A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
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    Default Into the Keep on the Shadowfell IC

    OOC - Battle Map - Rolls

    Spoiler: For Sarathi, Drang, and Gagan
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    After coming together as a team to fend off multiple ambushes, rescue Douven Stahl form the clutches of Agrid, and kill Iroontooth, the three of you set your sights on the Keep on the Shadowfell. What you saw in the first room made it clear the three of you alone couldn't root out the evil within, so you left to seek out new allies.

    Your search went well, and those new allies have agreed to meet with you this noon. As expected, the inn's door opens at high noon, revealing the people who will help you take down Kalarel once and for all.

    Spoiler: OOC
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    Of the stuff I haven't already specified in the narration, convincing the slinger to change sides in the dig site battle and arresting Ninaran occurred.



    Spoiler: For Zishu, Elmo, and Vulthan
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    Whether because you heard Marla's request call for someone to investigate reports of a cult or heard the call for allies sent by the group of adventurers you're about to meet, you've arrived in Winterhaven. After you meet in Wrafton's Inn, you'll set out for the inhabited yet ruined keep north of town to deal with the dangers those adventurers have already found dangers within it.

    As you go through the door, you leave the light of the noon sun for more comfortable air.


    The tavern serving as the inn's front room is filled with noises of a lunch rush. Salvana Wrafton, the owner of the place, has her hands full directing the waiters and cooks she employs to serve everyone inside. There's some chatter in the air, but less than you'd expect for the amount of people present.

    Fortunately, Sarathi, Drang, and Gagan have an entire table to themselves with plenty of chairs to spare.
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    Default Re: Into the Keep on the Shadowfell IC

    Zishu walks into inn, remembering the notice for additional adventuring allies.
    He finds the three members at a table was sure were hiring him. They seemed to hae additional chairs
    Hello, fellows, I am Zishu, a wandering swordsmen. I hear you three are looking for help to loot a keep? If you still need a hand, I am willin' to lend my sword skills at your service.
    Zishu says with a bow before sitting down to see their decision. His feet were tired, he needed a good place to relax for a moment.


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    in case I forget my sheet link: https://www.myth-weavers.com/sheet.html#id=2472775
    Hp 32 Init +5
    Defenses: AC 19/Fort 14/ Reflex 15/Will 17

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    Default Re: Into the Keep on the Shadowfell IC

    A wide goliath enters Wrafton's Inn, and gets himself some meat and a drink before wandering the room. "Hello. I heard a Marla woman, needed help with some roving monsters? I've been looking for a challenge and was wondering if anyone here happens to know about this?" He takes another bite of the meat, which looks almost as oily as his armor.

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    Despite the chaos in the room, Salvana took a moment to guide Vuthan.

    She pointed to the table Sarathi, Gagan, Drang, and Zishu were seated at she said "You're mixing things up a bit, but it's still clear you're looking for the people over there. Don't be afraid to ask them for more details about what's going on, since they know more about that than anybody else in town. " While returning to work, she muttered "I'd be more afraid of a cult than any monster."
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    Default Re: Into the Keep on the Shadowfell IC

    "Thank you very much," the goliath wanders over to the others, still eating. "Hello; are you the ones looking for the monsters?"

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    Default Re: Into the Keep on the Shadowfell IC

    A strange elf slinks into the tavern. He is slight and unimpressive, and his simple drab attire is adorned only with a brooch in the shape of the sun. He leans a curved staff against the wall near the table - it's an older-style longbow, not one of the newer recurves, and it's unstrung for the moment. He has a tattoo on his forearm but it is hard to make out the design, since it seems to be marred by a burn scar.

    He takes a seat next to the goliath and, after a somewhat awkward pause, says, "Oh right, saying hello is a thing. I'm Elmo Theren, hopefully Marla told you about me. Excuse my lateness. Guards stopped me at the edge of town. What's the news?"


    Spoiler: OOC
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    Edited to link my character sheet at the top.
    Last edited by Archemist; 2021-07-18 at 02:19 PM.

