Quote from Rachel while making characters: “ANGRY STONES!!!”
|Twls Aud (pronounced twools)||Female Halfling Rogue||Kate F.|
|Edna Bettie (Isil Losse)||Female Elven Monk||Emily M.|
|Gorram Fox||Mail Human Barbarian||Chris V.|
|Vysthe Que||Female Half-Elf Barbarian||Rachel J.|
|Morena-Nadia Summerset||Female Human Cleric||Lauryn N.|
|Jisrae Tirnek||Male Human Bard||Karl S.|
|Araya Watershed||Female Human Paladin||Jules M.|
Night falls. They come across a well traveled tavern. Jisrae goes up to the barkeep and offers to sing for their keep. Merchant stalls line the side of the street opposite the inn, and carts are hitched up behind them. Jisrae sings for keep and food; the patrons are only mildly impressed. They get some grub and a room for free. Gorram wants free beer. Some man wants him to dance for it. Gorram: “You going to make me?” He fingers the hilt of his sword. Morena volunteers to dance. After her poor performance: “You should be paying us to watch this stuff.” Also in the bar are Anvil Hammerstone the owner, his wife Gem, his son Gray, his daughter Flower (all dwarves), two merchants, five henchmen, one woodsman, and one fighter. Jisrae tells the rest of the group not to talk and just to sit at their table in the corner. Vyshte manages to buy all of them beer after dropping coins and wrestling them back from the henchmen. Others discuss payment for work done.
Morena and Edna Bettie go to look at the mules. Two henchmen follow them. Gorram looks at his beer and wonders if it is half full or half empty. Beer goggles make the women look pretty. He distracts Vyshte. Twls gets drunk and goes to sleep under the desk, and Jisrae goes to bed. Meanwhile Edna Bettie follows Morena, who wanders like Billy from Family Circus throughout the town. The henchmen are standing there oblivious. Morena goes up towards the henchmen; they move toward the two girls. Morena and Edna Bettie wrestle over who is in front. Morena wants to know what is in the cart. She is looking for powerful weapons of medicine. The guards are confused. “Want to see what’s in the cart? Come back tomorrow morning and we can sell you stuff. Why aren’t you in the tavern? We were sent out to make sure you weren’t going to steal stuff.” The henchmen argue over whose cart they will buy from. Edna says one will buy from one and one from the other. Morena tries to bribe them with extra money to look at the carts. They don’t accept; the two girls go off to bed. Everyone goes to bed. Vyshte sleeps standing up.
Gorram hears loud footfalls running down the steps. He pulls out his sword and opens the door. He sees the hat of the woodsman at the bottom of the stairs. A merchant is standing and walking tentatively closer to the steps, and the henchmen jostle trying to make each other go down the steps first. Gorram closes the door and wakes everyone up. “Let’s go find out what’s going on!” They pick up gear and question the merchant. The merchant says that the mules were making noise, and they hear shouting. They head down the stairs and out the door, and Jisrae sends Gorram in front to smash some heads. A rock smashes in a window as they get to the main floor. Little creatures are trying to crawl into the window. Jisrae yells “Over there!” and knocks the closest table over to give him cover as Gorram wrestles with a henchman to get by. Gorram throws the guy aside, Edna moves in between them, and Vyshte is pissed that she has been woken up. Morena goes to hide behind a table. Edna runs over to a table closer to the window and sees about five different things forcing their way through the window. They look like ugly little creatures (a.k.a. goblins, although the party doesn’t know that). Gorram goes through the door and circles around to get to the things from behind. He sees two henchmen cowering against the wall of a stall. One of the henchmen inside smacks his head against the wall; the other one slams his head against the desk and knocks himself out. Jisrae shoots with his shortbow towards the window, and one of the creatures falls out. Then he pops back down behind the table. Vyshte also runs forward. Morena shoots her crossbow at the window and hits the table right by Edna. Two of them make it through the window. Edna punches one into the wall, and it falls dead. Gorram attacks them from behind and slices one. Jisrae moves towards the door so that he has line of sight and can see out the door and shoots. The arrow thuds close by Edna again. Vyshte runs and attacks with her halberd, poking it and cutting its arm off. Morena fires at one in the window and knocks it out with her crossbow bolt. The one outside tries to get away; Gorram tries to hit him, but he books it out of there. Edna punts the creature on the floor and impales it on a table candlestick. Gorram runs the other one down… “Mercy…you want mercy?!? I’m chaotic neutral!” He kills it. He steps on another one’s head and kills it.
