Eryndir is unsure of Able's recommendation to kill the worms and move on. He wouldn't stop anyone from doing it, but I want to try just one more roll to see if I can learn more.
Nature - to see if Eryndir has ever heard of a creature that can do something like this, or a phenomenon that would cause such a thing.
Not a great roll, but happy to try it.
Nope. He ain't heard shit.
To summarize -
Trigger sucks at rolling dice.
Charn would like to take the worms which spin metal instead of silk.
There is a metallic webbing blocking your path.
Caleb won't object to Charn taking a sample back to town but failing any obvious way for us to cut through the metal ribbons without being sliced to death, he thinks we should backpedal and go around.
"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag and begin slitting throats." - H.L. Mencken
You would have to have something ridiculously sharp to cut through the metal webbing. That stuff is strong.
Good thing we found that alien crystal dagger! But they might still pop free when the tension releases and decapitate one of us.
I think you guys posted these at the precise same moment where I posted to the IC thread.
Stealth checks from everyone, please.
The roll doesn't account for Caleb's penalty for heavy armor or shield.
You'll have to roll at disadvantage due to the heavy armor.
Oh, ok. Here goes.
Do I get a Mask of the Wild benefit, such as advantage, or am I rolling straight Stealth?
Yup. You're rolling with advantage.
Caleb's 14 is pretty good for the group - this could work out well.
C'mon, Eryndir the Ninja!
Charn's 9 benefits from his Dex bonus, so a 10.
We'll proceed once we get Able's rolls.
Can someone roll? I'm in Morocco. Trying to keep up, but it isn't super-easy.
Rolling for the fiend.
Alrighty. This is a group challenge, which you passed. In a group challenge, the group has to have more successes than failures and everyone then passes. Group challenges tend to make things easier on sneaky characters because the loud guy wearing full plate doesn't automatically negate the chances of the sneaky character getting the drop on somebody - a key part of the class fantasy.
In the current case, everyone succeeded thanks to Caleb's improbably good roll with disadvantage. Even though Able did not roll very well, the DC was only 10 - which Charn made just barely! Consequently, you aren't creating an insane racket as you go plunging through the underbrush. You're right about the ambient noise level of being in a forest that's teeming with life of various types.
IC update incoming.
I inferred that we're still too far away from the source of chanting for Caleb to make out the words but I would like to try anyway. Religion?
He can't pinpoint who is doing the chanting, but he's pretty sure it isn't a prayer from an Established Faith. He can't quite figure out what it might be.
Able is (unusually) willing to pretend to be alone and lost to start interaction with the chanters, with the plan of having everyone else ambush them when they think they've cowed the 'only' enemy.
Eryndir will make his way down the rest of the embankment, over that drop, and to the edge of the clearing. Hopefully, that will give him a better vantage point to see where the chanting is coming from.
What rolls would you like?
EDIT: Would any group member be willing to toss in a Help action? Perhaps use some of the rope from one of our packs to help lower Eryndir down to the edge of the clearing? Something else to assist in Perception, or whatever else he'll need to do to figure out what's going on? Whatever rolls our illustrious DM asks for, Advantage might be nice.
Able is willing to help if asked in character. He won't volunteer it.
Stealth will work for now. Your wood elf racial applies.
Stealth roll with advantage.
I guess being a wood elf is pretty good in the woods.
Eryndir makes it to the edge of the river bank unseen. The river isn't wide - maybe 20 feet across and its slow moving. The water is beautifully clear. Upstream, maybe 100 yards away, there appears to be some sort of priest conducting a religious ceremony in the river. There are a small number of demihumans wearing motley colors that give away their affiliation to Eryndir.
There also appears to be someone sitting down or kneeling with the multicolored assortment of communists. Eryndir can't tell much about him, except that he's a demihuman of some kind and he's got what appear to be antlers.
Is it possible to estimate what constitutes "a small number"? Does it look like 3-5? 5-10?
At 100 yards and without a perception check, you're at between 5 and 10.
Of course, we could always ask Legolas:
My Perception modifier is pretty good. Happy to give it a shot.
Would also like to know if I can determine anything else about Antler Guy.
Your 15 result makes you think there are 6 guys total. One doing the chanting, four guys in motley, and the antler dude. The antlers on the dude vaguely remind you of the antlers that Archdruid Taron wears.
