Friday, November 11, 2011

Devereaux's House And The Gem

As the party stands together sorting out their mind-sets and considering what's just gone on in the last hour, with the house well in sight, they piece together bit by bit the realization that knowledge of the gem will not simply let them go.  There is a clear understanding that they have not been able to keep themselves from thinking about the gem since arriving.  During their conversation, they find themselves continuously talking about the gem.  With a great clarity, they feel a foreknowledge that sleep will be impossible without possessing the gem.  They must have it.  They cannot leave this place until they do.

While that prospect is frightening, it remains the fact of the matter.  They may be able to resist for a time, but sooner or later they will have to go get the thing ... no matter what consequences that brings.  Each member of the party understands this.  Each member cannot change it.

Devereaux's house stands there.  The weather is unchanged.  Only now the overcast conditions seem dreadful and foreboding.  The moderate breeze that felt good on the ride up now seems to sting the skin with bits of sand, threatening to drive a man mad.  The temperature that was pleasant before now seems thick and cloying in the player's throats.

All about seems hateful and ugly.  And each companion looks at one another with doubt, irritation and fear.

168 comments:

Nine-toes said...

"So... it seems we're going back to the house. I propose that I climb the roof and have a look at the crawl space the old man is hiding in. After I've surveyed the area, I'll drop the rope down and let the rest of you up."

Ninetoes runs back towards the house as fast as he can

Nine-toes said...

(OOC - Fine, if I'm crazed for the gem, I'll do crazed for the gem. Race you all there! Heh.)

Ahmet said...

As Ninetoes starts running toward the house (and the gem), Ahmet raises the dagger, poised to throw it into his back. But thinks better of it -- as it will be difficult to get to the top of the house without him.

Dagger still in hand, he takes off after him.

Alexis said...

(OOC: no need to mock the situation)

Reading it as Nine-toes being anxious to end it, and his running as fast as he can far outdistancing the others in the party almost at once, Nine-toes finds himself on the roof. Action, Nine-toes?

Silvius Volundr said...

"Two hammers, one for each," thinks Silvius as he watches the giant Turk and the monk race off. "But then what of the priest?"

"Bah, later." He springs after the two, picking up his pack as he goes.

Nine-toes said...

(OOC - Sorry, wasn't trying to mock, just trying to get in the spirit of it. Maybe I'm not understanding the nature of the hold it has on me. If I am sure I have to have the gem, and I'm assuming I want it for myself, wouldn't I want to take measures to secure it for myself?

On second thought, I suppose if that were true, I wouldn't necessarily be overt in my pursuit, still knowing the others might kill me for the gem once I have it. This is a grey area for me. I did think it would be funny if I ran pel mel for the gem, but I wasn't trying to show you up or mock the situation. Just trying to have fun with it.)

Nine-toes said...

Having failed to notice a trap before, Ninetoes creeps to the light you described earlier. He attempts to be stealthy.

Alexis said...

The door mechanism is fairly clear and straight-forward.

Nine-toes said...

Can I see inside any of the windows?

Alexis said...

Of course. But you'll have to look.

Nine-toes said...

I look inside the window, again, trying to be stealthy.

Alexis said...

You can see a bed, a small chest, a large open chest with a few clothes and common things, a small table with a 2-foot-high, 18 inch diameter keg sitting on it, and little else.

The old man is on the bed, eyes closed. He seems to be sleeping ... but his breath is coming with great difficulty. You can see every few seconds him taking in a deep hitching breath, his face contorted with pain, his chest jerking as the breath is pulled it. Then it slowly is released again.

Ahmet will get to the front of the house, with Silvius not far behind.

Nine-toes said...

Am I able to lower the rope to my friends at this point?

Alexis said...

Yes, you can bring them up onto the roof.

Andrej said...

Andrej will simply sit cross-legged in the sand 100 yards or so from the cottage where the party sought to parley.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nWaHqp-vWBo

Nine-toes said...

I lower the rope to them. When I can see them I will put a finger to my lips (ssshh, but with no noise) Then point to the room and lay my head on my hands to indicate sleep.

Alexis said...

Andrej's unhappy so let's just move this along.

You are all on the roof.

Silvius Volundr said...

Silvius cuts in front of Ahmet and climbs the rope

Nine-toes said...

