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  1. - Top - End - #91
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Zhentarim's Avatar

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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    Zion has nothing to say, but is present and will respond if somebody addresses her.
    DnD Alignment: Neutral Evil
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  2. - Top - End - #92
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    u-b's Avatar

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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    Upon a somewhat closer examination, the dark figure lying near the water turns out to be a very dead man. He has a huge bite marks all over his torso and is in a stage of some initial decomposition.

    Spoiler: Local 10
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    Seems like a city type, judging by what's left from his clothes. Neither from Kassen nor a woodsman. Besides, you would know if someone was missing from Kassen as it was clearly some time ago.
    Spoiler: Perception 15
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    There is abnormal number of dead flies around.
    Spoiler: Heal 15 OR Survival 20
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    He seems to be dead for well upwards of a month.
    Spoiler: Survival 10
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    Probably should have been very thoroughly eaten in that time.
    Spoiler: Nature 20 (or 15 if you've made the above perception check)
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    You have a solid hypothesis about what might have caused the bites (I'll tell).
    Spoiler: Detect magic
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    Nope.
    Spoiler
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    You have not yet searched the body nor came close enough to do so. The Elissa's and Bast's rolls above cetrainly apply to these spoilers.
    Last edited by u-b; 2019-11-14 at 12:10 PM.

  3. - Top - End - #93
    Halfling in the Playground
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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    A heavy leaden weight settles in Gwyn's stomach as the realization that the figure was someone who needed help sinks in, spoiling the joyous feelings she had initially felt upon discovering the meadow. "I don't... think this is part of the trial." While still staying behind Bast as asked, Gwyn gets as close a look as she can at the body. The man is no grover, that much is certain, but the young woman also doubts that he was from Kassen. His clothes were a little too urban to be from their part of the Fangwood, a little too impractical. The lack of surprised gasps from her townie friends only makes Gwyn more sure of her assumption. The normally talkative young woman is quiet as she continues to study the corpse, but, if her furrowed brow is anything to go by, her mind is hard at work trying to piece together what happened to this poor soul.

    Survival: (1d20+5)[7]

  4. - Top - End - #94
    Ogre in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    "Does anyone know how to determine a cause of death?" Bast asks, swatting at the swarming flies. He makes a bit of a face. "I think something might be up. There are a lot of these buggers about, aren't there?"
    S C R E A M I N G is always a free action.

    If you don't have a group that supports you - if you instead have a group that judges you - find a different group, trust me. It's not worth your life to waste it on a bunch of hyenas who serve no value to you aside from keeping you down. Everyone deserves to have a say at the table regardless of how they do it.

    -Guy, "How to be a Great Game Master"

  5. - Top - End - #95
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    BlueKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    Elissa also becomes quiet, whispering a short prayer. She also studies the body from a short distance, crouching down opposite of Gwyn.

    "You're probably right, I don't think he's from here. No idea what someone would be doing this far out... As far as a cause of death, well, I think those bite marks are a safe bet, don't you?" Elissa pushes down her distaste and leans in closer. "Poor fellow's been dead a good while... a few weeks, at least, maybe more than a month. Although... I would think something would have--well--eaten more of him by now. Just laying out here in the open like this...
    A worldbuilding project, still work in progress: Reign of the Corven

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  6. - Top - End - #96
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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    Putting it all together, Gwyn thiks she has a solid guess at what might have killed the man. Was a giant freshwater serpent, by the look of it. The bites seem about right, the body is by the lake, and these are decidedly venomous, which would explain both the dead flies and the fact the body has been left uneaten. These serpents are cold-blooded and should be about to camp for the winter by now, if they haven't already (they are not really active throughout the winter). That said, they are somewhat territorial, so it would not be good to bother one in it's territory.

  7. - Top - End - #97
    Halfling in the Playground
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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    With the help of Bast and Elissa's deductive contributions, Gwyn is able to arrive at the likely conclusion for what happened to the man. "Get back, get back!" she suddenly warns the pair, taking several steps away herself as her eyes sweep the placid-looking lake for a disturbance. "I think it was a giant freshwater serpent that killed him. Their bite packs a potent poison, which would explain why nothing's been feeding on him. Look; even the flies that tried to are dead." Gwyn slowly shakes her head but still keeps a wary eye on the lake as she does. "They usually aren't active when it gets this cold out. 'Course the weather was a different story a month ago. We might be safe from it now, but they're known to be territorial, so we should definitely proceed cautiously."

