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PF1E Crowns of Ice - A Tale of Blood and Betrayal - Arvid's Song

Archon Basileus

First Post
GARMMÖRK

The healer must have been prepared by the girl for he barely flinched when he saw the shaggy head.

“To put simply…” – his eyes roll back and forth between beast and girl – “…we’ve been persecuted by a group of dubious intentions, and we are inclined to believe that your lawgiver is a probationary member of their coterie. You can ratify my words by running through his personal belongings. Servants speak of nefarious experiments down below his cellars, now adapted into prisons.” – he studies Garmmörk with a cautious posture. “The nature of such experiments we cannot fathom” – his manners are controlled and distant, giving the impression of a powerful and influential presence.

“I have heard he’s been intent on acquiring onyx stones, as well as dead men’s preserved parts – fingers, ashes, and so on. Some even say his hirelings would pay handsomely to fetch bodies -fresh or otherwise – but we found no proof of such activities.” – he still studies Garmmörk, keeping the beast at a safe distance. Garmmörk’s head still pounds, echoing concerns and restlessness.

“I know not what this suggests… My background allows me knowledge, but the darker varieties of wisdom still elude me.” – he goes towards a cabinet, retrieving a small flask. He then leaves it over a table, always keeping a distance and glancing at Garmmörk. He leaves the small container, offering it to the beast with a gesture and taking several steps back.

“Here. This might aid you. It is a healing concoction. Effects are slower than those a warlock could obtain with magic and runic mysteries, but still… Go on, take it.” – he falls silent, studying the creature’s reactions.

[MENTION=24380]Neurotic[/MENTION] [MENTION=8058]Queenie[/MENTION] [MENTION=2820]Fenris[/MENTION] [MENTION=6855204]tglassy[/MENTION]
 

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Neurotic

I plan on living forever. Or die trying.
OOC: This is second time you mention the headache :) And this offers stinks of suggestion spell or other manipulation :) Anyhow, Garmmörk is not about to enter the room.


"Growl! I've seen the prison - no labs. Girl, bring the potion to the window."

As he takes the vial he moves back fully to the roof.
"I'm leaving. If you find out where the cult is meeting, tell the proprietor of a Broken Barrel to fly the white flag. He doesn't know what it means or for whom he does it, but he gets paid to listen to such requests. I'm visiting the Lawgiver now. Good bye."

Short scramble can be heard on the roof as the beast disappears into the night. Even as he raced through the night he considers that with every interaction he gets more confused.
"Is this man really what he appears to be? Or just a good front. Is this really a healing or some new poison? The Lawgiver is not innocent, but he may be only an initiate. This one will be of Arvid to disentangle."

He checks what is happening at the Lawgivers house, looking for signs of clearing up the evidence, but has not enough time to wait whole night, just in case Arvid is called in. Even now there could be a messenger returning with the news Arvid is nowhere to be found. "Quick and dirty then."

Garmmörk drops into Ulms house and minute later Arvid strolls out heading for the Lawgivers house.

OOC: waiting here to see if they remained silent about the boys running away or there is a bustle about fleeing prisoners. Also, what kind of headache? Pounding, blinding migraine? Or just dull throbbing - I may need to see some real healer, a priest :)





[sblock=Actions]
Just in case its needed...
Will roll: 1D20+6 = [1]+6 = 7
Sense Motive: 1D20+5 = [12]+5 = 17
- great will save :)

[/sblock]
 

Archon Basileus

First Post
GARMMÖRK

[Wink-wink! :p I gotta use smooth ways to talk about effects, considering the style of the game… It would be no fun to just blurt something like that out. Besides… Who knows what’s truly happening, hehehe? P.S.: should have seen the will roll I made for you in secret early on, hehehe.]

