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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Feb 2009

    Default Kerluddein Revisited

    You'd seen it all. Kerluddein is like that. A little of everything, so much that it all becomes a blur. You'd seen humans and elves of all shapes and colours, dwarves and halflings, half-orcs and half-elves, gnomes and goblins and giants all mixed into one great city, and you rubbing shoulders with all of them. You'd seen the ships setting off to war in the port, been there when the Lady Crummel set off to the south, remember the Archmage standing trial by the priests and the civil wars that made the Petty Kingdoms. You'd been to the libraries and seen sketches of what the explorers' ships had found in the wild coasts of the west. You were a citizen of the city of Kerluddein, not some backwards village idiot who'd never seen anyone not of their own race. You chatted daily with philosophers and mages and heroes of war, not backwater peasants.

    That's why the rumours reached you first when the sending reached the city that the latest trading ship was coming back with something a little more unusual than darkwood planks and naga moults. Something properly worthy of the legends that crewed the sailing boats, and something you wanted to see, or be seen seeing. That's why you were up so early this morning to line the dockyards even before the tradesmen did. Impress you enough, and the cargo might even entice you to become one of those crews. You have it in you, you know that already.

    The sun came up a few hours ago, and the crowds have been gathering ever since. Most of them are just here for their jobs; there is, after all, more than one ship coming in today, and every one needs a horde of workers to get it unloaded and restocked before its next journey. A small group of curious members of the middle class and lower aristocracy have been watching the horizon since before dawn, waiting for whatever wonder the Lady's Wings has been reported to be bringing back. Most of them are expecting to be disappointed, but it's being there, and being seen to be there, that counts to them. A lot of the locals are out to watch for it as well. Whether or not they've heard the rumours working their way down from the shipyard offices, "spice" ships are always a source of wonders and entertainment. The bulk of their holds might be just ordinary spice goods, but it's these ships that carry the spell ingredients to Kerluddein, and that means that they can hold just about anything.

    Whatever your reason for being there, you're part of that crowd, and the sails of the Lady's Wings have just been sighted. What you do now is up to you.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Jack_Simth's Avatar

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    May 2006

    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Sylvia
    Able to see over the crowd thanks to being on her companion's back, Sylvia keeps her hood down as she slowly works her way through the crowd, towards the docks, to see what there is to see. She'd been looking for work aboard ship, simply to travel away from the grave site more quickly. Such a pity that the crowds were so thick.

    Spoiler
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    Sylvia: HP 21/21, AC 17 (touch 17, flat-footed 17), saves +6/+3/+11, Ki: 7/7
    Patches: HP 13/13, AC 18 (touch 12, flat-footed 16), saves +5/+5/+1
    Of course, by the time I finish this post, it will already be obsolete. C'est la vie.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Titan in the Playground
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    Dec 2007
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    Israel
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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    "One more time" Selv said to himself as he threw the ruby up. Catching it mid air, he pocketed it as he lowered the hood to cover his face. Sliding the hood back off, a young blond elf giggled to herself as she slowly ran towards the crowd from the corner of the street she was in.

    Noticing something interesting among the people, she hurries toward a burly man scanning the crowd. Pretending to trip, she awkwardly pushes her front against the man, nearly knocking him out of balance, more from surprise than anything else. Giggling, she seems to slightly blush and looks away "Oh, I'm sorry, I'm so clumsy..." The man seemed to struggle for words, which Selv expected. The brute was a personal guard, and one that rarely left his master. He never spoke to a woman, let alone touch one. Finally, his awkwardness was subdued by his sense of duty and the brute spoke up "Have you seen a half orc? Balding, this tall, has a club and a chain shirt.." Selv giggles to herself and shakes her head like a little kid "Nope, sorry. But perhaps I can help you in another way?" she said with a sly smile as she leaned forward. She knew the answer before she asked the question, and it was a mere taunt. Selv wanted to mess up with the brute and would never actually go through with sleeping with such a pathetic being. A brainless servant. Still giggling, the elven woman slowly ran off, slipping through the people and away from the speechless brute.