    Having given them all the information she could about the potential threat, Gwyn turns to her townie allies. "What should we do? I mean, he wasn't a townie but we can't just leave him here... right?" As she looks over her companions, her gaze briefly stops on Zion. The other woman did have the most experience with such funereal matters, after all.

  8. - Top - End - #98
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Zhentarim's Avatar

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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    Zion stepped forward and began performing a funeral ceremony for the dead man.

    Spoiler: OOC
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    I’m leaving the details of the ceremony to your imagination.
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  9. - Top - End - #99
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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    Phillip stands respectfully silent as last rites are given to the fallen man. He didn't know him, and judging by the look of him he was some sort of city folk which seemed strange to Phillip. He wasn't sure why there would be a city dweller this far into the wilderness at this time of year. The weather was hardly suitable to taking a dip in the Gray Lake. The fact that this body was so poisonous after a bite that every bit of it was so toxic it killed vermin was also somewhat unsettling, but Phillip was no expert on such things, so heeding Gwyn's wisdom he never comes close to touching the body.

    "As heartless as it may seem, I think the best we can do is say a prayer that his soul moves on to whatever afterlife he's entitled to and move on. I think it unwise to touch him, it seems his body is still toxic... enough so to kill these flies at least. Unless someone has a way to neutralize the poison we may just be condemning one of ourselves to an equally terrible fate." Phillip can clearly see how much this is affecting Gywn. He bows his head and mutters "I'm sorry. We could tell the town elders about this on our return to Kassen. They might know more about where he was from and get word to his relatives. For now though, I do not wish to linger here too long in case this serpent is riled by our presence, as unlikely as that may be. We still have a lot of ground to cover."
    Last edited by Shub-Niggurath; 2019-11-17 at 02:01 PM.

  10. - Top - End - #100
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    BlueKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    Elissa frowns--she doesn't like the idea of just leaving the man laying on the ground here--but she nods reluctantly. "Philip's right. It's too dangerous to stay here. Let's see if we can get a bit more distance behind us before nightfall." She takes a few steps away from the water, looking southward.
    A worldbuilding project, still work in progress: Reign of the Corven

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  11. - Top - End - #101
    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    Having finished the last rites and prayers to various deities, Zion places coppers on the man's eyes, gathers what kindleling she can find, and casts Burning Hands so the body was cremated properly and laid to rest.
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  12. - Top - End - #102
    Halfling in the Playground
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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    Touched by the sincerity of Phillip's regret, Gwyn glances up, her surprised gaze falling on the top of the half-orc's bowed head. A few moments of stunned silence follow before the young woman finally finds her voice. "No... no, you're right. This is out of our hands for now," Gwyn agrees with a stiff nod. Once Zion has finished administering last rites to the corpse, Gwyn feels a little better about their decision to leave him behind. With a resigned sigh, the young woman shoulders her pack and gets ready to set back out. The serenity and beauty the lake initially promised is now long gone and, feeling somewhat disenchanted, Gwyn is all too eager for them to continue their journey.

  13. - Top - End - #103
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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    Zion prays for the fate of the man's soul, then you leave the body in peace and move on.

    You walk southwards from the lake. There is barely a trace of the trail here. You suppose it might be frequented more often by animals than by fellow humans, and not much even that. Then, when you reach what seems to be the older part of the forest, with lots of old dry and fallen trees, there no longer even seems to be the semi-straight trail to follow. In the afternoon it started to "rain". The amount of actual water falling down from the sky per minute is miniscule, but the rain goes on and on and does not seem like stopping.

    The evening is nearing when you hit the gorge. It's not as big, or as steep, as could be seen on the map. Rather, it's more like a broad walley. Still, with all that water falling down from the sky, the slopes are pretty much wet, and probably slippery.

    Spoiler
    Show
    I'm not sure whether Zion specifically mentions Asmodeus or any other god(s), but I suppose there would not be much of consequence either way. I suppose you did not spend that one casting of Burning Hands, knowing beforehand that one would not be enough.

    Anyone without a cloak risks becoming somewhat wet, somewhat cold, and rather uncomfortable. The cloak comes automatically with some outfits. Choose whether you have it if you did not explicitly specify an outfit.

    You won't miss the gorge, but make two DC 10 survival checks (rolled; one person leads, more than one can help) to reach it roughly where the crypt should be.

