Chapter 1: Harvest (OOC)

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Talanall
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Vexandi is aware of the same strategy as Leland. Girdling would be the easiest way of dealing with this issue, especially if you're trying to avoid using magic.

On that note, Vex thinks that he could also work something out with a fire spirit to speed things along. The magmin he's been calling on lately is ideal for this kind of job, and at this point Vex can bring it to the material plane for a much longer time frame. Elemental Potentate is a nice feat in this regard; he's effectively a 4th-level shaman now, so the magmin will stick with him for 4 hours.

Anything a magmin touches takes 1d8 points of fire damage, plus another 1d8/round for three to seven rounds. I think that works out to something like an average of 24 points of fire damage every time it touches something, plus another 1d6 points of heat damage per round from its aura. Figure that any given tree is going to take at least a couple of rounds worth of damage. So add seven points to that, and you're sitting around 31 total, on average.

But if the magmin gets carried away there could be some issues, especially if Vexandi is right in thinking that a forest fire would provoke the ire of the forests's other spirits.

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

Talanall
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Also, Leland would be aware that girdling a fruit-bearing tree (which these are, of course) tends to make it bear larger, more flavorful fruit. Any vitality gathered by the girdled tree's leaf canopy has nowhere to go except into its fruit, since it is cut off from its root stock. Leland isn't sure whether this would be a problem, since he doesn't know how the bleak banyan broadcasts its seeds.

Mundane cousins' fruit would be eaten by . . . birds, he thinks. Or maybe monkeys? They'd crap the seeds out onto some other tree, where they would sprout, go through an epiphytic phase, and then strangle the host tree to death as the new banyans reached maturity.

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

Darker

Talanall wrote:

I'm going to continue play. @deadDMwalking, @Arkenian, and @Darker need to get their updated sheets to me, either via PM or in a posting to the Character Sheets thread ASAP. Any characters not updated by this time on March 15, 2017 will be turned into NPCs and removed from the party at my first opportunity.


My sheet is updated, didn't you see it? Did I make a mistake?
Talanall
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Last I have from you is "Getting lighter/better armor is a priority for him anyway." Dated Feb 18.

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

Darker

It's on his character sheet. I updated it.

deadDMwalking
deadDMwalking's picture

I suck.

But I've just posted my character sheet to the character thread. Please let me know if it checks out.

Talanall
Talanall's picture

Darker, I have a PM from you with Rasnak's 1st-level sheet. That's all I have from you. Did you PM or post an updated copy of the sheet to me?

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

Darker

No, I thought you were looking at the shared copy. It still shows you have access to it.

Talanall
Talanall's picture

I rely on the copy you PM'd to me.

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

Talanall
Talanall's picture

There's a little sack containing about 20 pearls in the treasure you guys found in the trapped chest. Also a similar little sack with 14 black sapphires.

Speaking of which, none of that stuff has been checked for magical auras (Rasnak was tapped out last night). And the same goes for the stuff in the hidden room.

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

Obsidian_Spoon
Obsidian_Spoon's picture

Vex can now help with checking things for magic.

Talanall
Talanall's picture

Two of the aforementioned sapphires radiate magic (moderate). Also, the jar of caviar radiates an extremely faint aura.

Additionally, a couple of the items in the treasure room also radiate magic.
1) smooth jade rod (strong)
2) dragonbone amulet set with onyx and ruby (faint)

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

Arkenian
Arkenian's picture

Level HP

Fighter HD
I rolled 1d10, the result is 2 = 2.
Arkenian
Arkenian's picture

Ammo retrieval

I rolled 1d100, the result is 25 = 25.
Darker

Talanall wrote:

Two of the aforementioned sapphires radiate magic (moderate). Also, the jar of caviar radiates an extremely faint aura.

Additionally, a couple of the items in the treasure room also radiate magic.
1) smooth jade rod (strong)
2) dragonbone amulet set with onyx and ruby (faint)


Rasnak can cast 3 identify spells per day, so its going to take a while to work down the list. And it will leave him pretty much drain of spells and useless, so good luck convincing him to hang around the house o' undeath while its done. He'll be much more comfortable back in his clan's cave.