Once Silvius and Ahmet are on the roof, I gather up the rope. I point again toward the room, make a motion as though I'm tying up my hands, then sneak into the room.

Alexis said...

As you enter, the old man wakes up. His eyes roll and look at Nine-toes, but he himself seems unable to move.

He tries to speak, but it only comes as a whisper.

Ahmet said...

Ahmet ignores the old man and goes for the gem.

Andrej said...

(OOC: Not unhappy... just testing the bounds of "out-of-control"... please don't mistake my playful defiance for anger or feel the need to rush things along to appease what I assure you is not my petulance.

Plus, if these guys kill each other over the gem there will be less for me to do when I take it for myself. ;) )

Alexis said...

From that, I presume that Ahmet enters the room through the small door. No one and nothing stops him. He moves to the gem as Nine-toes stands indecisive, lifts the pot and breaks it open upon the floor.

The gem glistens; it is about the size of a walnut, and a rich, watery red in color.

That's as far as I'll judge "goes for" describes.

Nine-toes said...

Ninetoes moves to the bed, if he can.

"M. Devereaux, where is the map? For the sake of your soul and his, where are his bones buried?"

Ninetoes leans in to hear his words, still aware it may be a ruse.

Alexis said...

Andrej, as regards testing the boundaries, you feel no pain or anguish. Only the sort of emptiness for the gem you might have if you were hungry. You plan seems sound. Let me play it out.

Ahmet said...

Ahmet holds the gem tightly in his left hand, his dagger in his right, puts his back against the wall, and eyes the others suspiciously.

"I will hold onto this. It is safest with me, for I am the strongest."

Alexis said...

Nine-toes leans in and the old man simply says, "You've won. Take it. Take it and leave me in peace."

Nine-toes said...

Unwilling to confront Ahmet openly (as he only has 8 hp) Ninetoes turns his attention to the chest.

(OOC - I never said so, but may I presume to have collected my staff at some point.)

Alexis said...

At the moment Ahmet grasps the gem, and old man will cry out, and grasp his chest, and quite thoroughly die.

(OOC: Frustrating for me. The old man always only had one hit point. And the only thing that was ever keeping him alive was the gem. Climbing the ladder at the end was literally the last strength the old man had. You had gone through the last trap, and there was nothing left to stop you ... but then you stopped completely. I must have overdone it)

Alexis said...

Nope. Nine-toes staff is leaning against the house where he left it before climbing the chimney before.

Nine-toes said...

(OOC - I wanted back-up before I went after him, so I tried to bring in Andrej with me. Given the nature of the house, there was no guarantee there weren't more traps, or more crossbows)

Nine-toes said...

Ninetoes examines the chest, and if it does not appear to be trapped, attempts to open it.

Andrej said...

(OOC: I think what made me quit was the realization that the gem was not simply the object of a curse we could work to vanquish via spell, but rather a magic thing in and of itself... the old man and his traps I never feared... the gem, though, is another story...)

Silvius Volundr said...

Alexis, what can we feel now that Ahmet has the gem.

Alexis said...

The large chest is, as I said, open. It has a shirt, a cloak, two extra blankets, a wooden comb, and a fairly nice wooden mug.

The other, smaller chest has a padlock. Before Nine-toes can open it, you will both hear a voice in the room:

"AAAAhhhh ... that is much better!" A moment later, Lebeau materializes in the empty corner of the room, over the large chest (sitting on the lid). "Thank you. I was worried there for a moment."

Looking at Ahmet, the ghost will then say, "Don't do it."

This is in reference to Ahmet's thoughts to beat Nine-toes senseless and run ... thoughts Ahmet cannot help having.

Alexis said...

Silvius feels primarily the desire to enter the room and look at the gem.

Andrej said...

(OOC: I so want to stand up and rush to the house to see things resolved first-hand, but I suppose I made my bed and will sleep in it. Good luck fellas. If things get bad I'm sure I could hear you call for me...)

Ahmet said...

Ahmet's eyes widen at the sight of Lebeau. His grip tightens on the gem... and the dagger. He says nothing.

Nine-toes said...

"M. Lebeau! How can you be here? Did you play us false in some part of your report of the gem? We risked great evil in coming here. Please explain yourself!"

Silvius Volundr said...

Silvius enters the room, pausing to watch the drama unfold when he hears the warning to Ahmet.