The Lawgiver’s household sees no rest this night. Servants and guards stroll around, trying to understand how the escape happened. The guards victimized by Garmmörk’s and Ulm’s actions have nothing to add, leaving a disgruntled Lawgiver to desperation as morning approaches and the prisoners are not found. No one else has been warned though. Apparently, the Lawgiver seems to fear any damage to his position. Because of this , soon enough he’s forced to reveal the reach of his influence – at least to the trained eye. A considerable contingent of men and women move through the streets inquiring about the boys’ whereabouts. The Lawgiver has more people on his side than one could imagine – at least, as far as this crisis extends.

And that’s not all. As soon as the Lawgiver’s men begin their search, someone else makes an opposite bet. The night ends on a high note, tense and promising violence to be had in the days to follow, as another competitor does the same thing and tries to recover the prisoners. Garmmörk can’t say who’s this other person, but it’s presence is visible through two fights that erode down at the docks, near sunrise, dismissed by everyone as drunk fistfights gone wrong.

Arvid is as clueless as his nocturnal companion. He pays the Lawgiver a visit as the night goes by. Servants ran in and out the whole night, but none took a massive amount of objects from the place, meaning that any proof against the Lawgiver would still be in there.

@Neurotic @tglassy @Queenie @Fenris
 
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Neurotic

I plan on living forever. Or die trying.
OOC: You need to read more carefully :) Arvid came to Lawgivers house in the middle of the night. :) Unless headache got too strong - yeah, that's it!


Arvid went toward the Lawgivers house as soon as he changed. But the head, oh, the pounding. He veered away into the temple and woke up the resident priest.
"I'm sorry to bother you this late, but I seem to be ill. The head is hurting me enough to wake me up. And my mind is all muddy. I remember that I got this brew some time ago, but I cannot remember what it does. So I brought it along - maybe it can cure the headache. Do what you can, I will donate to the temple for the services."


In the morning he went to visit the Lawgiver
"Good morning Lawgiver. Not to bother you, but I was out yesterday night to see the priest. And I noticed some activity in the streets and around your house. Is everything alright? Are we safe from the vagabonds? Can I help?"
Lawgiver knows Arvid. His renown as Jarl sons teacher and all around pleasant and just man is known to all. Most good people of the town will react positively. Few others...not so much. He may be seen as harmless gossiper to most. But to those who have something to hide, having Arvid around is a big risk.
 

Archon Basileus

First Post
[Hehehe, sorry, I thought YOU wanted to forward the scene! We'll pick it up during night, then. Also, headache became a throbbing sensation as night went by, almost as a hangover.]

[EDIT: *Archon edits original text.* 'What, me? I didn't say anything about morning, did I? Nonono, sir, I did NOT! :D' Just kidding. I fixed it.]

Enviado de meu GT-I9505 usando Tapatalk
 
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Neurotic

I plan on living forever. Or die trying.
OOC: Nah, it's fine. I just went to the priest to have my head checked :p

This turned into full mini adventure, if you want to finish it, by all means. I just meant you can wrap it up if you want. I can do it if you give me the info. But I trust you can do a good job with it. Failing to find the cult or finding the cult, but leaving corrupted lawgiver in place... Both. Neither.

I would of course play this out B-)
 

Archon Basileus

First Post
GARMMÖRK/ARVID

Within the dark, barely lit house on the outskirts of the city, the woods block most of the noise. Silence surrounds Arvid as translucid hands easing the pain.

The priest’s shack lies in the dark, the faint light of a fire pit emanating from its insides. Within the small house, the smell of smoke and herbs is heavy, making Arvid’s heart leap a bit. Everything, from dried leaves to animal skins, hang from roof and walls, making the place even smaller.

"I'm sorry to bother you this late, but I seem to be ill. The head is hurting me enough to wake me up. And my mind is all muddy. I remember that I got this brew some time ago, but I cannot remember what it does. So I brought it along - maybe it can cure the headache. Do what you can, I will donate to the temple for the services."

The priest evaluates Arvid’s state with care and concern after dismissing his excuses and concerns. He then glances at the vial, opens it, smells it, tastes a bit of its content. His eyes widen as the flickers his tongue.

