Session 4:
At Death's Door

 

     

[JadedDM]: Dymin 28th, Darkday; 10 bells.  It has been five days since the party slew the fire imp, Cinder.  It is a hot spring day, and the party is hiding from the blazing sun in the cool Mirthful Miner Tavern.  The party sits at a table in the back while Gaheris nurses a drink sullenly.  Griselda is at the bar, chatting with Flaco.  A figure wearing red robes sits at another table.  A handful of drunken miners occupy the rest of the empty seats.

[JadedDM]: The mines are still closed and yesterday, the Tainted Hands were hired to clear out the mines of more vermin--much to Gaheris' chagrin.  Lately, everyone has been on edge.  This is due to the mines being closed.  Sooner or later, word will get to the drow, and they will send someone to see what's holding up production.  Three days ago, one of the Duergar were found and arrested, but the second is still at large.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris looks down into his mug and sighs.  "Damn Tainted Hands..."

[Daufer]: Daufer wipes his brow. His sleeves are rolled around his elbows. "Nothing you can do about that.  They've got a better reputation in this town."

[Jasmin]: Jasmin shifts about in her new armor as if she was still trying to get use to it. "We'll get up there, Gaheris. You'll see," she says cheerfully as she adjusts the new circlet around her head that seems to resemble a bat with its wings outstretched.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris grunts.  "We cleaned out the mines the first time.  We deserved that job."

[Daufer]: "I didn't think they'd come this far down south, though, from their usual neighborhood."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "I heard the Viscount is paying them quite a bit for such a simple job.  He must be as worried about the drow coming as everyone else."

[Jasmin]: "Worried? About drow?" Jasmin grins. "I don't know, this town could use a little excitement."

[Daufer]: Daufer looks at Jasmin incredulously, but does not reply to her comment. Instead he says, "We should go out and do something. Sitting around here isn't going to let people know about the Shadow Bats."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris gulps down a large portion of his ale, and then wipes his mouth with his sleeve.  "Any ideas?"

[Jasmin]: Jasmin pushes herself up out of her chair, and walks behind Daufer only to wrap her arms around his neck playfully. "Aw, now you can't be worried about a drow or two," she says sweetly before looking to Gaheris. "Well, we could always search out new jobs. I'm not sure where though."

[Daufer]: Daufer looks slightly uncomfortable when Jasmin does this, but he is stoic and calm.

[JadedDM]: As they talk, the person in red robes gets up and leaves.  Another couple of miners come in and order drinks.  Gaheris polishes off his own ale and looks down into the glass with disappointment.

[Daufer]: "That's probably our best option," Daufer says. "We're not famous enough for people to come to us."

[Jasmin]: Jasmin turns her attention away from Daufer, despite the fact she doesn't exactly let him go. "Who was the guy in the robes that just left?"

[JadedDM]: Griselda approaches them with a smirk on her face.  "My, don't you three look like the most depressed folks I've ever seen."

[Jasmin]: "Oh, do you plan on doing something about our depression, Griselda?"

[Daufer]: Daufer looks at the old dancer with a sour expression on his face.

[JadedDM]: Griselda is another dancer here at the Mirthful Miner, but unlike Jasmin, she is considerably older.  In her mid-40s or so, she sags a bit more in certain places and her skin is no longer as milky smooth as it once was.  But she's still somewhat attractive, with long blonde hair that extends to her ankles and mischievous blue eyes that reflect many years of experience.  Placing a hand on her hip, she looks around the table.  "Are you all still in the slaying business?"

[Jasmin]: "Yes,” she says simply. Casually she slips into Daufer's lap. "Do you have something that needs...slaying?" she asks sounding almost amused.

[JadedDM]: Griselda glances behind her shoulder, and then slips into an empty chair at their table.  Leaning forward, she says, "I might have a little ol' job for you."

[Daufer]: Daufer lets a condensed sigh escape from the small space between his teeth. Leaning forward, he takes a mug and sips a bit of ale, made difficult by Jasmin being in his way.

[Jasmin]: "You aren't going to ask us to slay some customers that don't pay you attention anymore are you?" Jasmin asks teasingly. "What's the job?"

[JadedDM]: Gaheris leans forward a bit himself, curious.

[JadedDM]: Griselda:  "It's like this, see.  I need you to retrieve something for me.  It's really important, and since the Tainted Hands got their hands full with the mines, I thought maybe ya'll could help me out here."

[Daufer]: "Retrieve from where?"

[Jasmin]: "And what are we retrieving?"

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "And from whom?"

[JadedDM]: Griselda takes a deep breath and tells her story.  "All right, I have many...suitors, as you might have guessed.  One of them was a wizard visiting from another town.  He sent me a gift, a little ol' potion he brewed up for me.  But, the wagon it was being transported on was attacked outside of town, by orcish raiders.  I need ya'll to go get it back from the orcs for me."

[Jasmin]: "What kind of potion?" she asks. Absently leans back against Daufer as if he was her own personal chair at this point.

[JadedDM]: Griselda:  "That's not important.  I just want it back.  It's in a purple bottle and the orcs probably got it hidden in their caves somewhere."

[Daufer]: Daufer finally lets out a growl and pushes out his hand, not too gently, against Jasmin's back.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "You want us to go into the Karik Mines?  There are over a hundred orcs in there.  How much are you offering?"

[JadedDM]: Griselda:  "Will this do?"  She opens up a belt pouch and reveals a beautiful broach with a ruby in it.  "Family heirloom.  Worth at least 100 gold, but I'm sure you could get more for it."

[Jasmin]: "Touchy, touchy." Jasmin giggles a bit as she sits up a bit straighter though she doesn't make a move to get off him. "So over a hundred orcs all for one potion. Well, I'm for it."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris' eyes widen at the sight of the precious jewel.  "I see..."

[Daufer]: Daufer grabs the cuff of Jasmin's neck and says, "You're really trying my patience."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris' eyes flick over to the other two, then back to the broach.  "Can you give my associates and I a minute to discuss this?"

[JadedDM]: Griselda gives him a soft smile and nods.  "But of course."  She stands and sashays back over to the bar.

[Jasmin]: "Oh and what are you going to do about it?" Jasmin says with a fearless grin.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "You two want to cut it out and focus on the business at hand here?"

[Daufer]: Daufer lets go of Jasmin's neck and looks at Gaheris. "Fine. I say we do the job."

