Session 6:
Self-Fulfilling Prophecy

     

[JadedDM:] Saffir 6th, 666; Lightday.  Today is the beginning of the Festival of Gold, and the party awakens in their small, dank cell once again.  After nearly a week of slave labor, they are no doubt quite eager to be free of their Orcish masters.  Three guards watch over the prisoners.  One carries the key, and a second carries a horn.  All are armed with long swords, small shields, and studded leather armor.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin stretches out as she wakens on the dirty ground with a groan. "I actually miss that mattress I sleep on," she says while she pushes herself up on her elbows.

[JadedDM:] Meschior leans against the bars, looking at the fireplace.

[Daufer]: Daufer is also leaning on the bars, though in sitting position, eyeing the guards.

[Jasmin:] "So when is that Festival suppose to start?"

[Daufer]: ((Do we have any sort of weapons, even if they're just rocks?))

[JadedDM:] Baska:  "It probably has all ready begun.  Most of the Orcs are likely gathering in the main chamber by now."

[JadedDM:] (Conceivably, you could collect a few rocks while mining, yes.)

[Jasmin:] Jasmin looks over to Meschior and Daufer for a moment. "Well, I think now would be the time to get out of here then, providing everyone is ready of course."

[Daufer]: Daufer nods. "Now is as good a time as any."

[JadedDM:] Baska:  "How are you going to escape?  We can't even leave this cell," she says.

[Jasmin:] "You'll see," Jasmin says before she looks to Daufer. "Should I go for the one with the key, or the one with the horn?"

[Daufer]: "The one with the horn is the greater threat," Daufer says in a matter-of-fact tone.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin nods in agreement before she walks to the bars. Gently, she sticks her arm between the bars to point to the orc with the horn. "Hey handsome!" she calls out to the orc sweetly to get his attention.

[JadedDM:] The three orcs, whom had been in a quiet game of bones, as one turn toward her and raise their brows.  They do not move or say anything, however.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin smiles rather seductively towards the orc with the horn, and she uses her index finger to motion him closer to her.

[JadedDM:] The three orcs look at each other, and the one with the horn steps forward.  He points to himself and says something in Orcish.

[Jasmin:] "That's right," she says softly with a small nod of her head. Slowly she presses herself against the bars as if she wanted to get closer to the orc in question.

[JadedDM:] The horn-bearing Orc approaches, until he's about fifteen feet away.  He points at Jasmin and says something, again in Orcish.

[Daufer]: Through all this, Daufer looks at the floor, appearing exhausted from the days of work.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin takes a moment to blow a kiss the orc's way as she doesn't have a clue as to what he just said. Afterwards she places one of her shapely legs through the bars and slowly runs her hand up it in a suggestive manner.

[Jasmin:] [1d20] -> [16] = (16)

[JadedDM:] The horn-bearing orc raises a brow and then looks to his companions.  He says something to them and they respond.  The three seem to get into some kind of argument about something.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin clears her throat to get the orc's attention again while he argues.

[JadedDM:] The horn-bearing orc becomes more aggressive and the other two seem to back down.  He summons the key-bearer to come unlock the cell.  The third orc crosses his arms and looks annoyed.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin pushes herself away from the bars, and walks over to the door so she can be let out.

[JadedDM:] The key-orc unlocks the gate and swings it open.  The horn-orc gestures for her to come out.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin looks to Daufer and Meschior for only a moment as she slowly starts to make her way out of the cell.

[Daufer]: Daufer gives Meschior a look, tensing his muscles, and charges out the door, grasping hold of a sharp rock. He makes a swipe at the orc with the horn.

[JadedDM:] (attack roll)

[Daufer]: ((oh man))

[Daufer]: ((My luck has been really bad. Here's hoping.))

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

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

[Daufer]: Daufer manages to inflict a heavy gash across the orc's forehead, and blood falls freely to the floor.

[JadedDM:] The other two orcs are stunned.  They key-bearer takes a step back and the third orc draws his weapon and shield.

[JadedDM:] (State actions.)

[Daufer]: Daufer will finish off the horn orc.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin takes a swing at the key-bearing orc.

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

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

[Daufer]: ((Uh-oh.))

[JadedDM:] Meschior's turn.

[JadedDM:] Meschior prays fervently to his deity for the First Blessing.  The sword-bearing Orc is suddenly blinded when his eyes burst into light.

[JadedDM:] Orcs' turn.

[JadedDM:] The horn-bearing orc draws his weapon and slashes at Daufer, but the priest evades.  The key-bearing orc does likewise, only going for Jasmin.  He cuts a slash across her leg.  The third orc comes forward, unsteadily, trying to see.

[JadedDM:] Daufer's turn.

[Daufer]: [1d20] -> [11] = (11)

[Daufer]: Daufer aims at the orc's head again, but hits a raised shield instead.

[JadedDM:] Jasmin's turn.

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

[Jasmin:] Jasmin throws a punch at the orc, but her swing is a bit wild in nature as she only manages to really bat at him than anything else.

[JadedDM:] Baska's turn.

[JadedDM:] The woman charges forward in a fury, throwing a punch at the horn-orc.  It's but a glancing blow, but this seems enough as it drops unconscious.

