~the story so far~

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~the story so far~

Post by itwasmeDio on Wed Feb 24, 2016 11:24 pm

1) Tarja and Rheoc were traveling in the forest when a black portal surrounded by blue flames appeared, and they were hyped because black portals don't just appear every day, and walked into it.
Zyro was in a bar and everything froze and became black and white, and when she opened the door to leave it was completely black and surrounded by the blue flames. She went to get her supplies and a light and walked through it.
Evan was at the rented home in the city and there was a knock at the door. When he opened the door, DM was there and told him to get his things and follow him.
Valanthe was in her room and slightly drunk when a raven with a scroll started trying to get through her window. She let it in, took the scroll, and it flew away. When she looked up the wall was the blue flame void and she stuck her head in. She saw all of us in a nice house, pulled her head out and grabbed her stuff, then joined us.
DM appeared and told us that we were each chosen for a mission to stop a spreading darkness and he had high hopes for us. We then "fell" into a forest, fought some bandits, and found a sketchy town that apparently no longer had a name. We briefly introduced ourselves to each other and Rheoc told everyone that Tarja is a warlock because he doesn't know what warlocks are and that you probably shouldn't announce that. We ended up in an equally-sketchy tavern and gave fake names as the members of One Direction. Zyro talked to a suspicious-looking man playing chess in the corner about what sounded to us who don't know thieves' cant like aggressive grocery shopping, and ended as we went to sleep in the inn.


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Re: ~the story so far~

Post by itwasmeDio on Wed Feb 24, 2016 11:24 pm

2) During breakfast at the tavern, a strange man appeared out of nowhere and left. We sent Zyro to follow him alone, but she lost him. She tried to follow some sketchy people leaving town and found an invisible wall she couldn't pass through.
Then we all went to check out the shops and found a sketchy magic shop. Val could tell literally everything was cursed except one ring, which Zyro bought and turned out to be a ring of +1 insight.
When most of us left, Val and Tarja stayed in the shop and tried to find out where the man had gotten all this cursed stuff without telling him outright that it was cursed. They tried to get him to pick up a wand and he wouldn't, then they decided to buy the wand but with a cloth around it so no one had to touch it directly.
We went to check out the weird wall, and saw the man from before walking along the perimeter doing something to the wall. We approached him and asked him what was going on and he told us we were in a dream world. Surprisingly, the stuff we got from there was all real. Tarja and Val pulled out the wand and it was EXTREMELY real, and very very bad. Val really wanted to know what would happen if she touched it, even though the wizard said words couldn't explain it, so he showed her telepathically instead and she was shaken and dropped the box with the wand. The wizard and Evan destroyed it.
Tarja realized what could be done to kick us out of the dream world and told the wizard, but that we might not like where we would wake up. The wizard did what she suggested and got us out as we all disappeared in confetti and child voices going "yay!"
Unfortunately we woke up in a dark room in a labyrinth ooc we're calling the House of Leaves. There were spooky sounds coming from one direction so we went the other way, wandering about a little. When Rheoc activated a trap and was hit by an arrow, Zyro was able to tell it was a Drow-made trap. Most of the skeletons we'd been passing were human, with one elf.
We fought and killed a minotaur skeleton and found a room that looked like bad experiments involving torture had been carried out there. Through that room we found a study with vials of blood that had since dried, and a desk Rheoc opened. There was a journal we all saw that we couldn't read much of, but gathered that someone was doing experiments in immortality and mixing the blood of different races. There was also a scroll of pedigree that we couldn't really make out and had a seal we couldn't recognize but knew was elven nobility. Rheoc also found a key with a sapphire in it and a wedding band.
In a hallway we noticed our shadows were acting weird so Val yelled at them and they were actually living shadows that we did a pretty crappy job at fighting (Rheoc almost Freaking Died) but survived. We ended with us climbing stairs out of the dungeon.