[Jasmin]: Jasmin holds back a laugh as she turns back to Gaheris. "It sounds fun to me. Let’s go."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "All right.  I'll go tell Griselda."  He stands up.  "I'll be back in a second.  Try and behave until then."  He walks over to the dancer.

[Jasmin]: "Aww, do I have to?" she calls out to Gaheris.

[Daufer]: Daufer drinks more ale, suffering the embarrassment of being used as upholstery in silence.

[Jasmin]: "It can't be that bad, Daufer. I've done a lot worse to complete strangers. I'm going easy on you."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris returns a few minutes later and sits down.  "All right.  That's taken care of.  Now we need to figure out how we're going to do this."

[Daufer]: "We're going to need more than just us three. Where's that mage?"

[JadedDM]: Gaheris shakes his head.  "I'm not sure.  I went by his house the other day, but there was no answer.  Maybe he was out, maybe he was hung over.  Maybe he was entertaining a lady guest."

[Jasmin]: "Well, it wasn't me," Jasmin says in a bit of a huff. "Looks like it is just us then, and since you all don't want to take on over a hundred orcs maybe we could...sneak in?"

[JadedDM]: Gaheris leans back in his chair a bit.  "What do you two know of the Karik Orcs?"

[Daufer]: Daufer gives a shrug, difficult to do with the extra weight. "As much as anyone else."

[Jasmin]: Jasmin shakes her head slowly. "No, nothing."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "The Karik Mines used to be ours, until the orcs took up residence there.  There isn't enough ore left in the mines to fight over it, so nobody has ever removed them.  They're remnants of the Hobgoblin Insurrection, I think.  After the battle was over, they took what was left of their tribe and set up shop in the mines."

[Daufer]: "So, basically, a bunch of scroungers," Daufer says.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris nods.  "There's over a hundred in there last I heard.  So we'll have to do this delicately."

[Jasmin]: "Then how do we go about doing it?"

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Good question.  The women and children are no threat, but the males outnumber them both."

[Daufer]: "I'm no good at sneaking," Daufer says. "Besides, that sort of thing leaves a bad taste in my mouth."

[Jasmin]: Jasmin glances over her shoulder to Daufer only to giggle lightly at him. "Did she say when the wagon was attacked? Maybe we don't even have to go all the way to the mines and just deal with the raiders."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Yeah, she told me this was a couple of days ago."  He pauses to think.  "If we go during the day, most of them might be sleeping.  Maybe.  Then again, if we go at night, maybe most of them will be away on hunting parties..."

[Jasmin]: "If you really want to avoid them..," she starts, wrinkling her nose, "...then it is best to go at night it sounds like since most of the males will be gone."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris rubs at his forehead.  "I don't suppose either of you can speak Orc?"

[Daufer]: Daufer shakes his head.

[Jasmin]: "I can't."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Me, either.  Okay...so this is going to be a challenge then."

[Jasmin]: "You still got me. It doesn't matter what language you speak when it comes to pretty girls."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "What, you mean...let them capture us?"

[Jasmin]: "It would get us in."

[Daufer]: "Capture you, you mean. I'll be damned if I let myself be captured."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Assuming they even try to capture us...as opposed to killing us on the spot, if the plan fails, we wind up orcish slaves for the rest of our lives."

[Jasmin]: "We all don't have to be captured, as Daufer pointed out."

[Daufer]: "Perhaps we should ask around, see what anyone else knows about these orcs. Their patterns, and so forth."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Even if you get in, how will you get back out?"

[Jasmin]: "One of you could sneak in while they were sleeping, and get me out." Jasmin shrugs.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris sighs.  "So there's diplomacy...sneaking in...letting ourselves be captured...and fighting our way in."

[Daufer]: "A retired Slayer, for example, might know more about the orcs than we do. Even if only by a little."

[Jasmin]: "Um, I don't think I know of any retired Slayers."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "I'll sooner die than go ask the Tainted Hands for any help."

[Jasmin]: "Sounds like we might be on our own on this. Diplomacy is going to be hard since none of us can speak their language. Daufer can't do sneaky apparently, so that really only leaves two options."

[Daufer]: "Information is vital, Gaheris. Besides, maybe Jasmin can use her...charms on one of them."

[Jasmin]: Jasmin smiles brightly, glancing to Daufer. "You think I have charms. Isn't that sweet," she says before leaning in and bravely giving him a kiss on the cheek.

[Daufer]: "In a manner of speaking," he says, grimacing.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris frowns.  "I'm sure Jasmin doesn't want to lower herself to dealing with those barbarians," he says with a hint of uncertainty.

[Jasmin]: Jasmin looks over to Gaheris, raising an eyebrow curiously." Are you saying I can't charm barbarians?" she asks, crossing her arms.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "I just mean...they're below you, is all."

[Jasmin]: "Maybe, but that makes it even easier." She smiles. "Are you worried I'll join them?"

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Gonach!" he swears in goblin, obviously frustrated.

[Daufer]: "With that out of the way, we should discuss something else," Daufer says. "We'll need someone to replace Kaodic if we can't rely on him."

[Jasmin]: Jasmin slides out of Daufer's lap only to walk over to Gaheris and slide into his lap. "Let me try, Gaheris. You know you don't have anything to worry about."

[Daufer]: Daufer looks increasingly more comfortable now that no one is using him as a chair.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "The Tainted Hands are our rivals, Jasmin.  Asking them for help puts us at a disadvantage.  It's bad enough they got that mine job."

[Jasmin]: "But they don't know who we are. They probably don't even know who I am, so we can just...steal the information from them and use it to our advantage."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Fine, do what you want."

[Jasmin]: Jasmin pouts. "Don't get mad."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "You're on your own, if you go to them, though."

[Daufer]: "Now, about that replacement for Kaodic…"

[Jasmin]: "Fine." Jasmin huffs a bit and looks to Daufer. "Who did you have in mind?"

[Daufer]: Daufer eyes the Miner's bouncer. "He looks pretty strong."

[JadedDM]: Grunk, the mute half-ogre, stands silently and stoically by the stage.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Do we need muscle or magic?"

[Jasmin]: "I say we are just fine by ourselves right now.  Give Astal a few more days, and maybe he will come around."

[Daufer]: "What about the priest from the smelter? That young one. He might be useful."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Really?  You think we need another priest?  Of a different faith?"

[Jasmin]: "There was nothing wrong with him," Jasmin says with a small grin.