[JadedDM:] (Actions for Round 2?)

[Daufer]: Daufer goes on to the key orc.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin aims a kick key bearing orc.

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

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

[JadedDM:] Daufer's turn.

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

[Daufer]: ((And... it returns.))

[Daufer]: Daufer moves towards the key-bearing orc but can't get an opening in the orc's defense.

[JadedDM:] Jasmin's turn.

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

[Jasmin:] [1d100] -> [29] = (29)

[Jasmin:] Jasmin kicks at the orc's stomach with all of her might which causes the orc to drop to his back from the force.

[JadedDM:] Meschior's turn.

[JadedDM:] The acolyte charges the blinded orc and swings, but his punch does nothing against the orc's armor.

[JadedDM:] Orc's turn.

[JadedDM:] He attempts to counterattack Meschior, but slices through the air instead.  He calls out in Orcish for help.

[JadedDM:] Only one orc left, and he's blind.  Actions for Round 3?

[Jasmin:] Jasmin turns to face the final orc, and aims a kick his way try and disarm him.

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

[Daufer]: Daufer picks up a sword and attacks.

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

[JadedDM:] (All right.  Remember, Heather gets a -4 to hit for a called shot and Daufer gets a -3 to hit for an unfamiliar weapon.)

[JadedDM:] Daufer's turn.

[Daufer]: [1d20 - 3] -> [17,-3] = (14)

[Daufer]: [1d8] -> [2] = (2)

[Daufer]: A surprisingly dexterous orc, or extremely luck, Daufer only manages to give him a small scratch at his cheek.

[JadedDM:] Orc's turn.

[JadedDM:] The orc counters, but his attack is too high and Daufer easily ducks.  The orc continues shouting out and begins to back away slowly.

[JadedDM:] Meschior's turn.

[JadedDM:] Meschior picks up another long sword and slashes at the orc, but he seems to sense it coming and throws up his shield at the last second.

[JadedDM:] Jasmin's turn.

[Jasmin:] [1d20-4] -> [8,-4] = (4)

[Jasmin:] Jasmin kicks at the orc's arm to disarm him, but the kick comes up short as he moves his arm just in time to avoid the kick.

[JadedDM:] The orc decides to turn and flee.  This means he turns his back on you and drops his defenses.  Everyone is allowed one free attack (+2 for rear attack).

[Jasmin:] [1d20] -> [4,+2] = (6)

[Daufer]: [1d20-1] -> [13,-1] = (12)

[Meschior:] [1d20+2] -> [3,+2] = (5)

[JadedDM:] (All three miss.)

[Daufer]: ((Great.))

[Jasmin:] Jasmin tries to trip the orc as he starts to run, but she doesn't seem to be quick enough. "Damn," she mutters.

[JadedDM:] The orc runs down the hall, shouting at the top of his lungs in Orcish.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin looks to the others as she moves to grab the keys off the key bearing orc. "Someone grab that horn. We might need it."

[JadedDM:] Baska:  "I can't believe it...you actually did it."

[JadedDM:] Meschior quickly scoops up the horn.

[Daufer]: Daufer looks back at Baska. "We're not out of here yet."

[JadedDM:] Meschior:  "The one that got away could bring the whole tribe down on us.  He's blind, though.  We could possibly catch him."

[Jasmin:] "We need our weapons. I remember passing an armory, so letís head down that way, and we should try to keep as quiet as possible."

[Daufer]: Daufer nods, saying, "Let's go." Hefting the sword, he moves out.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin follows after Daufer as quietly as possible.

[JadedDM:] The party walks thirty feet to the armory, which is locked.

[Jasmin:] Once reaching the door, Jasmin looks at the one key in her hand. With a shrug, she decides to try it anyway.

[Daufer]: Daufer keeps an eye out along the hallway for any orcs.

[JadedDM:] The key fits.  With a turn, the lock clicks open.

[Jasmin:] "I can't believe it," she whispers as she begins to open the door.

[JadedDM:] Inside is a small nook holding all of their weapons and armor.  Also inside are three spears, five long swords, and a suit of chain mail.

[Daufer]: Daufer sets down the long sword and picks up his maul.

[Daufer]: ((Just our weapons and armor?))

[JadedDM:] (Yes.)

[Daufer]: ((Dang. Oh well.))

[Jasmin:] Jasmin is quick to grab her armor and put it on before she grabs her weapons.

[JadedDM:] Meschior dons his chain mail and grabs a shield.  He swaps out the orc's sword for his own.  Baska grabs a spear.

[Daufer]: Daufer takes the suit of chain mail. "I hope this will be enough for the coming fight.

[Jasmin:] "Are we going for River Bear, or are we just going to leave?" she asks Daufer curiously.

[Daufer]: "By now, the orc who fled will have alerted the entire tribe. But I suspect that they won't think that we will just come to them, instead of looking for a way to escape."

[Jasmin:] "Is that a yes or no, Daufer?"

[Daufer]: "I am prepared to fight against River Bear," Daufer says, with only a little hesitation.

[Jasmin:] "I'll take that as a yes then," Jasmin shakes her head slightly. "Letís head to the celebration then."

