A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
You can get A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2 now at Gumroad
Results 1 to 23 of 23
  1. - Top - End - #1
    Titan in the Playground
     
    BlueWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Edmonton, Canada

    Default Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    The City of Brass. One of the most ancient and renowned metropolises in all the cosmos. Home to a million souls (and quite a few things that don't have souls). The seat of a proud and unbelievably complex efreeti culture. A renowned centre of learning, of metalcraft, of magical might. A magnificent spar of rock soaring from the gently undulating flames of the Lake of Fire.

    Also a filthy, cramped and dangerous place to visit.

    Out of Character Thread
    Last edited by Toliudar; 2021-10-14 at 11:04 AM.
    "We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." Kurt Vonnegut

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Titan in the Playground
     
    BlueWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Edmonton, Canada

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Spoiler: Calida
    Show
    Spiders, as it turns out, do not do well in the heat.

    Also, as it turns out, armour customized for arachnoid humanoids are not often available off the rack, outside of the Underdark. So, flush with gold from her last job, she made arrangements to visit the City of Brass, and followed directions to the Street of Steel.

    It was actually remarkably easy for Calida to find Isle of Mithril, a shop specializing in the million forms that the light metal can take. An embarrassing hour of measurement, and a tweak of enchantments and a day of impatient waiting later, and she emerged back onto the Street of Steel wearing the most beautifully fitted mail shirt she could imagine. Not that it LOOKED like mithril mail at the moment.

    Walking towards Calida were half a dozen efreet in matching breastplates, moving with a casual watchfulness that screamed ‘cop’ to her. Instinctively, Calida shifted and prepared to duck down an alley, but somehow, two of the beefy efreet were already there. One unhooked a gleaming spiked chain from his belt in a way that suggested that he wouldn’t overmuch regret swinging it in the enclosed space of the alley. The much smaller efreet beside him winced apologetically and took a black velvet cloth…something from a bag at his belt. A light skiff of ash began to fall. The big one spoke.

    “I am Mo-Attim Diassim, Third Lieutenant of the Hand of the Sultan. Calida Merimange, you have been found guilty of an infraction of section 89 dash 14 of the Iron Code, improperly identifying yourself upon entry to the City of Brass. The normal penalty for such an infraction is a month of slavery and hard labour, but Sultan Marrake is exceptionally munificent. You are offered an opportunity to instead complete a simple task in order to set aside this sentence. Either way, you are coming with us."

    As Calida begins to plan three avenues of escape from this situation, she turns to observe the other four efreet blocking off the alley behind her. And then a soft, dark bag pops over her head, and…nothing.


    Spoiler: Eshra
    Show
    Even with their ring, Eshra found the incessantly parched air and hostile inhabitants of the City of Brass wearying. It was remarkable that the same city could be full of wonders and deeply tiresome. Especially since they had learned of the recent passing of Mistress Xan Fourblade.

    And so Eshra had returned to their tiny room at the Yellow Sulphur Arms, intending to either find work or passage out the next day.

    There is no true night in the City of Brass, and no windows in Eshra’s room anyway, so it wasn’t clear to Eshra how much sleep had come before the knock. Loud and insistent. “Eshra, you will open in the name of the Sultan.”

    Eshra considered their options, but ultimately decided that taking on an entire city of efreet, or trying to sneak out of aforementioned city, were unlikely to do much either for their health or spiritual equilibrium. They rose to answer the door.

    Half a dozen efreeti guards in brass breastplates were clustered in the narrow hallway. The largest, a big bruiser with absurdly coiffed long black hair and a seemingly painted-on sneer, pushed his way inside.

    “Eshra. I am Mo-Attim Diassim, Third Lieutenant of the Hand of the Sultan. You have been found guilty of an infraction against section 489 dash 3 of the Iron Code, sedition against the authority of a duly appointed representative of the Sultan.

    "Such a serious offense is normally punished by a period of 5 years of enslavement, but the Sultan is forgiving beyond the understanding of lesser beings. He offers you one opportunity to have your sentence set aside, in exchange for a modest service.”


    Instinctively, mindblades form in Eshra’s hands. The sneer on Diassim’s face deepened, and he lay a hand on a gleaming spiked chain at his belt. A much smaller efreet, dressed in a shapeless grey tunic and knee-length pants, cleared his throat from the doorway.

    “Um. I beg your pardon. Eshra? I believe Io had many wise words to say about the importance of distinguishing between action that is purposeful and essential, and action which expends energy without purpose. Yes?”

    The burly warriors behind the scruffily dressed efreeti quietly drew swords and maces. Eshra completes a complex piece of mental arithmetic, and makes their mindblades dissipate with a thought. The efreet in grey tosses Diassim a black velvet bag, and the Lieutenant smiles as he pops it roughly over Eshra’s head. Then…nothing.


    Spoiler: Grimmald
    Show
    If this was Hell, then the Dread Executor was mightily disappointed by the disorganized and seemingly random nature of the punishments. The devils, easily twice the height of an ordinary person, turned him away from several parts of hell; people seemed to walk about committing crimes and acts of petty disrespect, and NO ONE KNEW WHO HE WAS. It was intolerable.

    The Dread Executor was just starting to savour the experience of being hungry. Normally, there had been servants at hand to attend to every whim, and now he was forced to purchase a small bread stuffed with what was likely but not definitely meat from a sketchy looking orc on the street. Worse, he only got four bites in when a heavy red hand appeared on his shoulder. Who would dare?

    It was one of the devils, dressed in a fancy brass breastplate. He was flanked by five other similarly attired devils, all armed and looking angry. The Dread Executor began to speak. “You will remove your hand or I will do it for-"

    Then the devil, incredibly, interrupted!