Edna tumbles out the window, Morena smashes in the back window, Jisrae comes out the door, and Vyshte follows Edna out the window. Morena sees two more creatures out the back. The rest see the cowering henchmen. Jisrae: “Hey, what’s going on over there?” Then he goes over to the stables. Edna runs up to the henchmen. Gorram follows and goes past her. He sees a lot of small figures and other humanoid figures down near the mules. “To me, brothers in arms! Charge to battle!” yells Gorram. Jisrae at the stables starts singing to inspire courage while Vyshte runs up behind Gorram. Morena shouts and casts sanctuary on herself, but she is so nervous at the sight of the creatures that the spell doesn’t work. They pull their daggers out and walk towards her. The others fight down by the mules. Edna runs around to get them from the side. She sees what’s left of a mule being dragged by four creatures. Gorram charges in: “Time to die, pipsqueak.” He fells one. Jisrae heads diagonally towards the action. He wonders where Morena is. Vyshte charges in to attack and fells one. Morena realizes that they are scared of her and goes ooga booga boo. She prepares to inflict pain and steps forward. They back up slowly. Vyshte gets hit by one, but another misses her. The woodsman dies. Edna hits one, and it crumples over the body of the dead woodsman. Gorram: “Die die die!”…they don’t die. One henchmen steps aside, and the other waves Jisrae in. He sees Gorram and Vyshte attacking. He shouts encouraging words: “Go Vyshte! Go Gorram!” Edna: “…what about me?” “Oh, uh…go Edna!” Vyshte halberds one to death. Morena: “If you don’t leave me alone, I’m going to smite you.” She smites and kills one. The others slowly back away. The fighter goes down. Edna misses. Gorram hits the one who felled the fighter and slices him in half against the cart. The henchmen root the others on. Jisrae tries to figure out if he knows Morena is missing. Vyshte misses. Morena yells smite again and shoots a bolt into a goblin. He screams his head off. His cronies run for the hills. Edna knocks one underneath a mule. Gorram charges in and swings, checking it so as to not hit Edna. Jisrae circles around the cart. Vyshte hits and fells one. Morena skips and yells smite as she shoots and misses the injured goblin. He pisses his pants. One tries to hit Vyshte and misses. The mule stomps one to death. Edna punches one. Gorram misses again. Jisrae keeps walking and slips in gunk on the ground. Vyshte kills another. Morena smacks the wounded one and kills it; then she skips towards the others. The mule goes down on its knees. Another swings and misses Vyshte. Edna kicks and leaves one half dead. Gorram swings and misses, spraying blood everywhere. Jisrae: “There’s blood over here!” He follows the blood trail by feel. Vyshte hits the one that is slicing and dicing the mule. Morena skips down towards the bloody singing noise: “Smite smite-y smite.” One goblin runs off. Gorram hits him as he goes by, and the goblin’s buttcrack goes up its side. Edna kills one, and Gorram kills another. More blood! Jisrae keeps following the blood trail that he can now see in the moonlight. Vyshte puts the mule out of its misery. Morena skips towards the stable.
Everything in front of them is dead. Gorram goes to search through the carts. The henchmen wander down cautiously. Jisrae stops playing his instrument and wanders back. Vyshte checks the corpses for stuff. The henchmen tap Gorram on the shoulder: “Excuse me?” He turns around and faces them with blood pouring down him: “I’m just making sure the goods are nice and safe.” Edna tries to prevent Vyshte from looting the bodies and grapples her. Gorram: “Look, women wrestling!” The henchmen enjoy. Jisrae says that they want to make sure that none of their possessions get lost, so they will take them off the bodies and talk to the relatives of the deceased. The henchmen want it split right now. Gorram: “You didn’t do any fighting, pansies.” He pushes one to get to the fighter’s corpse. The henchman pulls out a dagger. Edna tries to talk them into going back to the merchants and gets sliced with a dagger. Jisrae tries to trip one. Vyshte attacks the henchman and misses. Morena meanwhile pets the horses in the stable. Edna hits for nonlethal damage, and the henchman goes unconscious. Gorram grapples the other one. Morena wants to take the horses because they don’t have names on them; then she decides not to. Edna goes off to find Morena. Jisrae collects everything off of the bodies. He gets a longsword, leather armor, a helm, and a dagger off the fighter and a sword, leather armor, a dagger, and a shortbow off the woodsman.
They go back to the tavern. Anvil is standing at the door. Jisrae: “What just happened? Does this go on regularly?” Anvil: “It’s the first time in a long time.” His family is fine, as they stayed inside. The merchants also stayed inside. Anvil asks for the possessions of the fighter and the woodsman. He offers them a night’s stay and good meals in exchange. Jisrae tries to bargain to get something better. “Either give it up now or I’ll force it out of you.” He hands it over. Vyshte objects that Jisrae is the leader. Gray gives them beer and nice rooms. The merchants go to check their stuff, and Gem bandages Edna up. Jisrae drinks ale, acts disgruntled, and goes to bed, but he is more grateful after he sees the fine rooms. The next morning, the weapons of the fallen are mounted on the wall. A table is propped up against the broken window. They burn the goblin bodies, and the dead mule is buried by a henchman. The merchants wonder what they are going to do.