Maybe we should get everything we can carry and go back, then leave a scout or two to keep an eye on things here.

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

I think Rasnak's point is that less than 24 hours ago, a couple was brutally murdered in this very house. This is not a nice neighborhood.

"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

If we stay for just ONE identify on the rod that controlled fire, I think we could be done with this place before nightfall.

Darker

Rasnak needs to memorize spells first, as he does not currently have identify. I believe Rasnak prays at dusk. Then it'll still take an hour to cast.

Talanall
Talanall's picture

You also have the barn to look over. It has been set on fire already, but given the mages' demonstrated ability to put out fires, there's a pretty good chance that there is stuff to do there.

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

Talanall
Talanall's picture

Okay. The whole barn, inside and out, shows evidence of being a highly trafficked space, which means there's little chance of there being traps; they'd be getting set off constantly from having undead and people running around. But let's get a Search check from each PC member of the expedition except for Johten, Henrik, and Leland anyway, to reflect the "look around for useful stuff" directive.

I rolled 1d20+0, the result is 19 = 19.
I rolled 1d20+0, the result is 4 = 4.
I rolled 1d20+0, the result is 17 = 17.
I rolled 1d20+0, the result is 3 = 3.
I rolled 1d20+0, the result is 1 = 1.
I rolled 1d20+0, the result is 4 = 4.
I rolled 1d20+0, the result is 15 = 15.

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

Cronono
Cronono's picture

Please add two to this roll if it involves a trap.

Search (without trap bonus)
I rolled 1d20+7, the result is 7, 7 = 14.
MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Don't shortchange yourself. While you're asking for freebies, might as well request as much of a bonus as you need to succeed.

"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

Just add whatever I need to succeed to this roll.

I rolled 1d20, the result is 4 = 4.
Obsidian_Spoon
Obsidian_Spoon's picture

Searchin'...

I rolled 1d20+1, the result is 13, 1 = 14.
Fixxxer
Fixxxer's picture

For the sake of a proper visual, Johten is not lifting casks cover his head and throwing them to the ground. He's strong as shit, but he's not that strong. But I assume there are casks stacked on casks, or possibly in cask rails, and he's easily strong enough to lift them off each other and let them drop, or you yank them from their housings if it gets him access to casks stacked behind them.

Talanall
Talanall's picture

For the vast majority of these barrels, Johten IS that strong, actually. Most of the ground floor is occupied with tun barrels, which hold ~252 gallons. Those are (not that any of you would know this, since you lack the appropriate Profession skills) being used as fermentation tanks.

Most of the upper floor of this barn is filled with standard barrels, which hold around 31 ½ gallons, or rundlets, which hold 18 gallons. Call them 280 lbs. and 160 lbs., respectively. Johten would find the standard barrels heavy, but he is fully capable of lifting them above his head and walking around with them.

That said, it's much less effort for him just to knock them over and let gravity do the work, especially for the ones upstairs, which are indeed racked.

As a side note for In Character interest, bleak banyan wine runs 30 gp/glass at retail. A bottle is roughly 4 glasses; a gallon is a little more than 5 bottles, and a rundlet or barrel would therefore amount to something like 11,500 gp or 20,150 gp, respectively.

As I said, that's at retail price. But it occurs to me that Johten in particular has lived in a decent-sized city for long enough that he probably would know that a drink of this stuff is as costly as it is. I don't know if he's capable of doing the math in his head, but certainly he'd know that he's destroying thousands and thousands of GP worth of illicit drugs.

In essence, it is as if you guys have just sacked one of Pablo Escobar's cocaine plantations, killed his henchmen, looted his treasure room, and are preparing to urinate into roughly a metric ton of pure, uncut Bolivian Marching Powder.

Maybe he's not the kind of guy who'd care about that.