    “Grimmald Swordshade, you have been convicted of an infraction against section 280 dash 1 of the Iron Code, entry into the City of Brass through an unsanctioned portal, and against section 280 dash 14, failure to register as a visitor within one hour of arrival. You have been sentenced to seventeen months of slavery. However, the Sultan is merciful beyond all bounds, and offers to erase this sentence in exchange for your completion of a simple service.”

    The Dread Executor lays a hand on his katana’s grip and draws himself up, fixing the impertinent devil with a literally imperious stare. A small and innocuous devil, barely taller than a human, stepped out from behind the squad of warriors and sighed. “I’m not sure that we have time for this.” The devil was holding a black bag of some sort in his hand, and with remarkable speed slipped the bag up and over the Dread Executor’s head. Then…nothing.


    Spoiler: Gentle
    Show
    If Sigil had been a kind of playground of new sensations, this was more like a testing ground, a blasted heath of unrelenting heat and ubiquitous misery. So many twisted bodies, so many injured souls.

    At first, Gentle had thought that this was an eternal day of torment for him, wandering the streets, healing and lending aid when he could, but he eventually grew tired enough to seek out a flophouse of some kind. Apparently, gold was gold, even in this inexplicable place, and Gentle dropped gratefully off to sleep on a filthy bundle of rags.

    In what he would arbitrarily called morning, miraculously unmolested, Gentle sat up and reached out to Liira, and was relieved to find that, just as in Sigil, his goddess could reach him here ass well.

    When Gentle opened his eyes, he was surrounded by half a dozen of these huge devilish figures, the efreet, who seemed to be in charge of this place. The largest of them reached down and lifted Gentle up by his mail, up and up until he was dangling well off the ground. Speaking through twisted and contemptuous lips, the big efreeti spoke.

    “Goran Weaver, you have been convicted of a contravention of section 1,739 dash 14 of the Iron Code, providing healing services without a license, and of 1,740 dash 3, providing healing services outside of a licensed establishment. You have been sentenced to seven months of slavery. However, through the infinite mercy of Sultan Marrake, you are being offered an opportunity to earn forgiveness for these offenses, all in exchange for one simple service."

    The familiar heat-spark of a blast began to tickle in the palm of Gentle’s left hand, when a soft strangely-accented voice drifted up behind him. The tone is soft and wheedling.

    “Lieutenant Diassim!”

    The big efreet’s sneer changes inflection but does not disappear.

    “Stay out of this, Zyleni!”

    “Suit yourself, but I don’t think that Master Weaver is arguing. Not yet, anyway.”

    Darkness abruptly engulfed Gentle’s view, and a soft velvet brushed his cheeks. His crown of flame was nearly knocked off his head. And then…nothing.


    Spoiler: Ganzak
    Show
    It had been a good visit with Melchior, profitable. The recent interplanar disturbances had been the subject of much murmured conversation across the City of Brass, and while Melchior had no hard details about what might be happening, he had no end of entertaining theories. He also had a Ring of the Darkhidden, aesthetically pleasing to Ganzak’s refined sensibilities, and at a reasonable price.

    As the two continued chatting in Melchior’s front room, the shop door opened and five thuggish efreet in matching breastplates – so either a fiery boy band or a military unit of some kind – barged in and quickly approached. Their apparent leader, an especially arrogant looking oaf with an absurd pompadour and a sparkly spiked chain, strode quickly over to Ganzak. A sixth efreeti, smaller and with a kind of shapeless grey jacket and short pants, slouched in after.

    The big one glowered down at Ganzak, while Melchior quietly slipped behind the shop counter.

    “Talarious Stoneham. You have been convicted of an infraction of section of 56 dash 2, conspiring with a convicted enemy of the Sultanate. To wit, one Rule of Three, criminal mastermind and known seditionist. You have been sentenced to eleven years of slavery. However, the Sultan in his boundless mercy is willing to commute your sentence in exchange for one simple service."

    Ganzak, seeing how this was progressing, quietly slipped a hand inside his backpack. The hand closed around the metal tuning fork that would lead him toward home again. However, the motion seemed to draw the elaborately coiffed enforcer, who reached out with remarkable speed and hauled Ganzak to the floor, straddling him and efficiently pinning his arms.

    The small efreet slipped quietly forward, pulling a black velvet bag out of a sack at his belt.

    “Please don’t hurt him, Lieutenant! We need them intact for –“

    “Stop your bitching, Zyleni! If the humans are good at one thing, it’s healing after you’ve put them in their place.”

    The small efreet makes a small grimace, stepped forward and popped the black bag over Ganzak’s head.

    Then...nothing.


    Spoiler: Caolin
    Show
    The roast goose was spectacular, lightly seasoned and not overcooked. Th mashed yams were not inspired, but complimented nicely. Caoin settled back in a pleasantly cushioned chair which, if a trifle large for him, was easily the most comfortable thing he had been on since arriving in the City of Brass.

    Well. Second most comfortable.

    Yelenah al-Guri sashahed to the door of her pleasantly appointed apartment, in the fine neighborhood of the Foundry, overlooking the almost as fine neighbourhood of the Cinders. Clearly, Yelenah had excellent taste. He was here, wasn’t he?

    The efreeti woman opened the door, and immediately stepped back.

    “Mo-Atar! It’s been far too long! Oh. You’ve brought friends. Is this an official visit of some kind?"

    A barrel-chested efreeti man with a military bearing and hair that might catch fire if it got ten degrees hotter burst into the room, followed by four more efreeti with a distinctly not-in-charge vibe, and a shabbily dressed efreeti man who clashed with the whole stormtrooper aesthetic.

    Glancing around the apartment, the knot of genies beelined for Caolin, who barely had time to stand before the brute squad hemmed him in on three sides. Captain Hair Product bent down to get in Caolin’s face.

    “Caolin, you have been convicted of four violations of section 111 dash 8 of the Iron Code, false representation, and two instances of section 307 dash 2, trespass. There were also three complaints lodged about your performance at the Velvet Crucible –"

    “Objection! I have the voice of an angel. Tell him, Yelenah!”