[JadedDM:] Baska:  "Do you really believe you can defeat him?" she asks, although this time there is a bit less skepticism in her voice.

[Daufer]: "We shall see," Daufer says. He stands at the armory door, listening for any orcs.

[Jasmin:] "Renos, I hope so," she mutters softly.

[JadedDM:] For the time being, he doesn't hear anyone approaching.  Meschior finishes putting on his armor and stands ready.  Baska slinks to the back, holding her spear tightly.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin grips her two swords tightly before she motions Daufer forward.

[Daufer]: Armed and armored, Daufer opens the armory door as quietly as he can and moves out.

[JadedDM:] Meschior and Baska exit, as well.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin follows behind Daufer.

[JadedDM:] Meschior:  "What is our plan then?  Are we to go to them or wait for them to come to us?"

[Jasmin:] "We head to the main chamber, as that is where this celebration is right? It was past that river."

[Daufer]: "We'll go straight to them," Daufer says, nodding.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin looks to Baska. "You wouldn't by chance remember where the main chamber is now would you?"

[JadedDM:] Baska:  "Of course," she says, confused by the statement.  She takes the lead, despite being the most vulnerable of the group.

[JadedDM:] They head down the tunnel until they reach a fork, and Baska leads them to the left, which begins to slope upward.

[Jasmin:] "There were guards up here," Jasmin says more in a whisper as she moves to walk beside Baska.

[JadedDM:] When they reach the top, they find three paths.  Baska points to the southern one.  "This is the way to the main chamber," she says.  "All the way to the end."

[Jasmin:] "Where do the other paths lead?"

[JadedDM:] Baska:  "Different chambers.  It's all inter-connected, like a big maze."

[Jasmin:] "Does that river lead out of the mines?"

[JadedDM:] Baska:  "I'm not sure.  I think it may."

[Jasmin:] Jasmin nods slightly before she starts for the southern path.

[JadedDM:] In the distance, you hear shouting and commotion.

[Daufer]: Daufer follows Jasmin.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin slows her pace upon hearing the shouting, though she keeps quiet and keeps as close to the wall as possible so it will be easier for those looking to miss her.

[Daufer]: Daufer grips his maul tightly. "There is a chance that I may fail. If that's the case, then just leave and make a run for it."

[JadedDM:] The party reaches the room with the lift in it.  By the time they do, the halls thunder with footsteps.  Ten orcs, each armed with long swords and splint mail, emerge from the other side and begin to spread around the room defensively.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin glances over her shoulder to Daufer. "This could be a problem."

[JadedDM:] The orcs seem to wait for you to make the first move.  One shouts something in Orcish.

[JadedDM:] Baska:  "He says if you surrender and lay down your arms, you will be spared," she translates.

[Jasmin:] "Then tell them we want to be taken to River Bear."

[JadedDM:] Baska:  "Drec syh tasyhtc du lrymmahka River Bear!"

[JadedDM:] The orcs seemed surprised.  One of them responds.

[JadedDM:] Baska:  "He demands to know what right you have to challenge their leader."

[Daufer]: Daufer only looks at the speaker for the orcs. "Tell them that our right is only a matter of simple strength."

[Daufer]: ((This could go badly.))

[JadedDM:] Baska responds and the leader looks to Daufer and narrows his eyes.  He says something, and then his men part, to let him pass.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin motions Daufer forward. "This is your moment of...glory," she says playfully.

[Daufer]: Daufer moves forward through the line of men.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin moves to follow the hobgoblin.

[JadedDM:] Meschior and Baska follow.  Once in the midst of the orcs, they close around you, forming an entourage.  They watch the party carefully as they march toward the main chamber.  Once there, they find it full of orcs.  Several large tables have been brought in, and many orcs (including women and children) sit at them, their feast interrupted.  The lead orc shouts something and bows to River Bear, who sits at his throne.  Bronze Skull and Amber Wasp are at his side.  River Bear stands upon hearing the news and looks to the party, specifically Daufer.

[Daufer]: Daufer stares back at River Bear, ignoring everyone else's stares.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin smiles sweetly to each of the leaders in kind.

[JadedDM:] There seems to be a commotion as the orcs all talk amongst each other in surprise.  River Bear silences them with a wave of his hand.  In Hobgoblin, he speaks, "Who are you to challenge I, He who is chosen by the Black Sun Goddess?"

[Daufer]: "I follow a goddess even greater than that, River Bear. She stands behind me, and I, gifted with her powers, say that you are weak," Daufer replies in Hobgoblin.

[Daufer]: ((I have a really bad feeling about this.))

[JadedDM:] River Bear's eyes widen in surprise, as if he couldn't believe someone would dare say such a thing.  Bronze Skull looks to Daufer with an appraising look.  Amber Wasp smirks slightly.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin lets out a slow, deep breath as she looks up to the ceiling of the mine. "Renos, I beg of you. Please let this go well," she mutters in her own way of praying.

[JadedDM:] Bronze Skull:  "You must accept the challenge, my lord.  To allow a slave to speak that way to you is a blemish to your honor," he says calmly.