My non-expert opinion is that this is a Carcosan murder cult dedicated to the King in Yellow, a la the first season of True Detective. Normally I would be all for disrupting cult rituals and saving someone's life but in this scenario the person about to be sacrificed is a Communist so let's just pretend we didn't see anything.
Should I change your icon to Woody Harrelson?
No way, I'm definitely Matthew McConaughey. Death created time to grow the things it would kill, we can smell the psychosphere, etc.
Victim is a druid, not a communist.
Druids can be Communists too. It's the current year.
I guess these days you can call anything Communist. Of course, that tends to be true historically where any number of groups have claimed to be Communist but were anything but. I think these Communists are probably Stalinists. I guess we'll find out!
Question as to how far Eryndir can get, working through difficult terrain, and whether he can reach the ritualists at the same time Able arrives there.
If this doesn't go well I guess it would be better for Caleb to be closer to the action. He will make his way down the hill and begin his approach now that it's clear Eryndir and Able are already on their way.
Candidly, I didn't anticipate this course of action. It has taken me some time to recover.
It seems like the best way to resolve this is through a skill challenge. You will need to accrue 9 successes before you accrue 3 failures. At 3 failures, the filthy communists will begin the process of murdering you. Each accrued success will turn the odds in your favor, but 9 successes means you will talk through your problems with the Thousandfold Men of Industry.
We will use the same rules previously posted. Please feel free to ask questions about them.
At the beginning of our skill challenge, Able is 30 yards away, or 90 feet, from the communists. Able is moving through the riverbed, which is normal terrain. He is adjacent to the rambling river, which is difficult terrain. 10 feet to the East of Able is the treeline and the slope. The other PCs are in the woods, 60 yards away, or 180 feet. All of the woods are difficult terrain.
Same rules as before -- we get to ask the DM questions about our attempts and find out what the difficulty of those attempts would be. If we don't like the odds, we can shift to a different action. We each get to use the HELP action once.
If we front-load our HELP actions and cherry pick easy DC actions, we have a good chance of starting out with 4 successes and zero failures. From there, we can know that at least if this turns to combat, we'll have some advantages.
I'm happy to HELP in the first action, if anyone can think of an action they'd like to do. Or I can try to roll Stealth and take a HELP action from someone else to try and get us closer to the Communists without being seen.
Skill challenge Action 1 (Deception)
"Well this is a good start. Now I know just a little of your ideology and I like what I hear. Someone like me could be helpful to you and your cause. What do you say, 'from each according to his ability?' I think you'll find my abilities...significant."
Could the information I provided from my scouting be considered HELP if I sacrifice my action this turn to have done it? Could me reporting back on my scouting be considered the start of the skill challenge?
Negative, but if you can simply say you're helping someone else with their action if you can come up with a way to do so.
When Caleb catches up to Able and is close enough to speak without shouting at the other people, he would like to either try Insight to discern the nature of the relationship between the person wearing the antlers and the rest of the gathering (like whether this is a legit human sacrifice we stumbled upon and if he is totally unwilling or not) or a Medicine check to try to give him a once-over and see what his condition might be like (such as if his face shows any obvious signs of having been beaten or kept in rough captivity, if he looks like he has had enough food and water recently, etc).
Are either of those Easy?
I'll wait and see what Charn wants to do, I think, and whether he wants to make his way to the river with the others, or remain in the treeline with Eryndir. I don't think I can HELP those in the river without giving up my hiding spot.
If Charn wants to to stay in the treeline, I'll find a way to HELP him. If he wants to go with the others, I'll try a Stealth, taking advantage of my, er, advantage in the dense brush.
If nothing else, I can stay hidden and if things go to shit, I'll have a good ambush point when the fighting starts.
Caleb's medicine check is so easy as to not necessitate a roll. Antlerman has recently been viciously assaulted. He is currently at or around 1 hp. Unfortunately, this does not help Caleb contribute a success to the challenge.
The insight check is also easy.
Insight it is, then!
15 is pretty good.
The Druid is definitely a sacrifice. Caleb can tell that the commies very much so intend to murder him in cold blood. However, Mr. Antlerhead over here is faking the fact that he's scared.
1 Success, 0 Failures.