Thurirl: Looks like I’ll be blending in with the wait staff and the decor, and trying not to insult someone by accident.
Isabis: you’re more of a hider than an impresser, yes
Jessaila has connected.
Grok: Hey all, sorry I’m late. It’s VBS week at church
Isabis: it kind of makes sense, actually.
Malaina: It does?
Isabis: Hello It’s no problem. We’re still waiting on Grok, too.
Isabis: Malaina: well, hiding and showing off are kind of mutually exclusive skill sets.
Isabis: or mutually exclusive activities anyhow
Thurirl: Actually, I’m aiming to be more of an intimidator… but then again, “BatLizard” may need to brush up on his social skills.
Seiankornai: you mean Jess, it was Grok who was saying he was sorry
you find yourself in a richly appointed room, with the task of convincing the king to support your expedition over that of a competator.
Jessaila: ((Give me a moment. Still getting settled in.))
Isabis: ((…yes, that’s what I meant. Except what I was trying to type was “Brock” which kind of rhymes or whatever))
Isabis: ((hmm. Everyone remember to add your ‘appearance bonus’ when you make charisma based skill checks))
Isabis: ((it’s a panache benefit; see page 153))
Seiankornai: ((oh right))
Seiankornai: ((So I’ve got a +8 then))
Isabis: ((Appearance: Each time you make a Charisma-based skill check targeting another character, you gain a +1 bonus with your check per point that your Appearance bonus exceeds the target’s Appearance bonus.))
You have the assistance of a local lad by the name of Randel. He tells you that neither of you are supposed to talk to the king directly until the last half hour of the two hour party, and that attempting to hinder the work of your opponent, Baron Terkhih, will not be looked favorably upon if discovered.
Malaina: ((I only have a +2))
Seiankornai: ((oh right, so if the king has a decent appearance, then I’ll only have a +6 then ))
Isabis: “Party? Oh dear, I’m not in any condition to attend a royal party. Look at me, I’m in traveling clothes!”
Seiankornai: “Do we have time to prepare?”
DM: ((Mechanics note. This is a challenge where you are working directly to win favor over another.))
DM: ((you do have suitable clothes available, so dress and washing is available. Other types of preperation, not so much.))
- Seiankornai whispers to the others “I think I’m very glad that Grok decided to guard the island. Wonder how he’s doing.”
- Thurirl looks about in mild distress. Social functions. How horrid.
Isabis: “Hopefully he and the mercenaries are wrestling each other or something and not tearing up the landscape…”
DM: ((Certain actions will be looked on favorably by the king, other things, not so much. Some of it is obvious, some will take a little bit of finding out. The other side has already done their actions mechanically, and you may or may not be aware of what they are doing as the party progresses. This opposing party does have access to DM action dice.))
If Isabis could see the landscape right now, she might not recognize it. Currently the ogres are attempting to dig under the annoying archway, with no success
Jessaila: ((OKay, back.))
- Isabis dresses very carefully, wishing she’d let her mother convince her to carry a grooming kit after all.
Isabis: ((does that mean we have to bridge a pit to get out of the temple now? ))
- Seiankornai addresses the lad, “So who are we to talk to before we meet the king?”
DM: ((Last mechanic note. This will be somewhat an experiment in real time. As in, when the party starts, you have two hours real time for the party. This will be fudged by me depending on how things go.))
Randel: “You may speak to anyone else, Sir Drake.”
Seiankornai: “Oh, ok.”
Isabis: ((when will you be starting the party?))
- Thurirl dresses up as best he can, though he detests the situation. Besides, he feels ridiculous in his formal clothes.
- Seiankornai looks to see if proper drake attirehas been set out (I’d imagine it would mostly be shiny draps and harnesses, chains and jewels, no regular clothing)
- Malaina is a bit angry she is being forced to wear a dress
- Jessaila works out what she’s going to wear.
- Vari has his scales all shined up, looking happy
- Thurirl looks over at Malaina and resists the urge to make any sort of remark.
Seiankornai: ((even a nice one?))
Randel: “I have been instructed to tell you the names of the royal family, and anyone else you should wish to know. King Volpher is married to Queen Caroline, and they have an eldest daughter, Natalia, and a younger son, Towkin
Jessaila: ((”For you, silence would be wisdom!" ))
Seiankornai: ((and are these all elves?))
Randel: ((your 15 minutes of prep time starts now.))
Isabis: “Think of it this way, Malaina; it’s hunter’s camoflage for a very specific sort of prey.”
- Malaina grumbles as she tugs at the skirt a bit
- Seiankornai gets not so much dressed as decorated
- Isabis turns to Randel
Malaina: “Can’t run in this thing…”
Randel: ((Feel free to throw multiple actions at once at me, and I’ll try to handle them as fast as I can.))
Isabis: “So does the king have any especially valued advisors? I feel certain I will need to know their names.”
Seiankornai: “At least you do look nice, Mala, don’t you agree Vari?”
Randel: “I am sorry m’am. While I am hoping that you win, I can only give out names and positions of people. The inner workings of the court I am not allowed to divulge.”
- Vari lowers his head and nuzzles her, “Mala always looks nice.”
- Malaina smiles and pushs his head away, “You just want me to get you a cow later, that is why you’re sucking up.”
Isabis: “Well, does he have any official advisors, then?”
- Jessaila has found something that looks nice but still Action-Girly.
- Isabis has dressed as she would for her uncle’s court, in something rediculously stylish which she will pretend not to hate for the required three hours.
Isabis: (and not a second longer )
Randel: “There is his captain of the guards, who advises on military matters, the chancellor, who is advises on political and economic matters, and the high priest, who advises on spiritual matters.”
Isabis: “And their names are?”
Malaina: ((I want to say Mala’s dress looks something like this; http://www.dornbluth.co.uk/pix/gr/guinevere-m-brzr-1.jpg )
Randel: “In addition, local dukes and other peers of the realm are also present.”