[Daufer]: "We could discuss the merits of worshipping a flame another time. But, the job will be tough to handle with only three, and I don't think waiting for Kaodic for too long is an option."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "I suppose.  Then again, if we can pull it off by ourselves, that's more gold to go around for us three."

[Jasmin]: "Maybe we should wait until I learn more about the orcs before we recruit anyone."

[Daufer]: "In the short term, yes. But, we should think long term. With more people, we'll have a higher success of completing the job. Therefore, more jobs as well."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris rubs at his chin, as if attempting to find some hole in that logic.  "I suppose...."

[Jasmin]: Jasmin smiles lightly to Gaheris before she nuzzles his cheek. "It's true, you know. The more jobs we have, the better luck we have at beating the Tainted Hands."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris sighs in defeat.  "All right.  But that's assuming we can even convince the guy."

[Daufer]: "About the Tainted Hands. They'll probably want a drink after their job. I'd say that would be a good time to go."

[Jasmin]: Jasmin nods to Daufer in agreement. "To celebrate another victory of course."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "That probably means they'll be at the Wolf Blaze Inn tonight."

[Daufer]: "You'll want to look the part, too. Not as a Slayer, but as an adoring fan. So, the armor will probably have to go."

[Jasmin]: "I've been doing this for awhile. I think I know what to wear," Jasmin says teasingly before she hops off Gaheris' lap. "So that means I need to change and clean up a bit, if I'm going to be that inn tonight."

[Daufer]: Daufer shrugs and finishes off his ale.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Fine.  Then Daufer can go see the fire-eater priest," he says, using an old derogatory term for a worshipper of Renos.  "I guess I'll search around town for any more information on the Karik Orcs."

[Daufer]: Daufer nods and stands up as well. "I'll go now."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Good luck."

[Jasmin]: "Well, I'm going to make myself pretty," she says before she saunters over to the door.

[Daufer]: "Thanks," he says, leaving the Mirthful Miner. Outside, he makes his way to the smelter.

[JadedDM]: (And for the sake of convenience, I'm going to run both scenes at once, even though they happen at different times.)

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Daufer heads to the smelter, finding it still quiet and inactive.  He walks past a couple of homeless war vets to reach the stone staircase leading up to the bronze doors.

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer knocks heavily on the bronze doors.

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  That night, Jasmin steps into the Wolf Blaze Inn, her gear and armor discarded.  The Inn is much fancier and cleaner than the Mirthful Miner.  It is two stories, with a balcony surrounding the edge of the second floor terrace, and two staircases leading up to it.  A ball of flame hovers in a glass orb connected to the ceiling, illuminating the place.

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  With a loud noise, the doors swing open and an older woman appears behind them.  She is wearing red robes with her hood down.  She looks to be in her fifties or so, with short-cropped white hair and hazel eyes.  Wrinkles ravage her face, giving it a leathery texture.  "Yes?" she asks, a bit of suspicion in her voice.

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin absently smoothes out her red silk skirt before she runs her fingers through her long hair. She had abandoned the barrette tonight so that her silky hair would fall down over her shoulders nicely. After a moment of looking around in a bit of awe, she walks over to the bar.

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  There are a number of patrons in the inn tonight, most of them appearing rather wealthy.  They dress in the best fineries and the women have beautiful jewels and gems adoring their clean and fragrant bodies.  A number of these women are concentrated near the bar, as they swoon and giggle over three men sitting there.

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer gives a short bow to the elderly woman. "My name is Daufer, priest of D'lokka, the Dark Lady; a Slayer by profession. I was hoping to speak with one of your acolytes."

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  The old woman raises a brow.  "If you're here seeking converts, I'm afraid you'll be disappointed."  She opens the door entirely and lets him in.  "I am called Dia," she adds.

[Daufer whispering]: "That was not my intention, no," Daufer saysd slowly, insulted by the implication. "Priestess Dia, where is the acolyte called Meschior?"

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin smiles faintly to herself as she glides over to the swooning women before she speaks up as if she was some sort of adoring fan girl. "So these men must be the famous Tainted Hands," she says even though she can't exactly get the best look at them yet with the women surrounding them.

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Dia:  "Ah, the youngest of our flock.  He and the others were sent out on an errand.  He should return soon, if you care to wait, mister Daufer."

[Daufer whispering]: "The youngest?" Daufer repeats, feeling that this may be a bad idea. "Priestess Dia, perhaps you could answer one more question for me."

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Getting closer, Jasmin can now see the men better.  One is an older man, perhaps entering his early fifties, but still handsome in his own right.  He's in great shape with graying hair and hazel eyes.  He is regaling a few of the women with a tale of him fighting a giant wasp 'the size of a house.'  The second man looks to be around 25 or so.  He is very bulked-up with broad shoulders and tanned skin.  He has long brown hair and hazel eyes.  He is screaming out for another beer from the server.  The third man is the youngest, maybe a few years behind the second man.  He's thin and willowy, but has some rather stern facial features.  He has brown eyes and black hair.  He isn't speaking at all, but drinking his ale.

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Dia:  "Very well.  What is your question?"

[Daufer whispering]: "I heard one of the acolytes attempted to summon a fire imp a week ago."

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Dia's lips tighten.  "Did you?  From where did you hear that?"

[Daufer whispering]: "From the fire imp," Daufer says simply.

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Dia smiles softly.  "My dear, imps of all kinds are known as liars and pranksters.  No, I'm not sure where this imp came from, but I assure you it was not from anyone here.  We are far too careful to risk bringing in creatures from Zenan into this realm."

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin seems slightly amazed at the attention these three have managed to receive, though she continues to make her way through the crowd of woman to find herself next to the youngest member of the group. "For someone so popular, you don't exactly seem to be enjoying yourself," she says casually.

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  The younger man smirks slightly as he finishes off his ale.  "Believe it or not, but it gets old after awhile.  Although you wouldn't know it from watching my father and brother."

[Jasmin whispering]: "Your brother seems to be enjoying his ale more than the women around him, and your father surely what he says is just a little exaggerated?"

[Daufer whispering]: "A prankster he was, but he had no reason to lie."

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Young Man:  "We all have our vices, I suppose.  As for my father, he may embellish a little, but most of what he says is true."