Alexis said...

"I admit to being surprised myself," he says. "When you told Cuxhaven of the ship, a priest came and exorcised me from it, and I found myself free for the first time in seventy years. I was not latched onto any place or any thing ... I could roam the world. It was an exhilerating experience.

But I could not help wanting to see the grave of my murderer; and when I came here to find that he was still alive, I was amazed and stunned ... and settled in to haunt him immediately. I was just concocting some plan when you all showed up.

Thank you, I most appreciate you taking the effort to help me. I really did not think you would."

Nine-toes said...

"But you have damned us with your tale, sir, for now we are within the pull of the gem ourselves. Perhaps you did not do so intentionally, but even as I speak to you now I feel I am mad with the desire of the thing. I sense no curse. How shall we ever be free of this gem?"

Alexis said...

"Give it to me," says the ghost, holding out an ethereal hand towards Ahmet.

Ahmet said...

(OOC: Um... what do I want to do?)

Alexis said...

Ahmet may want to resist, but the ghost can always draw the Ahmet's mind (magic jar, right?) from his body, then restoring it after the gem is in the ghost's hand. This very uncomfortable idea, which is put there by the ghost, will probably end in Ahmet handing over the gem.

"Please forgive me my friends," says the ghost. "I wanted so badly to manifest ... but I found, once you had arrived, that I could not do so. The most I could do, by trial and error, was to push against any of you. I'm afraid that was me trying to push you back towards the old man, wanting you to see into his window that he was helpless. I probably frightened you terribly."

Silvius Volundr said...

"Give it not to the shade, Ahmet. Tis surely another trick."

Ahmet said...

Ahmet's flick from the ghost to Silvius, then back to the ghost. He stands there, confused. He's sure someone is trying to trick him... but he's not sure who.

He holds onto the gem.

Alexis said...

"Bif and Balderdash, my good sir!" says the ghost. "I'm not here to cheat you. I want nothing more than to have my bones put to rest!"

He softens. "I'm sorry, my friend Silvius, who has come to save me. I've met other ghosts these past three days who are the most awful of entities, but I have no evil in me. I do not come to take the gem, but to carry it in your stead. We may then bring it to the Archbishop in Engelke, and rid the world of it's magic forever."

Silvius Volundr said...

(OOC: if Silvius can see the sense in this he relents. As a playa (sic), I want to get this gem into the ghost's hands.)

Ahmet said...

Ahmet is unswayed.

"I'll hold onto it for now," he says evenly, eyes sliding to Silvius and Ninetoes.

Alexis said...

(OOC: I'm not telling your character what to do, so don't act as though I am. I didn't tell Ahmet to pick the gem up. I'm not telling him to keep holding it. If Silvius wants to give the gem to the ghost, say it to Ahmet. You've never lost any power to play your character)

Ahmet said...

(OOC: So, I'm not sure. Am I now being compelled by the ghost's implied threat of possession, or compelled by the gem to hang onto it?)

Ahmet said...

(OOC: Wait, you didn't tell me to pick the gem up? Um... there are probably about 10 references to my needing to possess it? If I wasn't compelled to pick it up, I wouldn't have picked it up. I wanted to leave the thing and go back to town.)

Alexis said...

(OOC: omg)

Andrej said...

(OOC: Andrej was able to sit in the sand without penalty, Ahmet, but had we all done that we wouldn't be this far. We're very close here, guys, we can probably wrap this up today.)

Ahmet said...

(OOC: Look, I'm all for wrapping this up and moving on. But I don't understand how this:

With a great clarity, they feel a foreknowledge that sleep will be impossible without possessing the gem. They must have it. They cannot leave this place until they do.

While that prospect is frightening, it remains the fact of the matter. They may be able to resist for a time, but sooner or later they will have to go get the thing ... no matter what consequences that brings. Each member of the party understands this. Each member cannot change it.


Becomes this?

I'm not telling your character what to do, so don't act as though I am. I didn't tell Ahmet to pick the gem up. I'm not telling him to keep holding it. If Silvius wants to give the gem to the ghost, say it to Ahmet. You've never lost any power to play your character.

I thought my character was compelled to possess the gem.)

Alexis said...

(OOC: We could if people would stop overexamining everything right into the ground.

