Gideon's Justice (OOC)

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MinusInnocence
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The only way Thunk knows for sure that someone or something deserved to be smashed into bloodpaste is if he did the smashing. Someone being killed without provocation might be really jarring for such a happy go lucky guy. I imagine this whole Gideon thing must be a real mess for Thunk, what with the indiscriminate murders being committed by a former friend and colleague. And a racist, to boot, if his comments about orcs are any indication.

"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

Well yeah, it wouldn't really upset him. But it would be fun having him tiptoe, holding his breath and trying to be quiet past a dead guy, right?

And not quite worship, but Thunk believes things live in suffering, pain, and ignorance only to be released at the right time by death. As the physical body is shed, the consciousness is free from perceiving only through earthly embodiment and becomes a manifestation of pure truth and objective certainty.

Talanall
Talanall's picture

I feel like Thunk only actually knows about half of those words.

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

Darker

Maybe only a quarter. But it is language that castrates the intellect.

Talanall
Talanall's picture

Lacan has a lot to answer for.

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

drumandfight
drumandfight's picture

And all this time Jugg thought Thunk worshiped the Deaf due to his speech impediment.

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Are there any more details I can offer that might expedite a decision about what to do next? Is a choice between turning left or right enough to paralyze the party with uncertainty? Have we just collectively lost interest in continuing? What's 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

Talanall
Talanall's picture

Jugg was looking to see if the guard is dead. Although I think it's obvious that he is, perhaps it would be helpful to have your word as DM, since you're the only person who actually knows for sure?

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

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Oh, maybe it got lost in the shuffle.

MinusInnocence wrote:

Feruq can tell without a Heal or Perception check from this distance the guard is either dead or very close to it. He doesn't appear to be moving enough even to suggest he's still breathing.

"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

Thunk is just following, waiting for those in front to decide where to go.

Fixxxer
Fixxxer's picture

It wasn't lost in the shuffle so much as I completely missed it somehow. Given that Feruq feels it's relatively safe, he'll approach... as stealthily as he can. He'll keep his eyes on the figure and pause immediately if he seems movement.

Stealth
I rolled 1d20+6, the result is 10, 6 = 16.
drumandfight
drumandfight's picture

Yeah, I have been checking and wondering what the hold up was here. Apologies. Next time I will just Jugg-smash to move it along.

deadDMwalking
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Does magic like 'cure light wounds' restore vision? 'Remove Blindness' specifically says it doesn't restore eyes that are removed (but does fix damaged eyes). Or are we looking at 'regenerate'?

Talanall
Talanall's picture

In general, cure spells only fix hit point damage--not ability score damage, poisoning, nauseation, disease, missing limbs or organs, insanity, etc. Most of those, excepting missing limbs, can be handled by heal, or else by various spells that are intended to address that specific infirmity.

Also it's possible to fix mental issues and stuff like ability or level drain by using various spells from the restoration chain.

In this specific case, it's blindness. So either remove blindness (clr 3) or regeneration (clr 7, healing 7, drd 9) To know whether remove blindness will fix someone, you need to see whether he's still got eyes. I am pretty sure MinusInnocence already posted something to the effect that this guy's eyes were physically gouged out, and he's got nothing but empty sockets. That'd put him into regenerate territory.

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

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Getting a closer look would definitely help Argus, so opening the door is probably a priority. In case it wasn't clear from the IC post, all three cells (these two and the one across the hall) can be opened separately, assuming someone has the key or otherwise bypasses the lock. We'll assume that everyone is standing as far from the bars as possible in case either of the two men (the one who is eating Squire Marlen and the guy with no eyes) suddenly lunges forward.

Right now, Jugg is standing pretty much right in front of the presumably dead guard in the hall. Feruq and Thunk are still hanging back peeking around the corner from the secret passage, and Argus and Dalvar are observing the prisoners through the bars. Pending the results of a PM conversation, Raph may be moving up to join them. If the layout of the passageway you find yourselves in now is in any way confusing from the way I described it, I will draw up a map for you, but if it doesn't turn into a combat encounter or something similar there may not be much call for that.