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Dia:  "Imps need no reason to lie.  It is their nature."  Just then, the bronze doors open and two people enter, both in red robes.  One Daufer recognizes as Meschior.  The other he has not seen before, a woman in her mid-20s with red hair pulled into a ponytail.  Both are in the middle of a conversation but stop suddenly upon seeing Daufer.

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Dia:  "Ah, here he is now.  Meschior, you have a visitor."

[Jasmin whispering]: "It sounds as if you three have had your share of excitement then," she says sweetly. "While I know of your fame so very well, I do not know your names. I'm Jasmin." She gently holds out her hand to him.

[Daufer whispering]: "You may remember me from the other day. I am Daufer, priest of D'lokka."

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  The younger man hesitates, but then accepts her hand and shakes it softly.  "I am Liamx.  My brother is Cardel, and my father is Kricket.  A pleasure, Miss Jasmin."

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Meschior:  "Oh, yes.  Julia, this is one of the people I told you of, the ones who slew the rust monsters.  Welcome back to our humble shrine."

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer gives a short bow to Julia before looking back at Meschior.

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Meschior:  "What brings you here this fine day?  Nothing is the matter, I hope?"

[Jasmin whispering]: "A polite one aren't you, Liamx?" She teases him a bit. "So who am I more likely to get a truer story out of?" she asks curiously. "Your father seems to have quite a few stories, but I'm not sure I'll like his tales."

[Daufer whispering]: "No, nothing is the matter. I would like to ask you something, however."

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx shrugs.  "I suppose the less fantastic tales are of less interest, so he focuses on the more grandiose ones."  He frowns slightly as his father apparently reaches a climax of the story, and several of the women gasp or react verbally.

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Meschior:  "Oh.  Very well.  What would you like to ask?"

[Daufer whispering]: "The mage of our Slayer group... you may remember him?"

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Meschior thinks a moment and nods.  "Yes, yes.  The one who wished to purchase another burning oil."

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin glances over to the women who gasp at the tale and shakes her head as if it was the stupidest thing in the world. "Then perhaps you'll be willing to tell me a story, providing that I get to pick the tale." She smiles brightly to him. "And I promise not to overreact like these women so obviously are doing."

[Daufer whispering]: "Yes..." Daufer says, wincing at the memory of the incident." Him. Well, he's become unreliable, and we are looking for a replacement. Which is why I thought of you."

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx:  "And what tale would you pick?" he asks with a hint of amusement.

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Meschior blinks in surprise.  The two women share a look.  "Me?  You wish me to join you...to fight monsters?"

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin glances to the ceiling in thought. "I guess something of a personal interest of mine. Have you come across the Karik Orcs before?"

[Daufer whispering]: The look the women share does not go unnoticed by Daufer, but he's already come this far to back out now. "Yes, in fact," Daufer says, giving the acolyte a clap on his shoulder. "You look able enough."

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx chuckles.  "They are smart enough to give us wide berth now.  But when we first started, we had a few run-ins with them."

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Meschior:  "W-Well, I...I had never thought about it before.  I mean, my training is not yet complete and I'm sure Vandoorm would wish me to stay..."

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Dia:  "Nonsense!" she interrupts.  "I think it's a splendid idea!"

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Meschior:  "Wh...what?"

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer looks at Dia, suspiciously, as well.

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Julia looks at Dia confused, but slowly nods her head in agreement.  "Yes...I am sure Vandoorm would not object.  In fact, he would probably insist.  You could use some field experience."

[Jasmin whispering]: "What was that like then? Are they truly as vicious as some say?" Jasmin absently leans back against the bar and scoots a bit closer to Liamx so she can hear him a bit better.

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx attempts to talk over his father and the women.  "They are vicious, although I dare say they have a spark of intelligence to them.  They fight fairly honorably most of the time, but they sometimes slip back into their old ways."

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Meschior:  "Well...I suppose I could."  He seems a bit confused.

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Dia:  "It'll do you good, to get out of this stuffy old shrine and see the world," she insists.

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin glances around with a small frown. "Care to tell me more in a more private setting? I can barely hear you over all of this...noise."

[Daufer whispering]: "We have a job tomorrow," Daufer says, with some regret. "You should go prepare."

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx glances around and then sets his empty mug down on the bar.  "I have a room upstairs."

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Meschior:  "So soon?  Oh...uh...all right.  What kind of job is it?"

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin pushes herself away from the bar gracefully. "Then lead the way, dear Liamx."

[Daufer whispering]: "Well, I won't lie. It'll be dangerous. But, I'll give you the details later."

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx takes Jasmin by the hand and leads her through the crowd.  Once beyond them, they slip upstairs unnoticed and he takes her to his room.  He opens it with a key and steps inside, letting her in.  It's quite well furnished with a double-sized bed, a dresser, a mirror and desk, and a closet.  The window is covered in silk curtains.

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Dia:  "We will see he gets some proper equipment."

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Meschior:  "Where should I meet you tomorrow?" he asks, still in a bit of a daze.

[Daufer whispering]: "The Mirthful Miner is where we usually meet."

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Dia:  "That's settled then.  He'll be there," she interjects, setting a hand on Meschior's shoulder.

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin steps into the room only to have a feeling of awe sweep over her once again. "Oh, to have a room like this," she says softly as she moves to examine the silk curtains a bit more closely.

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx closes the door behind him.  "That's better," he says, admiring the quiet.

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer waits for Meschior to leave.

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin turns to face him with her hands clasped behind her back. "Much better," she adds with a smile. "So they fight fairly honorably do they? What did you mean that they slip into their old ways?"

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Julia escorts Meschior downstairs, leading him as he still seems a little out of it.  Dia smiles and turns back to Daufer.  "Is there anything else you need?"

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer is silent for a moment. "You seemed awfully... eager to be rid of him."

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx offers her a seat on the bed.  He opens up a drawer on his desk and removes a bottle of wine and two glasses.  "Yes, they were once part of the Hobgoblin Insurrection.  So they were taught the codes of honor and war, and all that.  Care for a drink?"

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Dia chuckles slightly.  "Oh, not at all.  We adore him.  But he could use an opportunity like this.  After all, we can't spread the teachings of Renos staying cooped up in here, can we?"

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin softly walks over to his bed and sits down gently upon it. "I could use one, sure," she says sweetly. "This might sound like an odd question, though are they known for…capturing people?"

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx pours them both a drink and then brings the glasses over to her, handing her one.  He sits on the bed next to her.  "Yes, they do sometimes.  For slave labor, mostly."