    Pulling the hood up and down again, an average human male stood among the crowd. Average hight, average build, average looks. "Perfect." he thought to himself. Well, not perfect, average, but for now, it's perfect. Who knows, the brute might decide he does want to spend the night with the attractive elven lady. Although maybe we didn't hit the mark? Always suspected he was hanging in the wrong camp... Selv avoided giggling, not suited for his current form. He was supposed to stay undercover, leave as soon as possible. The brute's master paid Selv to steal a certain gem, the ruby Selv now had in his pocket. Selv inspected the gem, and was told it isn't worth that much, but that noble wanted it, and Selv decided to keep it to himself. Now to leave this place.
    A wise monk trains both mind and body, but a smart monk is actually a swordsage.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Planetar

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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Renia
    Wizards always got a nice respectful patch of space on the shorefront as they waited for the spice ships to come in. Since they were the ones the spell components were for... and they were the ones who would drop a fireball if you jostled them too often.

    Renia was staring a little wistfully at the 'official' delegation of mages. The last time the ships came in, she'd been one of them. It was as they said.. you never truly appreciated the perks that came with guild membership until you walked out over religious differences.

    To be honest, it was always likely to lead to trouble - talented as she was, she was still a Priestess of Torm by vocation. The guild's hierarchy was never going to put his with her 'strange' ways forever.

    So she's struck first, and quit, and now here she was, trying to keep her spot near the front safe from the encroaching crowd...

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Feb 2009

    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Renia
    A hobgoblin guard wearing the insignia of one of the minor merchant houses tries to jostle you away from the edge. "No spectators within pike's reach of the gangway point."

    Selv
    Something is pushing the crowds aside off in the direction you're trying to travel, making it difficult for you to slip through unless you go towards the edge of the dock.

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Titan in the Playground
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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Selv slips among the spectators, making sure none are watching him, and shifts to a slightly thinner, taller build, standing on his toes, trying to see what dares push him away from his goal!
    A wise monk trains both mind and body, but a smart monk is actually a swordsage.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Selv
    Even with your greater height, seeing directly over the crowd is difficult, but you surmise from the sudden appearance of halberds at the edge of the crowd that some important merchant or aristocrat is having his bodyguards force a way to the edge.

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Titan in the Playground
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    Dec 2007
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    Israel
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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Push 'em! No, that wouldn't be nice. But it will be hilarious! I can't change my clothes that quickly, people will suspect! That's your reasoning to not do it?

    After a short internal monologue, Selv decides to try and slip towards the edge as well, as it seemed to be the clearest route, while keeping clear of the bodyguards and nobles.
    A wise monk trains both mind and body, but a smart monk is actually a swordsage.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Feb 2009

    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Everyone
    It isn't long until the Lady's Wings are within shouting distance of the dock. The crowd is growing fast, and the number of hobgoblin guards increasing even faster, in a variety of uniforms. Those of you nearer the front can see them start to clear a space around several of the bollards on the seafront, along with a space to lower a gangplank. The crowds are getting shoved away rather roughly, even including a few of the wizarding delegation.

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Jack_Simth's Avatar

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    May 2006

    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Sylvia
    Sylvia debates the relative wisdom of muscling further into the crowd, vs. taking wing... but decides to stay grounded, for the nonce, and see what she can see, and hear what she can hear... and she's very good at it.

    Spoiler
    Show

    Taking ten on Spot and Listen (for a result of 21 on both) to see about finding out what's happening.

    Sylvia: HP 21/21, AC 17 (touch 17, flat-footed 17), saves +6/+3/+11, Ki: 7/7
    Patches: HP 13/13, AC 18 (touch 12, flat-footed 16), saves +5/+5/+1
    Of course, by the time I finish this post, it will already be obsolete. C'est la vie.

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Feb 2009

    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Sylvia
    Being a crowd, there's rather a lot going on at the moment. A great many people are arguing or discussing the cargo of the ship, rumours ranging from it coming back entirely empty to containing the corpses of all kinds of monstrous beasts to being actually crewed by its cargo rather than its proper crew. Most of them claim to have heard either from the palace or overheard the delegation of wizards that recieved the sending that notified them of the ship's return. The hobgoblin guards are also arguing amongst themselves, though since they're using Goblin to do it in you can't understand the conversation.
    What you can see, however, reveals infighting between several factions. The royal guard have just turned up and are attempting to bully their way into the positions around the gangplank's expected position, opposed by the hobgoblins (and a few humans, on both sides) wearing the insignia of merchant guilds.
    The ship's cargo is mostly below decks, and thus invisible, but the centre of the top deck is taken up by a large tarpaulin covering a roughly spherical object. The crew are all giving it a wide berth.

