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Friday, 4th June, 2010, 02:00 AM #531
Defender (Lvl 8)
Without hesitating, Grakk jumps down and breaks the chains, which bind th girl, being careful not to hurt her. He then picks her up and brings her to the edge so that she can stand on her own. He then jumps out of the pit. Standing again next to the girl, he asks her "What happened here that led to the point where you were bound in chains at the mercy of the fallen cleric?"
"Yes," adds Morvannon as he looks around. "Would you be lady, um, Porphyria, by chance?"
Up close, the girl proves to be a very attractive human woman, not long into adulthood. Somehow, she manages to appear relatively clean and composed, despite being covered in filth from the pit and no small amount of Grakk's blood, among other liquids of less certain origin. Or perhaps it is because of the liquid mess; her light dress of purple and yellow silks is rather flimsy, and clings to her ample curves in rather closer fashion than its designer ever intended. She even smells nice, at least when compared to Grakk's blood-covered hides and the stench of no-longer-fresh corpses.
She gives Grakk's arm a squeeze as he sets her down on the dry stones. "Yes, I am Porphyria Donnervale. As for how I came to be here... Well, um, we were..."
She gets a reprieve from her stammered explanation when, at that moment, a clatter of booted footsteps echoes down the tomb from behind you. They pause, and there are a few inaudible shouts before one clear one comes through: "Here! In here, milord!" A sleepy-looking guardsman in his nightclothes, carrying a bare sword, emerges from the passage through which you arrived not long ago. He stops and gapes at the situation, but before anyone can say anything, a dozen more men come barging into the room behind them. Notable among these arrivals are the dwarf you interrogated, and whose testimony led you to this tomb, and a tall, well-groomed man in a velvet doublet, hose, and fine suede boots. His clothes are rumpled and slightly soiled at the collar and hem, as though he had been in them all day and had either fallen asleep in them or not yet been to bed.
"Daddy!" Porphyria shouts, and runs to the velvet-clad man, throwing herself into his arms and curling her head beneath his chin. "Oh, Daddy, it's so terrible! Rosaria isn't really a person, she's a terrible monster and she kidnapped me and they tied me to this altar and these horrible undead men came and they smelled really bad and they killed some people and were going to kill me, only these adventurers came and rescued me! They killed the monsters and they even killed Rosaria when she, I mean it, tried to stab them in the back and it was a really close fight and I thought they might lose but then they won and there was this really big ball of fire and the big smelly one kept coming back to life and swinging his big sword and the little one went stabbity-stab-stab and then they won, and now I'm safe, and you're here and... and... Oh, Daddy, I thought I'd never get to see you again! And my best friend is a monster, and now she's dead! And she said she never really liked me anyways!"
If the man is confused or surprised by this sudden torrent of words, he doesn't show it. He hugs the filthy young woman with real affection, while looking around in shock and confusion at the room -- the pool, the dead bodies, the shelves. "What is this place? This wasn't here when we buried your grandmother, Lauto rest her soul. Where did it come from?"
Porphyria doesn't meet her father's eyes. "We, uh, we found it Daddy. Well, I suppose it was Rosaria, really. We used to go into the tombs to, um, study? Where no one could interrupt us, you see."
"Study? the man, who must be Lord Donnervale, says disbelievingly. "Porphyria Edwina Donnervale, were you practicing magic again? I've told you, girl... Ah, but we'll finish that conversation later. Tell me about finding this place."
"It was a loose stone in the walls, and Rosaria leaned on it one day and it fell in, and there was a tunnel behind it, so we pulled down the other stones nearby, and this was here all along! Only this pool was just water then, and there weren't any torches in the sconces, and the bookshelf wasn't here, either. I put in the bookshelf and the torches, but I didn't make the water all icky and evil, Daddy, honest! And then last week, Rosaria started trying to keep me away from here, and she wouldn't say why, just that it was a surprise for me, and then when she brought me here today, they... It was like this. With the monsters and the dead people and the priests locked up in the back and the pool all glowy and evil and..."
"Priests? What priests?" Donnervale interrupts, breaking the flow of sound for a moment.
"Oh! Oh, I'm so silly, how could I forget! There are some priests locked in the back, there, behind that iron grate thingy! They were praying and chanting for a while, but their chanting must have interfered with the ritual, because the nasty dead guy stopped it and went back there and hit them all a lot and had to come start over. He said he was going to kill them next after me and gain even more power and then he would be immortal, but he can't really do that, can he?"