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Re: ~the story so far~

Post by itwasmeDio on Wed Feb 24, 2016 11:24 pm

3) We emerged from the dungeon in a forest and could tell it was early afternoon, except for Tarja who wanted to fight the strange glowing orb in the sky. We sent Zyro scouting in one direction and she returned to tell us the forest seemed to get thicker, so we started in the other direction.
We decided to stop and picnic on the way and Evan asked Valanthe where she learned about magic. She told us about her brother Varric and how he was killed, and that she Got Good in order to avenge him.
We continued in the same direction and heard a scary big cat-like roar and picked up the pace, and ended up running out of the forest to see an elven city. The roar came again from behind us so we decided to keep running until we were closer. It turns out we were in Tal'Goroth, the elf colony, on an entirely different continent.
We went to the largest very nice inn and Val got weird with the bartender, an argonian named Kraith, by touching his face. She also chugged some elven wine and immediately passed out, which freaked Kraith out but got us a free room. Tarja stayed and took care of Val while Rheoc, Evan, and Zyro went shopping for more supplies.
When we got back and Val was awake and reasonably okay, we decided to go to the royal library in order to find information about the letter of pedigree we found in the House of Leaves. Val, Tarja, and Zyro found that the seal didn't match any on record, Evan found some records of noble elves that could possibly match that had all been missing for a long time and presumed dead, and Rheoc found history and lore about the Chaos Wastes and the Ruins of Languard which were destroyed in some  kind of magical disaster, the forest of Taurebein where we had come from which were really dangerous and we probably shouldn't've been able to just picnic and walk through like we did, and Lohch'tol, the volcanic island which is the homeland of some of the tieflings.
Rheoc performed in the tavern and even though his having Val sing with him didn't go well at all, his scary storytelling was a hit. Zyro came back downstairs without her mask on which was a Bad Idea because her brand marking her as a criminal caught some unwanted attention. She left on her own and was abducted by hooded and masked figures. Later Rheoc was concerned about her being missing and we all went to look for her and ALSO got abducted by the same group. We woke up tied up in the same room with Zyro.
While we were discussing where we were and what to do (and who's fault this was), there was a commotion and Kraith burst through the door. He got us untied but then got hit by a thrown dagger, though he wasn't killed by it. We tried to fight back against the assassins and not die but they were called away by someone and before leaving they threw another dagger, hitting and actually killing Kraith.


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Re: ~the story so far~

Post by itwasmeDio on Wed Feb 24, 2016 11:24 pm

4) DM appeared in white armor to tell us he can't leave us alone for five minutes and absorb Kraith into an orb. He told us we were on a ship but it was still in port, and the assassins had planned to sell us all into slavery, but they were dead now. We asked where we needed to go now, and he said we would know when we saw it before leaving, after which we realized Zyro was missing.

There was an important discussion going on and we intimidated the guard into letting us in even though we were really unintimidating individually and looked more like a boy band. Inside, Gandalf and the noble leader guy were discussing the incoming orc army.

We fought an entire army of orcs by burning the ground with alcohol, and tira joined the battle! Her superiors were the ones to save the day and then Lady Blackraven scolded her for not listening because she was just supposed to track the orcs and report back. The other dragon knights flew away on their dragons and Tira needed to get back to her post on the wall in Hiralia as soon as possible.

There was a celebration of our victory afterwards, during which Valanthe asked for the mortalities, horses, and someone to watch the tavern.


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Re: ~the story so far~

Post by itwasmeDio on Wed Feb 24, 2016 11:25 pm

5) We left for Hiralia and set up a bit away from the forest, but then we heard a displacer beast from the forest and decided to move even further away. While leaving, Evan saw eyes in the forest and yelled that we needed to go right now immediately because it was here and we all ran VERY far away before stopping and setting up again.

While walking through the forest we heard a scream but decided to avoid rather than follow it. We found a withered tree with an entrance leading underground, and Aeris couldn't fit so he stayed guarding the entrance.

We found a mage in the sectet passage that was wearing a robe with the royal icon on it, who killed Gandolf. While Tarja was attacking him in his gated-off area with Hunger of Hadar, Val saw that it was Varric. rheoc freaking stabbed Varric twice. and this is after pushing val into a pit of acid. Varric did tell Val their family needed to be stopped, and was taken away by a person in a cloak who teleported there and away.