[JadedDM:] River Bear snorts a few times and shouts something in Orcish.  The bodyguards leap into action, and begin clearing away some of the people and tables to make room.

[JadedDM:] River Bear then takes hold of his maul and steps forward.  "I will see that you pay for your insolence, slave."

[Daufer]: Daufer hefts his own maul and replies, "We shall see who the gods favor."

[JadedDM:] The muscular orc stands at a full six feet, so he's not much taller than Daufer.  He seems much wider, though, with his barrel chest.  "Prepare yourself," he warns, stretching a bit.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin seems to actually tense a bit as she watches the two. "Come on, Daufer."

[Daufer]: Daufer prays to his goddess, and then begins to limber up.

[JadedDM:] River Bear grins.  "Any last requests, slave?"

[Daufer]: "I don't make a habit of making requests from dead men."

[JadedDM:] River Bear:  "So be it!"

[JadedDM:] (Actions for Round 1?)

[Daufer]: Daufer attacks River Bear.

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

[Daufer]: ((Oh man.))

[JadedDM:] River Bear's turn.

[JadedDM:] With a mighty blow, the Orc swings the hammer down at him, but Daufer manages to stop it using the shaft of his own hammer.

[JadedDM:] Daufer's turn.

[Jasmin:] "Gaheris, where are you?" she asks more to herself than anything else.

[Daufer]: [1d20] -> [20] = (20

[Daufer]: [4d4+4] -> [1,4,4,3+4] = (16)

[Daufer]: Knocking aside the orc's hammer with the shaft of his own weapon, he makes a swing while River Bear and manages to graze the orc's shoulder.

[Daufer]: ((Wow, this isn't looking good.))

[JadedDM:] (Actions for Round 2?)

[Daufer]: Daufer tries to disarm the orc.

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

[JadedDM:] River Bear's turn.

[JadedDM:] (natural 20...)

[Daufer]: ((Awesome.))

[Jasmin:] (....)

[Daufer]: ((I feel like I'm going to be rolling a few d6s before the night is out...))

[JadedDM:] River Bear slams the head of his maul into Daufer's chest, nearly knocking him across the whole room.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin watches as Daufer flies. "Meschior, is there anything you can do?"

[JadedDM:] Meschior:  "I...maybe.  If he can get a hold of that hammer..."

[JadedDM:] Daufer's turn.

[Daufer]: [1d20] -> [11] = (11)

[Jasmin:] "Start looking for an opening in the crowd. We might need to make a run for it,"

[Daufer]: Daufer picks himself up and charges the orc, but misses him completely.

[JadedDM:] Meschior:  "That seems unlikely," he says, referring to the bodyguards surrounding them.

[JadedDM:] Daufer's turn.

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

[Daufer]: Daufer swings with all his might and manages to catch the head of his maul on River Bear's handle, freeing the weapon.

[JadedDM:] The hammer drops to the ground with a clatter at Daufer's feet.  There is a collective gasp in the room as everyone watches on with awe.

[Daufer]: Trying to keep his gasps for breath under control, Daufer picks up River Bear's hammer and says, "This is the strength of the Dark Lady."

[JadedDM:] Meschior quickly drops into a low prayer and points at the hammer.  Suddenly, it bursts into a white light.  Everyone gasps again and the Orcs begin dropping to their knees.  River Bear is completely stunned at this.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin jumps up and down in excitement. "Yes!" she cries out.

[JadedDM:] Amber Wasp:  "Impossible!" he cries, leaping from his seat.

[Daufer]: Daufer looks at the glowing and look back at Meschior.

[JadedDM:] Meschior gives him a grin and a thumbs up.

[Daufer]: Turning back to orc chiefs, Daufer says, "This victory is mine, wouldn't you say?"

[JadedDM:] Bronze Skull stands up calmly.  "The Hammer of the Gods has made its choice.  This man is a descendent of the Prophet."

[JadedDM:] River Bear just stands there like an idiot, unable to even speak at this.

[JadedDM:] By now, all of the orcs have dropped to their knees.  Bronze Skull kneels, as well.  River Bear looks around and slowly, also kneels.  Amber Wasp is the last to do so, and when he does he stares at Daufer with an intense glare.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin giggles in delight as she makes her way through the crowd towards Daufer.

[Daufer]: Daufer also makes his way towards the party and says in a low whisper to Jasmin, "Whatever it is Meschior did, I don't know how long they'll be fooled by it."

[JadedDM:] Meschior:  "It was the same prayer I used to blind that orc.  But what should we do now?"

[Jasmin:] "Then demand our freedom, and that potion," she mutters back to Daufer.

[Daufer]: Daufer nods and turns his attention to the orcs. "Orcs of Karik. As the victor of this contest, I demand that these slaves go free and our possessions returned to us."

[JadedDM:] Bronze Skull rises.  "As you wish, my lord...uh...I am afraid we do not know your name."

[Daufer]: "I am called Daufer, and I am a priest of D'lokka," Daufer says simply.

[JadedDM:] Bronze Skull turns to the crowds and switches to Orcish.  "Ymm ryem uin haf lreav, Daufer uv D'lokka!"