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Titan in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

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    Dec 2007
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    UTC -6

    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Helena followed the guards to the docks, curious about the commotion. It's always times like these that she wishes her family had a bit more substantial to their name, rather than only being able to afford her a sword and family ring... those were basically the only things that made her stand out at all from even the servants of most upper-class families.

    ((OOC: I'm considering switching the sword from a greatsword to a longsword... the smaller size makes it less unreasonable to assume that she's able to cast her somatic spells with it, and would let it be used while holding another item, at the cost of only a few points of average damage. The 35 gp would go to pocket money.))

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Titan in the Playground
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    Dec 2007
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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Selv moves around, trying to listen in to the crowd and to the goblins for anything interesting. Sometimes, if he hears something interesting, he changes form and joins the conversation, trying to lead it towards revealing more details without making the group suspect him.

    (1d20+5)[18] - Gather Information (Inspiration)
    A wise monk trains both mind and body, but a smart monk is actually a swordsage.

  14. - Top - End - #14
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Planetar

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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Renia
    Obligingly, Renia steps back... to a distance of a pike length. She doesn't want to get into a fight (she's not armoured, she's not backed up by senior wizards, and she's heavily outnumbered), nor does she wish to move too far back into the crowd. Despite the sword giving he the appearance of a professional soldier, she's not all that great at fighting through crowds...

  15. - Top - End - #15
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Feb 2009

    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Selv
    Unless you particularly pursue any specific avenue of information (which you can), you gain the same knowledge as Sylvia did.

    Renia
    The hobgoblin allows you your bare minimum of distance, which affords you a prime position for when the cargo starts to be unloaded, though not for actually seeing the ship come in. In fact, from this angle it will be obscured until it's actually anchored.

  16. - Top - End - #16
    Titan in the Playground
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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    What are the hobs argue about?
    A wise monk trains both mind and body, but a smart monk is actually a swordsage.

  17. - Top - End - #17
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Planetar

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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Renia
    Guess I'll settle for this spot, then. Never a great idea to fight a crowd if you're not a half-orc.

    That it ruined her view of the approach was just something Renia would have to live with. No matter. She couldn't do anything until it was docked anyway...

  18. - Top - End - #18
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Feb 2009

    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Selv
    Apparently the hobs have conflicting views on who has the right to dock the ship. The Royal Trading Company guards and the Royal Guards are both attempting to secure the gangway position, and several other companies and individuals, including the College of Mages and some other guilds are attempting to argue that they have the right to be present as well. The consensus in the crowd seems to be that the two larger and more important hobgoblin groups will ally to push the others out.

  19. - Top - End - #19
    Titan in the Playground
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    Dec 2007
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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Can I use my last roll to find more specific information? Selv will try to find representatives of the other groups.
    A wise monk trains both mind and body, but a smart monk is actually a swordsage.

  20. - Top - End - #20
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Feb 2009

    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Selv
    If you're looking for lackeys of the various groups, nearly everyone around is connected to one or the other. The actual "official" representatives, however, are rather difficult to get to. You're able to get them pointed out to you, however; the mages are further up the dock where the viewing is better, and the various trading companies are lining the dock wherever possible, arranged roughly in order of importance decreasing away from the docking site.

    The crew of the ship are shouting back and forth to the people on the dock in various languages, arranging the ropes to be thrown. The ship is very nearly in position by now, and the captain has apparently relinquished the helm to move further towards the front of the ship, stalking along the side.
    Spoiler
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    Listen checks to hear anything useful, if you want.

  21. - Top - End - #21
    Titan in the Playground
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    Dec 2007
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    Israel
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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    listen - (1d20+4)[14]

    So.... Hey there.
    A wise monk trains both mind and body, but a smart monk is actually a swordsage.

  22. - Top - End - #22
    Titan in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

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    Dec 2007
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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Helena tries to slip in closer, to figure out what's on the ship, and to see if there's anything she can do to help arbitrate the conflict between parties.
    Spoiler
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    Listen - (1d20+1)[5]
    Spot - (1d20+1)[9]

  23. - Top - End - #23
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Feb 2009

    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Helena
    You neither see nor hear anything particularly useful. By the time you reach the scene of the dispute, it seems to have resolved itself, lost in the mess of the ship finally coming in to dock. By the time that the gangplank has slammed down onto the wharf, there are already crewmembers off the ship, having slid down the tethering ropes onto the slippery stone.
    As soon as the ship is actually in dock, however, the conflict seems to resume, looking as if the two groups are willing to come to blows over the right to board the ship and inspect the cargo.