    “Absolutely! The note that you hit when I stuck my finger-“

    “Enough, both of you! Regardless, that’s not technically in contravention of the Iron Code. But, for the other offences, the sentence is fourteen months of slavery. But the Sultan apparently has a soft spot for lost causes. He is willing to commute the sentence in exchange for one small service.”

    Yelenah, still hovering by the door, as if hoping that the entire scene would pass back through it, clears her throat.

    “Oh, wow. You should take that offer. I’ve seen humans after they’ve come back from a year at the smelters. They’re usually not all there.”

    The scruffy efreet drew a velvet bag out of a sack at his belt and handed it to the pompous spokesman. He seems about to pop it over Caolin’s head when the human forestalls him with a raised hand. He reaches down to grab another bite of the goose, chews and nods. The burly efreet lifts the bag to Caolin's head.

    Then…nothing.
    "We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." Kurt Vonnegut

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Titan in the Playground
     
    BlueWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Edmonton, Canada

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    The bags are yanked from six heads, and six figures sit on chairs. The chairs are near a black stone wall. The wall is nearly forty feet tall, in a cylindrical room. A dozen efreeti guards stand, tense and alert, around a trio of exits. In the centre of the room is a large table, ringed by bright white lights floating in midair.

    Around the table, four figures stand. Two are familiar: the pompous soldier who had overseen the recent arrest - if that was in fact what had just happened - and the scruffy efreet who had helped him. The third figure is a female efreet with pale red skin, clad all in delicate green armour. The fourth a figure some six feet tall, almost lost in a baggy grey robe and white face mask devoid of emotion.

    The woman turns towards the six unhooded figures, and it's easy to see that the left side of her face is horribly disfigured, her left eye replaced with a dark orb. She smiles and beckons them closer.

    "Ah, good. Our volunteers are restored. Come closer, quickly. There isn't much time."
    "We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." Kurt Vonnegut

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Titan in the Playground
     
    BlueWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Edmonton, Canada

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Caolin rises cautiously to his feet, glancing around the room.

    Volunteers? He says mildly. You couldn't find a more dignified way of getting help? Like some public graffetti? Or maybe a note nailed to a temple door?

    He gives a measured glance over at the other chairs. A figure clad in white robes. A human with the lightly scaled skin of draconic ancestry. Another human with Adarian features. A humanoid with jet black hair wearing black armour and black clothing with a black on black motif tastefully done in black. And a final human dressed in baggy explorer's clothes. All healthy, mostly fairly attractive, and all far from home. And he looked to be the only entertainer, although the Adarian could be a dancer of some kind. He couldn't make out what they were supposed to have in common, but what he could see was a theme that was not promising for his continued health.

    We're all foreigners, he thought. Deniable, or disposable, or both.

    He sighs and ambles over to the table of lights, adjusting his simple lace cuffs as he goes.

    Even sitting at the corner table in the Rusty Songbird with a hooded cloak and a sackful of gold would see you struggling to escape from the crush.
    "We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." Kurt Vonnegut

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Titan in the Playground
     
    BlueWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Edmonton, Canada

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Gentle was waking up after getting… Captured? Abducted? Well he could see again which was kinda good at last. And he saw at least one kinda familiar person... For some reason he didn't liked him that much. Weird. A very scary looking guy, seemed like face even a mother would punt in. The rest were totally unknown to him.

    He stood up. It seemed the hell in the City of Brass wasn't to end that quickly. He could even get to know what that was all about.

    I guess we are assembled, in a way. Why have you taken this… Colorful entourage instead of enslaving all of us because we have inconvenienced you slightly?

    The healer strode towards the woman with the weird face, it seemed futile to trying to help her with her affliction, lest he get pressed into another weird situation.

    And it really seemed better to follow instructions at the moment.
    "We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." Kurt Vonnegut

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Ridai's Avatar

    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Germany (GMT +1)

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    If you, dear reader, read the Grimmald spoiler tag, congratulations, you got treated to the propaganda exterior version of Dread Executor Grimmald Swordshade, also known as the Night Demon! What follows is the internal view of one Grimmald.

    So, hell looks an awful lot like a busy marketplace. The devils mostly just seemed to stand watch, as people shuffled about, as people are wont to do, and guards are wont to do. He also has heard many, many paragraphs being cited before people were dragged away. Grimmald has been unsuccessful in finding a law book. Part of it was that back home, the old emperor kept changing things, though the new one seemed to regard the last draft as heaven's gospel, so maybe that is different now?

    So getting to stroll about is very much indulged. No people prostrating themselves before him on the street, or priests trying to intone chants at his passing, or crowds parting. And above all, no one seemed to know him. This is great!

    Since Grimmald also isn't getting put through palace servants bringing food and him needing to eat it so the cooks and servants don't get punished (the strongman physique has been developing the start of some paunch, especially since the new emperor seemed very worried about Grimmald ever growing hungry), he even got to take a look at street food. Street food! After years! Some of it might turn his stomach inside-out, but, you know, just gotta figure out what's safe and what's for the tourists! It's not like he ever actually gets hungry, what with that ring he found once.

    A few bites into his assessment, after a bit of an awkward stand-off of Grimmald looming over the orc while trying to figure out how to adress people here and what to try (the orc was starting to look a tad nervous), a hand grabs his arm. A big hand. He will really need to get used to the devils here just being people going about their city business, not monsters (same with the orc, really; at home, humans are usually what is considered "people" by society, everything else usually being pretty ill-tempered). In his booming oktavist and shadowlands-infused voice, Grimmald manages to get through "You will remove your hand or I will do it for-" before getting cut off with a dubious arrest. Sadly, the remaining part of the sentence ("-you, as my armor has very sharp edges and you could hurt yourself on accident.") will forever be lost to time.