[JadedDM:] The crowd cheers in response.

[JadedDM:] Bronze Skull:  "The treasury, my lord," he says, leading them to the chests behind the throne.

[Jasmin:] "I'm jealous," she says as she crosses her arms in a huff.

[Daufer]: Daufer limps towards the chests.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin follows after Daufer.

[JadedDM:] There are four chests.  The first holds over 200 white coins with strange markings.  The second holds several small treasures, including an amulet, statuette, and four potions (two you recognize as the Fire Breathing and partially depleted Fire Resistance).  The third chest holds 10 amber gems.  The final chest holds your personal belongings, including your money, holy items, and such.

[JadedDM:] Meschior:  "What manner of coins are these?"

[JadedDM:] Baska:  "Electrum.  The Orcs mint them themselves."

[Daufer]: Daufer begins gathering his belongings, especially his holy symbol. "Are any of these potions the one we're looking for?"

[JadedDM:] Meschior retrieves his own gear.

[JadedDM:] One of the unidentified potions is in a green bottle.  The other is in a purple bottle.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin takes hold of her personal belongings, along with the Fire Breathing potion, and then the two potions she doesn't know. "They are now," she says absently as she stuffs them in her pack.

[Daufer]: Daufer also takes this chance to say a small prayer to D'lokka.

[Daufer]: [1d8] -> [7] = (7)

[JadedDM:] Bronze Skull watches as Daufer heals himself.  "You truly do have the favor of the gods," he mumbles.

[Jasmin:] After a few moments of thought, Jasmin takes four of the ten gems as well. "Well, I'm ready."

[Daufer]: Daufer studies Bronze Skull for a moment before saying, "Yes. But you are not all that different. I think your people would fit well within the Dark Lady's embrace."

[JadedDM:] Bronze Skull listens and considers.  "I have always held faithful to the Black Sun Goddess...but never before have I seen such power.  Perhaps we would do well to learn this faith of yours..."

[Daufer]: "If you are willing to learn, I shall teach you and your people."

[JadedDM:] Bronze Skull salutes him.  "As you wish, my lord.  We will follow you to victory, in accordance with prophecy."

[Jasmin:] Jasmin shifts from one foot to the other as she listens to Bronze Skull and Daufer. "As we are free," Jasmin finally says in hobgoblin. "Where is the exit?"

[JadedDM:] Bronze Skull:  "I can have my men escort you," he says to Jasmin.

[Daufer]: "Eager to leave?" Daufer says.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin looks to Daufer then simply nods. "I want to find Gaheris."

[Daufer]: Daufer nods. "Then, let us get him a gift." He goes back and retrieves the amulet and the statuette and hands them to Jasmin. "I feel he will appreciate the gesture."

[Jasmin:] Jasmin takes the amulet and statuette then places them in her pack. "He'll probably die upon seeing them," she jokes before turning to Bronze Skull. "May we have that escort please?"

[JadedDM:] Meschior:  "Hold on...you are coming with us, aren't you, Daufer?"

[Daufer]: "Of course, Meschior," Daufer says. "Gaheris is my friend as well."

[JadedDM:] Bronze Skull:  "But my lord...you will return to us, won't you?"

[Jasmin:] "He is bound by honor, so of course he will return to you," she replies to Bronze Skull.

[Daufer]: "I will teach you of the Dark Lady, Bronze Skull," Daufer says, "but, I must go to my friend's aid."

[JadedDM:] Bronze Skull:  "Then who shall lead us in your absence?"

[Jasmin:] Jasmin looks to Daufer, then motions to Bronze Skull in suggestion even though it isn't her place to decide who leads the orcs.

[JadedDM:] At this, River Bear stands again at his full height in anticipation.

[Daufer]: Daufer looks at Bronze Skull and says, "It is you, Bronze Skull, I deem, that is worthy to lead. Strength is important, but if not tempered by a level head, it will lead to nothing."

[JadedDM:] River Bear lowers his head and Amber Wasp looks as if he may catch fire he's so annoyed.  Bronze Skull bows graciously.  "Thank you, my lord."

[Jasmin:] Jasmin steps up to Meschior and wraps her arms around him in a hug and kisses his cheek while she waits for Daufer. "Thank you," she finally says softly to the priest.

[JadedDM:] Meschior:  "For what?" he asks awkwardly.

[Daufer]: Daufer goes to the party and says, "Well, we should go now."

[JadedDM:] Bronze Skull gives an order in Orcish and three of his own personal guard joins the party to show them the exit.

[Jasmin:] "For what you did," she says to Meschior. With an excited smile she turns to Daufer. "Letís get out of here."

[JadedDM:] Baska:  "Wait...I wish to thank you for what you have done.  My daughter and I are now free thanks to you."

[Daufer]: "Baska, you have a daughter?" Daufer says, surprised.

[Jasmin:] "Your daughter?"

[JadedDM:] Baska nods.  "With River Bear.  I was afraid to tell you because...her blood is tainted," she admits.

[Jasmin:] "Where are you going to go, Baska?"

[JadedDM:] Baska:  "I will stay here for now.  Perhaps, when Daufer returns, I will move to the city.  If I can learn to adjust."