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer scrutinizes Dia's wrinkled face. "I am not going to guarantee his safety, you understand. Anyone in our group is an equal member and must contribute his part."

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Dia nods.  "Renos is with him.  And he could learn some responsibility and teamwork.  This is perfect for him."

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin wraps her fingers around the glass and takes it from him before she places it to her lips to take a sip. "What else can you tell me about them?" she asks as she leans back on one hand while her right hand holds her glass of wine.

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx shrugs and takes a sip himself.  "What would you like to know?"

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer sighs. "Very well. One last thing, priestess. Do you know anything about the Karik Mine orcs?"

[Jasmin whispering]: "Despite living here all my life, I don't know much of the outside world. I heard that the mines that they live in use to be ours. I doubt it would be easy to sneak into something like that wouldn't it?"

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Dia:  "About as much as anyone, I suppose.  They mostly keep to themselves, save for the occasional raiding party for slaves or goods."

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx chuckles.  "Yes, it's true.  The mines were once ours.  But we depleted them and when the orcs came, we didn't care enough to stop them.  As for sneaking in, well...it wouldn't be easy.  Even if you had a map, it would most likely be outdated.  I'm sure the orcs have made some changes since they moved in."

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer nods, expecting about as much. He gives the time Dia should tell Meschior to meet with the rest of the Shadow Bats and takes his leave.

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin takes another few sips from her glass before she continues on. "Just say someone did decide to sneak in though, when would be the best time to do it?"

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  His business there complete, Daufer returns to the Mirthful Miner Tavern to find Gaheris at the bar, apparently having finished his own legwork.

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer hails Gaheris and sits down, ordering an ale from the nearby waitress as he does so.

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx arches a brow at her question.  "I suppose during the day, as they are nocturnal and hate the sunlight.  So they tend to sleep during the day.  Night is when they are most active."

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  As the waitress brings him his ale, Gaheris takes a sip of his own.  "So how did it go?"

[Jasmin whispering]: "How many do you think are in there?" Jasmin merely smiles to him. "I'm sorry for all the questions. Like I said, it is just of personal interest to me."

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer drinks deeply from the mug before saying, "Meschior will meet us here tomorrow. We'll see how he works out then. What about you? Find anything out?"

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx:  "I wouldn't think a pretty young lady like yourself would find such interest in orcs."  He shrugs again.  "I would guess maybe around a hundred or two."

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Gaheris:  "Maybe.  I want to see what Jasmin learns first and compare.  So do you think this fire-eater will work out?"

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin looks up to him curiously and almost innocently. "What do you think someone like me would be interested in?"

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer gives a shrug. "Let's just say, they couldn't get rid of him fast enough."

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx thinks a moment, at a lost.  "I suppose...girly things?"

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Gaheris:  "Really?  He some kind of trouble-maker or something?"

[Daufer whispering]: "I'm not too sure what was going on there exactly. We'll see when we see," he says, taking another drink.

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Gaheris:  "Well, maybe he can burn the orcs up and we can just walk in and get the potion," he says in jest.

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin giggles lightly at his words. "Well, I do like girly things, but I'm not going to be like those noblewomen downstairs."

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer barks out a laugh. "If only it were that easy."

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx:  "I wouldn't call orcs all that very girly.  Even their women are rather bland and masculine."

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Gaheris:  "Hopefully Jasmin can learn something useful.  She is good at extracting information from men, I'll give her that."

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer scowls, remembering earlier that day.

[Jasmin whispering]: "Someone was telling me a story of the orcs in those mines, and it just caught my interest. I thought that the best way to learn about them was to ask one of you, considering you are the experts on such things around here."

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Gaheris chuckles.  "What's the matter?"

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx shrugs.  "Fair enough, I suppose."  He finishes his wine.

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer takes another sip. "What was with her today? She always like that or did you put her up to it?"

[Jasmin whispering]: "You've come in contact with them before you said. How did that turn out?" Jasmin asks before she finishes off her own glass of wine.

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Gaheris shrugs with a grin.  "She's like that.  Has to be the center of attention."

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx:  "Obviously, we got out alive.  Can't say the same for them, though.  Their leader would probably love to get our heads on pikes, but he knows that'll never happen."

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer acknowledges the comment, but sits silently, drinking his ale.

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Gaheris:  "What's the matter, though?  Don't like the attention?  I mean, she's rather attractive, after all."

[Jasmin whispering]: "What exactly is your job in your...group?" Jasmin sits up a bit straighter and pushes her long hair back behind her ear before she looks to him.

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx stands to put their empty glasses on the desk.  "I'm the archer of the group."

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer gives a sneer. "For a human, I suppose."

[Jasmin whispering]: "An archer..." Jasmin nods slightly. "And how old are you?"

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Gaheris:  "Ah, I get you.  Prefer your own kind, do you?"

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx:  "Twenty summers," he says, returning to her.

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin finally pushes herself up with a smile. "Well, Liamx. Thank you for the wine, and for the information. You never know maybe one day I'll be out there slaying monsters and the like," she says playfully.

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Liamx:  "Oh.  Uh...yes, perhaps someday."

[Daufer whispering]: "Pshah, women of all races are strange creatures."

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin steps up a bit closer to him and gently kisses his cheek. "Enjoy the rest of your evening," she adds before she walks for the door.

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Gaheris:  "They have a lot to offer.  Really."  He nudges him with his shoulder lightly.  "Trust me, you don't know what you're missing."

[JadedDM whispers to Jasmin]:  Jasmin steps out, leaving the confused warrior alone.

[Daufer whispering]: "What do you take me for, huh? A little kid?"

[Jasmin whispering]: Jasmin nearly runs back to her own tavern with a smile upon her face.

[JadedDM whispers to Daufer]:  Gaheris backs off.  "All right, fair enough."

[Daufer whispering]: Daufer takes another gulp of ale. "Ah, no harm done, I guess."

[JadedDM]: Later that night, the three meet up again to discuss what they learned.  Jasmin, Gaheris, and Daufer all sit at a table in the back of the room while various miners walk in and stumble out.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Learn anything, Jasmin?"

[Daufer]: Daufer looks at Jasmin, waiting expectantly.

[Jasmin]: "Not a lot," she says as she leans back in her chair. "They apparently fight honorably, though they are known for switching to their old ways and they seem to have some intelligence.  If we were to sneak in, the best time to do it would be during the day, and they sometimes do capture people for slave labor."

