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#14372535 Jun 12, 2020 at 05:28 AM
65 Posts
"What would dos expect from Trolls but to use simplest of tactics? However, even Usstan was expecting illithid to have put up a better fight. For Usstan and most of dos it was simple matter to slaughter them." Ravillion stated as she glanced from each one to each one, eyes perhaps lingering on a certain one longer than the other.

"Regardless, Usstan agrees that should naut throw away caution. Undead are annoying foe and if indeed a lich or vampire could prove to be a tricky foe to permanently remove if is being smart and hiding recovery place somewhere else. As well, Tiefling better be hoping there actually /is/ a weapon designed to slay dragons in there." Ravillion said with a sharp glare pointed at no one in particular.
#14372639 Jun 12, 2020 at 08:29 AM
82 Posts
"For certain, be cautious, and not just about the undead..." Zau'lann said, thoughtful. "That cave-in. I wonder where the illithid ran to? To the Dar'ges outpost, to get help...? We have been told, they're the power around here. To a larger illithid colony? If so, they... they might just come back and even fight the Dar'ges outpost. Maybe they thought we were from there, haha."

Zau'lann nods. "For every action, a reaction. I have a feeling we've started tumbling a few stones down the rock face. Let's be ready for when it tumbles down on us, hm..."
#14372645 Jun 12, 2020 at 08:40 AM · Edited 5 months ago
63 Posts
"Think it likely brain-eaters would ally with white-hairs?" Miiq hissed, in a manner that most of his companions had come to recognise as scoffing. "More probable they went to see more of their kind, yes. Could become problem. But would not be surprised if brain-eaters don't care enough about this place to notice. Is little here to interest them."
#14372680 Jun 12, 2020 at 10:37 AM · Edited 5 months ago
71 Posts
Darsin wondered what exactly they would face in the Tomb of the Dark Lords. Clearly the place would be guarded by undead and probably a fair number of traps. He would have to consider both of those as he selected the blessings of fire. He would have to prepare for the worst and hope for the best.

//my notebook unexpectedly died at work this afternoon and I had to go out and buy a new one. I'm hoping to have everything up and running by game time tomorrow, but it depends on how good my internet connection proves to be for downloading and installing NWN and assorted stuff between now and then.

//update: Looks like I'll be good to go. I had a problem of lacking a key from GOG, but I used my Beamdog one and that seemed to do the trick.
#14372726 Jun 12, 2020 at 11:44 AM · Edited 5 months ago
Veteran DM
192 Posts
Session 5

+1650xp for full-party IC posting.

[EDIT: I was originally going to test my server hosting this week, but I remembered that shifting the server back to me would require a lot of shuffling of character files back and forth. Let's keep doing what we're doing with Vanya Mia hosting for now; I'll test my hosting capability when we get to the next campaign.]

#14373320 Jun 13, 2020 at 10:10 AM
Veteran DM
146 Posts
((Server is up.))
Old enough to know better, too old to care.
#14375443 Jun 17, 2020 at 06:26 AM
Veteran DM
146 Posts
Retreating to a private room, Tian'ith waits until the room has been carefully checked for the presence of small creatures and all are attentive then begins. As she speaks her voice holds no indication of dissembling or withholding information.

"The one wishing to meet us says his name is Zur'essik and he represents personages who wish to remain anonymous but who would like to see, as he termed it, some inconvenience offered to House Dar'ges." She looked at Zau'lann. "A position I already had reason to share which has increased following the conversation as it seems they have something he describes as a great treasure is being hidden there. He did know the precise nature of the treasure only it that belonged to my house." The flint in her eyes returned. "A house he declared defunct, which therefore makes it mine."

"He provided us with some further information which is pertinent," Tian'ith continued. "The outpost is run by the proteges of the House Dar'ges spymistress, a female by the name of Vemelrie and information which in no way lessens my interest. Two sisters, Chelya and Lestra, a weaponmaster and a shadowdancer and each accomplished in their field. Zur'essik's contacts want the two dead, the treasure stolen and the outpost weakened."

"What he also offered was information on the layout of the compound and a way to facilitate entry into the outpost covertly." The drow gave a thin smile at the description. "We approach the outpost but instead of going to the gates we veer right where there is a side-canyon containing a secret passage. There is a guardian there but Zur'essik's contacts do not know its exact nature." She pursed her lips in irritation at that but continued.