Ahmet, unless I say, "Your character picks up the gem," you don't have to.

My saying "You really want the gem" is akin to the player saying, "I *will* go to the market today."

This gets really really really confusing when you start doing things thinking it's because I have a stake in you doing something. I don't)

Ahmet said...

(OOC: If Ahmet has the ability to give the gem to the ghost, Ahmet does so. I do not want it, but at this point I am confused as to what Ahmet wants to do.)

Ahmet said...

Ahmet gives the gem to the ghost. "I am glad to be rid of the accursed thing."

Silvius Volundr said...

Silvius pauses, sewing an opportunity that he missed earlier. "Wait Ahmet. You should part with the gem for the present. It shall tell us if thus ghost is real or not. May be an illusion."

Silvius smiles and nods for emphasis, knowing that the Turk is not that bright. Silvius believes the ghost is very real, but it may be easier to get the gem from it than the hulking brute who now possesses it.

Andrej said...

(OOC: I understand your perspective, Ahmet. I questioned it as well... but this is why I decided Andrej would sit in the sand. I wanted to know if the DM saying I really, really, really wanted it was the same as me having to go after it. The results were that I was not compelled beyond my will to resist. You guys played along with wanting it, which is cool, but it looks to me like we're still in the driver's seat. I'm not saying, by the way, that you have to hand it over... just that I think the choice is now yours.)

Nine-toes said...

"Perhaps this is best, friend Turk. M. Lebeau did not have to show himself, he could have let us murder each other for the gem if that was his wish. Let him carry it. He cannot rest until the world is free of it. Let us take what gain we can from the cursed thing, even if it only be to help this spirit rest."

Nine-toes said...

(OOC - I decided I truly wanted the gem when I found I couldn't leave if I wanted to. I felt sort of absovled of the consequences. I suppose that wasn't the most mature of responses in retrospect, but the idea of doing a 180 and running full tilt for the gem tickled me. I didn't mean to ruin anyone else's fun."

Alexis said...

Zero trust. That's all it is.

Andrej said...

(OOC: My fun isn't ruined, I accept and agree that yes I came here knowing there was a chance we'd be fucked with a bit over the gem and I don't think we should abandon any of what Alexis just laid out. All is good, is it not?)

Silvius Volundr said...

(OOC: silvius is throwing a hammer at Alexis. D20=11)

Ahmet said...

(OOC: It's all good, let's continue.)

Alexis said...

The ghost will take the gem, thank you, and leave.

Andrej said...

(OOC: Alexis, I think it more a matter of some of us just getting tangled up in trying to play it out properly and having fun with the idea that this gem was indeed fucking with us. When you point to a post on your other blog explaining that player's need to accept that sometimes they're not in control, you have to be ready for those players assuming they're not in control. I chose to test it, the others chose to go along... I don't believe its all quite as fouled up as you may think.)

Silvius Volundr said...

(OOC: did I hit?)

Alexis said...

Nine-toes will need to give me a % to open the smaller chest.

Alexis said...

(OOC: the "assuming" part is always a disaster, isn't it?)

Silvius Volundr said...

(OOC: Andrej summed it up well. I thought that part was fun, but I really didn't sense the boundaries, which was fine. When we had questions, they were answered and we could play the hand with the info we had. I'm good with all this!)

Nine-toes said...

% roll:

12

whoo hoo?

Alexis said...

(OOC: Please forgive me. I was told I was 'telling' people what to DO, which was the reason for Ahmet's protest, when what I was said was that the party 'wanted' to do this or that. The difference between wanting and doing is enormous)

Alexis said...

The chest is open.

It is three quarters filled with coins, gold and silver. You'd estimate one gold for every five silver coins, as a ratio.

Silvius Volundr said...

(OOC: outstanding. This may put Ahmet within spitting distance of 2nd level)

Silvius Volundr said...

"Ooh. Dump it out n' count it Ninetoes."

(OOC: not to belabor this Alexis, but all effects of the gem are gone now?)

Ahmet said...

(OOC: Score!)

Alexis said...

(OOC: no effects worth mentioning)

Andrej said...

Andrej, hearing no violence or calls from his friends and fearing the worse rises and approaches the cottage with his maces in his hands.

Fearing the worse, he clears a lump from his throat and calls out, "What goes on in there, friends."