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Re: ~the story so far~

Post by itwasmeDio on Wed Feb 24, 2016 11:26 pm

6) When we woke up and left the dungeon, Zyro was missing again. Evan tried to contact her via Sending, but the messages were being blocked somehow. We got real excited and left without our horses for like 30 minutes before realizing it and going back for them. The extra horse that was carrying no supplies was also missing.
We fought a bronze-colored mantis-cockroach underground-living thing and some spiders and for the first time, Tarja was actually hit by an enemy. After the fight, a kitten came out of the forest and went up to Rheoc who has now adopted her and named her Misty. She lives in his armor and he takes care of her.
We stopped for camp and Val confronted Rheoc about the whole brother-stabbing thing, and the argument ended with her storming off into the woods a bit and being grabbed by a centaur. The centaur tribe surrounded us, said they had been tracking us, and asked us what we were doing in their part of the woods. We'd been in that dungeon for four days and were really, really lost (thanks Tira). We apologized and said we were just trying to get Tira home, and Tira agreed to ask her superiors to stop going into their territory in the woods in exchange for leading us through their territory, since that would also get us out of it faster. Valanthe told them to contact her if they needed to, and was randomly inspired to get Evan to bless one of their messenger owls so it could find us when it needed to.
We traveled with the centaurs for about a week, then the rest of the way through the forest (with a better sense of direction) for another week, before finally getting out of the forest, crossing some really unnaturally cold snowy mountains, and making it to Hiralia. While on the way to report to Lady Blackraven, we saw the Raven Knights rushing through the gate, and when the group approached the Blackravens' office we heard them talking urgently about a darkness that was moving inland and encroaching on the kingdom, and it seemed someone else may have found the secret to taming dragons.
Tira brought us in as well when reporting, and she apologized to Lady Blackraven for how long it took and told her about the centaurs and how they were tracking us and asked for them to stop entering their territory (but also said she only promised she would ask them about it and not that they would actually stop). Rheoc mentioned there was a darkness in the forest and we encountered an elf necromancer and that although we were able to clear the unnatural fog and darkness, the necromancer was taken away by someone, and Evan said that the necromancer had the elven royal symbol on his robes. Rheoc and Val said he at least seemed to be against what the royal family was doing, and when Lady Blackraven was like "and you didn't hear any of this?" to Tira, Tarja tried to convince her Tira was just real busy and distracted.
We went to the mead hall because Rheoc wanted to learn about the lore of the area, and Val befriended basically everyone by barging in, saying the party's here, responding to a threatening Hiralian by saying yes, she is the party, and buying everyone the first round of drinks. Rheoc learned about a story of the war between humans and dragons, and how an elf mage and a human warrior killed a powerful black wyrm who was so terrible his name was erased from history.
Evan asked Tira about the Blackravens and how the tradition of the Dragon Knights began - after a long war with the dragons, the dragons came to respect humans as their equals and formed an alliance that included the Dragon Knights making pacts with dragons.
When asked about what she studied in college, Tarja said 'oh, stuff', and that she had to leave because she killed a man. She told Val the details telepathically, but Rheoc was able to "overhear" and Was Not Happy.
Val asked Evan about his past since he was asking everyone else and he told them about how his family was killed by elf extremists on the boarder between the elf and tiefling kingdoms, while they yelled about the tieflings in the troupe "smuggling slaves", and how a priest found him, and about the structure of the church of DM (mostly that there isn't much of one).
Rheoc asked Evan if he'd ever been in the city Tarja and him had lived in, and he said he had, so Rheoc asked he knew the name "Khayin" and Evan said he did not and asked who that person was to him. Rheoc didn't want to talk about it and Val asked if it was an ex-lover, and when Rheoc said he didn't want to talk about it again she said "he IS an ex-lover!"
Rheoc examined the wedding ring he found in the House of Leaves which didn't really help the assumption that it was a romance gone Wrong.
We all followed Tira back and even though she showed us the guest rooms we followed her to her room anyways, and ended going to sleep on her floor.


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Re: ~the story so far~

Post by itwasmeDio on Wed Feb 24, 2016 11:26 pm

7) Zyro reappeared in the tavern with us soaked and shaken, pulled from the formed-about-a-month-ago dream plane by being stabbed by DM. She didn't want to talk about it and didn't tell us what happened.
Tira was summoned by Lady Annelle Blackraven and told her new assignment was to become an adventurer, and given a scroll to open in private from the Blackravens.
It's fall now, we left and went to Anvard, it was market day. We went to the tavern and got rooms for the night, then went to the adventurer's guild and registered as "The Crystal Gems". Valanthe just signed as "Val" to be safe. We all got copper capes to match Tira's from DM, including Misty the cat.
When we went to check the bounty missions, there was wanted poster for a man that looks exactly like Evan who had a very high bounty and is wanted for murder, among other things, and Rheoc told us about his ex, Khayin, saying he took everything from him.
Zyro gave Evan her mask, and when we got back to the tavern, Valanthe proposed to Tarja with a gold ring inlaid with diamonds and a pearl. (<3)
Rheoc and Evan used Rheoc's disguise kit to cut Evan's hair, dye it dark brown, and give him fake facial hair, which was good because guards immediately came in with one of the wanted posters and talked to the bartender, saying someone had said they had seen someone who looked like that at the tavern. He said that he thought he saw someone like that with our group, but we told them we hadn't seen him and they left.
We went back to the adventurers' guild and took a mission to stop a witch in the swamp. The guy at the desk asked who the new guy was, and Evan "joined" again as "Peridot", and he asked about the person who was there before and we just said he was sick.
We went back to the tavern to eat and prepare, and Rheoc asked around for information about the witch. People were afraid at first but he persuaded them to talk, and the witch might be causing the disappearances. They said there is red mist in the swamp, the sound of wolves howling where there definitely shouldn't be wolves, and the witch turned one person into a newt (he got better). They think he probably uses necromancy magic.
We ended by getting prepared to leave in the morning.
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Re: ~the story so far~