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

deadDMwalking
deadDMwalking's picture

Any breast-fed dwarf will tell you that once you grow up, comfort drinking is poor form. Drink because you loke it, not to escape from your problems.

Fixxxer
Fixxxer's picture

Johten's not above getting piss drunk to escape his sorrows, but I see him as someone who would have seen the results of a Banyon Wine addiction and someone who is smart enough to know that he's got sorrows enough without developing such an addiction himself. I see him as possibly someone who might not be above selling such a thing to someone who is already addicted in certain situations, but carting it out of this hell while simultaneously trying to hide it from the rest of the party certainly doesn't qualify. He's currently employed and well-fed, plus there's a treasure haul in the farmhouse basement.

Darker

At this point I am at a total loss why the party wouldn't just take a share of the treasure and get the hell out there. With a treasure like that, there's no point to waiting for the reward and its enough money to get each person anywhere they'd want to go and live the rest of their life in comfort. So... while I get that some of the party members might be duty bound types or goody-goody ones... or just out to have fun. But that's enough loot to make even the best intentions fly out the window.

Talanall
Talanall's picture

I think there are several considerations at work. Moral reservations on the part of one character or another could be in the way, here. Bleak banyan wine is horribly addictive, and although I certainly have no trouble thinking of circumstances where a non-evil character might sell it, I also have no difficulty believing that a character might feel qualms about doing so.

Also, the stuff is contraband in a major way. Enteria is poor, rural, corrupt, and rather lawless, and you've STILL been hired as mercenaries to find this plantation and destroy it after killing everyone you can kill. It's entirely plausible that you could still find a way to sell some of the bleak banyan wine if you wanted to try; if everyone in Enteria were on the monarchy's side, they would not be hiring mercenaries. Your employer is not a good choice; she's a monarchist. You'd need to find someone who's not a monarchist. And probably you want someone who isn't a member of the specific cartel that you've just hit. That means you have some detective work ahead of you.

And yeah, there's also the treasure from the basement. But there again, I didn't just hand you a huge pile of money; I handed you a huge pile of stuff that can be turned into money, but where are you going to do that? And how are you going to do it without revealing that you've stiffed your employer? I don't think you can, although if someone wanted to try (and provided that he did a good job) I'm willing to be outsmarted.

The problem you have if you pursue the option of taking the treasure and running is basically the same as if you try to fence the wine. It's a lot of money, sure, but it's mostly stuff that needs to be appraised and fenced, and you'd have significant difficulty doing that. Zeno, the town where you started, has about 2,000 residents and is the nearest place of significant size. You could probably liquidate some of the treasure there—enough to get you aboard a ship, at least—but you'd be in some danger if the Marchioness's people figure out that you're scamming them before your ship is away. And of course, you'd never be able to come back to Enteria.

This said, you are currently faced with the opportunity to make a LOT of money if you are inclined to embrace the risks, and I have tried to make it obvious that yes, this is enough loot to make some honest men turn thief. But the risks are considerable.

If you destroy the wine and trees, and then bring back everything else that you've found, your expedition as a whole will get a reward that's worth about 10% of the treasure room's contents, which you'll then split 22 ways. It'll come out to something appropriate for the encounters you've had thus far, keeping you on track for wealth by level.

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

Darker

I got to figure out why Rasnak just doesn't sneak off with some gems and his artifacts and return to the other kobolds of his faith as a hero and rich little guy. I mean, I get that people in the world of the humans might be after him, but he'd go underground pretty immediately. I mean, like not just figuratively, but literally too. I can't speak for his kobold companion, but it seems like he'd have similar thoughts.

Cronono
Cronono's picture

The best answer is enemies. Rasnak knows exactly how much the humans want to destroy these goods and how much the humans want to kill those with these goods - his pay is multiplied by the huge number of people in the party, plus the rather large number of people with rather large weapons. Rasnak likely doesn't want to invite that wrath on his people.

Talanall
Talanall's picture

I dunno, would gems really be that useful to him and his clan? Do kobolds buy stuff? From whom?