    Spoiler
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    Also, hey. Thought the game had finally been abandoned this time, to my chagrin, but you guys never cease to surprise me.
    Last edited by rrkkskrrk; 2010-09-02 at 07:45 PM.

  24. - Top - End - #24
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Jack_Simth's Avatar

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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Sylvia
    Sylvia continues watching.

    Spoiler
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    Here it's mostly a matter of 'okay, fine... nothing of particular note occurring to react to...'

    Sylvia: HP 21/21, AC 17 (touch 17, flat-footed 17), saves +6/+3/+11, Ki: 7/7
    Patches: HP 13/13, AC 18 (touch 12, flat-footed 16), saves +5/+5/+1
    Of course, by the time I finish this post, it will already be obsolete. C'est la vie.

  25. - Top - End - #25
    Titan in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Quote Originally Posted by rrkkskrrk View Post
    Spoiler
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    Also, hey. Thought the game had finally been abandoned this time, to my chagrin, but you guys never cease to surprise me.
    Spoiler
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    Like Jack_Simth, I mostly haven't been posting since I'm not sure what I could do in particular at this point. I mean, if my character were a barbarian or homicidal maniac, I'd start swinging my sword around to get people to back off. But a Paladin... can't really think of much to do when there's no clear sense of anything going "wrong" going on but feels a vague sense of needing to go forward.


    Helena, unsure of how to handle the situation or really even what's actually going on, decides to wait it out a bit.

  26. - Top - End - #26
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    The infighting between the hobgoblin groups stops entirely as the first crewmembers walk down the gangplank, coinciding with the rest of the crowd surging forwards to see the cargo first-hand or cut deals with the crew carrying the first items onto the docks. Those of you nearer the front are at a real danger of getting crushed, and the hobgoblins are not doing much to help that risk; they're doing their job of keeping the crowds at bay excellently, mostly by hitting anyone that comes too close with the staff of a halberd. This level of interest is hardly normal for a ship coming in; Kerluddein is a port city, after all, and while the spice ships attract a crowd there's never been a case that any of you know about of the crew actually getting mobbed.

  27. - Top - End - #27
    Titan in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Still unsure of what she can do, but still curious about the strangely popular ship, Helena mutters a short arcane phrase, causing her skin and clothing to shimmer a moment before she presses onwards, trying to slip further towards where she can actually see the unloading.
    Spoiler
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    Casting Mage Armor, just in case

  28. - Top - End - #28
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Planetar

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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Renia

    With the crowd proving ever less co-operative, Renia decided the time had come for action.

    Well, not 'Action!' action. She was no good at that. Instead she was using magical action.

    Hypnotism, specifically.

    Spoiler
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    "Concentration" - (1d20+5)[24] - incase I need it
    "HD Hypnotised" - (2d4)[8]
    Since they're not in combat, the crowd gets a per-NPC DC15 save.


    And with her spell (presumeably) complete, Renia kindly asks her new 'allies' if they could help her get out of the worst of the crush of the crowd.

    Certainly she wasn't going to be pushing her way clear anytime soon on her own...

  29. - Top - End - #29
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Feb 2009

    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Renia
    The crowd parts easily with your suggestion and influence over some burly dock workers that look like they might have both orc and giant blood in them. It seems likely you could move anywhere in the crowd you chose, short of breaking through the hobgoblin cordon.

    Helena
    Your arcane armour keeps you safe from what would otherwise be quite a buffeting as you come close to the protective line, and thankfully there are no direct blows for it to deflect. Even by pressing close to the line, though, you can't get more than a confused view of what is actually going on. Something round and covered by a tarpaulin is passing by, and the guards have suddenly tightened their circle very closely.

  30. - Top - End - #30
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Kris Strife's Avatar

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    Default Re: Kerluddein Revisited

    Larin was standing in the crowd when the ship arrived, planning to try and get passage on board. His hood is pulled up over his head, and the sleeves of his robes hide his hands from view. He shudders and looks around to try and spot the caster of the spell he shook off, pretending to go along with it for now. He spots Renia directing those around him and follows suit until he's able to get around behind her, tapping her shoulder with his clawed fingers. "Excuse me, but I don't think that's a particularly noble way to use your gifts."

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