Nine-toes said...

"All is well, Elder Brother, or at least a bit better, I hope." He lowers a rope down.

Nine-toes said...

Ninetoes brings Andrej up to speed.

Andrej said...

Andrej climbs up to join his companions. Somewhat unsure and no longer feeling the pull of the gem he seeks an explanation (which I suppose we can assume you give unless you guys want to screw with me) :)

Andrej said...

Up to speed, Andrej will assist in the counting of coins and will search the room for the other "magic" items detected when his spell was still active.

Andrej said...

Kill the "will" (I swear I didn't used to do this so much before). Andrej counts coins and makes a search of the room.

Alexis said...

Under the bedclothes Andrej will find a ring of five keys. Apart from the keg, this is all there is in the room.

There is a notable absence of food.

Andrej said...

I wondered about food when the prospect of laying siege to the cottage crossed my mind. I suppse the gem sustained him entirely.

Andrej examines the keys, looking for anything noteworthy. "Anybody opposed to examining the keg or the body of the recently departed?"

Nine-toes said...

"Not I," says Ninetoes, a bit despondent after the dissappearance of the ghost.

Alexis said...

There's nothing of any note on the body itself.

Andrej said...

"Have at it Nine-toes, or shall I?" Andrej indicates the keg first, surprised somewhat that his normally convivial companions have not already examined a keg, of all things.

Alexis said...

I mean, there's only his old clothing, shirt, loin cloth ... and no shoes of course.

Nine-toes said...

Ninetoes examines the keg, then opens it if he can.

Andrej said...

"Once we discover what the keg contains, I recommend we make a search of the cellar... these keys must go to something. After that, I will speak the words over the body and we shall find a lichyard for the burial."

Alexis said...

The keg feels about a third full, or about four pounds in weight. But try as he might, Nine-toes can find no bung hole and no way to open it. Even the spigot appears permanently 'grown' into the wood of the keg.

Andrej said...

Does the spigot otherwise work? Try opening it, Nine-toes.

Alexis, can we get a coin count?

Alexis said...

Upon examination, the keys all look exactly alike, and according to Nine-toes, appear as if they fit in no lock he's ever seen.

Nine-toes said...

"Near as I can tell, it will take an axe to open the keg. Though I hope whatever is in it does not get damaged."

Silvius Volundr said...

"Shouldn't be too hard to buy a drill in Engelke," Silvius reasons. "Let's take the keg with us."

"When you wish to go to the cellar, Andrej I shall accompany you."

Alexis said...

To save us all time, there's nothing of any note in the cellar, nor any idea of what the keys might be for.

There are 1,347 g.p., 8,243 s.p. and 221 c.p. in the chest.

Overall, not assigning any x.p. for the actual coin, for ridding the world of the gem and such other items, Nine-toes and Silvius may take 450 x.p. each, and Ahmet and Andrej may take 495 x.p. each, due to their gaining 10%.

I know for a fact that puts Andrej to 3rd.

Nine-toes said...

Split 4 ways, that's 336 gp, 2060 sp and 55 cp each.

That leaves 3 gp, 3 sp and 1 cp left over. I propose a gp to the three of you and I'll claim the 3 sp and 1 cp. Agreed?

Silvius Volundr said...

"More than fair, good monk."

Alexis said...

I need to see if everyone agrees.

James C. said...

Agreed. Fine enough work, gents, even if the climax of the thing was a bit frustrating to some. A very satisfying adventure, all told Alexis. I hope you're not dissuaded from offering this sort of challenge in the future. As with Serafina, I feel we'd be

Alexis, how should we proceed with Andrej leveling up? I forget what the specific blog-play mechanics were last time around.

That's it for me today, gents, though I'll check in tonight and over the weekend for any instructions Alexis.

Alexis said...

(OOC: Fegeddabout it!)

Division of coin good with you, Ahmet?

Ahmet said...

(OOC: Sorry, got busy here.

Sounds more than fair, thanks Nine-toes! Or we could take the remainder and give it to Emmanuel...

Anyone have the PHB handy? Curious how many X.P. it takes to reach level 2...)

Silvius Volundr said...

(OOC: I show 2,001, Ahmet.

Fun week of DnD guys....thanks!)

Ahmet said...

(OOC: Getting there! Thanks Silvius!)

