Rise of the Runelords

Hidden Nin

sorry bitch i don't say sorry
Mirenia's eyes widen as she yanks her hand back... before she opens the bag and notes the paltry number of coins inside. Pursing her lips, she resists the urge to kick the chest and try her luck. "Blasted, dreadful little monsters you all are," she says with a shake of her head, turning back to the rest of the party.

"Should we bring the remaining Arrows their gear and get to burning this place down, then?"
 

Ronnam

Gorrendux / Red Royb
"I agree completely, Mirenia. This place needs to be destroyed. Step one to cleansing the land of their evil filth," Gorrendux says. Carrying a load of the Black Arrows' gear, he exits the building to rejoin Jakardros and the other two rescued men. "I am very sorry to share with you what I have to say gentlemen, but we found no additional survivors within. You have my condolences. Pharasma will guide them to their rightful resting place."
 

soulnova

Hello Kyuubi
The three remaining Black Arrows hear the news. Vale gives a long sigh and mutters a curse under his breath, shaking his head. Jakardros stares back at the house with a somber and pained expression. After a moment, he nods slowly. "I understand... thank you," his voice is strained.

He looks at the bag you hand to him as if he was unable to open it himself. Shalelu steps closer and slowly holds the bag herself so they can look for their equipment. He doesn't notice her doing that at first, he's lost in his own mind for a brief second and comes back. "Ah... thanks."

The three Black Arrows silently gear up. Each take a longbow. Vale wears the chain mail with two axes. Kaven, a fine studded leather, a rapier and a dagger. Jakardros takes a regular studded leather, a masterwork elven longsword and the magical composite longbow. Shalelu's eyes widen seeing his longsword.

"My mother gave you this one," she offers a small sad smile seeing the blade again. "You have kept it all this time..."

Jakardros hesitates, the tinge of pain flashing across his face. "Yes."

Now that the Black Arrows are dressed more properly, they return the cloaks and other gear you had lent them.
@Hidden Nin @EvilMoogle @Cardboard Tube Knight Mirenia, Rose and Addo notice that Kevan's tattoo is now expertly covered by the studded leather. It's very difficult to tell now.

Kaven seems much more confident now that he has all his gear. "Well, I'm up to burn it down. We would need to get some good oil so it catches on fire properly with this rain. I could go and ask in town for enough..."

Jakardros shakes his head. "I want to burn it as much as you do but... even if it's raining, if the ogres at the fort notice the column of smoke that might alert them that something is going on here. We have to-... We need to retake the fort."
 

Hidden Nin

sorry bitch i don't say sorry
Mirenia begrudgingly agrees with that logic. "You make an undeniably good point. We can't approach this recklessly," she agrees. "You all were away from the Fort on patrol while it was taken, correct? Do you have any clues as to the circumstances of its attack? Anything to go off of could be a useful piece of information."
 

soulnova

Hello Kyuubi
Jakardros takes a deep breath recalling what led to the nightmare that has lasted the past few weeks...

"The Kreeg have always been a thorn on our side. We usually only had to deal with skirmishes from them. This was... far beyond anything the Order has seen them organized."

"We were taking the less experienced members on a patrol into the wilderness to hone their skills. We had some issues on the road and we were coming back late... so by the time we arrived at the fort..." he trails off, a lost look on his face, full of regret and guilt.

Vale takes over the explanation and continues. "They must have struck the Fort at night, and killed the sentries before they could give the alarm," he says. "I can only assume the Commander was out in one of his monthly communing walks and wasn't able to help... The ogres got really lucky. Otherwise... none of this would've happened."

Jakardros nods in silence, still looking at the ground.


Sense Motive check from anyone.
 

soulnova

Hello Kyuubi
Those who pass the check notice two things. The most obvious one: Jakardros is completely NOT-OKAY. He fully blames himself for the loss of every single Black Arrow under his command, and those at the Fort. You have the distinct feeling he's going to want to look for chance to be "taken out" fighting the ogres. Second: Kaven tensed up when Mirenia asked if they had any clue of what led to the attack and again when Vale mentioned the "communing walks" of the Commander. He has keep strangely quiet during all this explanation.
 

Hidden Nin

sorry bitch i don't say sorry
Mirenia studies Jakardros for a long moment before she speaks up, clearing her throat. She keeps half an eye on Kaven without making too big a deal about it for now, but her true intent is to see his reaction as she says the following:

"To be completely transparent with you, we came here to help you, but what spurred us to begin with was a letter hinting at the presence of someone loyal a dangerous cult we've been encountering. Often their actions lead to disrupting and sabotaging order around Varisia for cryptic means. On our way here, we noticed some townspeople with a peculiar seven pointed tattoo we know is associated with it." She knew Kaven did too, but acted ignorant for now, just seeing how he reacted first. "Do you have a relationship with any individuals in town that might have had a reason to aid the Kreeg? What may seem like luck can just as well be keen intelligence or a cunning plot."
 

soulnova

Hello Kyuubi
"What?" Jakardros looks up suddenly taken out of his stupor hearing those words.

"A cult? No, we haven't know anything like that on this parts..." Vale frowns confused at the mention.

"A star? A seven pointed star?" Jakardros straightens.

Shalelu nods to him. "Aye, some people were sacrificed with that mark carved into their bodies, nasty stuff. I was away for most of it. They handled it on Sandpoint and also Magnimar."

Jakardros head turns to Kaven. The younger man's body tenses. "When we were... back there... you had a tattoo like that."

Vale gives a double take to them both then there's a flash of understanding on his face. "Yeah, now that you mention it, I saw it too. When we were shackled."

"Whoa... hold on. What are you implying? I almost got eaten like everyone else as well! I'm no cultist!" He assures you all, shooting a glare at Mirenia. "That tattoo is just for my love for the stars. That's all!"

You may roll Sense Motive again if you like.
 

Hidden Nin

sorry bitch i don't say sorry
Mirenia smiles faintly in response to their accusations, shaking her head. "Let's not jump to conclusions," the songstress says, lifting a hand. "Not all tattoos are painted equal. A townsperson, as I said, is one thing, but one of your own? That's another entirely. Someone out in town that has a bone to pick with the Black Order, or worse, is a spy sent by that cult, has far less to lose than a Black Arrow," she says, smiling apologetically at Kaven. "May I look at the tattoo, then? I'm sure it's just as you say."
 

soulnova

Hello Kyuubi
"Listen, I've bleed with my brothers and sisters of the Order. I'm no cultist," he repeats again with conviction. Vale seems to believe his words... But Jakardros... he stares at him darkly. He gives a quick glance at Shalelu who trusts you all and then back at Kaven.

"Show the lady your wrist, Kaven," he orders him in low voice.

Kaven's nostrils flare. "And what then? She's gonna cut my arm or something?" After a heartbeat he pulls back his sleeve, feeling Jakardros gaze harden. "Here. See? Just a normal tattoo, alright? I got it in town. Nothing wrong with that. They must have used the same design."

MOAR Sense Motive if you want.
 

Ronnam

Gorrendux / Red Royb
Frustrated by this interrogation, Gorrendux invokes a prayer to Pharasma, casting Detect Thoughts on this Kaven character. (Will DC 17 to resist) "You cannot hide from the Lady of Mysteries," Gorrendux growls.
 

EvilMoogle

Well-Known Member
Supporting Staff
Addo considers the young ranger and the uncomfortably familiar tattoo unsure of exactly how deep the youth might be into the circumstances before shaking his head. "A strange number of things have lined up today."

"First you happen to like stars to the point that you wanted a tattoo of one. Then you chose a seven pointed star rather than the more common five or six pointed stars, simply ignorant of any meaning of the symbol." The old Aasimar seems to count to himself as he reviews the situation, "the same tattoo worn by another man in town, one unknown to you? Perhaps the same artist did both tattoos and they suggested it out of familiarity?" He sighs slightly, unconvinced.

"Then we need to consider that the fort was attacked, at a time when the defenses were weakest and the commander was away, and a patrol was late arriving, very fortuitous timing for an ogre attack." A slight hint of anger colors his normally calm voice. "And our tattooed star-gazer happened to be amongst the patrol that was away from the fortress when the attack happened."

"That is a very long list of coincidences to ask us to accept." He turns to address Jakardros a moment, "tell me, by chance, was there another coincidence that your patrol was delayed because of this man?"
 

soulnova

Hello Kyuubi
Kaven frowns at Gorrendux noticing he did something but unable to tell what exactly. "Whoa whoa!" He becomes defensive. Vale is about to complain but Jakardros places a hand on his chest to tell him to wait.

It takes a few moments for Gorrendux to focus on the surface thoughts of Kaven and Addo's small interrogation works wonders to slowly bring out the information he likely is hiding...

"First you happen to like stars to the point that you wanted a tattoo of one. Then you chose a seven pointed star rather than the more common five or six pointed stars, simply ignorant of any meaning of the symbol." The old Aasimar seems to count to himself as he reviews the situation, "the same tattoo worn by another man in town, one unknown to you? Perhaps the same artist did both tattoos and they suggested it out of familiarity?" He sighs slightly, unconvinced.

"I told you! I got it in town," he says through gritted teeth.


"What the fuck is this shit about cultist? It wasn't like that!" Gorrendux starts by sensing his confusion... Lucrecia gave this mark to her favorite clients for 'Special treatment' at Paradise. Free booze, gambling chips... her personal attention~...


"Then we need to consider that the fort was attacked, at a time when the defenses were weakest and the commander was away, and a patrol was late arriving, very fortuitous timing for an ogre attack." A slight hint of anger colors his normally calm voice. "And our tattooed star-gazer happened to be amongst the patrol that was away from the fortress when the attack happened."

"You are talking nonsense old man," Kaven's pose becomes more physically defensive.

Gorrendux feels another thought coming. A more worrisome one. "No way. There's just no way they can know I told Lucrecia that one day I followed the old fart to the Shimmerglens. That's how I knew he was visiting his nymph lover. Not even Jakardros knows about that. Lamatar always so high about duty and not having distractions from this hellish job... what that a hypocrite. I hope the ogres got them both."


"That is a very long list of coincidences to ask us to accept." He turns to address Jakardros a moment, "tell me, by chance, was there another coincidence that your patrol was delayed because of this man?"

"You volunteered for the patrol," Jakardros doesn't keep his eye off him, his voice cold and calm. "You always hated that route, Kevan. Too rocky. You didn't have to come but you insisted on showing the new ones the ropes. Said the strap of the tent bag broke and slipped on the ravine... You were leading and I found it weird you hadn't see that hole where Rabby hurt his foot."

"Fuck. He knows. I should have ran when these noisy bastards went into the house. I need to find Lucrecia and get out here. NOW!"

Kevan tries to make a run for it. Jakardros waves a hand a signal for Kibb to cut him off, Jakardros closing from behind. Gorrendux is up. Then the others.

Surprise Round
Gorrendux/Kaven/Jakardros 20
Mirenia 15
Addo 13
Rose 12
Sumara 10
 

Ronnam

Gorrendux / Red Royb
Reading the knave's mind, Gorrendux senses the treachery. At the speed of thought, Gorrendux casts Command on Kevan, Will DC 16. "HALT!" Gorrendux shouts with a booming voice.
 

soulnova

Hello Kyuubi
"oh HELL NO!"

Kevan shakes off the compulsion from Gorrendux.


Surprise Round
Gorrendux/Kaven/Jakardros 20
Mirenia 15
Addo 13
Rose 12
Sumara 10
 

Hidden Nin

sorry bitch i don't say sorry
Next Mirenia speaks up with a smoother, more... enthralling voice, giving Javen a slight smile. "Javen, calm down, and stop to talk this out. I can tell from your tattoo's quality you're surely passionate." (DC 16 Will Save; Suggestion)
 

soulnova

Hello Kyuubi
Addo approaches Kaven, blocking the exit of the barn and infusing his sword with divine power to aid him stop the younger man.

"Get out of my way-!" he threatens with his rapier and then Mirenia casts the Suggestion... failing his will save. "Yeah, let's just all calm down. C'mon! We can figure this out!"
 

soulnova

Hello Kyuubi
Rose shoots a blunt arrow to his head trying to knock him out.

"Hey, this totally unfair-!"

BONK!

The arrow strikes him right between the eyes, dropping him to the ground unconscious. Sumara approaches in case he somehow manages to get back up.

Jakardros pulls away Kaven's rapier and dagger from his hands, then has to take a deep calming breath and looks at you. "Anyone has a rope?"
 
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Hidden Nin

sorry bitch i don't say sorry
Mirenia gives a sigh of relief when her spell takes root... before giving Rose a look of acute irritation and confusion when she still shoots Kevan. "Talk without our arrows, Rose," she says, pulling some rope out to offer to Jakardros, preparing to heal Kevan after he's properly bound. "Before you exact your judgement, I would like to speak to him to gather as much information as possible about how he helped the Kreeg. As difficult as that will be now that he's been beaten unconscious..."
 

soulnova

Hello Kyuubi
Jakardros takes a moment to consider Mirenia's request. "Alright, yes. I would like to see just how deep this got... if he was... if he has any information that might help us take them down, I'd appreciate it," he lowers his head. "The Order gives... gave... everyone a chance to show them there's a way to make up for their crimes and make a difference with their lives..."

Shalelu gives him a worried glance but remains quiet.

He continues. "He seems to have tossed that idea completely aside, along with everyone's lives. I would really appreciate to know why so I can look him in the eyes when we deal with him."

Vale helps you tie him up. He's much more visibly angry now. Makes double sure the rope is tight. Kaven seems pretty secure now if you want to proceed.
 

Hidden Nin

sorry bitch i don't say sorry
Mirenia begins going through a mental checklist, preparing her con to get more information out of Kevan as she runs through what would and would not work, and listening to what Gorrendux has to say about what he'd read from Kaven's mind. "I need you all to let me do my thing here. He needs to believe he's in control of the situation, that there's a way out, -- and for that I'm a potential ally he can divulge information to. For that everyone needs to leave for now, and let me speak to him one on one." She begins to work through the steps to the Pageant of the Peacock and casts Raiment of Authority in order to improve her chances accordingly. "Anyone that can, get into cover out of the way, because once I start this, I'll probably need to cut him loose to sell this. Otherwise go back to the house and act as if you're looking for more clues. That's what I'll tell him, inform him I'm another agent of Lucrecia, and that the Kreeg have actually betrayed us. I'll need all his information on his actions to set up the Black Arrows them in exchange for setting him free, complete with invisibility." She gestures to the roof. "Anyone that's confident enough, wait on the roof and I'll drop my spell. Knock him out again after I let him loose."
 

soulnova

Hello Kyuubi
Jakardros insists on being present for the interrogation, hidden or invisible as Mirenia prefers. He instructs Kibb to stay outside and be ready to charge/pursue Kaven on his signal.

Shalelu and Vale will wait outside out of sight as well.

It continues to rain...
 

Ronnam

Gorrendux / Red Royb
The Detect Thoughts spell still active, Gorrendux exits the building to stand with Vela and Addo near the door. Through the wooden door, the Half-Orc continues to scan Kevan's mind as Mirenia questions him.
 

Hidden Nin

sorry bitch i don't say sorry
Mirenia casts Invisibility on Gorrendux if he's near the door, casts on Jak so he can stay inside the room with her, and asks that everyone else either hide inside the other house or well out of sight. Afterwards she casts Cure Light Wounds on Kaven so that he'll come to with just her in the room.

"Kaven? Kaven, can you hear me?"
 

soulnova

Hello Kyuubi
Kaven gasps awake and looks around warily. "-the fuck!"

He blinks a few times in disbelief that his head is still attached to his body.

He realizes Mirenia has healed him. "What- what do you want? Torture? Is this what this is about? Hit me over the head then bring me up again? You have a sick sense of justice, gotta say," he says glaring at her.
 

Hidden Nin

sorry bitch i don't say sorry
Mirenia raises her hands placatingly, raising her brows. "Don't shoot the messenger. It was already a feat to get that inelegant brute and the rest of them out of here to talk in private," she says slowly. "I'm not here to hurt you. If anything, I'm the only chance you've got left. The rest of them are off searching the house for any more clues about the Graul and Kreeg. As for me, I told them I'd stand watch." She glances towards the window, and back at him.

"But I don't think I will. I think I'll let you go and do what you will. That is if you help me with what I need."
 

Hidden Nin

sorry bitch i don't say sorry
"I work with Lucrecia," she says quietly. "And don't think about spreading that around, cause it'll be your word against mine. But the only issue is -- the Kreeg have betrayed our interests, and their being inside the fortress is going to become a real issue once they learn to knock their heads together. The more information you can give me to oust them, the better chance you have of going free and getting back to Lucrecia. Once we're through, I'll cut your bindings, make you invisible, and you can get away before they're back. But if you want all that -- you need to cooperate with me, and fast. Sweeping the house won't take long..."

Result: 1d20 (20) + 22 Total: 42
 

soulnova

Hello Kyuubi
Kaven listens closely and takes all the bait. "Betrayed? Damn, guess that explains why she wasn't able to come to look for me... but somehow, I'm not surprised. You can't trust an ogre. I guess it must have been that new clan chief she told me about... Barl Breakbones, he took over the Kreegs a few months ago," he frowns making sense of this on his own. He considers his options. "Listen... I don't know the current situation at the fort. My plan with Lucrecia was really simple: I would get the patrol delayed while she got the other ogres to deal with Lamatar and the nymph so he couldn't help during the attack. Meanwhile, Barl would send Jaagrath Kreeg, a really murderous brute, to lead the attack on the fort by killing the sentries before they could rise the alarm and get to surprise the rest of the fort sleeping. We knew that by the time Jakardros and the patrol made it back, the Fort would be under their control. I was to break away from Jakardros and the others when we retreated and find her. We were going to leave together and she was going to present me to her boss," he smiles with pride. "She said I had a bright promising future of riches and power among her people."

"Even if Jaagrath is leading them, the rest of the ogres are still very stupid. They fight a lot among themselves so the sound of battle won't immediately raise alarm... they could think it's just a brawl between themselves until someone is smart enough to give the signal. I'd assume that would be up to one of Jaagrath's six elite fighters. If Lucrecia is in danger, I might be able to sneak in and out with her. Fall back, regroup... maybe let Jakardros and your other 'friends' deal with them. Then we just clean up after them," he offers.


Knowledge Local DC 20 "Jaagrath Kreeg"
Jaagrath is a infamous ogre known in this area, second only to the (seemingly late) chief ogre Grolki. He is said to squeeze the life out of foes face-to-face, casually gnawing off cheeks and lips so their screams resonate through his skull. He might be considered one of the greatest nemesis the Order had to deal with over the last few decades. His love for human pain and blood are said to have given his weapon a thirst for it (human bane weapon). He has taken the lives of several of the Black Arrows and many others.

Knowledge Local DC 25 "Barl Breakbones"
Barl Breakbones is not an ogre name... it's a Stone Giant name. What little it is known about him, he's considered a pariah among his people for dwelling into forbidden knowledge. Rumor holds he is as strong as he is smart, using both his earth-breaker to kill his foes and then rising them as his minions with dark magic. How or why he is trying to lead a group of ogres against the fort remains a mystery.
 

Hidden Nin

sorry bitch i don't say sorry
Mirenia listens to all this intently, nodding slowly as she comes to her feet. "I understand," she says slowly, before she snaps her fingers, dispelling her Invisibility on Gorrendux and Jakardros. "Sorry, Kaven. But I don't think you'll be leaving here," she says with some measure of remorse, bowing her head to the Ranger. "I'm done. Do as you wish."
 
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