"This leads to the upper tier behind a warded fence that separates it from the rest of the outpost, and near a temple where a key to the residential tower can be found in the possession of the high priestess. The gates to the tower cannot be forced. The sisters dwell within with their personal retainers. The opposition is not believed to be huge numbers but is likely to consist of their house warmaster and a small force of elite warriors"

"However," she rubbed her chin a little thoughtfully, "Zur'essik said that this only works if you leave no witnesses and advised that we hit the temple and the tower without raising an alert. There are more soldiers in the lower tier and at the gate which might cause a significant problem if they mobilise, and while I personally would wish to press the assault further without a means of assessing their numbers or skills I can only accept that as sensible. There are sentries on the upper tier but if they can be removed quietly we will have some time before the guards are changed. We escape by the same route." Tian'ith gestured with a hand to indicate her next was an obvious one. "It is certain that we must not be followed."

"You should know that I have already accepted," Tian'ith stated calmly. "As we were already contemplating the action, which to my point of view it was already necessary as a way of securing our interests in this location, what he offered was merely additional incentive. However I expect all of you are interested in the reward you will receive if we move as a group." As she spoke Tian'ith looked from face to face, obviously accepting this was to be expected. "These contacts have no interest in what is recovered from the outpost. Zur'essik told us the sisters are equipped with several very powerful magic items and his contacts also offer a set of magically imbued bracers in addition to what we recover on our return, provided we are not followed." Making the same gesture of considering something obvious again Tian'ith continued.

"I personally see no reason to differ from the approach we have followed so far. Specific items of use to be taken by those who benefit most." Her tone was firm as she continued. "The only thing I reserve is what belongs to me. Any we cannot or do not wish to use to be sold and the profits divided equally, though the giant may require removing should we attempt to do so in town. He's a mercenary paid by the Dar'ges and might attempt to intervene if any are recognised." She smiled thinly. "Personally I see no problem with that."

"I do not expect this will be easy. Naturally I too have some concerns with respect to gaps in the information and ,the potential for betrayal," Tian'ith said checking each face again. "Now though I expect you may wish to ask questions."

((Huge info dump IC of what was said. If there are questions I'll try and answer them IC but ooc fact wise most of what I know is in there.))
Old enough to know better, too old to care.
#14375731 Jun 17, 2020 at 05:29 PM
89 Posts
Vot did his best to pay attention to the long report of the conversation. The drow didn't often spill details like this, so Vot was taking it as a sign of... respect? Trust? Something like that, maybe. Anyway, drow don't just get chatty unless it's important stuff.

"Sure sure, I didn't come down here to say 'no' to the first actual job worth a damn. Buuut, I think we've learned over our time together that quiet is not a thing the whole of us Hard and fast? Maybe. These are drow though, so they aint gonna be easy pickings like those softy humans in the fort before.

So, to summarize the... ideal series of events in the uh 'operation,'
things should go like this:

One- We get in the secret passage and take out whatever guardian is waiting there.

Two- We come out behind the walls and near a temple where we can kill a high priestess for her key.

Three- Use that key to open the tower where the ultimate targets, a weapons master and a... shadows... master live. Kill em all dead, leave no witnesses.

You get your thing, we get loot.

That about cover it? There's not much we can plan for without any more details. Not that planning often helps us that much anyway."
#14375778 Jun 17, 2020 at 09:50 PM · Edited 5 months ago
83 Posts
The group had found a way around the rockslide.

Back in the "village", the Drows went to a secret meeting with one of their kind while the others stayed in the main hall drinking and casually chatting or went to the room to rest.

Nothing significant happened after the cleansing of the illiquid outpost except the encounter with the Night Lord, or Dark Lord or whatever that ancient powerful undead named himself.

It started the usual way with swords. The undead guardians trying to stop the group did little, merely slowing them down. The Undead Lord had his elite guards near him. Taking down that group could have proven difficult if not impossible. Polite words were exchanged. The Lord must have had spies or a special power allowing him to know about them and their capabilities. He offered a duel and Vot seemed eager to step forward and fight but the talks continued and surprisingly he gave the sword for free. It had something to do with drow factions and apparently our drows were not on the wrong side.

"Er you mean do that drow attack now? Is there a deadline set? Or do we have time to perhaps to... How to put it? Do easier things first?"

// Btw Dark Lord is the name of my AD&D 1E Fighter 8/Thief 9/Bard 18 a.k.a. the King of Thieves in Greyhawk who was known to be able to locate and recover almost any object of value. After completing Labours put before him by Zeus himself he was given a unique ring and was elevated to the rank of Hero. //
#14375838 Jun 18, 2020 at 02:55 AM
Veteran DM
146 Posts
"Hmm," Tian 'ith acknowledges with an accompanying smile and small nod as Vot gives his version of the task. "Succinctly put. Who needs the politics?" She also nods a little but with a mildly puzzled frown when Gog asks his question.