[Daufer]: "If they are honorable, perhaps they will give us what we want if we challenge them for it."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "What did you have in mind?"

[Jasmin]: Jasmin looks to Daufer curiously.

[Daufer]: "The challenge, though is communicating with them, since none of us speak their language."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Maybe one of them could speak to us.  Although that's kind of a long-shot."

[Daufer]: "We'd have to get their attention long before they had a chance to cut us down."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "But how?  Wave a white flag?"

[Jasmin]: Jasmin absently shrugs at Gaheris' question.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Where should we make contact?  It might be risky heading straight to their lair, but on the other hand, I'm not sure where else we could find them."

[Daufer]: "Perhaps if we offered something substantial, something that would catch their eye. A wager by combat."

[Jasmin]: "The only thing I know that would be of value to them are the Tainted Hands," Jasmin says with a small smirk. "But I don't think we can provide that."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "I wouldn't mind that at all."  He snickers.

[Jasmin]: "They do need slave labor once in awhile, so what if we offered us as the prize if they win."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "And if we lose...?"

[Daufer]: "Losing is not an option," Daufer says simply.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris crosses his arms.  "I guess that's the beginnings of a plan then."

[Jasmin]: "Who will be the one fighting though?"

[Daufer]: "As I said, though, none of us know their language, so the plan is shaky at best."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Probably Daufer.  I'm not much in hand-to-hand, and they would probably find the idea of fighting a woman insulting."

[Jasmin]: "What about that priest, Daufer? Isn't he coming along?"

[Daufer]: Daufer nods. "Meschior will be here tomorrow."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Let's hope he pulls his own weight."

[Jasmin]: "Maybe he can speak with them."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Well, I guess we'll meet tomorrow at the front gate and...what?  Head to the mines?"

[Jasmin]: "Sounds like a plan to me." Jasmin stands up from her chair.

[Daufer]: "What do we plan on offering them, though?" Daufer says. "I did think... Maybe you could ask for the broach in advance, Gaheris?"

[JadedDM]: Gaheris grimaces.  "I could try and sweet talk her into giving it to us in advance.  But then if we fail or die, she loses it, too.  It would be a hard sell."

[Daufer]: "You'll have to make it convincing then. We don't really have anything else to offer."

[Jasmin]: Jasmin grins. "Come on, Gaheris. You can do it."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "What about that potion we got from the shrine?  I mean, we're after a potion, after all.  That seems a fair trade."

[Daufer]: Daufer ponders the idea for a moment and says, "Perhaps that will have to do."

[Jasmin]: "Which potion?"

[JadedDM]: Gaheris stands.  "And if nothing else, we can offer them Jasmin," he says with a lop-sided grin.

[Jasmin]: "You better not lose then," she says pointedly to Daufer. "Though, then again that could be fun..." She looks thoughtful for a few moments.

[Daufer]: Daufer is silent at the comment.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "All right.  See you tomorrow."

[Daufer]: Daufer stands and goes to prepare for battle.

[Jasmin]: Jasmin looks to Gaheris rather seriously. "You would come after me if Daufer did lose right?"

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Of course, kitten."  And with that, he heads off.

[Jasmin]: Jasmin walks off after him.

[JadedDM]: The following morning, Dymin 29th, Lightday, at 10 bells the party meets at the tavern and then heads to the north gate of town.  Of course, calling it a 'gate' is a bit of a stretch.  The north wall is incomplete, so the party actually just passes by a checkpoint where the north gate should be.  Gaheris is present with a new brown cloak.  Meschior also shows, now wearing chain mail and bearing a sword and shield.

[Daufer]: "You all remember Meschior. Meschior, Gaheris and Jasmin." Daufer says nodding at each one.

[Jasmin]: Jasmin stands next to Gaheris wearing her new armor along with her circlet once again. Her swords are strapped to her back as always. "A pleasure again, Meschior," she says sweetly to the priest with a wink.

[JadedDM]: Meschior nods politely to both.  "A pleasure to meet you again.  Daufer was just telling me the details of this...job."

[Daufer]: Daufer has a new warhammer strapped to his belt. Otherwise his appearance remains the same.

[Jasmin]: "Sounds fun, huh?" Jasmin says while shifting a bit on her feet as she can't really hold back her excitement.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Have any of you been in Kallow Valley before?"

[Jasmin]: "You know I haven't, Gaheris."

[JadedDM]: Meschior:  "I must admit, I have not."

[Daufer]: Daufer looks at everyone with his eyebrows raised. "You don't stray too far from home, I see. I have, I suppose."

[Jasmin]: "It was kind of hard to wander when Sorel kept a tight leash on me.”

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Okay.  Well, then I'll just say this.  It's a dangerous place and not much to look at.  So keep your eyes peeled and your ears open.  No telling what we might run into on the way."

[Jasmin]: Jasmin somewhat hops a bit then she starts on forward. "Well, come on everyone. We aren't going to find that danger if we are just standing around."

[Daufer]: Daufer takes his position at the rear.  He keeps his maul in his hands, ready to be used.

[JadedDM]: The four step beyond the checkpoint and the incomplete wall and enter the valley.  A dirt road leads north.  There is no grass or lush vegetation, but a desolate wasteland.  There are a few rock formations and a couple of dried up trees, but otherwise Gaheris' description was apt; it's not much to look at.  The sun shines down on you and the wind blows dirt and sand in a westerly direction.

[Jasmin]: Jasmin wrinkles her nose a bit at the sight before her. "Well, I knew I shouldn't have expected much."

[Daufer]: Daufer uses his hand to try to protect his eyes from the dust.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Lead on, Jasmin.  Take this path for now."

[Jasmin]: Jasmin continues to move along the path though she sighs a bit in disappointment.

[Daufer]: Daufer follows, alert for danger, even this close to Voxis.

[Jasmin]: Jasmin finally breaks the silence. "So, Daufer, how exactly do you plan on going about beating these orcs?"

[JadedDM]: The mild sandstorm continues as the party heads north.  After a time of walking the path, it bends to the west and they continue in that direction.

[Daufer]: "I had hoped to only fight one. Wager by combat."

[Jasmin]: "But what if they decide against that?"

[Daufer]: Daufer says with a wry tone, "Escape or die trying.  If they are not complete honorless gobs, though, we may not have to resort to that."

[Jasmin]: "Well, I guess we will find out," she says but from the sound of her tone she kind of hopes they are a little honorless.