- Jessaila pays attention to see what Randel’s vocal inflections may give away about the people in question.
Randel: "Ah, yes. The Captain of the guard is Yaltina, the Chancellor is Vorack, and the Priest is Malchif
Seiankornai: ((and feeling somewhat like these two? http://www.girlgeniusonline.com/comic.php?date=20081124 ))
Thurirl: ((awww, that’s a pretty dress .))
Malaina: ((Link doesn’t work TGU))
Seiankornai: "Hmm, so can you give us a list of who’s who?))
Jessaila: « 1d20+10 = 2 + 10 = 12 » Notice
Isabis: “What temple does the revered Malchif serve under?”
Seiankornai: ((Try this))
Isabis: ((dibs on the purple one ))
Randel: “He serves the Lady of the Moon.”
- Jessaila keeps paying attention.
Isabis: “Very good then. Malchif, high priest under Moru.”
Jessaila: “What can you tell me about the other person bidding for this opportunity?”
Jamshid par-Bahadur: ((back))
Jamshid par-Bahadur: ((sorry about the delay))
Isabis: “Who are the nobelmen most closely related to the king?”
- Thurirl decides to whisper to the others his advice not to mention The One to this priest. Politics are bad enough, but religion and theology could ruin everyone’s night.
- Isabis nods to Thurirl in agreement
Randel: “Most noblemen trace some lineage to the king, either through marriage or blood. However, by blood ties, Duke Olatlin is the closest, being the king’s uncle.”
Randel: "As for the Baron, I can only relate the public details, that he is a well known adventurer, who has been successful in many expeditions.
- Isabis resists the urge to take physical notes, as it would probably be gauche to consult a notebook during the party
Seiankornai: ((she’s such an academic ))
Randel: “Hmm, it is time for the party to start. You will be able to find much more information there than you can from me. I am sorry, but this is my duty.”
Isabis: ((yep. Academic renown and all ))
- Thurirl prepares to look like a very sober houseplant in need of a good drink.
Isabis: “Are you permitted to point out Duke Olatlin to me?”
You are escorted into the a grand ballroom. The center is cleared for dancing, and food and refreshment are off to the side. The upper gallery is also open, as are the grounds and gardens of the keep.
- Jamshid par-Bahadur joins the others after having his best court robes laundered and himself bathed
Seiankornai: “Hmm, that area is for dancing? Who would I dance with?”
Randel points out the various people he has named so far for you all.
- Seiankornai looks around to see if there are any female drakes here
- Malaina goes to check out the food
- Vari follows after Mala
- Jessaila looks for their rival.
- Seiankornai will follow Mala too, if no female drakes
- Isabis looks at Jessaila
Jessaila: “Are you thinking what I’m thinking, Isabis?”
Nineteen out of twenty people here are humans, with the odd elf and pech present. No female drakes.
Isabis: “Let’s go see if we can monopolize that duke for a half-hour or so, I bet he’s an important advisor on other adventurers.”
- Seiankornai follows Mala then
- Thurirl finds a nice, out of the way spot where he can observe, taking note of the food and guests. He probably will have to be social though…
Jessaila: “Oh. That wasn’t what I was thinking.”
Isabis: “Heh, what were you thinking?”
- Jessaila glances at Isabis. “I was actually thinking we could subvert this Baron, convince him to merge our bids, and win this contest by default.”
As Mal and the drakes hit the food, you see your competator, the Baron and a small entourage. They seem to be dispersing, and mingling with the guests in conversation.
Isabis: “Oh. Or convince our rivals to merge our bids, and win the contest by default.”
- Malaina wonders what is the point of such small sandwichs
Isabis: “…huh, they’re all together. One way or the other, we better get over there.”
Jessaila: “Or you could go monopolize the Duke, and I could monopolize the Baron.”
Jessaila: ((We have a map?))
- Seiankornai stands next to Mala for a bit, “So have you ever been in a human court before?”
Randel: ((no map.))
Isabis: ((oh, the baron is who I meant I think. I apparently misread something above))
Seiankornai: ((can we have a few Who’s Who tokens on the Temple Symbols map?))
- Malaina shakes her head as she sips at her drink, “Nope, never been invited to one and never had a reason to go.”
Jessaila: ((I thought the Duke was the advisor, and the Baron was our adversary.))
Randel: ((Duke is advisor, Baron is advesary))
Isabis: ((OK, yeah, I got things confused a little, sorry.))
Seiankornai: “Me neither, this is nothing like the equivelent we have with the Drake King. As you said yourself, the food is pitiful. We ought to be going on a hunt and bring down some large game, bringing the choicest parts to the king.”
Malaina: “Ahhh, but I doubt that would go over so well right now.”
Malaina: “Food isn’t that bad honestly, it’s good, just wish it wasn’t so small.”
- Seiankornai is refraining very strongly from taking a whole try of something and duping it in his mouth.
Randel: ((working on tokens for who’s who. Don’t expect tokens to match up to appearance
- Isabis thinks it over and decides to go talk to the Duke anyway
- Malaina carefully feeds Vari so he doesn’t accidently break the table with his claws
Isabis: ((you could just use the “invisible” thurirl token and let us go by the name hover-text I suppose))
- Seiankornai looks for someone else at the food table
Isabis: “Wave if you need my help, Jessaila, I’m going to go play backup plan while you try the intelligence of our competitors .”
Seiankornai whispers: Skype!
- Isabis approaches Duke Olatlin and curtseys deeply
- Malaina looks around at the other people around them
Seiankornai: ((so are we going to split into groups to tackle different folk at once?))
The Duke bows in return.
Welcome to our land, fair lady.
Randel: ((opps, that was supposed to be speech
- Jamshid par-Bahadur heads on over to the Baron to make witty repartee and size up the opposition
Isabis: “Thank you good gentleman. Permit me to introduce myself; I am Isabis Estolin of the Darkness Piercers. What a fine party His Highness your nephew is putting on tonight.”