In walks a paladin. Anvil walks up: “Araya, it’s good to see you. I’m glad you finally became a paladin. Bad news though…your father died last night.” Araya: “NOOOOO!” Twls is there but hung over. Araya comes over and chats with the party who witnessed her father’s death. Gorram is still sleeping. Morena stumbles down the stairs and sees Araya talking to the party. Then Gorram follows her. Morena: “What can you do?” Araya pulls out her sword. [Rachel quote: “Araya reminds me of black people crying.”] They explain the difference between clerics and paladins to Morena: “You go ooga booga, she goes smite-y smite-y with a big sword.” Araya wants to go after the goblins; Morena wants gifts. Anvil goes to talk to the merchants. Jisrae kind of wants to go to the next town, but the others persuade him that he can get more stories this way. Anvil says that they will get the nice rooms anytime they come back. The merchants will send stuff home to their parents; another will give them four potions of cure light, two potions cure moderate, and one cure serious.
They pack up and follow the blood trail from last night’s mule. Araya takes her father’s horse, and Jisrae and Morena ride the other. They come across the corpse, and they hear a buzzing from the trees. They see batty creatures (stirges) that swarm at them. Gorram slices one out of the air. Twls attacks one with a dagger. Edna punches one and kills it. One lands on Twls. Another one tries to fly away. Araya misses. Vyshte misses. Jisrae tries to shoot and falls off the back of the horse. Morena shoots with her crossbow and misses as Jisrae falls off the horse behind her. Gorram misses. Twls and Edna also miss. The bugs also miss. One flies away. Araya hits the remaining one and kills it. Jisrae shoots the one flying away but misses, and Morena also misses. Edna hits it with her sling, but it flies away.
Gorram tracks them up to a rickety bridge. The horses have to be tied up. They leave Jisrae to guard the horses (practically tied with the horses) so that the goblins don’t eat their mounts. Morena goes first and goes splash. Edna balances across and starts to get out her rope to get Morena out. Gorram goes sploosh. Twls hangs on the bridge, dangling her feet in the water. Vyshte throws her rope to Gorram. Edna throws her rope to Morena, and Morena catches it. Gorram manages to stand up in the 5ft. water, and he grabs Vyshte’s rope. Twls falls in the water. Edna throws a rope at her, and Twls manages to catch Edna’s bad throw. Gorram jumps in again and walks across the rest of the way. Vyshte tries to cross the bridge and goes splish. Araya also goes splash. She stands up and picks up Vyshte. Jisrae sends the horses back to town, and he crosses fine.
Vyshte goes off in the wrong direction, but Gorram drags her straight. It gets dark out. They come to a steep gorge where the goblin hideout is. Gorram wants to charge. He goes off, and Vyshte charges after. The others approach more slowly and carefully. Vyshte gets to the cavern mouth and sees little blocks with people looking around the edge of the barricades. They have arrows at the ready. Vyshte yells that there are five: “Kill kill kill!” and she runs up and swipes at them. Morena casts sanctuary on herself. Araya moves up to the edge of the entrance with Twls. Jisrae: “Remember the fallen! We kill them for the fallen!” The goblins shoot at Vyshte, but they can’t penetrate her armor. Gorram moves in, as does Edna. Vyshte slices one. Morena saunters ahead. Araya moves in near Gorram. An arrow hits Gorram. He charges and attacks the one who shot him and reams through him. Edna goes up next to Gorram and punches one across the barricade with a cool move. Vyshte misses. Twls hangs out. Araya charges and slices, but she fails to hit. Jisrae lights things up. Morena wanders in. Two goblins bolt in two different directions. Edna jumps over, lands on top of the goblin, and kills him.
Morena runs down the path to the left. Jisrae chases her, and the rest follow to the north except for Twls, who sneaks the other way. Morena comes to a door and goes in. Vyshte runs in the door too, as does Gorram. There are six other goblins. Morena: “I’m shiny.” Then she realizes she doesn’t have sanctuary any more. Morena summons a celestial giant fire beetle; then she gets hit by a Morningstar, and the fire beetle also gets hit. Jisrae moves in. Gorram carves everyone’s name into the back of one goblin. Edna moves into the room and stands in the long line of people who want to hit things. Vyshte kills one. Morena drinks her cure light wounds potion. She shoots and misses. The beetle bites one. Araya cleaves through one. Jisrae steps through and tries to tumble to the other side of the combatants. He ends up at the feet of a goblin, who hits him. The goblins miss. Gorram charges and misses. Edna finally gets in and kills one. Vyshte kills another. Down the other passage, Twls hears noises coming her way. Morena and the beetle attack but don’t hurt the goblin. Jisrae bounces up from the ground and mauls the goblin with his shortsword, cutting him in half with a critical. Seven goblins charge past Twls.