    As he looks to the devil, making sure his posture is upright on reflex, partially because of being disappointed people do know who he is here (it was going so well!), awkward silence follows as Grimmald considers how to best talk this out, surely an appeal could be made and his situation explained. Handing over your sword is a good sign of cooperation, right? So one hand goes to the katana sheath. Wait. Is it in this society? This might also be seen as a gift gesture, so he either never sees his katana again because he just handed it over, or the guards think he is trying to bribe them, adding more charges. Perhaps he should just ask?

    Then the other devil pops in and things go dark. Fiddlesticks.

    -------------------

    Now, dear reader, on to the situation at hand.

    Dread Executor Grimmald Swordshade, a hulking figure in void-black armor with just as dark hair (at least what can be seen on his beard; it is hard to see where his mask ends and his beard begins) sits in his chair, bushy ash pale brow furrowed deeply, giving off a monstrous presence to everyone around him. The sudden bright lights really sting his eyes as he squints against them. Deep, slow inhale and exhale before rising, measured steps towards the table, steps very much heard, yet there is too little noise given off by a figure clad in plate. Making a habit out of louder steps in non-hostile environments has done much to prevent screaming fits of people rounding corners.

    Coming to a stand still before the table, there is a looming pause, most of Grimmald's face shrouded in dark, despite the bright lights, and the darkness feels deep indeed (and a number of guards might still feel being looked at), his two swords at his side, one larger, one small, both still enormous for a human. Once more, he considers how to adress this evidently high-ranking gathering in hell.

    "I do not remember... volunteering." The almost impossibly deep voice fills the room, felt in the stomach as much as it is heard. Really, he doesn't. They really could have just come to him and asked for volunteers. Or better yet: "Explain." Really, if they led off with that, they would have much more motivated people for... whatever is going on here, surely! Hopefully he can actually make an appeal for the infractions at some point, but the vague starting statement does not fill him with hope. Later then. Hopefully.

    Spoiler: OOC
    Show
    Intimidation check (1d20+38)[41]

    Not because Grimmald is actively doing it or trying for it, but because lol get used to being around Grimmald.
    Last edited by Ridai; 2021-10-14 at 11:52 AM.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Ettin in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Gaznak

    The hood came off. Gaznak took in the surroundings with a quick glance around. He noticed his shield leaning against the chair and his leg. They made a point of bringing my shield along. They need me for something. He grabbed his shield as he stood up. Casually he slung it over his left shoulder while discreetly and instinctively brushing his forearm against his spell pouch, careful not to touch it with his hand which may cause concern among all these unknowns.

    He strode confidently over to the table. He was sure he'd be spending more time with the other "volunteers" so that could wait. The guards were tense. Hmm, worried about our reaction or whatever reason for this meeting? It was those at the table he was most interested in. Well, the two he hadn't encountered yet at least. The other two who had "summoned" him were of low significance to him at this point.

    The black clad volunteer started to make a fuss. Gaznak chuckled to himself without the slightest indication. Trying to intimidate when you obviously don't have the upper hand makes one look weak. Still, that skill could be useful at the right time in the right way. Gaznak preferred steering people to see things his way when possible. Far more was accomplished that way.

    Gaznak looked to the two at the table he had interest for their reaction. He turned his attention briefly to the would-be troublemaker as he began to speak and then turned back towards those in charge.

    "Our hosts were not part of the Lieutenant's methods. We are in their realm, or at least I was when visited." He continued in a formal and respectful manner. "The Great Sultan had but to ask. How may I be of aid to Him?"

    Spoiler: OOC
    Show
    Sense Motive (1d20+20)[26]
    Auras are just to himself at this point. Motivate INT (to better understand what is about to be told) and Saves are on.
    Spoiler: Games
    Show
    Keston Tornok for GF's AoW
    Loradralsornux for GF's Savage Tide
    Suga for Kish's The Sunless Citadel
    Cendrik for J-H's Servants of the Thrallherd
    Semult for Kish's Wrath of the Righteous
    Faazeran for kinem's Drow Against Midnight

    Extended Signature - More detailed game/character notes

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Titan in the Playground
     
    BlueWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Edmonton, Canada

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Clearing her throat, a very plain-looking human woman in what looks like a bulky explorer's outfit seems to take the situation with aplomb. "I am quite sure that there has been some sort of mistake or possibly a clerical error, but nevertheless, I am certainly always at the service of the fine governmental body of this most gracious city. Perhaps I could offer a washing service? The...um...lovely sack could definitely benefit from a bit of soap and a firm brush, and I would be more than willing to provide such services, of course. Especially if I'll be...ah...enjoying its use again. T'would be no trouble at all, rest assured." Offering a courtesy, despite the lack of a dress, the woman folds her arms over her abdomen and keeps her head inclined in a gesture of respect, not meeting anyone's eyes as she keeps her inner thoughts private.

    Spoiler: Statblock
    Show
    Calida Merimange
    Female C/N Changeling Rogue 5 / Fighter 1 / Lasher 1 / Fang of Lloth 9 // Ranger 6 / Sonokineticist 10, Level 16, Init 5, HP 93/93, Speed 30' Land, 30' Swim, 20' Climb
    AC 24, Touch 13, Flat-footed 21, Fort 11, Ref 11, Will 8, Base Attack Bonus +13/+8, Power Points 3/3
    Spider Claws & Bite +13/+13/+13/+13/+8 (1d4, x2)
    Sonic Lash +18/+13 (1d6, x2)
    Bolt of Sound +17 (10d6, x2)
    +4 Planar Tolerance Glamered Improved Shadow Mithril Breastplate of Improved Silent Moves & Nimbleness (+9 Armor, +3 Dex, +2 Natural)
    Abilities Str 8, Dex 16, Con 12, Int 16, Wis 14, Cha 26
    Condition Invisible, Darkhidden, Pass Without Trace, Scentless, Endure Elements, Resist Cold 5, Resist Sonic 20, Waterbreathing
    'Always Taking 10' Skills Bluff (39), Diplomacy (39), Intimidate (39), Gather Information (22), Swim (17), & Sense Motive (13)
    Immunities Planar Alignment Traits, Positive-Dominant & Negative-Dominant Planar Traits
    Spoiler: OOC and Rolls
    Show