[JadedDM]: As they walk, they come across an unusual rock formation, about four feet high and shaped like a lop-sided stack of coins.  It's at this point that Jasmin spots in the distance, something approaching them.

[Jasmin]: Jasmin narrows her eyes slightly as if to get a better look. "Something is coming," she warns the others.

[Daufer]: Daufer tenses his grip on his maul and looks in her direction.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "What?"

[JadedDM]: Trying to see through the sand storm, Jasmin can make out what appears to be a squad of humanoids marching directly toward them in perfect formation.

[Jasmin]: "Well, it is hard to tell, but they look like humans, and they are marching in a formation."

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Soldiers, maybe?  Returning from war?"

[Jasmin]: "Maybe," Jasmin says with a shrug.

[Daufer]: Daufer waits for them to come.

[JadedDM]: As the squad approaches, apparently in no hurry, you can now make them out better.  The 'men' are completely without flesh and skin and are armed with short swords.  There are over a score of them.

[JadedDM]: Meschior:  "By Renos...the dead walk..."

[Jasmin]: Jasmin looks over her shoulder to Meschior. "The dead. Those things are dead?"

[JadedDM]: Gaheris swears.  "Damn skeletons...can't the dead stay that way?"

[Daufer]: Daufer growls, "There are stranger things. Don't look so surprised." He tightens his grip on his maul.

[Jasmin]: Jasmin pulls out her twin swords, glancing to the others.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "My arrows won't be much help here."  He climbs up on the rock.  "I'll do what I can."

[Daufer]: "Traveling during the day didn't help, huh? Damn. Hope you're of some use," he says, directing that last comment to Meschior.

[JadedDM]: Meschior draws his sword but says nothing.

[JadedDM]: The skeleton squad continues toward them, and once it's about 50 feet away, they come to a complete halt.  They are in five rows of four, with an additional one leading the way and carrying a banner of Legar.

[Jasmin]: Jasmin raises an eyebrow curiously. "What are they doing?"

[JadedDM]: The banner skeleton takes one step forward, raises the banner high in the air, and then swings it downward, waving the flag behind it, its jaw open in a silent yell.  The others draw their swords and start charging forward.

[JadedDM]: (Actions?)

[Jasmin]: "Oh..." Jasmin says as that answers her own question before she runs forward to meet the skeletons in battle.

[Daufer]: Daufer stays with Meschior and attacks the first skeleton within range.

[JadedDM]: (Roll initiative.)

[Jasmin]: [1d10] -> [6] = (6)

[Daufer]: [1d10] -> [3] = (3)

[JadedDM]: Jasmin's turn.

[Jasmin]: [1d20] -> [14] = (14)

[Jasmin]: [1d20] -> [17] = (17)

[Jasmin]: [1d6+2] -> [4] = (6)

[Jasmin]: [1d6+2] -> [2] = (3)

[Jasmin]: Jasmin charges into the battle coming up to the first skeleton that is to feel her wraith. She thrusts her right sword into the bones of the skeleton pulling its rib cage forward a bit, then she turns just slightly to bring her left sword to thrust into the rib cage as well.

[JadedDM]: Skeleton Squad's turn.

[Daufer]: ((don'tdiedon'tdie))

[JadedDM]: The first wave rushes forward, with three skeletons each breaking formation to engage Jasmin, Daufer, and Meschior.

[JadedDM]: Jasmin manages to dodge all blows.  Daufer successfully deflects the attacks.  Meschior gets a bit overwhelmed, but thankfully his armor keeps him in one piece.

[JadedDM]: Meschior's turn.

[JadedDM]: Meschior's lips begin to move in prayer as he keeps the skeletons at bay.  The sun above focuses a concentrated beam of light on one of his enemies, causing it to erupt in flame.  The skeleton stumbles away before crumbling.

[JadedDM]: Daufer's turn.

[Daufer]: [1d20] -> [3] = (3)

[Daufer]: As Daufer ducks and weaves the skeletons' swords, he tries to bring his maul to bear, but the skeletons crowd around him, making it difficult to swing.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris' turn.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris draws back an arrow and aims for one of the skeletons in the back.  He fires, twice, but both arrows are deflected from the skeleton's skulls.

[JadedDM]: (Actions for Round 2?)

[Jasmin]: Jasmin attacks

[Daufer]: (Attack the skeletons.)

[Jasmin]: [1d10] -> [5] = (5)

[Daufer]: [1d10] -> [9] = (9)

[JadedDM]: Jasmin's turn.

[Jasmin]: [1d20] -> [13] = (13)

[Jasmin]: [1d20] -> [2] = (2)

[Jasmin]: [1d6+2] -> [5] = (7)

[Jasmin]: Jasmin turns to the left as she brings her right sword in at where the throat would be only to watch the skeleton crumble to the ground. Her second sword comes to meet with another skeleton, but misses her mark in a bit of haste.

[JadedDM]: Skeleton Squad's turn.

[JadedDM]: The two skeletons fighting Jasmin stab, but she nimbly dodges both attacks.  Daufer deflects two of the attacks, but this leads him open for a devastating strike from the third skeleton.  Meschior, likewise, takes a severe hit from one of his targets.  Two more skeletons step forward to take the place of their fallen comrades.

[Daufer]: Daufer growls in pain as the skeleton manages to stab him deep in his shoulder.

[JadedDM]: Meschior's turn.

[JadedDM]: Badly wounded, Meschior manages to keep his opponents at bay long enough to pull something out of his pack and hurl it at the skeletons in the back.  The object breaks on impact and then explodes, destroying six skeletons instantly.  Their bones fly overhead as a wave of heat washes over you all.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris' turn.

[JadedDM]: "Shadowbite, damn me!" he swears.  Regaining his bearings, he draws another arrow and fires.  Sadly, this arrow just gets tangled up in a skeleton's rib cage.

[JadedDM]: Daufer's turn.

[Daufer]: [1d20] -> [2] = (2)

[Daufer]:  ((so sad...))

[Daufer]: Daufer pants as the maul feels a little heavier in his hands. He gives a weak swing, but only hits air.

[JadedDM]: Jasmin's turn.

[Jasmin]: [1d20] -> [4] = (4)

[Jasmin]: Jasmin brings her left sword around to stab at the one of the skeletons, but the sword just clangs harmlessly against a rib.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris' turn.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris' arrow flies true, and shatters the skull of a skeleton in the back.  It crumbles into a pile.