There’s another door, but it’s steel. Morena tries to open it; Jisrae wants to go find Twls. Edna cleans off blood. Morena heals herself and Jisrae. Araya and Gorram go down the tunnel further, and Vyshte follows Gorram. The rest follow eventually. The path goes on, but there’s a door. Gorram (a.k.a. Arnold Schwarzenegger: “Ahhnold”) charges in: “I kill ze goblins!” Twls goes into another passageway. Jisrae pulls out his soapbox and gives another inspirational speech: “Blah blah blah.” Morena steps in the door and tries to shoot something. Edna charges in, as does Vyshte. Vyshte kills one and then gets hit. Gorram: “You can’t hurt me, you puny leetle goblins!” He swings and misses. “Stupid goblins are too small to heet.” Araya moves into the room. Jisrae tumbles in. Morena walks forward. She watches the door. Twls meanwhile creaks the door open and goes down the hall noisily. Vyshte is too distracted by Ahhnold’s (whoops, Gorram’s) muscles and misses. Jisrae’s armor is dented. One hits Araya. Gorram misses. Jisrae tumbles behind to flank and slices it. Morena closes the door. Edna fails to hit. Araya gets hit again. Gorram kills one. Jisrae swings and takes one down. Edna still can’t hit. Twls searches a room. Vyshte halbards another and takes it down. Edna and Araya kill the last one as it tries to run away.
A door is in the back of the room. Jisrae searches the bodies (NOT groping). Araya drinks her potion. Araya and Edna hear the door open. Twls finds some gold. Two bigger goblins step in; they look tougher and have swords. Jisrae gets scared and starts playing his pipes and makes up a song about smiting the evil goblins. Edna charges up. Another little goblin comes up in between them. Araya runs up and, like Edna, misses. Morena tries to shoot with her crossbow; it thunks into the wall near Araya. Gorram charges and squeezes up between Araya and Edna and kills one of the big ones: “I kill you stoopid goblin!” Twls sees an open room and tipsy goblins. Vyshte shoves Edna to the wall. A sword almost hits Edna; she kicks the goblin back, squeezing between the wall and Vyshte. The little one hits Gorram. Araya can’t hit; Morena runs up to the door as Jisrae keeps playing his instrument. Gorram hits the little bugger but is stopped by its armor. Twls sees one open a door. Vyshte doesn’t hit. Edna gets hit and misses. Gorram gets hit again by the little guy. Araya misses. Morena starts to open the door. Gorram smashes the little bugger and kills him. Vyshte misses. Edna misses. Gorram misses. Twls hears a scream, and a goblin runs back. Other goblins start screaming and running away past Twls. Edna kills the big one in front of her. Vyshte and Gorram kill the little one as he tries to get out. Blood trickles down their rippling muscles. Vyshte is covered in so much blood that she is raging. Araya misses. Morena opens the door. Gorram smashes the big guy. Twls sneaks up to the door and sees rust monsters. Vyshte splatters the big one against the wall. The remaining goblin commander retreats. Morena and Jisrae go into the room and see a little goblin hiding in the corner. Morena fires off her crossbow with no arrow in it. The goblin pisses himself and passes out.
There’s a commotion out in the hallway. On the other side, Twls opens the door quietly and shuts it behind her. Gorram and Vyshte attack the goblins that run right by them and each kill two.
There are two doors in front of the larger group. Through one door they hear partying, and the other door is ajar. Twls is now stuck in a room with sacks of moldy grain, and there are rust monsters outside the door. Gorram pushes open the ajar door. Jisrae lights the way with his lantern. The passage opens up into a big room with broken tables and chairs and bottles and two doors. Those in that room find trinkets and baubles. Twls finds some gold and then creaks the door open. Two rust monsters charge her. She slams the door shut just in time, and one of the rust monsters gets its feelers stuck in the door. The others continue through the ajar door. Morena and Vyshte wander off. They pass two closed doors and run into a rust monster. Twls whacks off his feeler, and her dagger starts to rust. Edna charges but slides past it, and it attacks her. Rust monster two moves up and tries to hit Edna. Araya charges in, swings, and misses. Gorram charges in as well and misses Edna. Jisrae moves forward and starts singing. Gorram: “Your singing makes my muscles feel bigger.” The rust monster attacks Araya’s chainmail armor and rusts it, grappling her. Twls opens the door and sees the rust monster looking at the party. Edna tries to hit and fails; it goes after Gorram and injures him as Gorram defends his sword. Araya grapples with the rust monster on top of her and breaks free. Gorram flies into a rage and attacks rust monster three and slices it. Jisrae moves up and tries to scare it. Gorram to Jisrae: “Don’t be a pansy, girly man!” The rust monster laughs at Jisrae. One goes after Gorram’s sword and eats part of it. Twls flanks the rust monster attacking Edna and sneak attacks, stabbing it. Edna punches the same one. One rust monster eats more of Gorram’s sword. Rust monster two rends Edna. Morena walks in to them fighting rust monsters. She tries to shoot with a crossbow and misses. Gorram slices the one that’s eating his sword. Jisrae moves, fires, and misses. He’s somehow playing his panpipes and shooting. Morena shoots one. Twls misses. Edna misses and steps out of the way. Rust monster two moves up and tries to hit Gorram’s sword but misses. Araya swings her sword and fells rust monster three, slicing it in half. Gorram beats on one. Jisrae steps sideways and misses his shot. Morena shoots with her crossbow. Twls sneaks up on the one with Morena’s bolts sticking out of it but can’t stab. Edna tries to kick one from behind. The rust monsters get in each others’ way. Araya tries to hit but misses. Gorram fells one with his rusty sword. Jisrae shoots and hits, Morena misses. Edna moves up to hit another one and misses. The rust monster misses Gorram. Araya strikes and fails. Gorram misses as the rust flakes in his eyes. Jisrae and Morena miss. Twls sneak attacks and guts it. They’ve killed three rust monsters!