"They may leave or move what I seek, and if they do the opportunity will pass so Xas, we move immediately. But I am at a loss to decide what 'easier' things we could do unless someone is aware of a task that I am not."
Old enough to know better, too old to care.
#14376228 Jun 18, 2020 at 11:38 PM
71 Posts
A secret entrance is likely to have some magical wards and alarms, so we will need to be particularly careful on our way in. Taking out a high priestess covertly will be challenging I think. If we knew her routine, that would make it much easier. I suppose a sleeping cycle assault would be best, assuming she has a predictable one. In any case, I can add some silence blessings to aid our stealth efforts, if you feel that would be helpful.
#14376370 Jun 19, 2020 at 03:29 AM
65 Posts
"Easy. Nau such thing as Easy and Best way. Unless are thinking Dragon is easier, xas? That goal is more in line with Usstan's desires, but Usstan is willing to... compromise and... aid Tian'ith in reclaiming what rightfully belongs to her." Ravillion says with a pointed look towards Gog.

"The priest brings up a good idea as well. Silence affects an area around one dos cast upon, xas? Means can murder sentries without letting out even single scream. As for sleeping cycle is doubtful to work. Would have sentries and guards on rotating shifts, plus we nau have to sleep anywhere near as long as the rest of dos do. Regardless, they will make for good practice."
#14376477 Jun 19, 2020 at 07:02 AM
63 Posts
Miiq listened to the deliberations in silence, save for the occasional hiss.

He did not like this renewed focus on matters that were of particular interest to the Drow. It seemed to him the clearest threat to their already-strained partnership. If the drow were to get what they want - a return to their former status and influence - then what need would they have for the rest of them, save as potential servants or hirelings? Vot and Darsin might be agreeable to such an arrangement, but Miiq most certainly was not.

And yet, it seemed senseless to fight against the tide. That would bring unfortunate complications all its own - complications which might well end with him stranded on the group's fringes.

No. Better to bide his time, and await an opportunity to amass power of his own.

"Good sentries will be alarmed by unnatural silence," the little kobold said, pretending that his thoughts were mostly on the tactics proposed. "Will still have to move fast. Can cloak rest of us with magic if needed, but most of talents more useful when things become... loud. Am certain they will."
#14376480 Jun 19, 2020 at 07:06 AM
82 Posts
"... and something that ought to be added..." Zaulann added, indeed. "Once we do this, there's very little chance of turning back. We'll have made some dangerous foes. I've... heard of this Spymistress, the one called Velmerie. Old, but very good - that was what I heard people say of her. One of the pillars of House Dar'ges's ongoing survival."

He nods. "It'll possibly be worth it, of course... It's somewhat possible that there's no treasure at all and that we're walking into a trap, haha. But it's wholly believable that there would be forces in the area that want that House to fall, they've overcome more than one House in their time. If there's treasure significant enough to store in secret, and it's quite possible there is, then it'll be quite something." He nods. "They're nothing if not wealthy."
#14376703 Jun 19, 2020 at 02:32 PM
Veteran DM
192 Posts
Session 6

+1650xp for full-party IC posting.
#14377028 Jun 20, 2020 at 10:02 AM
Veteran DM
146 Posts
((Server up, usual details.))
Old enough to know better, too old to care.
#14379614 Jun 24, 2020 at 11:30 PM
83 Posts
Unwilling Soulmates

The baby dragon "Red" was happy to follow this group of Adventurers in this place called The Underdark. Sometimes there was a bat or a little flying demon with them. There was a fellow called Darsin, a fire priest and the little dragon was eager to fly not far from him. There was also Miiq the kobold who had some arcane "fire power".

"Mino" was trying his best to keep up with the group. Despite his strength and agility he was no match for someone like Vot. Also more than once the others insulted him, "cow" or "goblin" where words they used. Perhaps it was time for him to return to the maze, challenge the king and take his place...

Drazz (sometimes called Drazzt) was a drow hunter spending most of his time tracking other drows who had lost their way. Some of them decided to worship false Deities other betrayed their houses and fled as far as the surface. Some even ventured to alternate worlds or plans. Drazz followed their tracks killed them and kept one of their ear as trophy. He did that until he met his demise...