Post by itwasmeDio on Thu Mar 10, 2016 1:24 am

8) Rheoc was missing from breakfast so Tarja and Valanthe went to check on him and found a note saying the cat was missing and he went to find her and to leave without him, that he would catch up to us. We got ready to leave once it stopped raining, with Evan leaving a note on the door to not bring the cat and Tira leaving another note that said he could bring the cat if he wants, and our planned path to the Blood Marsh, which was by following the river. After looking for Misty and before leaving town, Rheoc saw two shadowy figures looking at the tavern from the roof across from it, but they ducked away when he saw them. Rheoc reached us shortly after we stopped to eat and set up for the night. Zyro caught her sleeve on fire and had to jump into the river, but was able to play it off smoothly and convince everyone except Evan that it was on purpose. Tarja was the one who ended up starting the fire, and Rheoc cooked for everyone.
Tarja and Tira went to sleep early, and Zyro found the that the magically sealed box she found had somehow gotten into her pocket and pulled it out to examine and ask about it. It started to warm up while she was holding it, and she passed it off to Rheoc who upon examining it realized it was the Deck of Many Things, shrieked and dropped it, and then told us about the legends he'd heard of what it can do and how it works, but that the box seemed magically sealed shut. After Rheoc explained how it worked Evan suggested that maybe the reason it wouldn't open was because no one had said they would draw a card and asked to test it but Zyro wasn't letting anyone touch the deck.
Val took first watch and nothing interesting happened, but when she woke Zyro up and she was on watch she found it the box in her pocket again despite putting it back in her pack. She heard a telepathic voice calling to her from the box itself, telling her that he was trapped in the box with the cards by people that didn't agree with using it and asking her to hashtag Free Him, but she was having None Of It.
In the morning Rheoc did a less-good job of cooking food, and Evan told Tira and Tarja about the box of cards. Tira agreed that it sounded like a bad idea but Tarja said she thought it sounded interesting and would try it, but Rheoc changed her mind by asking if she would be willing to risk something happening and leaving Val behind.
We made it to the swamp and left our horses tied to the crowbar Zyro staked to the ground, with Aeris looking after them. Unfortunately that was the end of our survival-in-the-swamp smarts and we ended up separated in the fog, with Tarja, Val, and Evan in one group and Tira, Rheoc, and Zyro in the other. Tarja sent Pearl up to look for the others but she couldn't see them, so she asked her instead to try to see where the fog was the thickest so we could head towards the source. She was able to find that direction, and using Sending Evan told Rheoc to head where the fog was thicker, but Rheoc said he'd found where we should go and that the fog was thinning out, and Pearl was able to find them by Rheoc shooting sparks into the air. They ended up fighting alligators and actually did well. We were able to reunite by tying a rope to Pearl who followed Rheoc's sparks, and then make it to the source of the fog: a decrepit wooden mansion.
There were a lot of dead adventurers around the front of the house, and when Rheoc approached the door to look for traps he triggered one on the stairs of the porch, but was able to jump back from the actual arrow storm it caused. Tarja started looting the bodies and then everyone but Evan joined in. Collectively we found a diary in a language none of us could read, an ornate scabbard that belonged to the barkeep's son, an indecipherable map, and a doll with a note to a child. A loud voice then warned us to go away, and lightning shot down in front of us. Rheoc ran past the stair onto the porch and threw the door open (and off its hinges) with thaumaturgy, and everyone else followed more carefully by just skipping the step with the trap instead.
The inside of the mansion was obviously old and warn and also full of bugs, and we were able to tell the fog was probably coming from the top floor. The second floor had colored magic circles drawn on the walls, ceiling, and floor, which everyone but Evan could tell were Bad News. To prove the (incorrect) point that they were a harmless ruse he stepped into the circle on the floor and then felt it definitely WAS magical and probably bad and stepped back out. Everyone else, who was smart, sidled around the circle to the stairs but having already made a point to say it was harmless Evan walked through the blood circle instead. The only apparent effect was feeling really drained and not entirely whole after walking through it.
Rheoc was the first to climb the stairs to the third floor and found a boiling cauldron with no heat source and a corpse on a throne made of bones. The undead corpse "woke up" but only seemed to be able to move her head, and told us to leave. Rheoc asked if she was the witch and why she was doing these things, and she claimed she was only an alchemist and had been falsely accused of being a witch, and was trapped there. Rheoc and Val tried to to get her to answer questions about how this had happened and what was going on, and that they wanted to help if they could. Rheoc was able to at least get her to let us look around and do what we would in the room, and go back to "sleep". Rheoc, Tarja, Zyro, and Tira began examining the room, and Evan went to pray over the corpse to ask DM to free the trapped soul but Val stopped him, saying we should wait and ask if that was what she wanted. He lied and was able to convince her he would just try to wake her up to ask in that case. Rheoc dipped an arrow in the cauldron, which was where the fog was coming from, and found out it ate through things. Zyro and Val touched the walls and found out that doing so caused the walls to flash with color. Val thought this was fun and kept hitting the walls. Tarja, Val, and Rheoc could tell that there was a ward keeping the spirit trapped in the room as well as holding the house together.
DM took pity on the trapped soul and freed her, upon which her spirit left the corpse (which immediately fell apart) and thanked us for finally freeing her. We tried again to ask questions but she had been trapped so long she couldn't remember to answer any of them. She disappeared and the unnatural chill of the room was lessened, but the fog didn't stop and there was still something wrong and bad about the house. We went back to the second floor to look at the magic circles again, and Val slowly scraped off the chalk ones on the walls (which were in Dwarven script but weren't Dwarven). The circle on the ceiling had words in Draconic, and Rheoc told us the blood circle on the floor was written in Abyssal. Rheoc decided to write "love" in his own blood in Infernal, and the circle started smoking and then knocked the people still near it back, which was a defense against anyone trying to change the circle or use it without knowing how.
Rheoc suggested he push the cauldron over, which would destroy the house and the circle. Zyro tied a rope from the third floor window so he could use it to get down quickly after pushing the cauldron, but Rheoc did not take into account that he is not very strong and that it is a heavy cauldron. He yelled out the window for Tira to come back and help, but together they still couldn't push it over, so they yelled for Val to join too. Zyro tried to climb the rope to see what was going on but wasn't very good at it and gave up when she couldn't actually pull herself up. The three in the house were able to push the cauldron over, and it immediately began eating through the floor. Val rushed down the stairs and safely rolled under where the acid was starting to eat through the ceiling and pour down. Rheoc tried to go down the rope and fell instead, breaking his arm. Tira fell after him, but at least Rheoc was able to get away before she landed on him. Val sprinted out the front door just before the house collapsed, and surprisingly Rheoc and Tira weren't as hurt / dead as expected from falling that far. Evan healed everyone with Prayer of Healing which also mended Rheoc's broken arm, and the fog began to clear.
We searched the wreckage for anything that survived to prove we had been the ones to clear the fog and "stop" the "witch", and found various trinkets along with a Rod of Fire, which Tarja attuned to herself. We made it back to town, turned in the mission and claimed the reward, Rheoc gave the scabbard to the barkeep and Val asked if he knew anything about the doll and note, and somewhere just outside of town a cloaked and hooded figure with red eyes looked over the city...
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Re: ~the story so far~