They talk to their missing companion Twls, and Morena heals Edna a bit. They go through the left door. Twls, however, goes through the right door. Jisrae follows her. Those two are in a room with four little goblins cowering against the wall. The other four see a door taking them into the big chamber again and a little path. Jisrae drags Twls off and locks door behind them. The little goblin kids piss themselves. Morena, Edna, Gorram, and Araya (MEGA) continue down the passageway, and Jisrae and Twls (JT) follow. Morena opens a door and goes left, and the other two try to catch up as Morena speeds up. Twls already looted these rooms, though. They backtrack to go in the other doors. The steel door opens inwards, and water is dribbling out from the door. Morena: “Barbarian monkey, go open the door!” He doesn’t open it, though. MEGAJT tries to get the door open, but nothing happens. Edna notices that the water is coming out of both sides of the frames.
They go off to the other door (the partying one). Morena blindly opens the door, and the partying noise quiets down a bit. Inside is a brightly lit room with upwards of ten goblins. Some look at her. She starts dancing. She yells for Jisrae to start playing music. Morena can’t dance. [Lionel dancing like Morena is wonderful.] Jisrae starts playing music. Morena walks through the doorway. Jisrae shouts for her to come out of the door. Gorram takes up position on the side of the door. The goblins shoot Morena. Edna moves out of the way. Araya moves forward. Morena turns around and runs out the door. Twls shuts the door. Morena mentions the fifty-some goblins. Jisrae tactically directs. The door opens, and a goblin is standing there. It swings at Twls and misses. She daggers it and moves back. Gorram tries to swing and misses. The goblin misses Araya. Edna tries to punch it. Araya takes a swing and kills it. Jisrae gets on his soapbox and cheers them on. Gorram swings and misses. The goblins slam the door. Edna hears some shuffling from the other side of the door.
Edna stays to watch the door, and the rest go back to the steel door. Jisrae casts message so that he can talk to Edna. The others inspect the door; Jisrae says to chip around the edges. Gorram attacks the doorway. More water comes out. Morena and Twls also chip at it, as does Araya. Gorram criticals on the door frame. Edna hears quiet and moves back towards the others. Water is definitely flowing more. Edna runs, and Gorram hits the door again, as does Morena. Everyone runs as the door comes at them. Edna runs more. Water flows into the room, splooshing everywhere. Gorram splashes in face first, as does Morena, Jisrae, and Araya. Twls runs for the door. Jisrae stands up, as does Morena. Twls gets out the door and sees goblins. Gorram glubs and goes unconscious. Edna peeks back around…she thought the plan was to run out, but no one else is there. Jisrae goes splash again. Morena tries to leave, but she goes splash as well. Twls runs in the other direction. Gorram floats down the hallway. More goblins appear. Edna: “What’s going on?” Twls: “They’re all drowning.” Araya falls down again. Jisrae fails to get up. Morena stands up. Twls goes back with Edna. Gorram floats further. One group of goblins splashes through the water, and three trip and fall. The other group runs the other way. The goblin runs into Edna’s fist. It dies. Araya swims down the hallway. Jisrae holds his breath and swims. Morena is back down. Twls wants to loot the body, but instead she runs back towards the entrance. Gorram gets stuck in the corner between the door and the wall. Edna wades in. Araya keeps swimming. Jisrae splashes around a bit. Morena starts drowning and yells help. One goblin drowns. Edna keeps wading in, getting stuck on dead goblin bodies. Araya goes glug. Jisrae keeps swimming but is hit by debris, and he falls unconscious. Morena tries to go with the water. Twls hangs out, standing on top of one of the barricades. The water keeps flowing. Two more goblins drown. Edna keeps slowly wading in the water. Araya swims up and sees the stuck Gorram, swirling in the eddy. The unconscious Jisrae smashes against the wall. Morena, also unconscious, smashes against another wall. Edna is forced back by the water spilling out the door. Araya grabs Gorram as she floats past, but she is pulled into the eddy with Gorram. Jisrae slams against another wall. Morena also smashes into a wall. Edna balances up and gets next to the door as the room in front of her fills with water. Araya keeps a hold of Gorram and tries to swim. Jisrae floats around some more, as does Morena. Twls fishes for bodies. Gorram finally gets free, and Araya and Gorram float out the door. Edna grabs for Gorram but misses. Araya swims out. Jisrae and Morena float closer to the door. Twls ties knots. Gorram floats further out. Edna grabs Gorram to keep him from flowing in the wrong direction. She can’t figure out who it is…the water has washed the blood away. Jisrae floats out the door. Morena moves forward. Edna feeds Gorram a cure light wounds potion, but he’s still unconscious. Araya paddles around in circles. Morena slides over to the other side of the tunnel. Edna tries to grab Jisrae as well. Araya swims some more. Jisrae flows the wrong way. Morena switches sides again, still not out the door. The end of Twls’ fishing line gets a little wet. Edna shoves Gorram in the right direction and goes after Jisrae’s floating form. Araya tries to grab hold of Gorram, but she damages his nostrils instead. Jisrae floats farther down the hall. Morena gets stuck in the eddy. Twls drags a dead goblin body out of the water. Edna goes after Jisrae again. Araya manages to get Gorram by the hair, and she continues to swim. Jisrae floats a little farther, and Edna takes a grab of opportunity and takes a hold of him. Morena keeps spinning (in the opposite direction). Twls pulls out another goblin body. Edna wades forward, dragging Jisrae. Araya pulls on a heavy Gorram. Morena falls out the door. Edna grabs Morena as well and goes along dragging the two of them. Then she stumbles and drops Jisrae. Twls gets into the water to go help out. She assists Araya and Gorram. Jisrae keeps floating the other way. Edna tries to shove Morena down the right way, but she’s wearing too much armor. Twls revives Gorram, and he stands up with water dripping off his rippling muscles. Edna shoves Morena down the way and starts going after Jisrae. Edna grabs Jisrae but loses him. Then she again grabs and lets go of him. This happens several times. It seriously takes forever. Elven swearing resonates throughout the caverns.