- Thurirl eavesdrop where he can, though he swings by the food table to take the edge off his hunger.
- Jamshid par-Bahadur bows extravagantly (Impress 15)
Jamshid par-Bahadur: “Greetings and salutations to your lordship … what brings you to this hall?”
- Isabis tries to determine the Duke’s attitude towards A) his nephew and B) the gathering (ie, are they on good terms, and is he the socialite type)
Thurirl: “The food is small on purpose. The emphasis is on taste, presentation, and texture. If one becomes too full with one food, one cannot enjoy the others. Thus, logically, small food is best.”
Duke: “It is truly impressive. Not quite up to scratch as his father, but this young generation still has things to learn.”
Duke: ((sense motive, Isabis
Isabis: « 1d20+12 = 1 + 12 = 13 »
Action dice spent by DM. Your attempts to read him have put the Duke off to you, -5 to further interactions with the Duke.
Isabis: ((can Isabis tell that, or would that require another sense motive?))
Baron: "I come to this land for the same reason you do. Finance for the expedition across the desert. Let us see what is beyond the bounds of this kingdom. Now if you would excuse me, I am here to serve the people of this land.
Baron: ((can tell))
Thurirl hears conversations mostly directed towards you and the Baron, and the relative merits of this expedition
- Isabis chats with the duke only another minute or two, then politely bows herself out of the conversation since he obviously doesn’t want to talk to her anyway
- Seiankornai looks around for the High Priest
The DM offers a hint for an action die.
Seiankornai: ((I’ll spend 1))
Isabis: “Jamshid, I think I did something to upset the Duke…would you like to try him instead?”
Baron: ((you find the Priest in the upper gallery looking down on the action.))
Baron: ((you misunderstand. I get an action die if you take it. Still want it?))
Seiankornai: ((hmmmmm, I’ll wait for now))
Jessaila: ((Okay, back. Reading backlog.))
- Malaina goes with Seian when he goes to talk with the priest
- Jamshid par-Bahadur heads over to meet the Duke
- Isabis finds the chancellor instead
- Seiankornai goes up to upper gallery to talk to the priest
Jamshid par-Bahadur: “Salutations Your Grace … it is indeed an honour to find myself your guest this day”
Seiankornai: “Greetings, Moon Glinter.”
- Jamshid par-Bahadur bows deeply and sincerely (Impress as an Influence check 30)
- Malaina gives a deep curtsy to the priest
Malchif: "Welcome, Drakekin. May your time with us be fruitful for you and us both
Isabis: “Good evening Chancellor. How are you this fine day?”
Chancellor Vorack: I am concerned. The king seeks my advice on which one of you to send to the desert region. So, who do you think would be best, milady?"
Jamshid par-Bahadur: ((I’m also requesting that the Duke make a knowledge check to recognize Jamshid by reputation (DC 20 but with a +1 insight bonus from Renown)))
- Seiankornai nods his head, in place of a polite bow. “Thank you. May I ask what your opinion of the expedition is?”
- Thurirl does his best to be ignored… and thus, perhaps overhear things about the Baron to their advantage. (Notice: « 1d20+9 = 4 + 9 = 13 »)
Duke: Jamshid successfully wipes away the penalty Isabis gained, and the Duke is very impressed by your courtesy.
Isabis: “Well, of course I hope it will be my group. Among other reasons, we have a desert native among us to ensure we deal properly with the difficulties of the region.”
Jessaila: ((Okay, I’m confused who’s talking to whom.))
Seiankornai: “Oh, and these are my good friends Malaina and Vraiuvant.”
Duke: ((the duke is more favorably dispossed to your party because of Jamshid))
- Vari dips his head a bit in a bow
Jamshid par-Bahadur: ((Jamshid talking with the Duke, Isabis to the Chancellor, Malaina to the Priest, that’s all I know))
Seiankornai: ((such as To HPM “Blah blah”))
Duke: Thuriri, stealth check please
Jamshid par-Bahadur: ((would that be stealth or blend?))
Duke: ((the Duke also recognizes Jamshid from his explorations))
- Jessaila ends up, slightly confused, behind Isabis.
Duke: ((stealth, he is trying to remain unnoticed, not unconsiously trying to avoid notice.))
Jamshid par-Bahadur: → Duke: “I have heard tales of the desert which intrigue me”
Jamshid par-Bahadur: → Duke: “As it happens I come from a desert region myself”
Thurirl: Sneak Check: « 1d20+12 = 8 + 12 = 20 »
Duke: HPM “Welcome. Tell me more of your home region, and those that you worship.”
Isabis: Chancellor “Beside that, of course, we have experience in investigating ruins and infiltrating hostile territory, which may not be directly relavent, but since we don’t know for sure, it can only help. For exploration, our great variety is a great strength.”
Thurirl notices that the duke’s men are canvassing the party to discover underlying information about the relationships within the kingdom
Jessaila: ((The Duke’s men?))
Jessaila: ((Or the Baron’s men?))
Jamshid par-Bahadur: → “My people say that the desert is like a great ocean, in which no oar is dipped”
- Thurirl finds this action curious. However, he does not wish to interrupt his companions’ conversations and risk appearing rude.
Jamshid par-Bahadur: → Duke “Our caravans traverse the expanse like ships scudding before the wind”
- Jessaila changes her mind about following Isabis, and walks confidently up to Baron Terkhih.
- Thurirl is especially loathe to approach anyone near the Duke. He might overhear.
Chancellor: “A desert dweller? How did you manage to find one to work with you? Most desert men have been hostile to us.”
Jessaila: → Baron “My lord Baron, might I request the pleasure of this next dance?”
Duke: “Tell me, do you love your land, desert man?”