[Jasmin:] "Good luck then, Baska." Jasmin appears to be thoughtful for a few seconds before she shakes her head and moves to join the escort.

[JadedDM:] The escort takes them to the lift.  One orc remains behind to operate it, and lowers the party and two other guards down to the first level.  From there, the guards lead them through several weaving tunnels before they reach the entrance.  They realize it is raining lightly outside.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin does not waste any time as she steps out into the rain. Absently she holds her arms out and spins in a circle with her head bent backwards to let the rain fall upon her.

[JadedDM:] The orcs salute and then return to the caves.

[Daufer]: Daufer falls in step behind her, saying, "I wonder what happened to him."

[JadedDM:] Meschior:  "If he is alive...he probably would have tried to return to the city," he reasons.

[Jasmin:] "Then letís head back to Voxis. He is probably drowning himself in drink right about now."

[JadedDM:] Meschior pulls his hood over his coif and steps out into the rain, heading south.

[Daufer]: "Agreed," Daufer says, gathering his cloak about him to ward off the rain.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin follows after the two while she runs her fingers through her rain soaked hair.

[JadedDM:] The party heads south, following the now muddy road up to the bridge spanning the Ore River .  The rain continues, but it is not much of an annoyance.  It's actually a bit refreshing.

[Jasmin:] "Why wasn't he with us anyway?" Jasmin finally asks. "I don't remember seeing him before those skeletons overpowered us."

[Daufer]: "He, uh, left to distract the remaining skeletons," Daufer says.

[Jasmin:] "Oh." Jasmin frowns faintly, yet she continues walking. "That idiot better still be alive."

[JadedDM:] The three cross the bridge to the other side. Meschior pauses a moment to look in the raging waters of the river.

[Daufer]: "Wait," Daufer says in a hushed voice. "Do you hear that?"

[Jasmin:] Jasmin looks around curiously. "Just the river."

[Daufer]: "No, no, it's more like a... some sort of buzzing," Daufer says.

[JadedDM:] Meschior looks around.  "Yes...I hear it now.  It sounds like it's coming...from the west," he says, turning in that direction.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin turns, following Meschior's gaze.

[JadedDM:] In the distance, perhaps some 200 yards away, you see something flying toward you at a slow but steady pace.  It resembles a hornet or wasp, but you judge it to be at least five feet long with a wingspan twice that length.

[Jasmin:] "Is that really a wasp? It's huge."

[JadedDM:] Meschior:  "It's heading this way," he says, a hint of anxiety in his voice.

[Daufer]: "I don't think I can handle another fight so soon," Daufer says. "I'm still weak from the fight with River Bear."

[Jasmin:] Jasmin looks between the two of them with a bit of disappointment. "Yeah, okay. You both are lucky I just want to find Gaheris." There is a hint of playfulness in her voice. "Think we could hide under the bridge?"

[JadedDM:] Meschior:  "The current is too strong.  We would be swept away."

[Jasmin:] Jasmin looks around the area for something that they could hide behind.

[JadedDM:] There are some hills to the south.  You could make a run for it, and hope the hornet doesn't see you or pursue.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin points to the hills. "There."

[JadedDM:] Meschior nods.  "Right."  He breaks into a run.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin runs after Meschior.

[Daufer]: Daufer runs after the two.

[JadedDM:] The three make a mad rush to the hills.  The hornet does not seem to see them.  If it does, it ignores them.  It continues on along the river and then heads north, away from them.

[Daufer]: "Looks like we lost it," Daufer says once he's got his breath back.

[JadedDM:] Meschior:  "I was so relieved to get out of the mines, I forgot the valley is no safe haven," he admits.

[Jasmin:] "How far do you think Voxis is from here?"

[Daufer]: "Not far," Daufer says.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin points towards the city once she notices it. "Well, it doesn't look too far from here, so let's go."
[Daufer]: "Then let's not spend any more time here than we have to."

[JadedDM:] The three hurry on at a quickened face, but fortunately do not encounter anything more annoying than a few mud puddles.  When they reach the city, they find there are several more guards than normal.  They are treated with some suspicion before allowed to enter.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin looks over her shoulder towards the guards as she enters Voxis. "Why are there more guards?" she asks as she nearly jogs towards the tavern.

[Daufer]: "Perhaps... the Drow?" Daufer ventures a guess.

[JadedDM:] Meschior:  "Did something happen while we were gone?"

[Jasmin:] "Flaco and them will know."

[JadedDM:] As they pass through the Merchant District, they find several overturned and destroyed carts.  In some areas there is blood on the ground, although no bodies.  There are a lot more guards than usual.  It almost appears as if there was a riot or some kind of attack.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin looks generally confused upon seeing this, so she catches up to one of the guards. "What happened around here?"

[JadedDM:] Guard:  "Demon attacked the bazaar," he explained.  "The Tainted Hands took care of it, though."

[Jasmin:] "Oh, well of course they did, but what was a demon doing around here?"

[JadedDM:] Guard:  "It was a Greed Demon.  Not sure who summoned it, but it was drawn to the bazaar.  First those skeletons attacked, and then this.  I have a bad feeling about it all," he says.