They were other souls trapped in that little body, a kobold who went too close or to far into the Temple of Flame and a lizard Slaver who got killed by a red wizard.

Unbelievable the group had managed to infiltrate the Drow stronghold, kill everything and loot the place.
They returned to the village to try to trade before leaving for good.

// BTW drow, kobold and "Ancient" Lizard seems equally good although they have their own plus/minuses.
Let me know if you have a preference (e.g. the Drows may or may not welcome another drow, Miiq may or may not welcome another kobold...)
#14379928 Jun 25, 2020 at 12:32 PM · Edited 5 months ago
Veteran DM
146 Posts
It was her fault. Not in the way that Baltana had believed but none the less Tian'ith knew that to a degree at least her sister had been right. Because there must have been a spy, and she had not been paying attention.

They'd come through the tunnels Baltana had said. She'd not known until then. She'd been organising the household guard in the defense of the courtyard and apartments as was her duty but it explained how none survived. Entering through the tunnels that would have been the escape route for her Mother and sisters together with their elite guard and senior priestesses. The core of the household gone. The death of a house.

The alliance had been a lie, doubtless to obtain information, and her mother had fallen for the ruse. Then and since Tian'ith assumed taking her away from direct command and assigning her as liaison to be an enforced schooling in politics following the death of her elder sister and resulting increased 'importance'. Perhaps that had truly been her mother's intention but where did the idea originate? It took her away from a role where she would have been monitoring disposition of forces and would certainly have noticed a change of target. Was it whispered and suggested by someone who wanted her out of the way?

As Tian'ith lay there restless she knew she should accept what Zau'lann said, that there was no blame for that very reason. They'd even speculated upon being a sacrifices and each day she'd been more convinced that their assignation would be interrupted by assassins and give their houses an excuse to move. But the truth was she'd become distracted by their liaison. The first and only time she ever truly valued someone else above herself.

Even now as an exile, her house gone, she didn't regret that feeling. Nor regret that he took steps to ensure they survived. Part of her still wanted to retreat and simply live. But not enough, not now. Not after she had seen her sister's fate.

No, she did not regret that she survived but others, as many as she could manage, were going to regret that she had. However lying there another thought surfaced, one that wouldn't go away and she voiced it softly to Zau'lann as he lay beside her.

"Might my mother be alive too?"

((With some parties Gog's shifting would be funny but IC this party does not have a sense of humour. Tian'ith would be angered if he became a drow, particularly after the drider incident, and even if she didn't try to kill him would certainly not want him around any longer. Particularly with the background you described in your post.

I can't speak for the others but I'm fairly certain their characters would do the same. If you're prepared to accept a very negative IC reaction from the majority of the party by taking their racial form then so be it but if you want the party to function going forward I don't think it a good choice.
Old enough to know better, too old to care.
#14379948 Jun 25, 2020 at 01:21 PM
89 Posts
It all went surprisingly well... if you didn't really care that it was all some kind of a trap and the drow didn't get an 'artifact' so much as a maimed, half dead, mopey drow that was gonna die anyway. But Vot got his stuff, so as far as he was concerned, total success.

Alright, call it almost total success after the whole they know we did it thing. Maybe Zau was right, maybe Vot was easy to please. Well, it would work out. Probably. And if things looked like they might go bad, he could always bail. Not that he was even considering it. This group still had something great to do.

Looks like they were going to start with slaying a damn dragon.

Well, at least the fire temple facilitated grilled roth sandwiches.
#14380235 Jun 26, 2020 at 03:30 AM
65 Posts
It was almost dreamlike the way their assault had gone. No alarms raised, no locks or traps beyond their abilities, no foe beyond their strength. They made quick and silent work of the sentries and infiltrated the tower with relative ease. They even murdered the sisters and reclaimed their wealth without much trouble.

So of course it was all planned ahead of time by a long time foe of that woman's pet lover. That... Spymistress had planned it all and watched from safety as her own daughters will slain, likely a test for her daughters which they failed horribly. And then there was the matter of the 'treasure'. That Spymistress had kept that woman alive all these years and tortured her just to torture Tian'ith on the off-chance they ever met again... Admirable almost.

Regardless however, this brought complications beyond the dead weight of a useless cripple. While they could pretend they were unnoticed before now they had no choice but to accept they were being watched and tracked, which meant it was time to leave this dump. And all that would take was stomping an over-sized lizard. And perhaps one other thing.

"Is already decided are naut returning... so golem and spire, best chance to remove it and inspect, xas?"