Thurirl: ((er, retcon to Baron then… oops))
Seiankornai: To HPM “Ah, we live in the Black Peaks, though Mala and Vari live down in the fertile valley, I live up in the more fiery regions. As for who we worship, we serve the Dragon Kings, as I’m sure you’ve heard of. Unfortunately, we have not been able to visit them in such a long time, since the desert came and blocks our passage. You of all those here could understand how that would feel, and why we have a vested interest in this expedition’s success.”
Seiankornai: “I am a young priest of the Dragon Kings myself.”
Baron: As you wish, my lady. I wish to warn you, though. You may not be familar with the dances of my land. They can be difficult.
Jamshid par-Bahadur: → Duke “This is a complex question Your Grace … the desert is a fickle mistress, one whom we approach with both love and caution, for she holds many secrets and her whims can be deadly”
Isabis: “Ah, well, his family are traders, and he helped us in a prior quest. You see, someone was kidnapping children for purposes of ritual murder. A certain mother requested our help, and we were able to track down the villians and rescue the child, along with another that was still alive in their foul lair.”
- Jessaila nods to the Baron. “I’ll try to keep up with your lead.”
Duke: “Tell me then. Do you consider this expedition wise? With such a dangerous mistress? What benefit is there for our kingdom?”
Isabis: Chancellor “That is the fire in which our group was forged.”
Jamshid par-Bahadur: → Duke: “Indeed there are great rewards, but equally great risks”
- Jamshid par-Bahadur quickly relates an anecdote to the Duke involving surviving a sandstorm and his battle with a desert naga, intended to persuade the Duke that people without desert experience shouldn’t be trusted with important missions in such a harsh environment (Impress to Persuade 25)
Duke: “Such dangerous experiences. And you survived?”
The Duke is impressed, but also wary with the dangers of the desert as you relate your story.
- Jamshid par-Bahadur points out the polished naga-skin breastplate that he wears at all times
Jamshid par-Bahadur: “I will say, however, that such dangers can be overcome with trusted and competent allies at one’s back”
Duke: “What is the strength of Naga skin? Is it tougher, lighter?” The duke is clearly interested in a tangible benefit of the desert land.
- Thurirl waits by the food table until he can be sure one of his companions is free to talk.
Jamshid par-Bahadur: “While I was alone in my battle with the great serpent, I have survived other encounters chiefly through the assistance of my trusted companions”
Jamshid par-Bahadur: “Naga skin is indeed strong, durable, and light, and it contains within it innate magical properties”
- Jamshid par-Bahadur explains how he was unharmed by the gouts of fire in the most recent adventure in the ruined temple
Duke: “How does it compare with the strength of leather?”
Duke: “Men would not lose protection, would they?”
Jamshid par-Bahadur: “as far as simple strength goes it can be hardened better than ordinary leather, but to do so requires a skilled craftsman”
You notice a small crowd, gathered around a man by the wall. It appears that this man is giving a comedic performance to the crowd, and that this man belongs to the Baron
Jamshid par-Bahadur: ((for reference, this particular hardened leather breastplate is mastercrafted and dwarven-made as well as containing a magical enchantment))
- Thurirl considers trying his own performance… but what crowd-pleasing skills might he have?
Isabis: “A jester…not the sort of person I want with me in time of dificulty.”
Jamshid par-Bahadur: “The greatest treasures I have found in the desert are in the ruins of forgotten cities … the sands often cover such ruins for centuries only opening to reveal their riches at certain times”
The crowd is responding favorably to his performance
- Jamshid par-Bahadur tells of the time he found Axhar’s decanter in a ruined elven city (Impress to Persuade that there are indeed rewards to be found in the desert 16)
Isabis: “I suppose it livens up the campfire of an evening all the same.”
- Jamshid par-Bahadur upends the decanter and Axhar appears
The Duke rolled a one on his resolve test.
Duke: ((he is amazed by the appearance of Axhar.))
Axhar: “I believe Jamshid may in fact be underestimating the significance of the artifacts that can be found in cities such as the one I once resided in. This is something I have firsthand knowledge of” (Persuade to support Jamshid’s argument 10 + any circumstance modifiers)
- Isabis reluctantly moves away from the chancellor, who is distracted by the commedian
- Thurirl thinks he could perhaps do a bit of acrobatics… he just needs a suitable space and someone to hold any loose and flowing clothing… unless he could work that in somehow…
Axhar seems to have frightened the Duke slightly, who did not expect such conversation from one so small
- Jamshid par-Bahadur does his best to defuse the situation and calm the Duke’s nerves with polite courtesy (Impress 27)
Duke: “Do you control this, this one?” the duke asks, indicating Axhar.
Axhar: “No, but Jamshid has gained my respect in our journeys together and I follow him out of choice”
Jamshid par-Bahadur: “Axhar speaks the truth”
- Isabis doesn’t want to approach the Duke, who doesn’t like her, or the priest (she has had an awful lot of trouble with priests lately) so she mingles about, trying to learn what the King is most looking for in adventurers. ((Investigate, « 1d20+12 = 2 + 12 = 14 » ))
Isabis: ((action die « 1d6 = 5 » ))
We are going to fade out Jamshid’s conversation now and move on
Jessaila: ((Who’s next?))
- Thurirl notices Isabis trying to mingle and approaches her. “May I speak with you? Privately.”
Isabis: “Certainly. What’s on your mind?”
- Isabis finds a private alcove along the edge of the room
Duke: ((one of the things Isabis hears is the king is concerned to find someone who is able to be supported by the local lords who’s land they must travel through to reach the desert. It seems that this expedition has become a mini power struggle between king and vassels.
Duke: ((I can probably handle Isabis and your dance at the same time.))
- Thurirl looks around and keeps his voice down, hoping the crowd is noisy enough not to be overheard. “The Baron appears to have men out upon the floor. I believe they are attempting to ascertain the exact nature of relations in the kingdom.”