Post by itwasmeDio on Tue Mar 15, 2016 3:54 pm

9) This played out like a two-part story because Evan and Rheoc decided to split the party because nothing bad ever comes of that. They discussed looking for Khayin together, deciding to leave separately and meeting up to try to look less suspicious.
Evan and Tira went to replenish rations while Rheoc left a note and most of the things he owned in Tarja's room next to the sleeping Valanthe. When Rheoc met Evan, he convinced Tira to go back alone with most of the rations while he and Rheoc "went to look for magic supplies," which actually meant Rheoc using prestidigitation to make a gold adventurers' guild plate and take the bounty mission for Khayin and the duo setting off to the last place he was seen, which was also the first time he was unable to actually get whatever he had come to steal.

Back in the tavern, Tira, Tarja, and Zyro overheard some dwarves talking about how this dwarven madness started after those people went after the King's Jewel. Tarja went over to ask them about what was going on and learned that they had found information that the Arkenstone was in a place in the mountains near the chaos wastes, and a group of dwarven adventurers had left to try to retrieve it. All of them disappeared except the runner they sent back, and afterwards, dwarves in the area started going mad.

Rheoc and Evan talked to the guards at the governor's mansion and were able to speak to the captain about what had happened, with Evan claiming the man was his estranged and missing brother. Looking at the map with pins and strings that tracked where Khayin had attacked, Rheoc was able to rearrange the connections into a vaguely familiar but unidentifiable shape. Rheoc and Evan further investigated the mansion and found the two most weakly-protected areas were a very high window in the tower and another window on the third floor, and then found a torn piece of cloth stuck in the third-floor hall window. They decided to stake out the hallway near the window, deducing that it was likely the man would come back soon because the guards were becoming weary.

Meanwhile, Tarja went to her room and found the note and things that Rheoc left, and came back down to declare Evan and Rheoc hadn't gone out for magic supplies, they were going after Khayin. Zyro was happy with the idea that the priest might die but Tarja told her they didn't have time for her to be petty and they had to go look for them. Unfortunately, Tira's ale had been poisoned, and since Tarja and Zyro hadn't been drinking they had to be knocked out in the classic "poisoned dart to the neck" manner.
They woke up tied up and left for dead in a sewer without any of their items or money. Zyro tried to dislocate her wrist to pull her hands out of the rope but only ended up being able to do the first half of that. Tarja called for Pearl to help bite through the ropes and was able to get free and untie everyone else. Fortunately Zyro was at least able to fix her wrist easily. They fought some rats in the sewer and found the exit, but they wanted their stuff back before leaving so they continued to search the sewers and found a door behind which they heard some people talking about how the boss was going to launch his attack tonight. Tarja kicked the door in and they killed the bandits handily and took their stuff back before heading back to the exit.