I'm going to go ahead and assume that Jugg agrees it is prudent to remove at least the guy with no eyes from the cell; maybe not right away, but at some point. And Dalvar's observation is a good one, the dead guard is a good candidate for someone who might have a key. So he will go ahead and start inspecting the corpse. PM incoming.

Re: the guy without eyes, yes, even from outside the cell Argus can tell they have actually been destroyed. This would require regenerate or similar magic, except that there actually isn't any similar magic in this ruleset, so far as I am aware. The problem is that localized damage like that almost never happens because most damage is dealt as a result of hit point loss, which is determined by an intentionally abstract mechanic. I have a project on the back burner for called shots and critical hits based on the part of the body affected, and if I complete it, it will necessarily include a more robust regenerate-esque assortment of spells. That doesn't really help you in the short term, but if there's any consolation regenerate isn't really an option for your party right now anyway.

"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

Which door is Raphael trying to open? The one leading to the blinded man, or the one leading to the deranged, possibly cannibalistic one?

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

Cronono
Cronono's picture

The blinded fellow. I realize now that the description I wrote could be interpreted both ways. Sorry for not being clear.

Talanall
Talanall's picture

Just making sure.

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

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Raph can make his rolls now that he has taken a gander.

"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

1, 2, 3

I rolled 1d20+1, the result is 14, 1 = 15.
I rolled 1d20+13, the result is 9, 13 = 22.
I rolled 1d20+8, the result is 18, 8 = 26.
MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Like Argus, Raph would benefit from getting a closer look at the guy. But it would appear at a glance that he gouged his own eyes out with his bare hands. Maybe what's in the next cell is a clue as to why he would be compelled to do such a thing - it is plainly a ghoul. Typically, one contracts the disease that transforms its victims into ghouls after their death from the bite of another ghoul, but there aren't any others running around in here. They are extremely dangerous in close quarters, attacking with claws and fangs and able to paralyze their victims; this makes opening the jail cell to let it out an unattractive option. On average, the transition to undeath makes them stronger, faster, and more cunning and observant than they were in life. This one hasn't spoken yet, but it was the most likely candidate for the singing heard earlier.

Ghouls are ravenously, perpetually hungry for human flesh. There is a more potent strain of the disease that produces what is called a ghast, but this doesn't seem like what's going on here; ghasts have an unbearable stench which would have been evident from down the hall.

In addition, Raph's roll was good enough that he knows the following basic information that is true of all creatures of the Undead type: http://paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd/bestiary/creatureTypes.html#undead

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

deadDMwalking
deadDMwalking's picture

How difficult would it be to fill it with arrows from the hallway? That is to say - without giving it the chance to rend and paralyze us?

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Argus shouldn't have too much trouble doing so. He has enough room to fire in the hallway, but maybe not so much that he can remain completely beyond the ghoul's reach. If it did try to swipe at you between the bars, though, you would at least benefit from a cover bonus to AC.

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

deadDMwalking
deadDMwalking's picture

Not eager to allow it to attack me, even with cover. I'm alright with moving on for the moment.

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

OK, so as I understand the situation Argus thinks posting up and trying to execute the ghoul from outside the cage is still too dangerous a proposition. Taking care to hug the far wall, however, easily places everyone outside the monster's reach.

The other problem is that there are open bars between the two cells housing who Dalvar presumes are the now-Undead Count Parlfray and his son. So any attempt to open the jail cell with the young nobleman may involve a combat with the ghoul anyway, as he snakes his long arm in for a swipe. Rather than ruling that picking the lock is simply impossible because no one in the party has the skills or equipment to do so, I am going to make this a skill challenge. You will need seven successes before you accumulate three failures.