The baron escorts Jess out on the dance floor, and with the advantage of leading, puts on an impressive performance « 1d20+15 = 1 + 15 = 16 »
Duke: ((Or not…))
- Isabis speaks in a low voice “That makes sense…I’ve been hearing that there are issues between the king and his vassals. Apparently the owners of the route between here and the desert are making some trouble.”
Jessaila: ((What do I need to roll vs?))
Duke: ((well, first anyone activating this error?))
Jessaila: ((Oh, me please!!!))
Isabis: Thurirl “I guess we better meet those people, and impress them a bit. Maybe they’ll like you – you give the impression of someone who can come and go without disrupting things too much, eh?”
Seiankornai: ((I’ll toss one in support too if it’ll help make it more embarrassing for him ))
Duke: ((Anyone can activate, and you can spend up to 4 dice between you all))
Isabis: ((Can we still find the helpful guy from the beginning and get him to give us the names of the noblemen along that route?))
Thurirl: “…I am reluctant to try my hand at social graces… yet if you think I can benefit our goals… I shall attempt it.”
Isabis: ((I’ll spend a second die on embarassing the competition ))
Duke: ((It won’t help his case, that’s for sure.))
Seiankornai: ((so Jess, me, and Isabis so far))
Duke: ((3 then?))
Thurirl: ((heck, I’ll toss mine in))
Duke: ((Jess, make a acrobatics check. Just to make sure you don’t roll a one.))
Jessaila: « 1d20+12 = 4 + 12 = 16 » Acrobatics
The Duke attempts to sweep Jess out on the floor. Unfortunately, he stumbles over his own two feet in the process, and he goes down, hard.
Jamshid par-Bahadur: ((the baron you mean?))
- Isabis goes back to information gathering, focusing on determining which nobles they need to impress to gain approved passage to the desert « 1d20+12 = 17 + 12 = 29 »
The crowd gasps at the sight, and he tries to quickly struggle to his feet. Unfortunately, for him, his leg doesn’t appear to hold his weight, and he falls heavily, cries out in pain. On the floor again, he curses loudly, interrupting all conversation. Two aides quickly grab him off the dance floor, but the damage has been done. He has made a spectacle out of himself, and broken his leg, removing him from the rest of the ball.
- Jessaila is totally ready to be swept out onto the dance floor, hoping she can keep up; but then he does that.
Jessaila: “Oh goodness!”
Jessaila: “Here, let me help you up.”
- Malaina watchs everything from a corner she found, eating her finger food, Vari pretty much snoozing beside her
- Thurirl blinks and looks over at the screaming. Was that the…?
- Jamshid par-Bahadur whispers to the Duke “Who is that clumsy gentleman over there?”
Seiankornai: “Ouch, tsk, I’m not sure I’d want a clumsy person like that out in a life and death situation.”
- Isabis tells whichever nobleman she is talking to at the moment “Oh, what a shame. He’ll have to put off all work for weeks while that heals.”
Jamshid par-Bahadur: ((Persaude (that the Baron is incompetent) 22))
- Thurirl has an idea. “Have you seen Malaina around?”
- Jessaila is totally helping the poor Baron (and twisting the knife with kindness.)
Thurirl: ((talking to Isabis, who’s hopefully still in range))
Duke: ((Isabis finds that there are two minor nobles who are opposing the king. They are trying to undermine the king’s authority, and this expedition is a flash point between the two, bringing the conflict up. Now, if you could win support for the expedition for these two, then it would be a burden off the king. However, you would have to do so in such a way that does not benefit the king more than themselves and their land.))
Isabis: Thurirl “I think she’s with Seiankornai, though I didn’t see which way they went exactly.”
The Baron, in bad grace, shoos Jessaila away and is hauled off by his men.
- Vari is in full view of anyone, so wherever he is, Mala is
- Isabis seeks out one of the contentious noblemen
- Seiankornai ’s great wings cause a bit of shadow below from up in the gallery
- Jessaila bows and departs to find others. "I"m so sorry I couldn’t see the dances of your country, my lord Baron."
Seiankornai: ((you did!))
Duke: ((Isabis finds one of these men))
Isabis: “Good evening sir. I was wondering if you could put a rumor to rest for me? Someone has been trying to tell me that you are afraid of becoming an avenue for trade, which I can hardly believe to be true.”
- Jessaila departs and goes to find someone more interesting to talk to."
- Thurirl goes through the crowd to find Malaina, being careful not to bump into anyone on accident.
- Seiankornai wonders if the prince and/or princess are of the fiery and rebeluous types, who might want to persuade their father to send out the expedition that would let them hitch a ride to adventure….
Nobleman: “What do you mean, a barrier to trade?” My land borders the desert."
Isabis: “Indeed, and yet these people claim that you want to prevent exploration of the desert. But one of my fellow adventurers is from a family of desert traders; if we found new markets across the desert your land would be the entry port of their new wares for the whole kingdom!”
Nobleman: Seiankornai feel free to make an investigate canvass roll, ignoring the time factor
- Thurirl finds Malaina and bows to her. “My lady… would you grace myself with your presence for a dance?”
- Malaina gives Thurirl a weird look, “Why are you talking like that? And why did you bow, did you drink too much wine or something?”
Nobleman: “The only thing that has come of out the desert is raiders. No good stirring them up by sending people into their land.”
Thurirl: “I am quite sober. However, with the Baron injured, it would be unfortunate if the dance floor went unused.”
- Seiankornai goes to find the prince and princess, and starts up some idle chat when he finds them, to judge what they think of the whole thing (( Investigate(Canvass) « 1d20+5 = 17 + 5 = 22 » ))
Malaina: “Yea, that was pretty embarrassing. Sure, why not, I’m bored.”
Isabis: “Oh, is that what has you worried? I knew there must be something more to it. But you see, that is why you should support us for this investigation. Since we have desert natives among our number, we are ideal for interacting with these people in a non-inflamatory manner. We might convert these raiders into profitable neighbors, bringing you the benefits of desert specific goods such as the magical hides that my companion uses in his armor.”