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    A tall golden-colored dragonborn with a booming voice and a sort of military looking outfit addresses the newer figures in the group. "Welcome, all. This is Drang, this is Sarathi, and I'm Gagan. The situation is this. We've got a nefarious cultist up to no good in an abandoned keep just a few hours' walk from here, and he's somehow acquired a pretty decent array of guards -- even a spy here in town. We need to take down the cultists, and the sooner, the better. We don't have any specifics on what loot to expect but the three of us have made out pretty well so far just from tackling the scouts and outer guards. And even without a king's ransom in riches awaiting, it's a job that needs to be done. Are you all in?"

    After a pause to get the newcomers' assent, Gagan adds, "Drang's a cleric and a good healer. Sarathi is good on the front line as a shock trooper, and I'm a pyromancer -- I put extra-hot fire right in the enemies' faces." He scowls suddenly. "Don't think of me as a wizard, though. I haven't got the patience, the mysteriousness or the frailty needed to call myself a wizard."
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    The beast-headed creature in chainmail looked at the newcomers, then tilted it's head back to look up at the goliath, with an audiable pop to accompany the unusual motion. "Not often I see someone bigger'n me, goliath. Hope you dont mind one monster fighting another?"

    Sarathi's presence was unusual, but if you've been in the region for awhile you may have heard of the gnoll pup some adventurers left at an inn a few years back.

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    Default Re: Into the Keep on the Shadowfell IC

    Elmo nods at the dragonborn. "An eloquent summary. So Marla didn't mention? Me and my bow are committed to Pelor's cause. Cultists will come back to the light or die."

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    Default Re: Into the Keep on the Shadowfell IC

    Gagan nods. "If you've a bow committed to a cause, you must be Elmo. Marla did mention you by name. Glad to have you here, and on such short notice from us. The Keep won't wait long, I'm sure of that."
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dimers View Post
    A tall golden-colored dragonborn with a booming voice and a sort of military looking outfit addresses the newer figures in the group. "Welcome, all. This is Drang, this is Sarathi, and I'm Gagan. The situation is this. We've got a nefarious cultist up to no good in an abandoned keep just a few hours' walk from here, and he's somehow acquired a pretty decent array of guards -- even a spy here in town. We need to take down the cultists, and the sooner, the better. We don't have any specifics on what loot to expect but the three of us have made out pretty well so far just from tackling the scouts and outer guards. And even without a king's ransom in riches awaiting, it's a job that needs to be done. Are you all in?"

    After a pause to get the newcomers' assent, Gagan adds, "Drang's a cleric and a good healer. Sarathi is good on the front line as a shock trooper, and I'm a pyromancer -- I put extra-hot fire right in the enemies' faces." He scowls suddenly. "Don't think of me as a wizard, though. I haven't got the patience, mysteriousness or the frailty needed to call myself a wizard."

    "A spy, did you figure who this was? I am good at stopping damage besides dealing out the hurt.
    Well, I'm game to take on a cult, when do we leave?"


    Zishu smiles thinking at least things won't be boring with this crew.

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    Default Re: Into the Keep on the Shadowfell IC

    Vuthan turns to Zishu, smiling. "That's most of my skillset as well." back to Gagan, he nods, "If the scouts are gone, they're likely to switch to larger groups. More fun for me, though. Just put me on the front lines and watch them flounder."

    Spoiler: OOC
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    Depending on how everyone wants, I feel no need to pad this out. If everyone else wants to though, it'll be entertaining nonetheless.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Starbuck_II View Post
    "A spy, did you figure who this was? I am good at stopping damage besides dealing out the hurt."
    Gagan turns to the human sword-wielder. "Zishu, you said you name was? Yes, we arrested the spy and turned her over to Lord Padraig." He passes a curious eye over the young man's equipment and stance. "Most people don't have the guts to carry a real blade into battle without wearing armor. You wouldn't happen to be a mage as well, would you? Do you need to stay in the back of the group, or are you willing to go toe-to-toe?"