    Bluff = 39
    Diplomacy = 39
    Sense Motive = 13

    Inner Thoughts: ****, **** ****, what the ****?!
    "We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." Kurt Vonnegut

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Titan in the Playground
     
    BlueWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Edmonton, Canada

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Suppressing the battle-instincts honed by years of combat, Eshra allows themselves to be taken. Painting the city with blood would do nothing but cause problems while lacking a means of egress from this sweltering hellscape of a plane. Allowing the roiling mind blade the size of a great sword to disperse, as well as their force shield, a simple mental command activates the boots of levitation just enough to curl legs underneath themself as if in meditation as Eshra's cloaked and cowled form is pulled through the air by one of the guardsman.

    Through both mask and hooded cloak, Eshra watches the figures in the room from their levitating cross-legged position carefully. Violence is always a simple thought away, and listening cost nothing but time. Their body hidden by the voluminous black cloak and their features hidden behind a mask and shrouded in the shadow of the hood, it is difficult to determine the figure's race, let alone gender. Stretching their leg to the ground briefly, a nudge with a booted foot sends the figure floating slowly towards the woman before the same leg stretches a second time to halt their momentum closer to the female who spoke and resumes their cross-legged position a few feet above the floor. The hood of the cloak oriented on the woman, the figure simply hovers in the air, silent and unmoving.

    Spoiler: OOC
    Show

    Eshra
    N/G Kalashtar Soulknife 11 / Illumine Soul 5 // Barbarian 2 / Fighter 2 / Battle-Dancer 1 / Ninja 1 / Soulbow 10, Level 16, Init 7, HP 167/167, Speed 40 ft.
    AC 35, Touch 26, Flat-footed 30, Fort 13, Ref 15, Will 18, Base Attack Bonus +13/+8/+3, Power Points 16/16
    +6 Defending Undead Bane Mind Blade of Collision (Longsword Shape) +26/+21/+16 or +20/+15/+5 while defending (2d6+16, 19-20x2)
    +6 Undead Bane Mind Arrow of Speed (Rapid Shot) +29/+29/+29/+24/+19 (2d6+14, x3)
    +6 Undead Bane Mind Arrow of Speed (Manyshot) +23/+23/+23/+23 (2d6+14, x3)
    Inertial Armor, Ring of Force Shield (+4 Armor, +2 Shield, +5 Dex, +2 Deflect, +3 Natural, +9 Misc)
    Abilities Str 20, Dex 20, Con 18, Int 16, Wis 26, Cha 16
    Condition None

    Currently Active: Boots of Levitation



    "We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." Kurt Vonnegut

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Titan in the Playground
     
    BlueWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Edmonton, Canada

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    As the six figures make their way over toward the table, the efreeti woman smiles and does her best to respond to each in turn.
    ”Ah, yes. Well, the next time I want to gather a group of opportunistic drunks, I’ll keep that strategy in mind.”

    To Calida ”If there was an error, it was mine. But now the die is cast.”

    Taking in the others, she nods and launches into a response.

    ”I regret the need for the distinctly unsubtle tactics of your recruitment. This is not a situation in which ‘no’ was an option.

    “I am Jasmine Al-Hyan, Master of Secrets of the City of Brass. Normally, I would make some kind of boast about hearing and seeing anything going on here, but I’m afraid I have been humbled today.

    “As you may have heard, there have been curious disruptions across the planes. We thought that these might be some kind of random effect, some kind of cosmic storm. But twelve hours ago, a much more serious threat emerged.”


    She turns to the table. At the centre is a small three-dimensional representation of the island on which the City of Brass perches, and the massive dark crag of the Charcoal Palace rising in the centre. Around it on the table are a few scattered brass tablets. Half-way between the edge of the table and the island is a blue marker, with an arc of smaller markers half-surrounding it.

    ”In the middle of the lake of fire, an opaque blue hemisphere appeared. It began to solidify the lava adjacent to it. Thanks to our planar defenses, its arrival was detected immediately, and a dozen ships of his Radiant Glory’s navy quickly intercepted. A dozen marines, protected against cold, entered the sphere – and were promptly frozen on the spot.

    The coalked figure beside her coughs faintly and tilts his(?) head. Jasmine nods and continues.

    ”Divinations lead us to believe that the sphere an incursion directly from the para-elemental plane of ice, and that the incompatible elemental natures overwhelmed our soldiers. Diplomatic overtures have been made to Overlord Tarxas of the plane of ice, but have not as yet received a response. Worse, in the last few hours, the freezing of the eternal fire in the vicinity of this ball has begun accelerating. At this rate of increase, it could reach the City within a few days.

    “But of course this will not be allowed to progress that far.”


    The pompadoured lieutenant beside her slams a gauntleted fist against his breastplate.

    ”Of course not! We will-“

    ”No one is doubting your courage, Mo-Atar. But time is of the essence.

    We are preparing several contingencies to halt the progress of the freezing, but we also need eyes inside the sphere to try to figure out what is going on. The navy has, ah, fired into the sphere, confirming that it seems to be permeable, but it remains proof against our best magic. And our best magic is very good.

    “It was determined that a group of outsiders, not affiliated with the plane or even resident here, stood the best chance of penetrating the sphere successfully. If possible, to make peaceful contact and determine the reason for this invasion. But one way or another, to stop it.”


    There is a quick pass of Jasmine’s left hand near her belt, and her left hand a black cube, about an inch on each side, with red gemstones picking out the numbers from one to six. She stares at it fondly for a moment.