Nobleman: ((Seiankornai find that the princess is obsessed with a young noble lad from a neighboring country, and shows very little interest in an expedition to the desert. The Prince himself seems to find the idea of the adventurer frightening, and also he is very self consious))
Isabis: “Just think of the benefits of becoming your kingdom’s source for such rarities!”
- Thurirl smiles and nods, leading Malaina toward the dance floor. “I know a relatively simple dance in a human style. It may not be that impressive… however, there are some Vessa flourishes I could add in… do you trust me?”
Malaina: “Well, never really danced before. And why would you ask that, of course I trust you!”
- Seiankornai "tsk"s to himself when he finds that out, wondering why they aren’t proper royal progeny.
The Nobleman seems to consider Isabis’s words. Make an impress check to influence him.
Thurirl: “Forgive me. I just do not wish to push our trust too far. The flourishes may be a bit…” Thurirl struggles for the right word. “…vigorous? I need to refresh my vocabulary…”
Isabis: impressive logic? « 1d20+6 = 3 + 6 = 9 »
Isabis: plus action die « 1d6 = 1 »
Malaina: “Oh come on, it’s just dancing and we are trying to have fun.”
- Seiankornai thinks “Oh, just dance with the girl”
Nobleman: ((Your words make some sense, but unfortunately, he isn’t convinced he can win over the desert people to not harass his land, based on his personal experiences.))
Thurirl: “…a fair point. Let us enjoy ourselves then. There is enough pressure for one night.”
- Thurirl leads her out and manages to gain some attention… he bows to Malaina and waits for her curtsy…
- Malaina curtsies
- Isabis circles around to Jamshid and the others, pointing out the nobleman as someone it would be good to win over to the side of the expedition overall, in addition to us as the ideal group to go
- Jessaila watches Mala and Thurirl, and crosses her fingers, hoping there’s no repeat of the earlier incident.
- Thurirl bends back up and takes Malaina’s hand, beginning a simple dance.
Thurirl: ((so, what do I roll? and should my partner roll as well?))
Nobleman: ((Acrobatics, assuming you don’t have anything bettter))
Malaina: ((I have Acrobatics and Athletics))
Princess Natalia: Hey lizardman, do you think you could talk my dad into showing favor on Erwin Kaltshe? I’d simply love it if he was invited to stay at the royal palace
Thurirl: ((then I roll Acrobatics… a +12 >=3 ))
Grok: ((the Princess is addressing Seiankornai))
- Thurirl dances with Malaina, adding a couple Vessa moves to the dance, being careful not to unbalance or be rough with her. (Acrobatics: « 1d20+12 = 20 + 12 = 32 »)
Grok: ((and apparently this mission is decided on the dance floor…))
- Malaina is throughly impressed
Thurirl: ((Then someone in the back yelled, “Everybody attack!” and it turned into a Ballroom Blitz…))
Isabis: ((I’ll activate, it’s not like my action dice are doing ME much good ))
Grok: ((can she keep up, though? Acrobatics check for her, 5+5 = 12 + 5 + 5 = 22 » Acrobatics
Seiankornai: To Princess Natalia “I don’t know, who is he? Is he here? And wh- oh, oh my, look at that.”
- Isabis grins at Jessaila “They’re showing the duke’s people how it’s done, aren’t they?”
- Thurirl leads her as best he can, finding himself in a curiously fluid and dynamic form. The human dance goes well with his flourishes, and he suspects he may have invented a new dance altogether…
Malaina does well, but Thurirl clearly steals the show. It is like a scene out of a movie, where everyone clears the floor and surrounds the couple in the center, all watching
- Jessaila nods back at Isabis.
Jessaila: “A lot better than what the Baron did.”
- Thurirl enjoys himself. He’s actually smiling! In an obvious manner!
Thurirl is using moves never before seen in this country, and they are learning just how flexible lizardmen and human females can be.
At the end of the dance, everyone claps and cheers. They particularly liked the part where you caught her with your tail, and used that to lead her around. Very impressive.
Princess Natalia: Wow, look at them go! I wonder if Erwin can dance like that?
Jessaila: ((Can I overhear that?))
- Isabis goes over to Seian and the princess
Jessaila: « 1d20+10 = 17 + 10 = 27 » Notice
- Malaina fans herself a bit
Grok: Yes you can hear that.
Seiankornai: To Princess “Perhaps I could convince my friend to teach him if he can’t.”
Thurirl steps off the dance floor, and finds himself surrounded by ladies asking him for a dance. His performance with Malaina goes down in legend, earning both of them 4 Reputation
- Thurirl smiles and leads Malaina over to some refreshments…. if he can fend off his sudden legion of admirers.
- Malaina chuckles as she side steps the ladies and goes to get something cool to drink
Thurirl: ((and the lizardman’s eyes go “O.O” in 0.5 seconds))
Princess Natalia: Maybe we could invite him here, and we could learn dancing together! That would be great!
Seiankornai: ((and women usually don’t like reptiles ))
Isabis: “Oh, you have your eye on a gentleman do you? Which one?”
Seiankornai: To PN “It would yes. Any particular reason he’s not here already?”
- Thurirl is not sure what to do, though perhaps another few dances couldn’t hurt… though he excuses himself first to talk with Malaina, stating that he needs a bit of rest in-between dances.
- Malaina drinking some water at the refreshment table
Grok: “Well, Daddy doesn’t seem to like him. I don’t know why. He just doesn’t understand him like I do. Erwin is such a great guy.”
Grok: ((that be the princess))
- Thurirl smiles and nods to Malaina, getting some water himself.
PN: We would be such a great couple.
Thurirl: “You did admirably out there. Perhaps we should dance more often, when the occasion calls for it.”
- Malaina grins at him, “And to think, you have been holding out on me all these years!”
Isabis: (at PN) “Oh, I begin to see. What sort of thing does he say when you ask him?”