Also, where are the other kobolds of his faith? I was kind of under the impression that his those of his coreligionists who survived the undead attack were scattered, so how's he going to return to them?

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

MinusInnocence
MinusInnocence's picture

Strictly speaking, even a cut of the take worth enough to catch everyone up in terms of the wealth by level guidelines would make them fantastically wealthy compared to a lot of other folks.

In an economy where minimum wage is set at a silver coin per eight hours of labor, being anywhere near wealth appropiate for a 2nd level character (not 900gp; just enough to account for the trip from 0xp to tleveling up for the first time) could be a tidy little nest egg. Maybe not enough to retire, but very comfortable living for months or years.

"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

This also is true, and one of the reasons why many of my PCs and NPCs are not (primarily anyway) interested in monetary gain.

A 1st-level NPC who works for a living using the Craft or Profession skill earns about 390 gp/year. One who makes a living using Perform earns ~200 gp/year.

Buying the freehold to a house costs ~1,000 gp, so you're looking at 5 to 7 years as a renter before you can amass the funds you need, as a crafter/professional. And probably more like 7 to 10 years for the performer. How long it takes is probably also related to whatever the cost of living is like, of course. This also assumes that nothing catastrophic happens to you during that time in the way of sickness, injury, getting conscripted to march off and die in some stupid fucking war, or having someone figure out where you're hiding your cash and just steal it off you.

An adventurer like the party's members can do it in roughly two weeks, provided he doesn't die, go insane, get used as a repository for some nightmare bug to lay its eggs in, contract lycanthropy, etc. And I think it fair to remark that retiring really is a pretty sensible option. You also get your money in a lump sum this way, which means that you don't have the wastage involved from having to pay rent while you're saving up.

So I think it's totally legitimate for someone like Rasnak to finish one adventure, look at the risks of adventuring and say, "Fuuuuuck this. I got paid, and I am DONE." This said, your average 1,000 gp home has two rooms and a shitty thatched roof. If you want a really nice place, you'll want to save up.

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

Obsidian_Spoon
Obsidian_Spoon's picture

Vexandi sort of has the opposite problem. He doesn't really care about money. With the survival skill, he doesn't need room and board, and I imagine there's not much of a currency economy in his home region, if at all. He knows what money is, and he's smart enough to realize that in the wider world it can be useful, but ultimately, he doesn't think much of it.

As a player, though, I do care about money for my character. He's gonna need to buy stuff as we progress.

Fixxxer
Fixxxer's picture

There's also the potential for a middle ground. Seems like it might be possible for one, some or all of us to skim a little off the top in the form of some of the more easily-concealed wealth (gems and whatnot), keeping them for ourselves and delivering the rest of the loot to our benefactor with a report that what we're presenting is all we found.

Just to muddy the waters a little.

Talanall
Talanall's picture

I don't think you'll have much to worry about unless Vexandi develops a habit of spending his cash on random bullshit. Most of the time, I try to keep reasonably close to wealth by level charts, in terms of the amount of cash and goods that you actually get to keep.

As Fixxxer suggests, it's possible that at least some of you might skim off the top. You're in a good situation for a little judicious lying. There's still some question about how much the Marchioness's people know about what's out here; if they just thought you were going to pour out the wine and maybe find the contents of that chest, then potentially you could keep all the other gewgaws with them none the wiser. They might not have known that the hidden treasure room was there.

On the other hand, if they DID know it was there and you show up with significantly less than expected . . . you're probably going to be declared outlaws, and maybe even have bounty hunters sent after you. More bounty hunters, I mean. The cartel that this stuff belonged to is going to want to do bad things to you regardless of what you actually do with all the treasure.

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

deadDMwalking
deadDMwalking's picture

If they knew about the 'hidden room' and didn't tell us about it, then how could they be sure we'd find it? They'll be sitting there, smirking, then send someone to investigate and only later learn it's all gone. Gone with us? Or did someone else make it back to the farm and abscond with the loot?