[JadedDM]: Daufer's turn.

[Daufer]: [1d20] -> [3] = (3)

[Daufer]: ((Sigh))

[JadedDM]: (Bizarre.)

[Jasmin]: (He is becoming the next Christophe)

[Daufer]: ((Nooo... by saying it, you have cursed me to a fate of eternal 2s!!))

[Daufer]: Daufer overextended himself from the previous swing and tries to make up for it, but cannot keep the weight of the maul under control. He barely keeps his grasp on the weapon, but misses his target completely.

[JadedDM]: Daufer, Jasmin, and Meschior each are fighting three skeletons.  Meschior looks pretty badly hurt.  Gaheris continues trying to pick off the three in the back.  Actions for Round 3?

[Jasmin]: Jasmin attacks

[Daufer]: Daufer chants the words to a prayer.

[Jasmin]: [1d10] -> [1] = (1)

[Daufer]: [1d10] -> [2] = (2)

[JadedDM]: Jasmin's turn.

[Jasmin]: [1d20] -> [15] = (15)

[Jasmin]: [1d20] -> [20] = (20)

[Jasmin]: [1d6+2] -> [2] = (4)

[Jasmin]: [2d6+2] -> [3, 3] = (8)

[Jasmin]: Jasmin brings her right sword around her body as she twists and stabs it into the skeleton's side, and then she brings her left sword up and upon the skeleton's throat, nicely popping off its head before it crumbles to the ground.

[JadedDM]: Daufer's turn.

[Daufer]: Daufer loosens his warhammer, all the while chanting words of a prayer. Finally, he hurls warhammer at a nearby skeleton, shouting out a plea to D'lokka. The hammer disappears before hitting its target and a new hammer appears in his hands, made of a shadow black substance with red veins, which he hurls at a nearby skeleton.

[Daufer]: [1d20] -> [8] = (8)

[Daufer]: ((grrrr))

[Jasmin]: (At least it wasn't a 2)

[Daufer]: The hammer flies past for some distance, and then reappears in his hand.

[Daufer]: ((I suppose it doesn't matter if I'm using a magic hammer or a maul. Bad mojo is bad mojo.))

[JadedDM]: Skeleton's Squad's turn.

[JadedDM]: Jasmin's remaining two skeletons both strike her, despite her attempts to dodge.  Daufer's bad luck thankfully does not extend to defense, as he is able to keep himself from getting hurt.  Meschior is not so lucky.  A skeleton slashes at his throat and he goes down with a yell.

[Daufer]: "Damn it," Daufer curses as the boy goes down.

[Jasmin]: Jasmin cries out as the swords of the skeletons stab into her leg and one into her side.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris' turn.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris fires another arrow, this one flying too high.

[JadedDM]: He then fires a second arrow with similar results.

[JadedDM]: The skeletons around Meschior split up to fill in the ranks left by their fallen companions.  Jasmin and Daufer are each fighting three, and there are five in the back.

[JadedDM]: Actions for Round 4?

[Jasmin]: Jasmin attacks

[Daufer]: (Attack with spiritual hammer.)

[Daufer]: [1d10] -> [10] = (10)

[Jasmin]: [1d10] -> [6] = (6)

[JadedDM]: Skeleton Squad's turn.

[JadedDM]: The three around Jasmin begin hacking at her, causing her to go down in a bloody mess.  Daufer takes another severe hit followed by a lighter one, weakening him considerably.

[Daufer]: ((Well, this sucks.))

[Jasmin]: Jasmin screams bloody murder before she falls to the ground in a bloody ball.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris' turn.

[JadedDM]: "Jasmin!"  He turns his arrow toward the one that downed her and fires, knocking its skull from its spinal cord.

[JadedDM]: Daufer's turn.

[Daufer]: [1d20] -> [12] = (12)

[Daufer]: [1d4+1] -> [2] = (3)

[Daufer]: Daufer gives a mighty hurl of the strange shadowy black hammer. It crashes into the skeleton's skull.

[JadedDM]: Gaheris' turn.

[JadedDM]: Firing another arrow, Gaheris manages to shatter another skull.

[Daufer]: ((So, uh, how many skeletons are left?))

[JadedDM]: (Three in the front, five in the back.)

[Daufer]: ((Crapcrapcrap))

[Daufer]: ((Meschior fell last round, Jasmin this round.))

[JadedDM]: Gaheris:  "Daufer," he says, lowering his bow, "save them."  And with that, he drops off of the rock, and runs right through the back group of skeletons to the west.  The five skeletons turn and give chase, leaving Daufer with three.

[JadedDM]: Actions for Round 5?

[Jasmin]: Jasmin bleeds.

[Daufer]: Daufer heals Jasmin.

[Daufer]: [1d10] -> [4] = (4)

[JadedDM]: Skeleton Squad's turn.

[Daufer]: ((uhoh))

[Jasmin]: (oh boy...)

[JadedDM]: Daufer deflects the attacks of two of them, but when he turns to heal Jasmin, he takes a hit in the leg.

[JadedDM]: Daufer's turn.

[Daufer]: ((Can I still cast the prayer, or was I interrupted?))

[JadedDM]: (Aww, you guys are having such rotten luck, I'll let you go ahead.)

[Daufer]: The spiritual hammer fades away into thin air as his concentration leaves it. Chanting the words to a prayer, he grabs Jasmin, standing her up.

[Jasmin]: Jasmin groans as her eyes slowly open to see Daufer holding her up. She seems a bit confused though she takes note of the skeletons around her and her eyes widen. "The...potion," she breathes out.

[Daufer]: ((by the way, Heather, if any of us get hit, we die.))

[JadedDM]: (Actions for Round 6?)

[Daufer]: Daufer attacks the skeletons.

[Jasmin]: Despite being weak Jasmin quickly pulls the fire breathing potion from her pack so that she may drink it and down the skeletons.

[Jasmin]: [1d10] -> [8] = (8)

[Daufer]: [1d10] -> [8] = (8)

[JadedDM]: Skeleton Squad's turn.

[Jasmin]: (*cries*)

[Daufer]: ((haha))

[Daufer]: ((It was nice knowing Jasmin.))

[JadedDM]: Daufer whirls to face the skeletons, maul in hand as the three fall upon him and the wounded dancer.  What happens is a blur, but the last thing you remember is a white hot pain and then descending into darkness...

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