- Malaina sips at her water and lets out a breath, “Only reason I danced so well was because of you. You’re fans are clambering all over themselves to have a dance with you now.”
Seiankornai: To PN “Hmm, odd, though I don’t know quite what I could do, it is a personal matter between the three of you, and I don’t know any of your well enough, him not at all except that you like him, to make a convincing argument.”
Thurirl: “Perhaps. But I hardly think I would have enjoyed it quite as much without your company. A true friend and companion is better than cool shade, so my uncle told me…”
Malaina: “Hehe, wise words.”
PN: “He says stupid stuff, like ‘No daughter of mine is going to marry one of those!’ and ‘Over my dead body!’ Parents!”
Malaina: “I’m gonna go take some more food to Vari, don’t want to keep you from your admirers!”
Jessaila: “One of those what?”
PN: “He keeps trying to get me to like Alberto, but he’s not nearly so interesting as Erwin.”
Isabis: “What makes Erwin interesting?”
PN: “One of those Kaltshe men.”
- Seiankornai refrains from suggesting to follow through with the “Over my dead body” statement
- Malaina gathers up some of the finger foods and goes back over to Vari
Seiankornai: “I’ve not heard of the Kaltshe, who are they?”
- Thurirl sighs as he watches Malaina go… and only partly because he is now vulnerable to requests.
PN: “Well, Erwin has this great hair, and he’s so brave in the joust. He’s beaten so many men, it’s amazing.”
Thurirl is currently being mobbed by half the females in the place.
Isabis: ((be diplomatic, Thurirl ))
- Jessaila wonders if she should go help Thurirl.
PN: “The Kaltshe is the family in the neighboring kingdom. We didn’t use to get along very well, but that’s all ancient history.”
Isabis: “Not ancient enough it would seem. What does your father like about Alberto besides his non-Kaltshe-ness?”
PN: “I don’t know. I don’t listen to him when he starts talking about him. Alberto is nice, but he’s so boring!”
- Thurirl tries to bargain the women down to a couple more dances… and prays to whatever Gods are watching that he doesn’t pull something.
The gong rings, and the last half hour of the party has arrived. O
One of the baron’s men is heading towards the king.
Isabis: “Hmm. Well, leaving aside the fact that he might be less boring if you paid more attention to him, it sounds as though you should emphasize Erwin’s value as a man who can cement the peace between your kingdoms.”
Seiankornai: “Ah, the king has arrived, shall we go speak with him, Isabis, being the two members of nobility of our party? Perhaps we may bring up the topic of Erwin, too, Princess Natalia.”
PN: "Hmm, maybe i’ll try that. Thanks, lizardman
- Jessaila moves up behind Malaina. “Nice job out there. You looked so good!”
Isabis: “Indeed, Seian, lets see if he will hear us.”
- Thurirl almost breathes a sigh of relief… and promises the women a few more dances once business with the King is concluded… provided His Majesty doesn’t mind the party going a bit longer for the sake of dancing…
- Seiankornai wanders his way towards the king
- Isabis paces Seiankornai
- Malaina looks up from feeding Vari “That wasn’t me, that was all Thurirl”
The Baron’s man is making an attempt to impress the king with the Baron’s abilities, but he is having a hard time, given the demonstration of the Baron’s abilities so far tonight.
Jessaila: “No it wasn’t. He led well, but you didn’t make any mistakes – so you helped make him look good. And by making him look good, you looked good too.”
- Jessaila gives Mala a firm hug and a grin.
- Isabis listens to the king’s reaction, hoping to learn what his highness is most concerned with
The conversation dies down as you approach, and the Baron’s man takes leave of the king for now.
- Malaina squeaks from the unexpected hug, but hugs back and smiles
Isabis: “Your majesty.”
Jessaila: ((Do we have a designated speaker?))
Jessaila: ((Isabis apparently. ))
- Isabis courtseys again
- Thurirl hushes his admirers and goes to join his companions, promising to dance again if he can.
Isabis: ((me and Seian as the members of the party who are actually noble in blood. I’m hoping Seian can make the rolls ))
King Volpher: My dear lady, thank you for your help in making this ball a success.
Jamshid par-Bahadur: ((Jamshid is also noble))
Seiankornai: “Hail, great and mighty king Volpher, may the fires of your reign never exinguish.”
Isabis: ((Is he talking to me?))
Isabis: ((oh, so he is. Get him over here ))
King Volpher: "I was just mentioning to the other party their part in making this night unforgettable.
Isabis: “You are entirely welcome, your highness. Oh, ahehe, indeed they did.”
Seiankornai: “Hess, I do not believe the baron will be forgetting his part for a long time, no matter how hard he tries tonight.”
Jessaila: ((Oh, don’t rub it in too much!))
Seiankornai: “THough I do hope they can treat his leg.”
Thurirl: ((yeah, please… we do need to show a little class))
Isabis: “I am pleased and gratified that you found my part to be of more beneficial, your highness.”
Jessaila: “It was such a shame, I was looking forward to dancing with him. I heard he was quite good.”
Seiankornai: “I am Seiankornai deev’Ornhysvear, third cousin, twice removed from my majestic Drake King.”
- Jessaila says that in a quiet aside.
- Malaina keeps quiet
King Volpher: “Welcome to my kingdom, Seiankornai. It is an honor to meet a relative of the Drake King.”
Isabis: “I am Isabis Estolin, niece to the King of the Matha.”
Seiankornai: “It is an honor to be invited to one of the human king’s homes.”
- Jamshid par-Bahadur heads on over to support
King Volpher: “I hope you don’t mind the nature of this competition. Since you are venturing into an unknown land, I thought it best to see how you would react to events in an unfamilar enviorment.”
King Volpher: “King Matha? Please, remind me where that land is?”
Seiankornai: “It is the life of a Sunchaser to go into the unknown every day. None know where the pools where bring him. Indeed, the desert would be more reliable in what to expect, though it have some unknown dangers.”