    ”You will receive the best protection we can give you against the cold we believe you will find in the sphere. If any of you also require it, we will provide you with protection against the rigors of the Lake. You will get to the bottom of this problem and eliminate it. If you do, you will each be granted a wish and you will be pardoned of all crimes currently on record. Oh, and Mister Garzak will get his tuning forks back. We don’t have time to enumerate the results of failure, but you’re clever folk. Well, mostly.

    “You will be teleported to the deck of the Burning Bitch where you’ll meet with Admiral Khadim Ul-Hulidaram, outside the sphere. I have convinced the admiral to give us an hour or so before he launches an all-out assault on the sphere.”


    The robed and masked figure gasps several times in a manner that initially suggests a seizure, but reveals itself to be laughter of some kind. Jasmine smiles and tosses the die to Gentle.

    ”We don’t think that would go well. Anyway, when you have completed the mission, join hands and press the six three times to be brought back here. Okay. We have time for a few questions. Go.

    The masked figure speaks a few words of power, and a magic aura settles onto he group.

    Spoiler: OOC
    Show
    Biscuit, fair warning: I love the cinematic use of the boots of levitation, but in a field application, levitation will not give you frictionless lateral movement. If you have a place from which to push off, you can make a jump check to move laterally.
    Geek and Ridai: you don’t get a sense that your social skill attempts are failed, just that there are other priorities that are trumping her shifting attitudes toward you. Geek, you’re not reading anything beyond the obvious tension in the situation.
    Everyone has the benefit of Cold Resistance 30 for the time being.
    Last edited by Toliudar; 2021-10-19 at 01:13 AM.
    "We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." Kurt Vonnegut

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    RedWizardGuy

    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Germany
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Gentle couldn't inspect the others because the father of all fear moved and then even spoke! He was kinda creepy when he just sat there but seeing him moving and talking was a totally different experience. The healer met demons who moved less creepy and spoke in less disturbing ways. He couldn't even pinpoint what made him freeze in place exactly it was just the whole package together that made this person so damn unsettling. There was definitely some kind of discussion in order there was no way in the nine hells that this person was like that all the time.

    Gentle returned to the discussion with the efreeti.

    The effect of elemental ice is not supressed here? Just by being not part of your plane it seems we have some kind of advantage.

    Gentle didn't like to get pressed into this service for the corrupt government, on the other hand the rewards seemed pretty nice and they were somehow searching for capable individuals for helping with problems they couldn't solve themselves and Gentle liked helping others if that didn't harm someone else and by just helping he could possibly lessen the impact or even the application of an "all-out assault".

    I'm willing to help you, Jasmine Al-Hyan, though I personally would need protection against the rigors of the lake.

    Gentle catches the die and inspects it shortly before stashing it away in his bag.

    Overlord Tarxas you say? Well it's worth a try I guess.

    Spoiler: OOC
    Show
    I'm pretty sure it's gonna fail but I'll try a Warlocks Call to cast a Sending towards this Overlord Tarxas, of the plane of ice (if thats possible for the requirement of being familiar with the target.)
    I'll ignore the failure chance, because if it's failing because of the 5% I'll just use it again.
    If Overlord Tarxas doesn't want to talk to me he must succeed on a Will save against 20 and then I get (1d10)[3] Damage.
    If he want's to talk to me he hears the following and can respond in 25 words.
    Greetings Overlord Tarxas, Sorry for rudeness, a giant ice thing appeared at the elemental plane of fire and disturbs everything heavily. Any ideas why?


    If it's failing Gentle has no more questions and doesn't mention that he try'd reaching him with a Sending because they probably already had try'd it too, but Tarxas has probably shut them out somehow because he has enough of the fire guys always laughing at him, because of the sweet ice gig he has going on.
    Last edited by Alhallor; 2021-10-19 at 05:12 AM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ridai View Post
    No no no, not speaking while fighting. Speaking with the fighting!

    That rabite monk dive-blobbing you in the face, followed by hooking teeth into your belt and suplexing you is a woefully poorly understood way of remarking on how nice the weather is.

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Ridai's Avatar

    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Germany (GMT +1)

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Grimmald listens motionlessly, only folding his arms with a reverberating "Hmmm", a sound likened to the growl of a fell beast in his homeland. Then silence for a while, until finally, his arms unfold again, one hand resting on the scabbard of his giant sword again. Another, if brief, moment of silence.

    "Give the flame ward. I will go."

    The void-black figure's head moves as the magic aura manifests, but he seems to merely loom where he stands.

    Spoiler: Inside voice
    Show
    Well, this sounds dire. Even hell has its troubles. Since there are not just devils here, and he has no way out of hell otherwise, letting hell freeze over sounds like a poor decision. So cooperation sounds like the way to go? Perhaps this might help with reaching an understanding with the devils to be on better terms in the future?

    Also, should he ask for the ward? He remembers fighting in volcanoes and other such hot and unpleasant places, and he was mostly fine, so long as he didn't drop directly in the lava. But, it's an ocean of fire out there. Even the air looks on fire. That has to be worse than a splash of lava every now and then, right? Yeah, better ask for it.

    The sudden magic aura surprises him, but it does not seem bad? One has to remind oneself that this is hell, and thus there is plenty of magic, and in this case, magic is actually cast upon him without the intent of harming him. Probably.

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Pixie in the Playground
    Join Date
    Aug 2021

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Floating silently, after a long pause, Eshra's cowled head nods before they speak in a slow, methodical voice devoid of emotion. "Very well. Protection for both environments beyond the standard planar effects would be welcome, if available. I have not tested my ring of Elemental Adaptation on the plane of ice, and am unsure of its effectiveness on such a plane. I have yet to have a reason to test it, until now."

    Pausing again for a moment, Eshra continues, "Now that I think on it, do potions freeze if brought to a low enough temperature? I've lived most of my life in tropical climates and have yet to experience such low temperatures as I suspect we will find there, so I know little about cold temperature effects. Knowing the answer to this question ahead of time seems prudent." Cowled head turning towards the rest of those gathered, Eshra leaves question open for anyone with the relevant knowledge to answer.