The window Rheoc was currently watching opened and closed, so Rheoc cast Faerie Fire in the area, revealing a man in a cloak, but it wasn't Khayin. Instead, surprisingly, it looked like Varric. After following after him and trying to stop him with non-damaging spells (Tasha's Hideous Laughter and Hold Person) and being attacked with an ice spell, Evan dashed past him to block his path. After "Varric" failed to stab Evan both in the opportunity attack his running past him incurred and the turn afterwards, Evan cast Guiding Bolt at Rheoc (and missed) before telling the man to let him help him. "Varric" tried to cast Fire Bolt at both Evan and Rheoc and in a beautiful turn of fate, got both a crit and a crit fail, knocking out Rheoc and killing himself at the same time. Dying revealed the mage to be an undead being that was probably animated by Varric and given part of Varric's own power. Evan took the cloak off the creature and looked out the window at the fight going on between mages in similar cloaks and the guards, and one cloaked figure running in through another door while the guards were busy with the large group, before healing Rheoc enough so that he was at least not dying and leaving him unconscious.
While running down the stars, Evan met the other hooded figure, who appeared to be the man they had been originally looking for. Evan pulled off his hood and addressed the other man as Dio, to which he said he no longer went by that name and was Khayin now. Evan asked why he was there and what he was doing, and Khayin answered that this city was more important and held more things than he could know. He said that he had been "enlightened" and that they had been committing random slaughter before telling Evan to get out of his way or he would make him get out of the way. Evan stepped aside but followed after Khayin, who tried to shove him down the stairs but only managed to knock him enough off-balance to get a head start.
DM contacted the unconscious Rheoc and brought him into a small realm, apologizing for what had happened. He had known Evan's nature but had hoped that by making him his cleric and having him travel with them, he would have a change of heart. He told Rheoc he had the choice between moving on to paradise or returning to the mortal realm, on the condition that he gave Evan the chance to redeem himself. Rheoc agreed to return, and upon waking up in the hallway immediately cast invisibility before Khayin and Evan came running down the hall. Rheoc followed after them as Khayin blasted apart the door to the tower.
Khayin ran through a hatch at the top of the tower, first just standing on it and then locking it, so Evan destroyed the wooden hatch with Scorching Ray and entered the top of the tower to find Khayin holding a scary-looking sword with screaming faces on it. Khayin warned that Evan didn't want to fight him while he was holding that, which Evan agreed to but asked what it was that had changed Khayin and made him like this. Khayin said that he was through being a pawn, and that "his" plans to "purify" the world meant that no one would survive, "not even us," and if he was going to die it would be for himself. He then said "Enjoy being a tool, Dio!" before putting on a cloak and disappearing, and was not revealed by Evan's attempt to cast Faerie Fire in the area.

When emerging from the sewers, Tira, Tarja, and Zyro found a group of bandits and could see some kind of great fight was going on. They attacked and killed some bandits, and Tarja killed a few more as the remaining bandits ran away. Zyro found the deck was once again in her pocket, but the box was no longer magically locked. The voice inside asked again for her to hashtag Free Him, and she decided to open the box and draw a one card. She drew the "Gem" card and a pile of gems worth 50,000 gp appeared before her, and she saw a humanoid figure appear, tell her that was the card he once drew, and thank her for finally freeing him.


Last edited by itwasmeDio on Fri Apr 08, 2016 10:53 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: ~the story so far~

Post by itwasmeDio on Mon Apr 04, 2016 1:27 am

10) Dis Course Leads to Madness (eventually)
Valanthe woke up to the sound of muffled distant loud booming, the cat and Rheoc's note next to her, and all of Rheoc's stuff nearby. She read the note and started grabbing everything, then changed her mind and just put on clothes and her armor, grabbed her stuff, and made a sling for the cat.
She ran out and towards the fighting to find Zyro trying to shove the jewelry into her bag and pockets. When Val asked what Zyro was doing, she said she was hiding her wedding gift, and asked if Val wanted the tiara or the crown. Val chose the tiara and put it away, and the duo met up with Tira and Tarja who were not far ahead in front of the burning governor's mansion. Val and Tarja went back to get Tarja's fire staff while Tira and Zyro helped the exhausted soldiers work to put out the fire. When Tarja and Val got back, they joined them.

In the tower, Khayin had cast invisibility and then fly on himself and escaped out the window. Dio ran down to try to follow after any retreating mages, with Rheoc getting out of the way in time to avoid being run into and then following after. Dio checked the place where Rheoc was left unconscious but just moved on after seeing he wasn't still there. When he ran out of the mansion still wearing the cloak he took from the not-Varric only Zyro recognized who it was, and she decided to yell "look, one of them is getting away!" Tira charged and with her lance but Dio yelled that it was him and pulled off the hood and she stopped short of actually stabbing him. Since all of the mages were dead and there was no one to follow, Dio ditched the mage cloak, and Rheoc, no longer invisible, came from the mansion. The group worked together to put out the remaining flames.
The gang returned to the tavern to crash. Zyro met with Tarja and asked her if she could store most of the jewelry in her pocket dimension with Pearl and keep it a secret, and Tarja accepted. Zyro also gave her the crown and told her it was a wedding gift. Meanwhile Rheoc met with Tira and told her to not freak out, but when he almost died in the mansion he actually did die and met with DM who told him Evan is evil, but also had him promise to give Evan the chance to redeem himself. Tira didn't really believe him, though.