Donnervale gestures during this speech, and several of the guardsmen step forward, excusing themselves past you with polite apologies, and break the lock off of the iron gate at the back. They go inside, out of sight, and emerge later, each carrying a black-robed priest of Lauto, limp and unconscious. "There's three more back there, my lord," one reports, and the rest of the priests are quickly hauled out. There are five in all, all alive but unconscious, with assorted bruises and signs of having gone several days without food. A bit of cold water and judicious application of the healing potions from the corner wakes them up, and they prove to be what remains of High Priest Belingras' investigative team.
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Friday, 4th June, 2010, 05:24 AM #532
Defender (Lvl 8)
Saturday, 5th June, 2010, 02:58 AM #533
Defender (Lvl 8)
Lord Donnervale issues some quiet orders, and the nightshirted guardsmen set aside their swords and start the gristly task of clearing the room's corpses. Donnervale himself approaches you, still holding his daughter protectively. "I am forever in your debt, strangers, for saving my daughter. She is... very precious to me." He looks away for a moment, gets a grip on his emotions, then turns back to you. "There is no way such an undertaking as this should have been able to take place right under my nose without my knowledge. Yet I swear to you, I knew nothing of it until tonight. I will get to the bottom of this. Of course, Lauto's church will have full access to my findings; I'm quite sure I will need the Temple's aid in understanding these matters. I'm just a businessman, not a theologian. But... In the meantime, it would be... I would be very grateful if you could, erm, keep these events in confidence, between yourselves and Lauto's church. I'm not asking you to lie, mind you; just... be discreet, if you would. There are a number of unscrupulous people in this city who would not hesitate to use a tale like this to tear down my family. Oh, it wouldn't sink us completely, but a word in the right ears could cost us contracts and friendships hard-won over a lifetime's work. Not to mention what it would do to poor Porphyria. She's such a gentle soul, bless her. As a small token of my thanks, I hope you'll take this small gift. You deserve more, but I'm afraid you catch me unprepared."
The girl in question rolls her eyes in embarrassment at being discussed so, but you notice that she takes care to do it behind her father's back, as he unbuckles and hands to you a flat purse that jingles with the distinctive dull clink of platinum coins.
"May I offer you some of our guest rooms for the night? Perhaps fresh clothes and hot water for bathing?" he goes on, eyeing Grakk in particular. "I'm afraid my men and I will be hard at work cleaning up this night's messes for some time yet, but there's no reason for you not to take your ease, if you will."
Kamotz shakes his head regretfully. "I must return these men to the Temple at once. The high priest has been anxiously awaiting word of them, and he will likely want to send someone to speak to you and your men, and particularly Miss Donnervale here. After she's rested, of course." Vrrsk't nods and agrees, and between the two of them, they bundle the weary investigators homeward.
Saturday, 5th June, 2010, 07:56 PM #534
Defender (Lvl 8)
In the morning, those of you who elected to stay the night are treated to a lavish breakfast of eggs, bacon, roast meat, fresh fruit, light wines, and fine imported tea. The servants treat you with unctuous courtesy, and when you have eaten your fill, they bring out several large, paper-wrapped packages for you, along with a note in an unfamiliar hand. Those of you who elected to go elsewhere receive the same note by liveried courier.
Sunday, 6th June, 2010, 03:08 AM #535
Defender (Lvl 8)
Grakk recieves the gifts and thanks them. "These will come in handy as I continue my training. The little girl...I am glad to hear thet she is ok. Please let her father know that I would be there to provide protection for her should the need ever arrise."
With that, he turns to his comrades and states. "I'd gladly adventure with any of you should our paths cross again."
Grakk says goodbye in the goliath way of doing so, then steps out the door and heads back to the tavern.
Characters: Kruk (Lvl 11), Max (Lvl 11), Lerrick (Lvl 6)
Sunday, 6th June, 2010, 07:55 AM #536
Waghalter (Lvl 7)
Monday, 7th June, 2010, 09:52 AM #537
Guide (Lvl 11)
"Each man, one way.
Each horse, one stance.
Each church, one buddha.
Each master to his own technique."
Tuesday, 8th June, 2010, 01:27 AM #538
Novice (Lvl 1)
Morvannon looks over the note, a distant look on his face.
*Perhaps those guards we killed were part of the conspiracy. I can only hope.*
*you done with the death-worshipers now?*
*I think so. This 'Zal'Ekthees' is something to keep an eye on, though.*
*you have no idea*
With a sigh, the young half-elf shrugs into his new armor and joins Grakk on his way to the tavern.
Tuesday, 8th June, 2010, 04:23 AM #539
Waghalter (Lvl 7)
Wednesday, 9th June, 2010, 06:30 AM #540
edit: I'm working on a new sheet for vixo on the new wiki, but it's not done yet