    Quote Originally Posted by sandmote View Post
    Vuthan turns to Zishu, smiling. "That's most of my skillset as well." back to Gagan, he nods, "If the scouts are gone, they're likely to switch to larger groups. More fun for me, though. Just put me on the front lines and watch them flounder."
    Gagan nods with satisfaction. "Great, sounds like you're volunteering to take point while we walk, then. What's your name, eager recruit? Oh, and Elmo -- you look like you've the knack for going through the trees unnoticed; do you want to be ahead of the group scouting or behind the Wall-O'-Goliath?"
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    Default Re: Into the Keep on the Shadowfell IC

    Zishu turns to Gagan, "Oh don't worry about me too much, I am pretty good at parrying most attacks, though not as strong versus attacks like poison or body ailments. I am fine in the front, the power of my god Sehanine shall keep me as safe as plate. "
    Zishu says, a fine group we got. How bad could these cultist be he wondered.

    "I can cast a spell or two, but you likely me have me beat magical might. Most of my magic is sword powered. This here is Elizabeth, she is a mighty friend that has served me well." Zishu points to his blade.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dimers View Post
    Gagan nods with satisfaction. "Great, sounds like you're volunteering to take point while we walk, then. What's your name, eager recruit? Oh, and Elmo -- you look like you've the knack for going through the trees unnoticed; do you want to be ahead of the group scouting or behind the Wall-O'-Goliath?"
    "Ahead," the elf answers simply. "I am a woodsman and can scout. But it matters little - don't worry about getting in my way, for my arrows will never find you unless I want them to." The elf steeples his hands.

    Elmo perks up at Zishu's mention of Sehanine, raising his eyebrows in surprise and curiosity. He seems about to say something theological, but then he quickly looks a little dismayed on hearing that Zishu has named his blade, and he says nothing. He doesn't seem one for sentiment.

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    Default Re: Into the Keep on the Shadowfell IC

    "I am Vuthan Kuligone, of a tribe that lives not to far from here," the goliath explains between bites. He doesn't seem to want to explain much more, and doesn't look very happy when mentioning it.

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    Default Re: Into the Keep on the Shadowfell IC

    "Good enough, then," Gagan says. He makes brief eye contact with Drang and Sarathi, and since neither expresses any hesitation about taking on the three new companions, he says, "Let's be off, if no one has pressing business in town." With a few more sentences as he plunks down a few coins for lunch, puts on his pack and heads for the door, the dragonborn explains the landmarks to the party's new scout, Elmo. "If there's no opposition along the way, we'll meet up again face-to-face before entering the Keep itself."
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    Sarathi indicated acknowledgement and rose, ready to head out.

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    Default Re: Into the Keep on the Shadowfell IC

    Elmo agrees as well and takes point. He is quiet and observes his new companions. Hiding this bunch might be hard - but they are numerous enough that it might not matter. He smiles.

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    "I'm worried about the elf. The last one was crazy."

    Drang tries to wink at Sarathi and just looks awkward. He's ready to go, though.

    "Did you warn them about the rat trap?"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phantom Genius View Post
    "I'm worried about the elf. The last one was crazy."

    Drang tries to wink at Sarathi and just looks awkward. He's ready to go, though.

    "Did you warn them about the rat trap?"
    "Dont judge them all by what one did." The gnoll, scion of Yeenoghu, grinned. "The others could be even worse."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phantom Genius View Post
    "I'm worried about the elf. The last one was crazy."

    Drang tries to wink at Sarathi and just looks awkward. He's ready to go, though.

    "Did you warn them about the rat trap?"
    "Rat Trap? Sounds like an interesting story."

    Zishu wander what he missed before he joined.

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    "I was going to mention when we got there, have it fresh in everyone's mind as we go stumbling through the halls ... Just inside the front door, between four support pillars, was a trap floor. The space underneath was filled with rats -- must've been a couple hundred of the things. The rats didn't do too much harm themselves, but the trap kept us occupied while the goblins got a few more shots off. As it was meant to. We shouldn't have fallen for that." Gagan sounds clinical, detached, as he reports this. Then he chuckles. "Heh, fallen for it."
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    "Ugh, and here I was hoping for honorable combat." Vuthan grumbles as he walks.

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    The muffled tone and silent tension seen within the inn is also present throughout Winterhaven and the surrounding farmland. Nervousness with no obvious origin has blanketed the town.