Dio contacted Peleus and told him that the agent from [insert city name we can never remember here] going by Khayin was in Anvard and trying to take over. Peleus said they hadn't heard from him in years and he was assumed dead. When Dio described the magic sword with screaming faces that Khayin stole, Peleus hissed and told Dio to stop him at all costs, then asked if any of his teammates were recruitable. He said possibly, though at least one has sold her soul, and was told to try to recruit them.
At breakfast Dio told Rheoc that he hadn't been lying when he said Khayin was his brother, and Rheoc said he wouldn't tell anyone. Zyro came down and sat as far away as possible from the other two, and then Val was next and skipped down the stairs in her tiara. Dio asked where she got it and she said not to worry about it, then he asked if she should really be wearing it and convinced her to go put it back.
Once everyone was at the table, Dio suggested that Rheoc see if anyone else recognized that symbol that had looked vaguely familiar that the two of them couldn't identify. No one else did, but it took drawing the symbol on a napkin in porridge for Rheoc to realize what it was: an interdimensional gate that connects two points in the same plane. And even worse, it was the complete symbol, with the point at the governor's mansion being the final point needed.
Tarja mentioned she overheard some dwarves talking about the dwarven madness and recounted what she'd heard. The group (Dio especially) were reluctant to do anything about that particular issue/possible treasure hunting, however, for fear they might come back to a city that had been teleported away or something Very Bad teleported to the city. Rheoc said he didn't even know what Khayin had actually done to make the circle and asked Dio if he saw him do anything that might be related to it, and Dio said he just stole a magic sword and left. Val asked what the magic sword looked like so Dio told them it had screaming faces and as a researcher, Tarja knew that that particular sword was very old, and hadn't been used since when Languard was a place and not floating ruins, and was related to the chaos wastes (where, coincidentally, the corkscrew mines with the Arkenstone was). The dwarven madness had also started very soon after Khayin started doing things in Anvard, so with a possible connection established and an interdimensional gate being part of the problem, the gang decided to set out to the dwarven city and then by the library in Tal'Goroth for more information.

While walking the first day, Rheoc apologized to Tarja for leaving like that. Tarja said he was the only family she had and asked why he thought that would be okay, and Rheoc broke down and said it was his fault they had to flee before because he had told Khayin and he didn't want to ruin Tarja's life any more.

Setting up camp the first night, Zyro found the deck (no longer in a sealed box) in her pocket again and exasperatedly shoved it into her pack near the rest of everyone's things before going a bit away to eat on her own. Only Dio was paying attention to what happened, but Rheoc also noticed. Dio went to his own stuff, was able to take the deck from Zyro's pack without anyone noticing, and then left to "sleep".
When Zyro came back to the fire, Rheoc asked her if he had actually seen the Deck of Many Things, not in a box, and if she had drawn anything from it. She said she had, to free a human soul that was trapped in the box with the deck. Rheoc was concerned and asked what happened, and she said it gave her jewelry. Rheoc was like "oh. still, don't do that, it's dangerous."

Dio declared he was going to draw two cards (and Caleb was very concerned) and got a Sun Blade and enough experience to jump to level 9, but lost The Everything that wasn't the clothes he was wearing, the new magic sword, and his shield. Seeing some glow from Dio, Zyro ran over and checked her stuff and saw the deck was missing, then went to kill Dio and stabbed him in the back. Rather than fight back, Dio cast Geas to charm Zyro with the command that she fight for him, and then healed himself. Rheoc and Tarja knew the spell that was cast and Rheoc yelled that mind control is not okay, but before anything else could happen, DM appeared at the camp, knocking down everyone who had been standing and keeping everyone from being able to move, as well as dispelling the charm on Zyro.