Ahmet said...

(OOC: Let's not tarry here... we can take the small chest as is and divvy up the coins back in civilization, the keg and the keys, and go.

I'd like to hold onto the undamaged heavy crossbow if that's OK with you guys... Even though I'm not proficient with it, I think it would still be a better long-range weapon than a thrown dagger.

I suppose we might as well grab the two damaged heavy crossbows as well -- I'm thinking they can be repaired by Silvius, or if not, we could sell them to someone who can fix them.)

Ahmet eyes the legless corpse on the bed. "I say we leave him here to rot, as he did with Lebeau, and get out of here now that our wits are about us again."

Alexis said...

The gold brings experience too; using Nine-toes distribution, I still owe you all the following:

Nine-toes = 465 x.p.

Silvius = 466 x.p.

Ahmet = 512 x.p.

Andrej = 512 x.p.

I was also incorrect about saying there was nothing else. The crossbows are worth 5 g.p. in Engelke, and the one with the broken mechanism can be salvaged for the stock for 11 s.p. Andrej can't use a crossbow, so its of no x.p. value to him, but the two good ones are worth 5 x.p. each if you keep them or sell them.

Alexis said...

Nine-toes shows 1,527 x.p. at the moment, so that would make his total 1,992, which is not enough for him to go up.

Silvius doesn't seem to have updated his character since before the fight. I am guessing therefore that with the x.p. from the first fight, plus the x.p. I declared for the non-coin assets, plus the last x.p. just now for the coin, that his x.p. is 2,053. Can you tell me, Silvius, if you had updated your x.p. when I gave 370 after the first retreat?

Alexis said...

I am guessing Ahmet's experience was up to date, and that it would be 2,067 with the new addition. This would be enough to put him up a level.

And finally, Andrej does not seem to have been brought up to date online either. This one I'm not sure about ... I think it was 2,881 at the point after Andrej got 209 from the first attack on the house.

If so, that should put him at 3,888.

Can people please confirm these numbers?

Ahmet said...

(OOC: Yes, mine was up to date on my website -- was 1,555 X.P., now with the additional 512, I'm at 2,067 and Level 2. Woohoo!)

Alexis said...

2072 if you were serious about taking the crossbow, Ahmet.

Please roll a d10 for hit points. If you roll a '1', roll it again; there are no ones rolled for players. Remember to add 3 for your constitution and update the new total.

This is the only thing a fighter adds at 2nd level. Enjoy.

Silvius Volundr said...

(OOC: Alexis, you are correct in that I had not updated my character sheet until this morning.

With 2,053 xp now,I believe that puts Silvius at 2nd level.

Just in case you want it, here is a d10 for HP, although I will not amend my character sheet for HP until you confirm this.)

d10=3+3 for Con =6

Andrej said...

Alexis, our XP numbers agree... I had my offline sheet updated after the break, but not the online one. I'm leveling up now (next comment).

Ahmet said...

(OOC: I would like to take one of the undamaged heavy crossbows, if my compatriots agree. We could sell the damaged one, and the other good one could be claimed by Silvius or Ninetoes, or sold as well.

Excel rolled me a 7, +3 = 10.)

Nine-toes said...

While the idea of having two loaded hvy crossbows appeals to me, the practicality of them both hanging from my belt would likely mean my tripping on my belt a great deal of the time. Dispose of the x-bows as you will.

Andrej said...

Andrej Level 3:

Gained Marriage and Consecration ceremonies (with the latter may make holy water or bless items for +1 saving throws or bless weapons against undead, all with limitations)

Rolled "5" for hit points, +2 constitution makes for 7 additional and 29 total hit points

selected the following spells (1 + 2 for Wisdom = 3 2nd level spells)

- Aid
- Know Intent
- Hold Person

Nine-toes said...

Whoo hoo! Hold person is a kick a** spell!

Andrej said...

(OOC: I agree Nine-toes. I left a couple of other cool ones un-chosen, but such is the game.)

Alexis said...

(OOC: sorry fellows, I'm going to be busy for a bit this morning. Digging out from the long weekend)

Silvius, I accept the roll for your hit points, and yes, 2nd level.

Silvius and Ahmet, I haven't looked, but I presume you'll update your character sheets online.

Andrej, that pretty much covers the cleric gains from my end.