They make it out alive but very wet. Edna and Jisrae now have a phobia of water. They carry the unconscious bodies back. The water under the bridge is now only about two feet. They get back to the tavern and crash. Twls sits and counts her money.
Araya and Twls wander off. At the inn, they tell the others to go down south to Alhaster. They reach the Eel Town ferry, and Jisrae is scared of the water. The others try to convince him to get across the river. Edna gives Morena cloth to try to tie him up. He figures it out, though. Gorram: “Get on the ferry, pansy man!” Vyshte and Gorram grapple Jisrae and drag him on to the ferry. Edna blindfolds and gags the bard.
Morena wants to skip the horse into town. They reach the gates and have to pay a gold piece each to get in. Everyone helps Gorram look for a blacksmith. They hear a crowd scream, and people start running towards the party. Vyshte and Gorram run into the crowd, and Edna ducks down an alley way as Morena and Jisrae move up on the horse. The two on the carts can see overturned carts, goblins, and creatures bigger than goblins: hobgoblins and ettin. Vyshte and Gorram continue to push forward through the crowd, and Edna continues down her alley. Jisrae shoots with his bow at a goblin. A goblin charges Gorram and stabs him. Vyshte swings at the goblin in front of her, and Gorram also swings and misses. Morena shoots a hobgoblin and misses. Jisrae sings and inspires. Vyshte hits and kills the goblin, and her barbarian comrade also kills one. Edna charges up and punches a hobgoblin. Morena shoots and misses; Jisrae shoots a goblin and slays it while he continues to sing and play his wind pipe. Vyshte swings at another goblin, and both she and Gorram miss. The errin moves a cart out of his way. One hobgoblin swings at Vyshte, and another hurts Gorram. Morena turns the horse sideways and shoots a hobgoblin. Jisrae shoots at the big errin. Vyshte swipes at another hobgoblin, and Gorram misses. Edna also misses. Morena takes a hobgoblin out. Jisrae takes a potshot at the big guy. Vyshte also goes after the big guy and whacks it with her halberd. Gorram hits the hobgoblin with his damaged sword, cursing the rust monsters. The ettin smacks Vyshte on the head, and she is pissed. Morena crits on a hobgoblin. Gorram tries to kill another hobgoblin after Vyshte misses the ettin. The ettin pushes Vyshte out of the way because it sees a nice tasty horse. Edna punches the hobgoblin in front of her. Morena drops her crossbow as she jostles the horse. Jisrae shoots the ettin again. Gorram keeps picking on the hobgoblin. Vyshte again is pushed out of the way, and Edna misses the hobgoblin. Jisrae kills one that is running away. Vyshte kills one. Gorram also kills the hobgoblin with his rusty sword. The ettin kills a goblin while swinging at the horse. Edna punches the ettin. Morena uses Jisrae’s short sword to hit the ettin. Jisrae dismounts and smacks the horse in the rump to make it run, and he shoots at the ettin. The ettin slams its club around Edna and misses her; Edna misses it, Morena misses it. Jisrae steps back away from the big nasty thing and shoots at it. Vyshte kills another, and Gorram kills the ettin. Edna kills a goblin, and Vyshte kills the other. All the enemies are dead.
The town guard finally shows up. There are people missing: criminals. They finally get to the blacksmith. He looks at Gorram’s sword and tells him he would be better off buying a new one. Morena also gets two sai. Jisrae looks for an inn: he says he will perform for everyone’s room. They stay at the cheapest place they can find. They are tired of rescuing towns for nothing.