    Spoiler: OOC
    Show

    Eshra
    N/G Kalashtar Soulknife 11 / Illumine Soul 5 // Barbarian 2 / Fighter 2 / Battle-Dancer 1 / Ninja 1 / Soulbow 10, Level 16, Init 7, HP 167/167, Speed 40 ft.
    AC 35, Touch 26, Flat-footed 30, Fort 13, Ref 15, Will 18, Base Attack Bonus +13/+8/+3, Power Points 16/16
    +6 Defending Undead Bane Mind Blade of Collision (Longsword Shape) +26/+21/+16 or +20/+15/+5 while defending (2d6+16, 19-20x2)
    +6 Undead Bane Mind Arrow of Speed (Rapid Shot) +29/+29/+29/+24/+19 (2d6+14, x3)
    +6 Undead Bane Mind Arrow of Speed (Manyshot) +23/+23/+23/+23 (2d6+14, x3)
    Inertial Armor, Ring of Force Shield (+4 Armor, +2 Shield, +5 Dex, +2 Deflect, +3 Natural, +9 Misc)
    Abilities Str 20, Dex 20, Con 18, Int 16, Wis 26, Cha 16
    Condition None

    Currently Active: Boots of Levitation

    Spoiler: Avatar
    Show


  14. - Top - End - #14
    Titan in the Playground
     
    BlueWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Edmonton, Canada

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Jasmine smiles grimly.

    "As our marines stuck part-way into that hemisphere can attest, everything freezes if you go low enough. And yes, you'd think that ice wouldn't be able to form on a lake of lava, right?"
    "We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." Kurt Vonnegut

  15. - Top - End - #15
    Ettin in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Gaznak's eyes focused on the display, taking it all in. His mind races among many thoughts, in a ordered manner, not panicky. An enhanced planar breach? Could someone be controlling it as a weapon? Was it those from the plane of ice, or a third party trying to hit the great city or to even start a war between the two? Do the others to join me have sufficient protections? Are my protections enough if their marines froze regardless of magic?

    The warmage returns the masked figure's stifled chuckle with a knowing and agreeing slight nod of his own.

    "Extra fire protection for all of us would be most useful in case I need to blast ice creatures within our numbers. It would be best for me to have my tuning forks since it is a spell that can be quite useful for eliminating enemies, but it is your call to limit my options to help save the great city. I do not doubt your ability to track me down if I flee, Master of Secrets."

    "One quick clarification before we go please. We may need to unknowingly break some infractions while saving the city. I respectfully request the pardon terms to include all infractions, known or unknown, up to the time we return. We need to maximize our chances and concerning ourselves instead with laws we aren't expert works against that, would you agree?"


    Spoiler: OOC
    Show

    Diplomacy (1d20+30)[37] Hoping it's seen as no cost to them, helps obtain the goal they want desperately.
    Spellcraft (1d20+19)[34] for the cold protection spell the masked figure cast on the group
    Spellcraft (1d20+19)[27] for the fire protection spell the masked figure casts
    Spoiler: Games
    Show
    Keston Tornok for GF's AoW
    Loradralsornux for GF's Savage Tide
    Suga for Kish's The Sunless Citadel
    Cendrik for J-H's Servants of the Thrallherd
    Semult for Kish's Wrath of the Righteous
    Faazeran for kinem's Drow Against Midnight

    Extended Signature - More detailed game/character notes

  16. - Top - End - #16
    Titan in the Playground
     
    BlueWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Edmonton, Canada

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Jasmine smiles at Gaznak with what might just be genuine affection.

    "While it might indeed be fun to chase you down across the planes, I can't spare the time or risk you bolting right now. But yes, your amnesty will extend to actions you feel are necessary. I wouldn't use that to pummel the Admiral senseless, mind you. I'd understand the impulse, but the crew would slaughter you."
    "We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." Kurt Vonnegut

  17. - Top - End - #17
    Orc in the Playground
     
    Geeksthenewsexy's Avatar

    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Blinking owlishly at Jasmine's pronouncement, Calida murmurs to herself, "Oh dear. That is... sub-optimal." Biting her lower lip slightly, she taps her chin thoughtfully as she looks at the projection, before letting out a small sigh "I didn't think to pack winter clothes when coming to the plane of fire. Bother. I wonder if we get a clothing allowance...or even paid at all for this suicide missionbusiness? And is lack of jailtime for crimes I obviously did not actually commit really even a proper payment for something like this...." Seeming to suddenly release she has been talking out loud, she closes her mouth mid-thought and her face flushes with color as she clears her throat.

    Pulling her attention away from the projections, she asks hesitantly, "Um... is there a way to send word back to you once we are inside, or are we under the impression that coming back directly to report will not be an obstacle? Heavens forbid we become trapped and have to find other means of egress, but if the worst were to happen... how will you know what we discover?"

    Spoiler: Statblock
    Show
    Calida Merimange
    Female C/N Changeling Rogue 5 / Fighter 1 / Lasher 1 / Fang of Lloth 9 // Ranger 6 / Sonokineticist 10, Level 16, Init 5, HP 93/93, Speed 30' Land, 30' Swim, 20' Climb
    AC 24, Touch 13, Flat-footed 21, Fort 11, Ref 11, Will 8, Base Attack Bonus +13/+8, Power Points 3/3
    Spider Claws & Bite +13/+13/+13/+13/+8 (1d4, x2)
    Sonic Lash +18/+13 (1d6, x2)
    Bolt of Sound +17 (10d6, x2)
    +4 Planar Tolerance Glamered Improved Shadow Mithril Breastplate of Improved Silent Moves & Nimbleness (+9 Armor, +3 Dex, +2 Natural)
    Abilities Str 8, Dex 16, Con 12, Int 16, Wis 14, Cha 26
    Condition Invisible, Darkhidden, Pass Without Trace, Scentless, Endure Elements, Resist Cold ̶5̶ 30, Resist Sonic 20, Waterbreathing
    'Always Taking 10' Skills Bluff (39), Diplomacy (39), Intimidate (39), Gather Information (22), Swim (17), & Sense Motive (13)
    Immunities Planar Alignment Traits, Positive-Dominant & Negative-Dominant Planar Traits
    Spoiler: OOC and Rolls
    Show

    Bluff = 39 (Keeping up the Alias - a clueless scatterbrained nobody, along for the ride)
    Diplomacy = 39 (Subtley making a case for a reward/advance.)