Getting a verbal response from the survivor is going to require a Diplomacy check on Raphael's part, and succeeding there won't just mean he can contribute in the IC thread with information or advice, but also may be able to participate in the skill challenge. As a refresher, these work with each character in the party who wants to participate opting either to roll one primary skill or one secondary skill check each round. Secondary skills don't add to successes or risk any consequences for failure, so they don't actually advance the point tracker at all; but they can provide bonuses to future primary skill checks (even if the bonus is applied to someone else's roll) or some other material support to the task at hand.

A successful Diplomacy check here will add one success to your tally but is a special corner case that doesn't count as a failure if Raph rolls poorly. The rest of the challenge will be slightly more difficult without the kid's help, and that's punishment enough.

Also, as an aside, Jugg and Feruq spent this time going over the dead guard with a fine-tooth comb. Together, they managed to take 20 on the Perception check for a total result of 30. Normally, you can't aid another when taking 20; but Feruq's bonus is actually so high he automatically succeeds on DC 10 checks, so he was able to help Jugg out. It wouldn't have really worked the other way, because Jugg can technically roll a 1 and still fail to reach DC 10 on his own, so he couldn't have been counted on to provide a +2 bonus to Feruq every six seconds for two minutes straight.

I will share what they have uncovered in the IC thread before seeing the results of Raph's Diplomacy roll. Either Argus or Dalvar can try to aid another on that roll, too, if either of them are interested in speaking to the Count's son. If you do want to chip in, please make some kind of IC post indicating what you're actually saying or doing to contribute to the Diplomacy 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

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Whether or not you proceed with the skill challenge, it bears mentioning that Golman was one of Squire Marlen's bodyguards at the small office he maintained in Thurmaster. Reven was the name of the other soldier. There is no indication they were ever locked up here with the Count, his son or the Squire.

"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

Dalvar is going to take a second to cast detect magic, just to see what there is to see. Spellcraft checks attached, in case they are pertinent. Let me know if you happen to need more.

Spellcraft
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 6, 12 = 18.
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 14, 12 = 26.
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 1, 12 = 13.
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 1, 12 = 13.
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 16, 12 = 28.

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

Talanall
Talanall's picture

If there's nothing of magical interest, Dalvar will assist in the skill challenge. How he behaves in IC will depend on the outcome of this, so we'll see what happens.

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

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

What Dalvar discovers may obviate the need for the skill challenge all. The note and everything else on the guard's person or elsewhere in the hallway don't radiate magical auras, but the seemingly homecrafted lockpick does. Once per day it can be used to cast knock, with some minor alterations. First, the effective caster level for the check used when that spell is cast is 10, despite the actual caster level for the item being 3; it only works against one effect or mechanism barring the user from opening the locked container or portal, with the user deciding which one to target before making the roll; and unlike actually casting knock, the user can only unlock something after actually touching it with the lockpick.

Lyntern's lockpick, faint transmuration aura, CL 3, 2,160gp.

"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

Clarification needed, I think. Knock specifies that you make a caster level check against the DC to open the door/chest/whatever, with +10 bonus on top.

So firstly, I guess that means that this item confers a +20 overall bonus. Is that right?

Secondly, the spell apparently works on barred or stuck doors as well as locked ones. Does that require a caster level check, or no? And if so, how is the DC tabulated?

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

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

1. Correct, the user rolls 1d20+20 against the DC of the lock.

2. Barred or stuck doors open without a need for a caster level check, but it still expends the item's daily use.

"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

Thank you.

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

deadDMwalking
deadDMwalking's picture

That went right over my head.

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Dalvar definitely knows the command word - it's "Tauster."

"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 was not really in any doubt that he knew the command word, because it's part of the ID process.

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

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Knowledge (history), Knowledge (nobility) and two Knowledge (religion) checks from anyone with at least one rank in those skills, please.

"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

Poor Thunk, he has no knowledge of stuff.

Do we have any character in the party that would be violently opposed to us making a temporary alliance with a ghoulish count?

Talanall
Talanall's picture

Obviously Dalvar is at least willing to talk about it.