Ahmet, you said you were going to test out the keg. Wondering if you still meant to do that?

Silvius Volundr said...

(OOC: With the exception of the HP total, my sheet OS updated.)

Ahmet said...

(OOC: Wasn't me interested in tapping the keg; I believe it was Ninetoes?)

Alexis said...

Ah, my mistake Ahmet.

Please continue with whatever you'd be doing next, all. I'm still monitoring things, I just can't be intensive with my responses.

Nine-toes said...

The idea to tap the keg was Andrej's. I suggested somebody bust in with an axe.

Ninetoes will set about burying Devereaux, by himself if need be. He'll tie the rope around the body and lower him down off the roof. If there are suitable stones about, he'll make a cairn, and ask Andrej to say a prayer for the departed.

"After all, any one of us could have succumbed to the lure of the gem. We might all be buried her if not for Lebeau intervening."

Andrej said...

Once the items we wish to carry off are gathered up (OOC: Andrej's character sheet is updated, including new level and disposition of the coins) I suppose we prepare to leave.

Despite Ahemt's understandable desire to do differently, Andrej will use the old man's bedclothes, blankets, whatever else is at hand to make an improvised stretcher/ body bag.

"We must carry off the remains and inter them in holy ground to put the spirit of Deveraux to rest. Otherwise, we risk his rising to haunt this site... or even us. Let him now go before God for his judgement."

Andrej does his best to get Deveraux down to the ground with what dignity is possible given the circumstances and carries him back to town when we are ready to leave.

Andrej said...

Nine-toes, we're on the same page but I think we need hallowed ground to prevent Deveraux's possible rising/ unrest. Alexis?

Silvius Volundr said...

Silvius will aid Andrej with the old man's body.

Nine-toes said...

Andrej would know better how to handle the corpse than Ninetoes.

Andrej said...

As for tapping the keg, I was under the impression that there was a spigot there already and proposed that we check to see if it worked. Something else was magical in the room aside from the gem when I detected for it. We gathered up little else. I can try my spell again tomorrow.

Alexis said...

Point in fact, there are no marks on the old man's body. He died, technically, of natural causes. As such, Andrej would know that the best thing to do would be to deliver the man to a local chapel, and allow him to be buried in a proper cemetery.

You would have seen the sort of chapel you want as you emerged from Engelke; there would be two or three small ones on the edge of the outer non-walled portion of town.

Andrej, if you administer a burial, it doesn't have to be in a cemetery to prevent rising. As long as he is buried or cremated, and you perform the ceremony, the matter is closed.

Alexis said...

Regarding the proposition, it is again a matter of always talking in the future. I can't discuss the keg until an action is dictated in the present.

Andrej said...

If the keg has a spigot, Andrej opens it very briefly, with his hand beneath it, to catch and examine what falls.

We take Deveraux to the nearest chapel when we go. If there is a cost to bury, Andrej will pay it from his own funds.

Alexis said...

Andrej opens it for less than a second, gets about half an ounce of ale from the keg. It looks rich and golden and with little head, suggesting (from the point of view of Nine-toes, who coming from Stuttgart could not help knowing a little bit about beer) it comes from a good vat.

Andrej said...

Andrej will sip what he can from his outstretched hand to taste the ale, but leave enough to sprinkle/ dump onto the ground for his fallen homies, yo.

Provided the taste meets with his approval, he will hoist the keg up over his head, and ask Nine-toes to open the spigot above his mouth so that he may get a better accounting of what's there. If satisfied, he passes the keg on to Nine-toes and offers to reciprocate.

Nine-toes said...

Ninetoes will oblige Andrej and say "To your health!" but does not partake himself. (Ninetoes drinks only water.)

Silvius Volundr said...

"That stuff may be valuable, brother. Mayhaps we can sell it to an innkeeper."

Andrej said...

Andrej offers a silent prayer for the poor, ascetic monk. "Here, friends, is living proof that God loves us." Andrej will take the gulp offered to Nine-toes.

"Valuable, yes. And tasty, too, Silvius. The old man had gold and silver enough for the likes of us, why not enjoy life while we still live it? Tomorrow you could be run through with a sword, and a bag full of gold and a keg full of ale will avail you not."

Nine-toes said...