[Jasmin:] "Skeletons?"

[Daufer]: "Skeletons? Did they carry a banner?"

[JadedDM:] The guard nods.  "That's right," he said, wiping some rain from his forehead.  "There were only a few of them, so the guards took care of them.  Seems like a bad omen, though."

[Daufer]: Daufer looks at Jasmin. "If the skeletons managed to make it here, then, what of Gaheris?"

[Jasmin:] "Well...maybe someone has seen him around," she says hopefully. She turns to the guard. "Thanks for the information." With that she runs to the tavern.

[Daufer]: Daufer follows at a walk.

[JadedDM:] The three return to the slums and step into the dry and warm Mirthful Miner Tavern.  Griselda is performing on stage and a number of drunken miners line the bar.  A group of farmers take up two of the tables, and a lone man sits at another in the back.  The other tables are empty.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin looks around the tavern as she enters before she walks over to the bar. "Hey, Flaco?"

[JadedDM:] Flaco steps out from the backroom.  "Yeah?  Oh...sweet Shadowbite...you're alive!" he exclaims.

[Daufer]: Daufer gives a small salute to Flaco. "That's right."

[Jasmin:] "You thought I was dead?" Jasmin places her hands on her hips in a huff.

[JadedDM:] Flaco:  "Well, when Gaheris came back alone..," he trails off.

[Jasmin:] "Where is he?!"

[JadedDM:] Flaco points to the back of the tavern, to the lone figure.  He's in a black cloak with the hood up and has his head resting on the table.  In his hand is an empty mug.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin removes her weapons and pack before she walks calmly over to the lone figure. From behind she wraps her arms around him as she leans forward to whisper. "Don't be sad, Gaheris."

[Daufer]: Daufer looks at the lone figure, but steps up to the bar. "I'll need a drink, Flaco. It's been a long week."

[JadedDM:] Jasmin's nose is assaulted with the odor of beer.  Gaheris only responds with a belch, only partially conscious.

[JadedDM:] Meschior:  "I shall have one, too."

[JadedDM:] Flaco:  "No kidding.  You all look like you've been to hell and back."  He prepares two ales and places them before the pair of soaked adventurers.

[Daufer]: "That was some quick thinking back there, Meschior," Daufer says.

[Jasmin:] "Hey!" Jasmin smacks his cheek a few times to wake him.

[JadedDM:] Meschior pulls back his hood and removes his coif.  "My thanks.  I had remembered what Baska had said about the hammer and inspiration struck, thank Renos."

[JadedDM:] Gaheris grunts and mutters, before lazily rising up and looking around, confused.  "Waitresh...I need another beer."

[Jasmin:] Once Gaheris lifts his head, Jasmin slips into his lap playfully despite his drunken state. "You don't need another beer."

[JadedDM:] Gaheris:  "I'll tell you when I've had enough," he grumbles, his eyes glazed over and out of focus.

[Daufer]: Daufer takes a sip of the ale. "Still, it's strange." He looks at the symbol on River Bear's hammer. "I feel like I've seen this symbol before. I can't remember where, though."

[JadedDM:] Meschior takes a gulp of ale and sets it down on the bar.  He looks at the symbol.  "I am not familiar with it," he admits.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin sighs softly and slides out of his lap. Though she is going to get the man to focus if it kills her, so she tries to knock Gaheris out of his chair with her foot.

[Daufer]: "It's probably nothing," Daufer says, shrugging. "I can't shake the feeling, though." Daufer takes another swig of ale.  He looks over at the commotion momentarily, but goes back to his ale.

[JadedDM:] Gaheris collapses onto the floor into a heap.  "Heeeey!" he protests.  "You're not getting a tip now..."  He looks up at Jasmin and squints really hard.

[JadedDM:] Meschior:  "Perhaps the hammer has some history to it.  It certainly does not look of Orcish craft."

[Daufer]: "You mentioned reading somewhere about the Insurrection? Maybe that'll be a place to start, if this hammer is even tied to that."

[Jasmin:] Jasmin places her hands on her hips and taps her foot in annoyance. "Know who I am yet, or do I have to do something else?"

[JadedDM:] Meschior nods.  "There is a small library in the Noble District.  You could start there."

[JadedDM:] Gaheris:  "Jas........min?"  He seems so unsure.

[Daufer]: Daufer nods. "So, this was your first mission. Everything seemed to turn out okay."

[Jasmin:] "Who else?" Jasmin smiles brightly to the drunken man.

[JadedDM:] Meschior:  "Indeed.  I understand now what Dia meant about experience.  I have sparred before and called upon Renos' aid, but never under duress. Never was my life in danger.  I feel I have learned a lot.  And yet, I also feel I have much more to learn."

[JadedDM:] Gaheris gets to his feet, stumbles, falls again, and then gets back up.  "You're alive!  Or am I dreaming?"  He reaches out and grabs her left breast, squeezing it slightly.  "Feels real," he says skeptically.

[Daufer]: "Shouldn't you go back to them, tell them you're okay?" Daufer says.

[JadedDM:] Meschior nods.  "But first, how much am I getting paid?  I don't know if we ever went over that exactly."