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

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Thus far, there has been no sound or other sign of activity either from the door the former Count gestured to before, adjacent to his cell (which, if he can believed, leads down to the next sublevel of the basement) or the other one around the corner and at the end of the long hallway in the other direction, past the secret passage (which probably goes upstairs; and if Jugg's estimation is correct, to the surface).

I'm operating under the assumption that even if some of the characters are not taking special pains to remain quiet, no one is going out of their way to raise a ruckus.

Secret
I rolled 1d20+9, the result is 2, 9 = 11.

"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

Thunk is sneaking. Which likely means he's knocking things over, talking loudly, and pushing people.

deadDMwalking
deadDMwalking's picture

Darker wrote:

Poor Thunk, he has no knowledge of stuff.

Do we have any character in the party that would be violently opposed to us making a temporary alliance with a ghoulish count?

I had to read that several times. I missed the 'o' in count. I wasn't sure how to answer under the circumstances. But I'm amendable to letting him out as long as Raphael stays closest to him.

Talanall
Talanall's picture

Why Raphael?

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

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Everyone has their least favorite party member. Raphael is almost as gross as a ghoul himself, so it might not be much of a loss, from Argus' perspective.

"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

Thunk's no so fond of Ralph, but can't remember why. He seconds that the ghoul can be closest to him.

Talanall
Talanall's picture

It's because Raphael eggs on Dalvar to talk about philosophy, isn't it?

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

Fixxxer
Fixxxer's picture

The count is a persuasive bastard, I'll give him that. Feruq is not exactly anxious to ally himself with someone who is not only unnaturally animated, but perfectly at peace with that fact. But his moral compass swings pretty loosely and he has little doubt that if the count shows his ass, Thunk will make short work of him.

Cronono
Cronono's picture

Gotta know something.

I rolled 1d20+13, the result is 11, 13 = 24.
I rolled 1d20+13, the result is 14, 13 = 27.
I rolled 1d20+12, the result is 13, 12 = 25.
MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Raph knows that while the Count appears lucid now, even if he retains his intellect and wit, eventually he's going to get hungry again. Then it probably won't matter how committed he is only to munching villains and criminals. He may have every intention of limiting his prey to those no one will miss but there is no realistic way he can resist the hunger for long. But he's probably being entirely truthful about not being interested in spreading his disease to others. That, at least, usually requires that the corpse to be reanimated is left relatively intact; and the hungrier he gets, the less likely that is. Paradoxically, research indicates that the more ghouls there are in a pack, the easier it is for them to collectively decide to reanimate their victims instead of picking the bones clean. One ghoul by itself will have a hard time controlling the temptation to gorge itself at every meal.

Further, what he said about the line of succession is technically true. Lyntern is now Count Parlfray of Haranshire. The Count retains his title because he is the only remaining lord to swear fealty to the Crown in Blackstar, and under the laws of nobility he was bound to give up his title when he died (no matter how short his death was before he rose again). This would be true even if he had died and been raised, not just reanimated as an Undead creature. There is a specific example of this happening to someone else, but the details escape Raph at the moment.

Finally, the patron deity of ghouls and the disease of ghoul fever itself is Urgathoa, a choatic evil entity dedicated to Undeath, plagues of every stripe, and gluttony. Ghouls are sort of a physical manifestation of all of her favorite things. There are references everywhere in the relevant lore to people making bargains with ghouls only to back out later, and living only a short time to regret it; this isn't because she has some kind of supernatural ability to curse those who cheat her children, but because she has many servants, and word travels fast. Ghouls, in particular, sometimes claim to have some kind of intuitive connection with her, something like the opposite of a conscience nagging and picking at the back of their brains.

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

deadDMwalking
deadDMwalking's picture

Talanall wrote:

Why Raphael?

If the ghoul turns on us and kills someone, he's my first choice.

Cronono
Cronono's picture

For clarification, is the distaste for Raphael from characters or from players? If he's not fun for the players, I'm happy to change him up. If he's not fun for the characters but he is fun for the players, great.

I can totally understand why his speech in common is more annoying than Thunk's dialogue, for example.

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