  14. - Top - End - #104
    Halfling in the Playground
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    Gwyn draws the hood of her cloak up at the first sign of a drizzle, having no interest in knowing what it would be like to tromp through the forest near nightfall, soaking wet. Although the rain thankfully never picks up as much as she had expected, it is constant enough to give her pause when they finally reach the gorge. "I know none of us probably fancy sleeping outside in the rain, but maybe we'd best wait for things to clear up in the morning before we try crossing this thing," she suggests, tilting her head back to look at the others from underneath the overhang of her hood.

    Spoiler
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    Survival: (1d20+5)[15]
    Survival: (1d20+5)[13]

  15. - Top - End - #105
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    BlueKnightGuy

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    Elissa shivers as the chill drizzle soaks into her cloak. "Resting for the night's probably a good idea, yeah. Don't think we should try and cross in the dark." At least the tents will keep them somewhat dry during the night.

    Spoiler: OOC
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    Survival rolls!
    (1d20+6)[22]
    (1d20+6)[12]

    I'm good to lead or assist, as appropriate. I figure Phillip's probably at least as good or better at the survival skill.
    A worldbuilding project, still work in progress: Reign of the Corven

    Most recent update: another look at magic traditions!

  16. - Top - End - #106
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    Gwyn leads the party to about the right spot of the Serpent Gorge, she thinks, and Elissa does not have major corrections, but by it's getting late so you camp for the night under the cover of old forest near the gorge, assigning the guard duty just like the yesternight. Nothing untoward happens during the night, except for the drizzle, which continued up to about the midnight. The morning seems marginally less cloudy than the morning before, which is a good sign, but the morning air is still humid, with even some mist down below. Consequently, the ground is mostly as wet as it was in the evening, maybe a bit less so.

    Spoiler
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    Mark one other day's worth of supplies as consumed.

    If you go down the gorge right now, it's DC 8 Climbing OR Acrobatics, rolled thrice per person, to reach the bottom. Those trained in either can take 10. It might get better by noon (Survival 10 for an informed guess). You can help one another the usual way if you tie yourselves with a rope in whatever arrangement, but if a fail's still a fail after all of the help, all those tied together will suffer the consequences.
    Last edited by u-b; 2019-11-22 at 10:35 AM.

  17. - Top - End - #107
    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    After a particularly miserable night's sleep in the cold and wet conditions Phillip awakes eager to make it to the crypt today. "Things are still wet it seems, but it doesn't look that difficult to make our way down. I'll go first, just take your time and try and step where I step." Phillip makes his way to the bottom of the Serpent Gorge without incident. He moves slowly and cautiously on the wet ground until he reaches the bottom. Turning back to the group he shouts up at the others. "See, nothing to it. Just be careful and I'll try and catch you as best I can if you slip." Phillip wasn't particularly fond of trying to catch a falling comrade decked out in armor and adventuring supplies, and frankly wasn't sure he'd be able to even if he tried, but it seemed like the reassurance may at least give them the courage to make the climb down.

    Spoiler: Climb
    Show
    Phillip takes 10 on all three climb checks with a result of 16.

  18. - Top - End - #108
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    hannahbbug3's Avatar

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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    Spry on his feet, Bast has no trouble hopping down the gorge to join Philip.

    Spoiler: OOC
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    Also taking 10 in Acrobatics, for an 18 on all three rolls.
    S C R E A M I N G is always a free action.

    If you don't have a group that supports you - if you instead have a group that judges you - find a different group, trust me. It's not worth your life to waste it on a bunch of hyenas who serve no value to you aside from keeping you down. Everyone deserves to have a say at the table regardless of how they do it.

    -Guy, "How to be a Great Game Master"

  19. - Top - End - #109
    Halfling in the Playground
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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    In the morning, Gwyn surveys the gorge with a slight frown pinching her features. Although the rain had let up some time during the night, the terrain was left a little too wet for her liking. But before she can suggest waiting a few hours for things to dry up, Phillip and then Bast make their way down the slope with ease. Deceptive ease, Gwyn might say. Despite druids generally being outdoorsy folk, the young woman has spent little of her life running, jumping and climbing and more time studying and meditating in preparation of taking over her father's role in their community. But that is a complaint for another time. For now, the crypt awaits.