They won't be able to pin that on us.

But ultimately, the good graces of a monarchist might be worth more than the money in short order. So I'm not particularly interested in skimming anything off the top.

Cronono
Cronono's picture

Do you need me to roll for Vandersrike to comply with Mbali's request?

Talanall
Talanall's picture

No, because he already rolled. :P

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

Cronono
Cronono's picture

Is this thing on?

Talanall
Talanall's picture

Yeah, it's on. I was waiting on someone. No longer.

I rolled 1d20+2, the result is 7, 2 = 9.

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

Talanall
Talanall's picture

Okay, at this point there are sufficient pruning knives, broad axes, and similar tools so that everyone in the expedition has a cutting tool that should be serviceable, especially once they have been cleaned, oiled, and touched up on a whetstone. That's necessary because skeletons don't have the mental capability to recognize that a tool needs sharpening and do the appropriate thing (and probably the overseers and mages didn't care). Fortunately, Rory had one packed. She was like Barbie—the bitch had everything. This will be a considerable help to your characters as they try to kill acres upon acres of living trees.

In the XP and Rewards thread, there's a bunch of stuff that I'm sure you'll want to load into the cart you found at the barn. Notably, there's food: easily enough for the entire expedition to eat until you make it back to civilization. Call it 107 lbs. each of dried peaches, applies, smoked fish, smoked beef and flour. A day's ration for a Medium creature is 1 pound of food along these lines; there are the 9 hobs, Vandersrike, Vexandi, Rasnak, Johten, Evrinel, Henrik and Leland, for a total of 16 members in the expedition, so you have a very solid 33 days' worth of food here.

That said, the apricots and peaches are still sealed up, and any preserved food is valid as a trade item in Enteria, provided that it's in good shape. Each barrel is worth something like 1400 gp to 1750 gp because these are not only preserved, but also a bit of a luxury good. On the other hand, they're tasty and you've been dying like flies out here. So maybe you'd rather live it up a little.

The wax and soap, which are in half-sized barrels called firkins, are also valuable, at 55 gp and 108 gp, respectively; they are basically worth about 5 sp per pound and 1 gp per pound. You'll want to consider that as you decide what is and is not worth taking with you.

The contents of the treasure room, once you get them bundled up in some semblance of neatness, probably weigh in at a total of only a hundred pounds or so. Their value is something you'd need to figure out via appraisal, but from the sheer proportion of them that incorporate precious metals, rare wood, gemstones and the like into their construction, it's safe to say that they are all valuable.

Finally, there are the dead mages' personal effects. You have apparently managed to capture the gnome's spellbook; obviously, that's something your employers specifically want you to bring back. But aside from the assorted potions and other unidentified magical goods on hand, you have garments and weapons that may be of use to some of the party's members. There's a morningstar appropriate for Medium creatures, a cold iron dagger sized for Small, and a sling and stones, also sized Small.

This also would be a good time for anyone who wants to skim off the top, as previously discussed, to do so.

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

Cronono
Cronono's picture

Vadersrike will take the dagger and the sling & stones, barring objection.

Darker

Rasnak gathers the items that show as magic so he can ID them. He also takes the additional pearls, as they are going to be needed for the casting of the identification spells.

deadDMwalking
deadDMwalking's picture

For my part, Henrik is going to insist on opening the fruit. If we're turning it all over to the authorities anyway, anything he eats now is a 100% split, versus 10% if it gets liquidated.

Yum yum.

deadDMwalking
deadDMwalking's picture

For my part, Henrik is going to insist on opening the fruit. If we're turning it all over to the authorities anyway, anything he eats now is a 100% split, versus 10% if it gets liquidated.

Yum yum.

Obsidian_Spoon
Obsidian_Spoon's picture

Vex might not quite grasp percentages, splits, contracts, and legalities of the action, but he likes fruit, so he supports this decision.

Fixxxer
Fixxxer's picture

Johten likes sweets.

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