Araya comes into town in the morning with Twls tagging along. It seems like people are showing up for some kind of party: moon madness. Morena and Vyshte wander off. A loud bang sounds at the door. Jisrae: “Yes?” “You’re coming with us; you guys are the ones who were involved in the fiasco yesterday.” The bard recognizes that they are guards. They are escorted to Baron Trelib. As they march along, Araya sees her party members being escorted down the street. The streets are busier and more jovial than yesterday. Araya follows nonchalantly on her horse. Edna waves at her. They reach the ritzier side of town and go through a gateway to a big manor house. Araya: “What are you doing with my captives? I’ve been looking for them all morning.” The guards don’t give them up. She says that Lord Twls sent her to bring them back. “What are their crimes?” “The bard presented a very raunchy performance in front of Lord Twls at his daughter’s wedding, along with his two actors.” Gorram: “I can’t help it if all the women want to take off my clothes.” He flexes for the guards. Araya is told to stay here. One of the guards goes to talk to the Baron. The guard comes back and tells the three to come and stand inside in a corner so that they can’t be seen from the street.
Araya is sent to talk to the Baron. She goes into a very nice building. The Baron is the captain of the city guard and sheriff of the local lands. She is informed that a caravan of criminals is being taken to the arena today. However, there was a breakout from the caravan, and the “prisoners” killed some of them. The Baron is puzzled about Lord Twls’s identity. Araya says that thanks to their deeds the previous day, she will drop the charges; they can help as long as the barbarian keeps his clothes on. He says that the night is wild with bloodshed and looting. The Baron releases the others into her care. The guard comes back and escorts Jisrae, Gorram, and Edna in. Jisrae glares at Araya. Gorram sees a picture of a girl of about Araya’s age, sitting on the edge of the Baron’s desk. The Baron moves the picture to one side: “I’d appreciate it if you didn’t look at my daughter like that, especially since she’s missing.” The Baron wants them to look for the six criminals; his missing daughter is an investigator. The criminals: Scrimshaw, the ivory gargoyle; Rrregla, the gasping strangler; Durok, the bugbear brute; Mange, the cowardly shifter; Vrinn, the changeling Cyclops; and Grimgraj, the failed monk. The Baron’s daughter is Zelina. The reward will be one thousand gold pieces for the criminals and one thousand for the daughter. Edna and Jisrae bargain for room and board. He wants it done by tonight and done quietly.
All of the criminals were captured by the same person: Victor Saint-Demian. He wanted to be the under-sheriff, but he’s arrogant, so the Baron turned him down. It is believed that he is trying to get back at the Baron. He lives on the south side of town. The Baron is meeting troops at the docks brought in by the Iron Duke. They continue towards the house of Victor Saint-Demian. Jisrae learns that he’s a very skilled investigator, but he’s an arrogant bastard. He was raised in an orphanage in town. They reach his chateau and walk up to the front door. There is no answer when they knock. They try to find ways to pick a lock without a rogue. Gorram wraps his hand and smashes the window. Jisrae (who tries to stop him) is also smashed. Edna climbs up on the roof and finds a hatch. It is also locked. Gorram snaps the frame out of the window. Jisrae tumbles in and sees paperwork on a desk, books, etc. He casts message so that they can all talk to each other. Edna climbs down the wall when Jisrae tells her to join him. Araya and Gorram keep watch, Gorram with his arms crossed in front of the bashed-in window. Edna enters through the window. Jisrae looks at the papers on the desk. Edna sneaks up to watch over Jisrae while he looks through the papers. They look like they are related to the criminals they are looking for. They take them. Jisrae finds a key: it opens the front door. Araya and Gorram move inside. Gorram: “It smells nasty in here.” He walks out the front door. The smell gets stronger closer to the stairs. They head up and find out it’s coming from a certain door. There’s also a bed. Jisrae opens the door, and fire and acid come out. He falls unconscious as Edna and the others jump out of the way. Araya lays on hands and gets Jisrae back on his feet. They find a dead body: the bad smell. They find remnants of an old cane, which is a masterwork sword with V.S.D. on the hilt. One of the doors in the desk has a false bottom. Inside are plans. Baron, ID, ET…They are confusing plans.
They head out and look for pepper and silver, as two of the criminals are susceptible to those items. They rush up to the dock as the Iron Duke slowly makes its way up the river. They are asked for a ticket by ticket constructs: “Ticket please. Ticket please.” They have to buy four tickets to Eel Town. They are told it is the wrong dock. Gorram punches the construct. Then Gorram grapples him, and Edna and Jisrae tumble past as other constructs try to grab and hit them. A mad dash pursues. The ticket-takers mob Gorram: “Ticket please, ticket please…” They reach the guards and try to explain what’s going on. From the bow of the Iron Duke is a big explosion, and out spring airy living clouds with shimmering string attached to the ship. Edna and the constructs get entangled and trip all over each other while Gorram leaps over their heads. Jisrae sings “We must save the Baron!” The Baron gets out of the skiff, and the party runs up as the constructs entangle each other asking about tickets. Jisrae looks at the incoming ship and tries to calculate when it is going to impact. He falls in the water when the Iron Duke crashes into the dock. Gorram and Edna try to fish him out as he panics because of his paranoia of water. It takes them about a half an hour. Araya gets the Baron to safety. Edna sees a bowman on the warehouse, who shoots at them as they dry Jisrae off. The arrow lands at his feet, and the bowman disappears. There’s a note on the arrow from Victor Saint-Demian.