    "Alright, I'm coming down... Spirits preserve us." Gwyn tries to emulate the elven grace Bast demonstrated as he picked his way down the slope, and she does so; for the first few steps at least. Afterwards, her worries about taking a tumble and fear that she can feel the wet ground giving way beneath her feet have her making the rest of the way down in a manner best described as erratic. But make it Gwyn does, stumbling to a stop at the bottom of the ravine before turning and shouting words of encouragement back up to Elissa and Zion. "See? ...Nothing to it."

  20. - Top - End - #110
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    BlueKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    Elissa frowns as the others scrabble down the cliffside with little difficulty. It's going to be a tough climb, especially in her armor. "I... I'm not sure I can make it down on my own. Hang on." She retrieves the rope from her pack, finds a good place to tie it off, and hangs it over the side. Taking a deep breath, she lowers herself off the cliffside, hanging onto the rope for all she's worth, and slowly starts letting herself down. While she doesn't have any slips like Gwyn does, her hands are still white from clamping down on the rope by the time she reaches the bottom.

    Spoiler: OOC
    Show
    Not sure what the rope'll do to the DC. And if there's nowhere for her to tie it off to... I guess she just takes her chances.

    Climb:
    (1d20-1)[10]
    (1d20-1)[15]
    (1d20-1)[11]

    EDIT: whew, high enough to make it with or without the rope. Still, let me know so I know whether to mark it off.
    Last edited by rs2excelsior; 2019-11-24 at 08:59 AM.
    A worldbuilding project, still work in progress: Reign of the Corven

    Most recent update: another look at magic traditions!

  21. - Top - End - #111
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    The last to climb down, Zion carefully made a slow descent using the rope.

    ”I am glad we all made it”
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  22. - Top - End - #112
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    When everyone is safely down the gorge, you start looking for the entrance to the crypt. You think it should be somewhere on the southern side of the gorge not too far from where you are. You pick a direction at random and start walking west, looking at the southern side. You walk for about an hour along the somewhat wet and somewhat misty bottom of the gorge finding largely nothing then decide to turn back and check the other way before you go too far from your original guess.

    After about eighty minutes of walk in the opposite direction, by wich time the morning mist has largely disappeared, you see, after the next turn of the gorge, a scene not quite up to your expectations. The crypt is there, all right - an archway of stone set into the side of a small hill at the bottom of the valley, with moss having overgrown many of the details, but not the keystone of the arch carved with a flame symbol with a stylized rune in the middle, the short tunnel leading to a pair of massive wooden doors, one of which is slightly ajar... but before all that is a pair of horses and a trio of ponies lying slaughtered next to the archway, each corpse still tied to a post set into the ground nearby, with a swarm of flies hanging lazily in the air above them.


    Spoiler
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    Assuming you get your hands on the rope (your sheet does not list any, but you might be able to borrow it before Elissa is away), the gorge is too high for one 50-foot piece. So, given that you are absent to comment either way, let's go with the next best use for the rope, namely to pack all our gear, including that heavy and clunky armor, and haul it down one rope length, then descend, then haul it down some more etc. Anyway, a success. Takes some time to get armored back, but you are in no hurry.

    Zion acrobatics: (1d10+1)[9]
    Zion acrobatics: (1d10+1)[8]
    Zion acrobatics: (1d10+1)[11]

    Direction (right/wrong): (1d2)[2]
    Last edited by u-b; 2019-11-25 at 12:33 PM.

  23. - Top - End - #113
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    BlueKnightGuy

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    Elissa grimaces at the stench of the decaying corpses. "Well, it looks like we're here... were these from an earlier group exploring the tomb, maybe?" She cautiously approaches the dead animals, looking for injuries or signs of decay.

    Spoiler: OOC
    Show
    I'd like to see if I can tell a) what killed the horses and b) how long they've been dead.

    Survival? (1d20+6)[10]
    If a Knowledge (Nature) or Heal check is more appropriate, there'd be no modifier.
    A worldbuilding project, still work in progress: Reign of the Corven

    Most recent update: another look at magic traditions!

  24. - Top - End - #114
    Halfling in the Playground
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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    A feeling of giddiness comes over Gwyn upon spotting the entrance to the crypt in the distance, the young woman even chuckling quietly about knowing they'd find their way eventually. But the joyful feeling is fleeting, readily extinguished by the discovery of the dead horses still tethered to the hitching post. With a weary sigh, Gwyn crouches down beside Elissa and inspects the carcasses. "Thinking it might be those wolves that did this? Or something worse?" she asks the trapper's daughter, hoping for the former even as an unsettling suspicion in her gut tells her it's the latter.

    Spoiler
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    Knowledge (Nature) (1d20+8)[27]
    Heal (1d20+1)[17]

  25. - Top - End - #115
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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    Bast approaches the dead beasts alongside the druid and the paladin, eyes lighting up briefly as he seeks out any magical auras in the area.
    S C R E A M I N G is always a free action.

    If you don't have a group that supports you - if you instead have a group that judges you - find a different group, trust me. It's not worth your life to waste it on a bunch of hyenas who serve no value to you aside from keeping you down. Everyone deserves to have a say at the table regardless of how they do it.

    -Guy, "How to be a Great Game Master"

  26. - Top - End - #116
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    The dead horses actually do not stink that much and have not considerably decayed. A closer examination performed by Gwyn reveals them to be killed about two days ago, with crude blades, claws or some such. You see no signs of them being eaten. There are some scattered bones underneath one of the horses. There is no magic anywhere around.
    Last edited by u-b; 2019-11-26 at 10:44 AM.

  27. - Top - End - #117
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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    "That's odd... Take a look at this," Gwyn says, pointing out a long, ragged gash on one of the carcasses. "This here looks like it was done with a blade, and not a particularly well-made one at that. But these"—she indicates a series of shorter slashes grouped together—"Look like claw marks to me. There's no bite marks, though." Her examination complete, Gwyn settles back on her heels and shares a confused glance with her companions. "I don't know what to make of it. Except that it seems senseless as all get-out to butcher a bunch of horses hitched up to a post," the girl fumes before falling into a sullen silence. Gwyn lays a hand on one of the ponies, hoping that its little spirit was running free in a plain somewhere, when she notices the bones underneath one of the bodies. Wordlessly, she pries one out from underneath the horse for closer inspection. "Any of you see any tracks leading to or away from this mess?"

    Spoiler: OOC
    Show
    Now, Gwyn's no forensic anthropologist, but would it be possible for her to determine what sort of creature the bone came from? Knowledge: (1d20)[14] (+8 for Nature, +4 [and untrained] for Local)

  28. - Top - End - #118
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    BlueKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    "It wasn't an animal, that's for sure..." Gwyn had made more of the wounds than she had, but based on what she'd said--even if she was wrong about some of the injuries being caused by weapons, if it was wolves they wouldn't have left the horses here to rot. "Looks like this is where things start getting dangerous. Keep your eyes open." She unfastens the ties on her greatsword's sheath and checks it to make sure it's ready to draw in a hurry. She takes a deep breath to steady her nerves, looking towards the entrance to the crypt. "Well... this is what we're here for, right?" Cautiously, she starts making her way towards the crypt.
    A worldbuilding project, still work in progress: Reign of the Corven

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  29. - Top - End - #119
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    Gwyn thinks the bones would constitute a lower part of some medium-sized humanoid's leg, complete with a foot, if properly assembled. They are not new. The arrangement suggest that there might be more under the horse. The crypt is silent. The door is barely opened and does not seems like it's going to move. Inside, there seems to be some sort of hall, which is dark.

    Spoiler
    Show
    Str 15 if you want to move the horse.
    Str 15 if you want to open the door.
    Escape Artist 10 to squeeze through the door without opening it.
    You expect it would be enough light coming from the outside to see normally inside the hall if you open the door. Otherwise, it would be dim light and require Elissa to almost stick her head there to make out details of what's on the other side of the door because of the difference in brightness.
    Last edited by u-b; 2019-11-27 at 11:34 AM.

  30. - Top - End - #120
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    Default Re: Crypt of the Everflame IC

    "Lis, let me look ahead. I'll be quieter that you are in that armor," Bast says, stepping forward and laying a hand on the paladin's shoulder. He attempts to slip in the doorway as stealthily as possible, alert for any movement inside the crypt.

    Spoiler: OOC
    Show
    Escape Artist - (1d20+4)[15]
    Stealth - (1d20+8)[15]
    Perception with Detect Magic - (1d20+7)[20]
    S C R E A M I N G is always a free action.

    If you don't have a group that supports you - if you instead have a group that judges you - find a different group, trust me. It's not worth your life to waste it on a bunch of hyenas who serve no value to you aside from keeping you down. Everyone deserves to have a say at the table regardless of how they do it.

    -Guy, "How to be a Great Game Master"

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