    Your trip to the keep is uneventful, which is fortunate given the circumstances. While the road generally leading north of Winterhaven is fairly well maintained, the disuse of the road specifically leading to the keep can be seen from the junction connecting it to the main path. The track leading in, despite being narrow and overgrown, is still usable, at least.

    At the end of the track you find a clearing filled with shattered stones and scorched timbers. The dirt is bare, as if nature itself was scared to intrude into Shadowfell Keep. Yet there are still signs of humanoid tampering. There's path leading to the center of the rubble, where a pile of debris and a stone staircase can be seen. Darkness covers the path downwards.
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    Quote Originally Posted by TurboGhast View Post
    At the end of the track you find a clearing filled with shattered stones and scorched timbers. The dirt is bare, as if nature itself was scared to intrude into Shadowfell Keep. Yet there are still signs of humanoid tampering. There's path leading to the center of the rubble, where a pile of debris and a stone staircase can be seen. Darkness covers the path downwards.
    Elmo takes a slow and steady approach towards the staircase. His low-light vision is only so helpful in these cases, but he takes his time to listen and mentally map the area as well. And looking around, it doesn’t require that much of a stretch to put himself back in the mindset of a cultist with few scruples and orders to keep goody-goodies away. A rat trap was not a bad idea - no one could prove who set it up, if the bodies were even found at all.

    He strings his bow and motions the others forward silently with a wave. Elmo walks slightly off to the left of the path, through more difficult gravel, not along the smooth part. When he gets to the top of the stairs he pauses briefly but then heads down, treading quietly.

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    Sarathi follows at a moderate distance, attempting to minimize the rustle of her chain, but remaining close enough to intervene if something befell the scout.

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    Vuthan stops to observe the odd foliage line before following along with Sarathi. He walks carefully, given his armor doesn't help with stealth either.

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    Cass keeps on hand on his weapon while it is sheathed in case he needs it. He keeps close to the front beside Sarathi, while he lacked noisy equipment, he never really got how to deaden the noise of his footsteps. He hoped he was ready for the dangers ahead.

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    The staircase downwards is unwelcoming despite how finely crafted it is. Every step down is followed by a chilling breeze. Torchlight can be seen and a voice can be heard from the bottom of the stairs, making it clear the keep isn't abandoned.

    "We should be watching to see if Splug's up to something, not wasting our time trying to greet the nonexistent people coming in. I bet those adventurers ch-"

    He glances at you when you reach the bottom of the stairs, then readies the visibly hot poker in his hands like a spear and continues, "Nevermind, then. INTRUDER ALERT!"

    Spoiler: For those who succeed on a DC 15 Perception check
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    You can smell some unwashed bodies.


    Spoiler: Game Actions - Battle Begins
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    A battle has begun! Link to the initiative rolls.

    Elmo, Zishu, Vuthan, and Gagan will place their token in the transparent green square on the battle map then take their turn, while Sarathi and Drang will simply place their character token in that area. Once everyone's done, the enemies will take their turn.

    The pillars in the north room provide cover. The barrels and boxes in the southeast room are difficult terrain. The beds in the southwest room are low enough not to significantly affect combat.

    The squiggly line in the hallway above that room is a thick curtain. It blocks lines of sight and affect and takes two squares of movement for a medium creature to move through. By taking a move action while it's in your reach, you can attempt to tear it down by making a DC 15 Strength check. Succeeding on the check will pull it down.

    A number of things are shown publicly for ease of adjudication. First, enemy defenses are displayed publicly so that you know whether your attacks hit. Hit points and status are public for similar reasons. When taking your turn, update the hit points, status conditions, and position of anybody (ally or enemy) affected by the outcome of your actions.

    What actions the enemy will counter with a reaction will also be listed. Most of them will specify what the reaction is inside and expect you to resolve it, but particularly complicated ones might require my intervention (mostly because they modify the battle map).

    Spoiler: When a melee attack misses W or S1-3...
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    they shift one space away from the person who performed the attack.


    Spoiler: When any creature steps on the four tiles in the center of the northern room, surrounded by the pillars...
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    they fall into the pit trap set there. This modifies the battle map, so I'll have to adjudicate the details myself.
    Last edited by TurboGhast; 2021-08-06 at 07:31 PM. Reason: Missed some words
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