DM scolded the three involved in this deck-touching incident. He told Zyro that even if something had been used by wrong means, it didn't warrant trying to kill a party member and she should remember their agreement. DM told Dio he knew who he served, "why?!" and that while Khayin's methods are wrong he was on the right track. Rheoc was reminded that DM had told him to give Evan the chance to redeem himself, and even if he wasn't directly responsible he could see what Zyro was doing and didn't do anything about it.
DM told Tarja that what she had heard from the dwarves was mostly true, but they got some things mixed up. The stone in the mine wasn't the Arkenstone, but the Forever Stone, and that it only works for someone who is dedicated to stamping out evil. He also said that he knew what Tarja wanted and that this would probably the best and most moral way to accomplish it.
Val asked about her brother Varric, and if she could save him. DM told her that when she thought he had originally died, it wasn't witches that killed him, and that the thing that he was now wasn't completely Varric and it would be difficult but not impossible to save him.
Zyro asked what the point of having a peaceful life after this if she was alone, and that the rest of the party wasn't going to stick around and she had no family or anyone else (Val said she considered Zyro family). She had tried to leave her life and become a better person, even going to a church to look for some great god, and it had only gotten her dragged into this. DM replied that he had said her life would be peaceful but nothing else about it, and she wouldn't have to be lonely. DM sure did say some things that led to "no more secrets" (and soon after, The Discourse), then disappeared.

We decided to draw straws to decide what order we would go in for the Truth Telling Session, and Zyro went first. She said that even though she acted like she didn't care about killing, she remembered every person she killed (she kept count, including during the actual campaign, i'm impressed) and her nightmares keep her awake. She also said that she keeps an amulet from her parents. Also, she really likes the cat.
Tira said that Aeris can speak common now, and Rheoc asked if Aeris liked us and he said everyone was okay, they're just people she adventures with. Aeris didn't want to take part in the truth-telling session but we also decided he probably didn't need to.
Tarja told Rheoc what being a warlock actually meant, that she had sold her soul for her cool powers, and Rheoc went off into the forest to scream and cry for a bit before crawling back.
Dio told the gang that Khayin is actually his brother, and he hadn't seen or heard from him in years and thought he was dead.
Rheoc told Dio that when he had been knocked out at the mansion he woken up, turned invisible, and followed him and he knew everything. When everyone was like "what does that even mean?" and "tell us what happened Rheoc", Rheoc added that Evan is evil and Dio said "what makes you say that?!" but then said Val had to go now.
Valanthe said that when she made her bargain to to get her powers she also sold her soul, but what was Rheoc talking about? Dio asked how she actually came into contact with Shar and Val said she had been looking into things and it was right after Varric had been killed, then asked how he knew it was Shar. He admitted he looked through their stuff like right after they met but was asking because he wondered if Shar had anything to do what happened to Varric. She said she wasn't sure but also what did Rheoc "know"? Had something happened?
Dio said that he had no idea what Rheoc "knew." He had confronted Khayin on the stairs and asked him what made him this way. Dio continued that he thinks Khayin is crazy, but that he had said that "we" were going to destroy the world, but he wasn't sure who he meant, if it was the followers of DM it would include all of the group by now. DM had said that Khayin was "on the right track," did that mean DM was going to destroy the world?

The gang finally went to sleep, and while Val was on watch a strange fog descended on the camp. The night passed without incident but as every was waking up the fog cleared and the party found they had been transported to just outside the Corkscrew Mines. (Finally!)
There was an outhouse near the mines that Val, Tarja, and Evan went to check out first, and when Val stepped in to examine the light coming from it, a giant purple worm came from underneath and swallowed the whole outhouse, Valanthe included. Tarja managed to damage it a lot, while Evan ran away and contributed a little more damage, but it escaped back underground and the swallowed Val Freaking Died.
Tarja wanted to follow the worm down the hole it left but was convinced to go through the normal mine entrance to get to the worm. She walked in but shortly stepped on a rune inscribed with dwarven letters and the entrance collapsed. She rolled further into the mine, and everyone else was trapped outside the rubble. Dio yelled to make sure she was okay, and she answered that she was but then continued walking further into the mines as the group said they would try to get to her.

Tarja walked into the mines until it branched out in three directions and tried to figure out which way would lead to the worm, but couldn't and just decided to start from the left and take the first safe-looking route, which also happened to be the left. Further in she entered a room that branched off to the left, with a hole in the wall with dwarven letters over it that read "SLIDE." She followed the instructions and slid down the slide into a room filled with lime dust.

The first Magic Thing from the mines was getting 3 questions answered but the only one that mattered was that it was possible for Val to be saved in the mines.

The gang outside managed to clear away enough rubble to enter the mines, but Tarja was missing. Dio used Sending to contact her and ask where she went, and she said she went left and down the slide. He told her to wait so they could meet up but she continued further anyways.
The rest of the group was able to get to the slide room and Rheoc screamed "Taaaaarjaaaa!" as he went down (and then hurt himself a little on the landing), and the whole group was caught up before she actually got anywhere.

Everyone fought lizard-man skeletons and some dwarf skeletons in the lime dust room, during which the magic of the mines made a small clockwork mouse that exploded at Dio.
The group then was able to get out to a different room with lots of dwarf skeletons including one "leader" with a diamond pickaxe chanting "finders keepers, finders keepers!" While fighting this next group of enemies, the magic surge brought Valanthe back to life and she appeared in glowing light with the rest of the gang! We finished off the dwarf skeletons, including the boss guy.
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Re: ~the story so far~

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