    "He who makes a beast of himself, loses the pain of being a man." - Dr. Johnson

  18. - Top - End - #18
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Chimera

    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    London
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Caolin stands looking at the table, brow furrowed.

    If I'm to be taken against my will and bundled to another plane, then I shall definitely prefer that, this time, I get protected against the elements before leaving. So, both protections for me, if you please?

    He leans over the map. So you can't find anything out, but you have tried to contact Overlord Tarxas . Was that a guess, or do you have a reason to think he's involved? He turns his head to look at Jasmine. For that matter, you're sure this is from the plane of ice? We're not going to end up, I don't know, in Stygia or something?
    Last edited by Togo; Yesterday at 02:27 PM.

  19. - Top - End - #19
    Titan in the Playground
     
    BlueWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Edmonton, Canada

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    At the additional burst of questions, Jasmine and the masked figure make eye contact, and she nods.

    "Calida, when I say that you get a wish upon successful completion of this assignment, my meaning is less metaphorical and more literal. If that, plus your freedom, aren't sufficient, well, I'd point out that if this city freezes, you'll freeze with it.

    "We will be trying to monitor your progress when you enter the area of cold, but can't be sure that the divinations will be possible. As to whether it's from the plane of cold as opposed to Stygia, well, it's certainly possible, but either way, the protection from cold seems well advised. If they turn out to be from somewhere else, I'll look forward to learning that."


    She gestures for the six to gather in front of her. Her voice is deadpan.

    "If the six of you could make physical contact now, it will make it less likely that we lose someone in transit."

    Spoiler: OOC
    Show
    A spellcraft check DC 14 reveals that the masked figure cast a Mass Resist Energy - Cold on the group, and that they followed up with a chained version of Planar Tolerance.
    "We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." Kurt Vonnegut

  20. - Top - End - #20
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Ridai's Avatar

    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Germany (GMT +1)

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Grimmald responds by simply putting his heavy, metal-sheathed hands on the shoulders of whoever two of his new companions are closest to him. Remaining in that position, Grimmald continues to loom. Ominously.

    Spoiler: Inner voice
    Show
    So, funny thing. Grimmald recognized the witchery! The only problem is that while he has managed to learn to pierce through some nefarious illusions and make it a hassle for witches and sorcerers to weave their spells and chant their incantations... he has little context in regard to actual magic effects. Still, cold resistance sounds rather promising! Aaand he trusts whatever sort of tolerance they have been granted will help. Somehow. If they encounter something... planar. Perhaps it will make them not slip on very well-maintained ship decks or sheets of ice.


    Spoiler: OOC
    Show
    Spoiler alert: Grimmald has no idea what the planes of existence are (or what a multiverse is), and knows not much more about magic. So it's like "ah, hm, yes, planar tolerance, I totally know what that is, yes. And some form of cold resistances, hmm, yes". He comes from a very simple, isolated, low-power place.

    Both should change throughout the game.
    Last edited by Ridai; Yesterday at 03:18 PM.

  21. - Top - End - #21
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Chimera

    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    London
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Caolin adjusts his pack, makes sure his sword is securely belted by his side, and that a battered horn with a chased silver rim is positioned where a sheathed knife should be. He then moves up and takes the hands of the two people nearest him.
    Last edited by Togo; Yesterday at 06:50 PM.

  22. - Top - End - #22
    Ettin in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Ganzak slides his shield off his shoulder and readies it and his scimitar, all of which appear well above average craftsmanship. "Just a moment so I can prepare a spell for later." He turns his back to all so that any who recognize what he is casting will not be concerned of being its target. Strangely, nothing seems to happen.

    Ganzak turns back and makes contact with the others, nodding that he is ready.

    Spoiler: OOC
    Show
    Setting Sudden Empowered Disintegrate as his Retributive Spell (CM47), level 6 slot. Anytime I am hit by a melee attack during the next 24 hours I can cast the spell on the attacker as an immediate action, one time.
    Spoiler: Games
    Show
    Keston Tornok for GF's AoW
    Loradralsornux for GF's Savage Tide
    Suga for Kish's The Sunless Citadel
    Cendrik for J-H's Servants of the Thrallherd
    Semult for Kish's Wrath of the Righteous
    Faazeran for kinem's Drow Against Midnight

    Extended Signature - More detailed game/character notes

  23. - Top - End - #23
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    RedWizardGuy

    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Germany
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Coming Unstuck Mark 2 IC

    Gentle nods towards Gaznak. Good thinking. Being protected against other breakings of the complicated Efreeti law was definitely something they would not need to worry about.

    When they all joined hands so to speak Gentle took a moment to look at everyone of his new acquaintances. Really taking time to take them all in, even if the embodiment of all nightmares is still looming like a Tarrasque, it at least seems they're not all strangers.

    Look at that, Caolin! Hopefully you won't sick a demon on me this time, eh? Gentle's voice is more jovial than anything else. Just happy to see a familiar in all this chaos.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ridai View Post
    No no no, not speaking while fighting. Speaking with the fighting!

    That rabite monk dive-blobbing you in the face, followed by hooking teeth into your belt and suplexing you is a woefully poorly understood way of remarking on how nice the weather is.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •