From Beyond The Stars (OOC)

661 posts / 0 new
Last post
MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

I was about to type out a bunch of stuff about how if you have a +3 or higher modifier you shouldn't need to roll for hit points because taking the average is fine. But if you had rolled a 9 or 10 instead of 2 you wouldn't want to hear any of that. So I'll just make an observation that you guys don't have a very good track record with rolling when you level up and maybe don't do it next time.

On the other hand, things are BOUND to turn around! So maybe you should all definitely roll next time.

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

Cronono
Cronono's picture

Now is not the time for looting hit points.

Darker

MinusInnocence wrote:

I was about to type out a bunch of stuff about how if you have a +3 or higher modifier you shouldn't need to roll for hit points because taking the average is fine. But if you had rolled a 9 or 10 instead of 2 you wouldn't want to hear any of that. So I'll just make an observation that you guys don't have a very good track record with rolling when you level up and maybe don't do it next time.

On the other hand, things are BOUND to turn around! So maybe you should all definitely roll next time.

WHY DIDNT YOU TYPE THAT FASTER?!?? I try to take the average with most of my characters except ones with 1d4's or 1d6's since the worse and average isn't that far off in mid levels.

deadDMwalking
deadDMwalking's picture

You're not my mommy.

Hit Die
I rolled 1d10, the result is 3 = 3.
Fixxxer
Fixxxer's picture

You don't know that.

deadDMwalking
deadDMwalking's picture

Argus has been celibate for a while now. Maybe he blew his load?

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

RIP Feruq

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

drumandfight
drumandfight's picture

Fixxxer wrote:

You don't know that.

This is my favorite group.

Also, what in the fuck did Raphael say to Jugg? Seriously.

Cronono
Cronono's picture

He said that his mother was particular to the periwinkle blue.

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

All righty. Looks like we have updated sheets for both Dalvar and Thunk at 5th level. Argus is incoming, presumably, and I will PM DDMW momentarily to offer a few suggestions. Take 'em or leave 'em - I'm not your mother but I ain't your daddy, neither.

Random
I rolled 1d2, the result is 1 = 1.

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

I need a Will save from Argus with a +2 circumstance bonus, as well as a Reflex save at your regular modifier.

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

Darker

Not that I want a TPK, but were we going to go to the library together? Or was Dalvar waiting until those two either survived or got killed off before going with Thunk trailing behind?

Talanall
Talanall's picture

Dalvar's not really in a hurry to run around by himself, and it looked like Thunk was enjoying himself with the smashing. So he just waited a bit. Whenever Thunk looks like he's about done with that, Dalvar's next priority is indeed to have a gander at the library. Probably with a stop on the way to check on Raphael and Jugg'r.

Wæs se grimma gæst Grendel haten,
mære mearcstapa, se þe moras heold

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

The plan was A. Finish exploring all three stories of the Keep as safely and quickly as possible. To this end, two teams were dispatched so that no one would be alone - Argus and Feruq went upstairs and Thunk led Dalvar down past the kitchen to where he found Raphael and beyond.

B. Tend to the wounded. After the party was finished exploring, someone would need to fetch Lyntern from the basement and Argus would take Feruq and Jugg to the infirmary to show Feruq how to administer longterm medical treatment for the dwarf and new Count using a fully stocked facility. Then he would go outside to tend to the animals in the stables so that they would be ready for a full day on the road tomorrow morning.

C. While this was going on, Dalvar would retrieve Raphael and venture up to the library, which some of the PCs have only just now laid eyes on but which everyone fully anticipated was somewhere upstairs because that's where the ghoul said you would find it. They would then spend the rest of the evening poring over the available texts and documents and hope to glean some useful intelligence about what lays buried beneath the fortress without having to treat further with the imprisoned ghoul. He was more than willing to tell you everything you wanted to know, but the price of his wisdom was freedom, and that was deemed too costly at the time of negotiations.

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

Darker

Ah, cool. Carry on. As long as Thunk doesn't have to read any books.

Talanall
Talanall's picture

There's no way in hell Dalvar is going to stand for the party spending the night in this funhouse. If we have to come back in the morning, then we come back in the morning.

Wæs se grimma gæst Grendel haten,
mære mearcstapa, se þe moras heold

deadDMwalking
deadDMwalking's picture

Will (+2) [+4]
Reflex (+6)

I rolled 1d20+4, the result is 12, 4 = 16.
I rolled 1d20+6, the result is 14, 6 = 20.
MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Well done! That was almost a dead PC we were looking at here. Updating the IC thread momentarily. Congratulations to Feruq for reaching 5th level! Here are updated status and XP tallies for everyone.

CURRENT STATUS

Argus - 2 Strength damage.
Dalvar - 100%
Feruq - 100%
Jugg - 17 Strength damage, 1 Dexterity damage. Unconscious but stable.
Raphael - 7 damage.
Thunk - 36 damage. 7 rounds of rage remaining.
Puck - 100%

EXPERIENCE TOTALS

Argus - 10,485
Dalvar - 11,085
Feruq - 10,085
Jugg - 8,185
Raphael - 5,770
Thunk - 10,385

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

All right, folks. That concludes your exploration of Parlfray Keep (or what's left of it). At this point, the next logical step would be to retrieve Lyntern Parlfray from the basement and bring him up to the infirmary so Feruq can administer longterm care for him and Jugg. For that matter, Thunk could probably benefit from getting back more hit points than usual tomorrow morning, too.

That leaves Argus to tend the horses outside. His rolls were so good when examining them in the stables that we'll just say the animals wake up tomorrow at 100% health and ready to roll out. I think the only other thing anyone mentioned they wanted to do before either leaving or pursuing Gideon was for Dalvar and Raphael to hit the library to see if they could find any intel on what comes next. More on that in a moment.

I have finished sheets from Darker and Talanall and am in the final stages of finishing updating Feruq with Fixxxer. DDMW, I sent you a message re: Argus hitting 5th level and would like to hear where your head's at on that.

OK, so. You basically have a whole day where the only people who want to do anything at this point are the folks researching. I'm going to go ahead and rule this as a Downtime activity because the place you're in is (relatively) secure and there isn't really any threat of anyone getting into any further encounters, combat or otherwise.

That makes the research a little bit different from just making a Knowledge roll and seeing what you find out. Each participant actually gets three different Knowledge rolls. If they're about different subjects, you need to clarify in what order you want to use them, because if you fail one you can choose to either proceed to the next subject on the list or use the next check to reroll the failure. In the case of this specific library, Knowledge (history) checks receive a +3 circumstance bonus.

For the purposes of this Downtime activity, aiding another would count as making a roll yourself. So you still only get to make 3 rolls. I'll leave it up to Cronono and Talanall to determine how they want to proceed.

If you want to try to make different kinds of rolls using the library, now's the time to decide that too. We'll assume that as long as no one else is bumbling around in there, Dalvar and Raphael are being careful enough that the hole in the middle of the floor doesn't present any real hazard to them.

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

Talanall
Talanall's picture

The haunts probably are connected to all the deaths associated with Gideon's visit to the keep, so we'll skip religion for now. The presence of an aberration, and specifically one that tends to live underground, suggests that of the things Dalvar knows much about, Knowledge (dungeoneering) probably is the thing to hit first.

I rolled 1d20+10, the result is 5, 10 = 15.

Wæs se grimma gæst Grendel haten,
mære mearcstapa, se þe moras heold

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Would you like to keep that roll, apply a +4 bonus from a Hero Point, spend a Hero Point to reroll it or burn your second Knowledge check?

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

Talanall
Talanall's picture

I'll hang on a minute to see what Raphael finds out with his first check, and then decide whether to retry this one or pursue something else.

Wæs se grimma gæst Grendel haten,
mære mearcstapa, se þe moras heold

Cronono
Cronono's picture

I was actually contemplating Religion for my first roll, but I'm indifferent. This discussion would lead Dalvar to conclude Raphael knows a thing or two about Arcana, History, Nature, Planes, and Religion. Does Dalvar have a preference for where Raphael spends his time?

No matter what that time is spent on, Raphael will spend the entire time he is reading engaged in an absurdly thorough self-cleaning, using fragrant soap he carries around in his pack.

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Does "absurdly thorough" mean butt stuff? It sounds like you're talking about butt stuff.

Ed, the hole in the ground is literally right there. It's not inconceivable that Raph could just... fall in.

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

Cronono
Cronono's picture

Where else is he going to hold the bar of soap while he's flipping pages?

Talanall
Talanall's picture

Dalvar knows something about Arcana, Dungeoneering, Local, Psionics, Religion, and Planes, although it's entirely possible that Raphael knows more about one or another of these than he does. Overall, I don't think it's very likely that Religion is going to be relevant to Gideon's actions, and I think the same thing goes for Psionics, Nature, or Local. Similarly, I don't really think that any of these are going to turn out to be very important in explaining what an aberration is doing here.

Planes has a good chance of being relevant, though; either Gideon has left this universe, or he's gone into the Night Below. Dungeoneering is where we'd find the latter prospect, and Dalvar likely has the highest modifier for that. So I guess let's see if Raph can puzzle out anything useful for Planes. Dalvar's going to retry Dungeoneering.

If Planes doesn't get us anything useful, I guess Raphael might as well give History a try, just because the library's good for it and we might dig up something unexpected.

Dungeoneering
I rolled 1d20+10, the result is 12, 10 = 22.

Wæs se grimma gæst Grendel haten,
mære mearcstapa, se þe moras heold

Cronono
Cronono's picture

Planes it is, then.

No trains, no automobiles.
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 19, 12 = 31.
MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Dalvar hit the nail on the head - the presence of an aberration in the Keep, and one that is native to the Underdark to boot, would indicate something amiss about the basement levels of this structure. Of course, he already knew that. However, it appears someone else knows it too: he finds a journal penned by Lyntern Parlfray (presumably before he gouged his own eyes out) consisting of references to other tomes, which Dalvar suspects might be found in this very collection, to encounters with creatures like the one that nearly killed Raphael that have been compiled by residents of the Keep over the years. Unfortunately, he didn't actually find any of the other tomes in question during his initial search and at this point only has a few hours left before it's time to turn in for the night. One item of note: the entries in Lyntern's journal appear to be listed in chronological order and half a dozen of them occurred in the same year, about 120 years before. I need a Knowledge (local) check from Dalvar at this point, but it won't count toward your research limit.

Raphael knows that discussions about planar phenomena need to first clarify what the audience knows about the planes and their relationships with each other. For example, if you could leave this realm and fly to the moon visible in the night sky, presumably you would eventually arrive at your destination. This is not, strictly speaking, a celestial body that qualifies as a plane of existence in its own right; but it is one possible destination in the Material Plane. Many scholars purport that, in fact, there are other worlds in the far-flung reaches of the void that are also part of the Material Plane - other Primes, although if that were true it would probably be advisable to come up with another word for them.

When thinking about what kinds of magic or technology one would need to be able to visit a place like that, we know that one primary concern would be breathable air. If you fly too high in Damark or climb to a high enough elevation in the mountains, the air thins and survival is called into question. Dragons or fauna native to such extreme environments are acclimated to it, but it stands to reason that the problem becomes more pronounced the higher you go (and eventually there might not be air to breathe at all). So those who would leave this world entirely in search of another would need a constant source of oxygen supplied either magically or mechanically.

This, among other quandaries, is raised in a text he finds relating to the time period in which the foundation was initially being laid for this stronghold. A clan of dwarves was called by the Parlfray clan from their home in Torag's Pact to write the blueprints and begin work on the new fortress. There doesn't appear to be much explanation for why the family thought it necessary to go to such expense to build a new home when apparently they already had the rights to one, but maybe he could find the answer to that riddle in another book.

Anyway, the records he finds were authored by one of the architects working on the project and start out simply enough but quickly deteriorate into the ravings of a madwoman. Gerdr Firebeard was, by all accounts, a woman of means and fine bearing and the highest quality education her family could afford. This is not the kind of person typically given to flights of fancy but whether it was the stress of the contract or some other trigger, two months after arriving onsite she started to come apart at the seams.

Gerdr writes about how the last of the foundation work was being dug when she made her first trip to inspect the build site, and that excavation on the shaft that would make the heating and ventilation system the party accessed to gain ingress to the Keep was still ongoing at that time. But to their surprise, the laborers had struck something that appeared to be worked metal right around the depth at which it would appear the stones were only loosely packed together despite their depth below the summit of the hill the Keep was eventually built on. This was highly unusual because the Firebeards made ready use of divination magic to survey a site before the first shovel was put to dirt and they didn't discern any significant amount of mineral deposits, and certainly not something like what they found (which most present believed was clearly refined and not raw ore at all). The best guess available at the time was that something manmade was buried there centuries or millennia before.

Almost immediately upon arriving, Gerdr's report started to turn into more of a field journal than a professional record of the construction project. She wrote cryptically of dreams that were not her own, which she believed to be visions imparted from spirits who had died long before - perhaps from someone who witnessed the strange object being covered in dirt and stone. Her ravings accompany sketches and schematics but Raphael can't make heads or tails of them. There isn't any indication any members of the Firebeard team or anyone else, for that matter, ever actually broke the surface of the whatever-it-is. But based on what she said and what he can parse from the drawings, they represent some kind of insight about what one might find inside it.

Before her mind was irrevocably lost, apparently the order was issued that the artifact would not be tampered with under any circumstances and that the blueprints for the build would be amended to account for its presence inside the hill. The journal abruptly ends before the story is concluded, however. It would seem that the Firebeards left not long after Gerdr required 24 hour observation but that the initial down payment from the Parlfray clan was enough to secure the rights to the schematics, and that construction resumed after the contractors departed by local laborers.

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

Talanall
Talanall's picture

Local

I rolled 1d20+9, the result is 14, 9 = 23.

Wæs se grimma gæst Grendel haten,
mære mearcstapa, se þe moras heold

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Dirkaster, the venerable old proprietor of the Baron of Mutton in Milborne and father of Andren and Barthelew, is obviously not old enough to have personally witnessed the spat of back-to-back aberration encounters in Parlfray Keep 120 years ago. But his parents probably lived through that and may have shared stories about that time period. Dalvar thinks this also roughly coincides with the timeline for when the Keep was first constructed (meaning the family would have abandoned the one deep in the Thornwood shortly before that) and that can be corroborated by what Raphael just uncovered.

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Grizzler might be another option, since he's also really old. But in past conversations it seemed more likely that he hasn't lived here that long. Also, a traveling storyteller interested in weird goings-on wherever he hangs his hat should have definitely been all over rumors about extraplanar artifacts being buried in the hills of Haranshire, but Grizzler definitely hasn't ever mentioned anything like that to anyone in the party before.

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

The text Raphael was consulting really does read like addled gibberish to Dalvar. It might because Raphael himself is a lunatic or simply due to the fact that Dalvar is far from his equal in the realm of planar lore. The only thing lending the dwarven woman's story any credence at all is his own firsthand experience with weird dreams, such as the ones he and the other Heroes experienced last night when they slept beneath Parlfray Keep.

I need an Intelligence check from Dalvar now.

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

Talanall
Talanall's picture

Intelligence

I rolled 1d20+5, the result is 4, 5 = 9.

Wæs se grimma gæst Grendel haten,
mære mearcstapa, se þe moras heold

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Raphael probably knows so much because he's a devil himself.

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

Cronono
Cronono's picture

DEVILISHLY HANDSOME

Talanall
Talanall's picture

For his final check, Dalvar will seek a third option.

Knowledge (psionics)
I rolled 1d20+11, the result is 16, 11 = 27.

Wæs se grimma gæst Grendel haten,
mære mearcstapa, se þe moras heold

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

That about does it for Dalvar. Does Raphael wish to proceed? He has two checks left to make. If he wants to do something else with the remainder of his time, I clock it at between five to six hours he has left to play with.

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

Cronono
Cronono's picture

There does some to be some magic afoot. Let's do Arcana.

Knowledge(Arcana)
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 4, 12 = 16.
Cronono
Cronono's picture

But why male models?

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Yeah, not so great. You could reroll arcana or try something else. You don't have to, though. You guys already found quite a bit, or at least enough to give you more to go on when pursuing leads elsewhere.

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

Cronono
Cronono's picture

Let's go with the library's focus - Knowledge (History)

Knowledge History!
I rolled 1d20+15, the result is 10, 15 = 25.
MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

I'm reminded of something I should have probably asked for during character creation for Raphael. I need a few Knowledge checks from him now, and if he wants to apply the bonuses from his adventurer's chronicles on any of them, feel free to do so.

Arcana (x3), Nature (x2), Planes (X3), Religion (x2)

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

Cronono
Cronono's picture

Is there a downside to applying those bonuses? In the case that the answer is no, then yes. In the case that the answer is yes, maybe.

Arcana (x3), Nature (x2), Planes (X3), Religion (x2)
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 4, 12 = 16.
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 6, 12 = 18.
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 10, 12 = 22.
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 10, 12 = 22.
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 8, 12 = 20.
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 10, 12 = 22.
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 12, 12 = 24.
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 19, 12 = 31.
I rolled 1d20+13, the result is 10, 13 = 23.
I rolled 1d20+13, the result is 15, 13 = 28.
MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Nope. I figured this is just as good a time and place as any for him to do so, since he's already surrounded by books. The contents of said chronicles are much like what I've described the two of you finding in this library thus far, if it helps to conceptualize what's in them.

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

Cronono
Cronono's picture

It does. He will apply the bonuses.

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Cool deal. You have mail. Now I need a few checks from folks who leveled up, and a few more from Cronono. Sorry, Thunk. You get NOTHING.

Dalvar: Arcana (x2), Dungeoneering, Planes (x2), Psionics (x2), Religion (x4)
Feruq: Dungeoneering, History (x2), Nature (x2), Religion (X4)
Raphael: History, Religion

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

Talanall
Talanall's picture

Rolls. Note that K:planes checks are 3 points higher if they pertain to demons.

Arcana (x2), Dungeoneering, Planes (x2), Psionics (x2), Religion (x4)
I rolled 1d20+13, the result is 3, 13 = 16.
I rolled 1d20+13, the result is 16, 13 = 29.
I rolled 1d20+10, the result is 4, 10 = 14.
I rolled 1d20+13, the result is 10, 13 = 23.
I rolled 1d20+13, the result is 12, 13 = 25.
I rolled 1d20+11, the result is 12, 11 = 23.
I rolled 1d20+11, the result is 17, 11 = 28.
I rolled 1d20+10, the result is 14, 10 = 24.
I rolled 1d20+10, the result is 15, 10 = 25.
I rolled 1d20+10, the result is 13, 10 = 23.
I rolled 1d20+10, the result is 19, 10 = 29.

Wæs se grimma gæst Grendel haten,
mære mearcstapa, se þe moras heold

Cronono
Cronono's picture

Nosin

History, Religion
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 13, 12 = 25.
I rolled 1d20+13, the result is 13, 13 = 26.
Fixxxer
Fixxxer's picture

Rolls

Dungeoneering, History (x2), Nature (x2), Religion (x4)
I rolled 1d20+6, the result is 17, 6 = 23.
I rolled 1d20+6, the result is 18, 6 = 24.
I rolled 1d20+6, the result is 7, 6 = 13.
I rolled 1d20+6, the result is 20, 6 = 26.
I rolled 1d20+6, the result is 3, 6 = 9.
I rolled 1d20+6, the result is 2, 6 = 8.
I rolled 1d20+6, the result is 16, 6 = 22.
I rolled 1d20+6, the result is 18, 6 = 24.
I rolled 1d20+6, the result is 18, 6 = 24.
MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

All righty. That should just about do it with all of the super secret Knowledge checks, and it also concludes the eight hour stretch of time Dalvar and Raphael had allotted for themselves while everyone else rested. It's late evening now and close to bedtime if the party wants to set out in the morning anywhere near sunrise.

If Raph intends to stay to continue his research, he might need to do some persuadin', because I think the plan is to leave the Keep for awhile.

We can go back to the IC thread and everyone can roleplay and do whatever they like until it's time to wind down for the night. When I update again, characters who have reached 5th level will receive the full benefit of leveling up.

"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken

Pages

Topic locked