Isabis: “It is a subset of the drake king’s lands sir, but of course that is of little importance, since I come before you today as a sunchaser rather than a fellow-royal.”
King Volpher: You come as sunchasers. Yet, for this journey, you will need endurance, and not have the luxury of using sunportals to travel. This expedition must be well mapped, so you will need to walk the land in order to do so."
Isabis: “Sunpools are hardly reliable transportation at the best of times. We often walk long distances, and of course Jamshid is a prince of the desert traders and knows how people may travel the desert best.”
Seiankornai: “Or fly and see it from the heights of the sky.”
King Volpher: “True, but not all of you can fly. What of them?”
- Thurirl suddenly finds a young woman on his arm. Then another on his other arm. He prays this encounter ends before too long…
Isabis: “We provide the grounded details of what the drakes see from above, of course.”
Jamshid par-Bahadur: ((au contraire))
King Volpher: “Yes, but are you able to endure long days and nights of travel in unknown lands? The Baron has proven himself able to do so. How about you?”
Seiankornai: “The groundlings can be the steady base from which we drakes can fly far from and return to scout out the land while having skill and supplies to support us. It’s not so much that the expedition will travel faster as it will travel wider and avoid more dangers and seek more resources.”
Jessaila: “My lord, I once walked sixteen days out of a hostile land, pursued by trackers, with nothing but the sun to guide me and a shaped stick for protection. I would expect this to be similar.”
Seiankornai: “And as has been stated, Jamshid here” swings his tail around to push Jamshid front and center, “people live in the desert, so we have expert knowledge.”
King Volpher: “Hmm, you expect to be tracked, and only have a stick with you? Very brave.”
Ok, let’s wrap up for the night. Someone roll an impress check.
Jessaila: ((Not it!))
Isabis: ((what’s Jamshid’s check?))
Jamshid par-Bahadur: Impress 28
Malaina: ((I have a 6 = 4 + 6 = 10 » vs DC 10))
Malaina: « 1d20+12 = 8 + 12 = 20 » Impress
Isabis: (( assist « 1d20+6 = 8 + 6 = 14 » vs 10 ))
Malaina: « 2d6 = 6 » Boost
Grok: ((Jamshid has the highest bonus, so I’m going to use his check for this one. Everyone else can assist, DC 15, as per page 66 in the rule book.))
Seiankornai: ((oh, it’s DC 15? thought it was 10))
Grok: ((you may want to save an action die, Malaina))
Grok: ((Cooperative check, DC 15.))
Isabis: ((I guess I’ll use my last action dice to get my check up to 15 then, it’s not like I can keep it until the next adventure « 1d6 = 6 » ))
Seiankornai: ((guess I’ll try to boost mine as well « 1d6 = 5 »))
Seiankornai: ((woohoo, just enough))
After much deliberation, it is reported to you that you have been choosen for the expedition. Congratulations!
Back in the changing room, the sunpool turns green, awaiting your entrance
- Seiankornai wonders if we can keep our clothing/ornamentation
Jessaila: “Are we actually supposed to do the expedition, or do we just step out at this all disappears?”
- Malaina finally back in her comfy cloths
Seiankornai: “Uh, maybe one of the other symbols is the expedition.”
Isabis: "I hardly know. The king didn’t recognize the name “Matha”… we could be in the distant future, or the past again, or something."
Seiankornai: “Not the past, humans weren’t present then.”
Isabis: “Another world? I’m just saying, this is some seriously powerful magic, and we don’t know what’s going on overall.”
You may now choose a new adventure. So the DM can know which one to focus on. Just don’t choose that one, as I’m not done with it, k?
Thurirl: “I hope we are not actually in the past… I do not know much about temporal mechanics, but I do believe I would be loathe to alter the past…”
Jessaila: ((Which one? I missed it.))
Malaina: ((So we have completed those three?))
Isabis: ((he’s not telling – whichever one it is))
Grok: ((I’m not saying. Don’t trust PCs to not mess with DM. I know i might.))
Isabis: ((but yes, the three with the square shadows))
- Thurirl suddenly realizes he may be responsible for a new dance craze involving Vessa… in the past. He shudders and violently rejects that thought before he goes mad with the implications.
- Seiankornai and Vari will loops around you groundlings, even with your fly spell
- Jessaila prepares to cast her emergency spell.
As you make your next choice, you find yourself on one side of a cliff. A river has cut out a deep canyon, with another cliff on the other side. You hear the voice in your head again. "Not only do explorers need to navigate difficult terrain, they are the bridge builders for future travelers. And that is what you will do here, build a bridge accross this cliff for others to use after you have moved on.
- Seiankornai raises an eye ridge
Seiankornai: “Not what I was expecting.”
O, at least most of you are on the cliff. Standing in a clear, field over the air are Vari, Seian, and Axher. They are cut off from the rest of the party.
- Seiankornai looks down and tries to get down to the others
They test the limits and find themselves enclosed in a box.
Isabis: “Oh…now /that/ is annoying.”
- Vari is clearly distressed
Seiankornai: “Grrr, this is cheating, you know.” he says to the Voice
- Vari tries to claw at his enclosure
Isabis: “I guess we’d better be expeditious about it, so our friends can come out.”
The gap is about 78 yards wide.
Grok: Vari finds gentle, but firm pressure on the other side.
There are two red sunpools, one in the airbox, and one behind you on the cliffs.
- Seiankornai grumbles, “Don’t worry too much, Vari, they should be fine, they just need to build a bridge.”
- Vari still looks distressed
Thurirl: “Apparently, we are expected to proceed without fliers. This should prove a fascinating challenge.”
Seiankornai: “Work fast, I’m bored!!”
Jessaila: “I do have an idea, but we don’t have enough cream cheese!”
- Seiankornai tries to find the extents of their prison, to at least find out if he can fly around a bit