They find their way to the condemned temple of Awean, guided by the note. There are statues in alcoves and a bell tower above all. Edna sees some movement. They smell anise. Jisrae: “The gasper must be here.” He scrapes pepper into oil. Edna steps into the room, and a tentacle wraps around her. Gorram attacks the tentacle. Araya smites the evil gasper. An arrow flies from the balcony into Araya’s back. Jisrae sets his mixture on fire and throws it at the gasper Rrregla. It hits Edna and Gorram too but produces peppery smoke. Gorram slices through him, and he slumps to the ground. Edna moves over to the broken stairs. Araya fires off her crossbow. Edna gets shot with an arrow by an albino guy (Scrimshaw). Jisrae fishes for a statue. Gorram runs to the corner and jumps to get up on the balcony. Morena runs up to Edna and heals her. Edna gets to the top of the stairs. Araya tries to get up the stairs too. A gargoyle falls on Gorram, and both tumble to the ground. Jisrae sings. Gorram untangles himself from the gargoyle. Morena shoots at the prone gargoyle. Jisrae picks up planks of wood while Gorram smites. Morena shoots and misses, and Edna keeps investigating the balcony. The gargoyle hits Gorram. Jisrae blocks Morena’s bad shot with his plank. Gorram gets mauled. Jisrae yells and smacks with his board. Gorram hits back. Morena shoots and hits. Edna charges and jumps on his head from above; he falls to the ground. Araya coupe de grace him. Morena heals Gorram.
They search and loot the bodies, finding jewels and other belongings. Jisrae comes back wearing a red cloak and smoking a cigar. Morena opens the door up on the balcony, and everyone else backs away from her. She opens it into an enormous stone chamber with broken pews. Edna sneaks in and sees Durok the Masher next to the altar; on the altar is Zelina, bruised and beaten up. Araya steps in and sees the same thing, as does Jisrae. Gorram quaffs his healing potion and walks into the room. Durok waves his warhammer above her and lisps at them: “Swop! O’ I’ll mash ‘er!” Araya tries to bluff that her potion is the drug he is addicted to, and he starts moving up to her. Jisrae supports her bluff, and Gorram moves up to Zelina and stands over her, ready to cut her bonds. Morena walks up and smites Durok with her sais. Edna stands next to her and pounds on him. Durok hits Morena with the warhammer. Araya charges him and slices, knocking him to his knees. Zelina turns into an ugly dude and slices Gorram with a dagger. Jisrae flanks but fails to kill him. Edna pounds his skull in. Araya charges up by Gorram at the altar. Everyone stands around the altar and beats on him. He flees, and Jisrae shoots him in the back. Gorram nearly takes out the doorway chasing him.
They move onward to a rickety old staircase to the bell tower. There are more people in there. Gorram gets hit with a boomerang. He jumps on the altar and yells for healing. Edna impatiently waits for people to finish looting the body before they can all go in. Morena damns the corpse and walks into the altar. Jisrae drinks a potion of barkskin and moves closer. Morena: “I don’t want to do this anymore.” She heals Gorram a bit. Araya moves into the room. Jisrae hands Gorram a potion of healing and the silver fork. Morena chills. Edna joins Araya in the room to fight the three remaining villans. Jisrae takes out his soapbox to inspire people. Gorram runs away. Morena tries to take out Jisrae’s soapbox. Edna the monk and their ex-monk enemy duel it out. Araya and Gorram battle Mange. Jisrae shoots an arrow between Gorram’s legs. Edna goes unconscious.
The others take Mange and the monk out and go up the stairs in pursuit of the other. Jisrae and Gorram see Victor at the top of the stairs. Victor kicked the surviving villain off the roof. Gorram charges into him while back down the stairs Araya, Morena, and a recovering Edna inspect the bodies. Victor whips at Gorram with his rapier, and Jisrae shoots Victor. The bell begins tolling midnight. Gorram’s rage wears off, and he starts running back down the stairs. Edna runs into Gorram, Araya runs into Edna, and Morena runs into Araya. Poor Jisrae is alone and gets hit. Gorram sees the reinforcements and moves back up. They all surround Victor and attack him. Jisrae cowers away. Morena laughs at Jisrae and shoots Victor. Edna punches him but is too weak from her previous injuries, so she is stunned. Gorram kills Victor before the villain was able to push Zelina off the edge; he grabs Zelina and picks her up, flexing his muscles and dripping blood. Morena to Jisrae: “You should fall down more often: it makes me hit things.” They take back the daughter, and Gorram smoozes for her hand. The Baron might think about it. She offers to take him to the opera.