"Were I to drink, I would concur with Elder Brother. In fact, I would propose we all have a feast at the inn and we each invite some unfortunate with an empty belly to dine with us in thanksgiving for the victory God has granted us this day, and in honor of Lebeau and Devereaux having been freed from the terrible power of the gem."

Silvius Volundr said...

Silvius swallows hard, hating the thought of being run through with a sword. He accepts the priest' s offer and has a daughter of the ale.

Andrej said...

"Hmmmm... brother monk, your idea is a good one. But why just one person each? As an act of charity we could buy much bread and such... this ale, even... and hand it out freely in the poorer parts of town, filling many bellies. In this manner we may please God and perhaps make a good name for ourselves."

Nine-toes said...

"As usual, the better idea is yours, Elder Brother. That is, of course, if our noble comrades agree on this course."

Andrej said...

"Indeed, now that I consider the matter more closely, should you Catholics amongst us be willing to fund this charity with tithes, you could even gain some divine benefit from the charity."

Alexis said...

Andrej finds it the very best ale he has ever tasted; no question about it.

As is natural, Andrej lifts the keg in both hands, holding it sideways over his head. Nine-toes turns the spigot 90 degrees and opens it -

And immediately gets a mouthful of milk.

Alexis said...

Sorry, that should read that Andrej gets a mouthful of milk.

Silvius Volundr said...

"Tithe?what good is that, Andrej?"

Nine-toes said...

Ninetoes tries very hard not to laugh, as it would be unseemly to mock his betters.

Nine-toes said...

(He is probably not entirely successful.)

Silvius Volundr said...

"Such a horrid curse!"

Nine-toes said...

Ninetoes stops his shoulders from shaking for a moment enough to think.

"Hang on, this fellow had no food, yet he obviously never left the place. Could it be the keg is enchanted and produced enought to sustain him in his hermitage? If so it could be a great boon to us."

Andrej said...

Andrej consumes the milk as heartily as the ale, perhaps slightly disappointed that it is not mare's milk and fermented (took a stab here, Alexis, that the 1/2 orcs of the Cuman would have been exposed to such via the Turks/ Mongols).

"Aye, Nine-toes... just such an enchanted item would explain both Deveraux's strange hermitage and the magic I detected."

Andrej sloshes the keg to and fro, to see if these is less liquid now. Then puts it on to the ground to see if perhaps his friends want to give it a try.

Alexis said...

You're not at all wrong about the exposure of Cuman's to mare's milk.

I would imagine the first reaction would be to cough and pause, but ruling that you've done so and then tried the milk ...

Interestingly, it IS cow's milk ... until Andrej's thoughts regarding mare's milk, whereupon it immediately becomes mare's milk. And the best Andrej can remember tasting.

Upon finishing about a pint from the keg, you slosh the keg and the weight seems unchanged; but you haven't really drained very much of it.

Andrej said...

"Silvius, you have the right of it. It IS valuable. Though I suspect we'll be wanting to keep this for ourselves."

Nine-toes said...

Ninetoes thinks about pure spring water and has a drink.

Andrej said...

(OOC: Will be tied up for about an hour or two)

Alexis said...

Nine-toes, the keg is sitting on it's bottom now and it delivers ale.

Silvius Volundr said...

Silvius grabs the cask and thinks of marvelous brandy before taking a small sip.

Alexis said...

Silvius lifts the cask, sets it down and it delivers ale.

Silvius Volundr said...

"Was worth a try."

Ahmet said...

(OOC: Sorry... back.)

Ahmet doesn't tinker with the keg for fear of getting a mouthful of alcohol -- but is amused watching the various results.

"Let's bundle it up along with the two chests, the keys, and the crossbows, and leave this place."

He pauses a moment.

"And yes, we'll bring the old man's body as well for proper burial. Must we bring the dog too? And the... door mat?"

Alexis said...

If you're worried about them turning undead, they don't have 'souls' so they can't - except if they are magically animated, and there's not much you can do about that (no 5th level mages around that you know about anyway).

You could bury them in the sand. That's up to you.

Andrej said...

Just the man. Let's be off.

Alexis said...

As soon as I get a confirmation of that from the others, I'll start the next post.

Ahmet said...

(OOC: Aye!)

Nine-toes said...

Aye

Silvius Volundr said...

Agreed

Alexis said...

The next post is up.