[Jasmin:] Jasmin gives him one of those annoyed looks before she swats his hand away. "Of course I'm alive!" After swatting his hand away, she is quick to wrap her arms around him in a tight hug.

[Daufer]: "We still need to get the potion to the client," Daufer says. "Then, we'll need to sell the brooch that was promised us. You'll get an equal share from that."

[JadedDM:] Gaheris stands stunned a moment, but then returns the hug.  After a few moments, he pulls her away.  "Wait, what about the others?"

[Jasmin:] Jasmin points over to the bar quietly.

[JadedDM:] It's around this point Griselda finishes her dance and begins to approach the two at the bar.

[JadedDM:] Gaheris:  "Hey, guys!"  He hurries over and claps both on the back.  "What the Nine Hells happened?  I lost the skeletons, but when I came back you were gone!"

[Jasmin:] "That is because the orcs found us. They patched us up and made us their slaves."

[Daufer]: "Good to see youíre okay, Gaheris," Daufer says. "It's a pretty long story, but we'll fill you in after..." Daufer nods towards Griselda.

[JadedDM:] Griselda:  "So ya'll are alive after all.  I suppose it might be too much to hope, but I have to ask anyway.  Did ya'll get the little ol' potion?"

[Daufer]: Daufer waits for Jasmin to procure the potions.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin picks up her pack after she walks over to the bar and pulls out the green and purple potion. "Which one was it again?"

[JadedDM:] Griselda:  "The purple!"  She reaches out for it, excited.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin pulls back her hand quickly only to Ďtskí the older woman. "The payment first."

[JadedDM:] Griselda takes off the broach and hands it to Jasmin.  "Yes, here.  Take it."

[Jasmin:] Jasmin takes the broach then hands the potion to Griselda.

[JadedDM:] Griselda takes the potion and quickly pulls the top off.  She takes a whiff of the liquid inside, steels herself, and then drinks the whole thing down in one motion.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin watches the older woman curiously. "What is it suppose to do?"

[JadedDM:] Griselda pauses and waits a moment.  Soon, she begins to change.  Crow's feet start to clear up, wrinkles straighten out, and her physique becomes firmer.  By the time the change is complete, you would swear she looks a good 10 years younger.

[Daufer]: Daufer raises his brows, but says nothing.

[JadedDM:] Gaheris watches her change.  "Nice.  Very nice," he comments.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin's mouth opens slightly as she watches the change, and then she nudges Gaheris in the side. "It is not." Absently she crosses her arms.

[JadedDM:] Griselda smiles and gives Gaheris a playful wink.  "Thanks loads, sug.  I really appreciate it."  She then turns and sashays back to the dressing room.

[JadedDM:] Gaheris:  "If we sell that broach for a hundred, we each get 25 gold pieces.  That's better than nothing."

[Jasmin:] "Actually,Ē Jasmin pauses as she pulls out the gems, amulet, and statuette they took from the orcs.

[JadedDM:] Gaheris' eyes widen to the size of dinner plates.  "Amazing...where did you get all of this?  Kitten!  These gems...this is amber.  They're worth at least a hundred a piece!"

[Jasmin:] "The orcs had it all. I just kind of helped myself to the gems, and Daufer thought you would like the rest."

[Daufer]: Daufer raises his ale to Gaheris.

[JadedDM:] Gaheris examines the statuette, which is a stone carving of a bull.  "This looks to be worth...50 gold, maybe more.  And this!"  He picks up the golden amulet with the large ruby inside.  "Damn, kitten...I bet I could get eight, maybe nine hundred for this alone!"  He looks ready to cry at this point.

[Jasmin:] "There was more, but we couldn't carry it all."

[JadedDM:] Gaheris gives a cry of joy.  He picks up Jasmin and spins her around.  "This is great!  Our money troubles are over!  I can't wait to rub this into the Tainted Hands' face!  Especially after that demon thing!"

[Jasmin:] Jasmin's eyes widen in surprise before she wraps her arms around his neck to steady herself and laughs. "We heard about the demon and the skeletons. What happened?"

[JadedDM:] Gaheris:  "The skeletons were heading toward the city, remember?  The guards made short work of them, but we don't know where they came from.  The demon appeared this morning.  A greed demon.  It must have been summoned, but who knows who did it?"

[Jasmin:] "They didn't have a hard time taking care of it I guess."

[Daufer]: "How long do you figure it'll take you to sell that, Gaheris?"

[JadedDM:] Gaheris:  "The bazaar is a mess, but the shops are a better bet, anyway.  If we go now, I bet I could sell this before tonight."

[Jasmin:] "Then what? Are you going to celebrate my return because I could use that, along with a bath, and somewhere very soft to sleep?"

[JadedDM:] Gaheris:  "You bet.  C'mon, let's go now!"  Like an excited school child, he hurries outside back into the rain.

[Daufer]: Daufer stands up, pays for his ale, and walks after Gaheris.

[JadedDM:] Meschior pays for his own ale, as well, and goes with them.

[Jasmin:] Jasmin picks up her stuff and runs after Gaheris.

[JadedDM:] And that about wraps it up.

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