“Where did you find this?” – the robed priest sits back and washes his mouth with water. “No matter.” – he turns, and begins to mash a few herbs with a small pilum. After some vigorous pounding and hot water, he delivers a thick beverage to Arvid which, after drunk, slowly begins to awaken the man.

“The flask you hold is a healing medicine. It has side effects. Did you take any of it tonight? It would explain the vagueness of your thoughts. Makes the body numb and the mind slow, despite helping close your wounds.”

The priest explains that his state was most likely the result of a certain mixture of plants. “This is sacred knowledge” – he mentions on a stern voice. “You shouldn’t be dabbling with it.”

After excusing himself, Arvid feels his strength returning, little by little. As morning comes, his wits are about him once more, despite sleep deprivation and bodily stress.

***

Once at the Lawgiver’s place, Arvid is well received. Bread, ale and fish are placed on a table at the main hall, and the fires are kindled to heat him up, despite the time of the year.

Soon after, the lawgiver arrives, dressed in a rugged yellow shirt and showing signs of exhaustion.

"Good morning Lawgiver. Not to bother you, but I was out yesterday night to see the priest. And I noticed some activity in the streets and around your house. Is everything alright? Are we safe from the vagabonds? Can I help?"

The man scratches his balding head, hinting sweat in the way it shines against the fire.

“Don’t worry, Arvid… everything is fine… I… appreciate you coming. As well as the jarl’s concern for my well-being…” – he sits his heavy body on the opposite side of the table, takes a piece of bread and, without eating it, leaves it on the table. “I wonder how is he today.” – he reaches for a goblet, but gives up drinking from it half way. “We are safe of course..” – he says nervously, gets the piece of bread and motions to eat it, stopping again. “You… Do you know of any trouble around? I mean, can I help in anyway?” – he asks, trying to appear calm, but failing to hide his concerns from Arvid.

[MENTION=24380]Neurotic[/MENTION] [MENTION=8058]Queenie[/MENTION] [MENTION=2820]Fenris[/MENTION] [MENTION=6855204]tglassy[/MENTION]
 

Neurotic

I plan on living forever. Or die trying.
At the priests
"No, no, it was given to me. I wouldn't dabble in such sacred matters..." Arvid makes the sign to ward off evil
"...I didn't take any. Do you anything about some new healer in town? Somewhere around or in Lavenders alley?"
Arvid returns to memories of earlier this night. He wasn't hit by anything and he was in that room for mere seconds. "The girl...could she poison me? Cast on me without me noticing? How?" he thinks as he starts to relax.
Then something the healer said penetrates the fog
"Side effects would make you susceptible to suggestion? Interrogation?"

Finally, as the headache recedes, Arvid thanks the man, pays generous sum and takes his leave.

At Lawgivers
"Well, no, nothing I could point my finger on. But there seems to be general unease in the populace. Just this morning as I started your way, I moved away for two maids carrying a wash basket - no sense in me holding them up on the stairs with this leg..." he thumps the leg in question
"...and one said that her brother swears he saw a ritual of some kind in the middle of the night. I didn't remain to hear where or when, but then the other said her husbands father returned late one night and was walking from the shore when he saw, and I quote, 'that darned night beast stalking again'. He of course could have been drunk, but there are lots of talks about some beast or man or both prowling in the night."

Arvid takes a bite, slice of fish on bread, followed by small gulp of ale observing the sweating man. After last night, last thing he needs is another poison. But he needs to appear calm and normal and so he does.
Time for the last nail in the coffin.
"And that thing with those boys burning the ship! Without a thought for secrecy or about the cargo. I would like a talk with them. I'm interested in why they d...assuming you didn't already sent them to Neifelheim."

OOC: Neifelheim is realm of the dead in norse mythology
 

Archon Basileus

First Post


THE PRIEST

In response to the man’s questions, the priest elucidates that he has heard rumors about a healer doing the gods’ work in Lavender’s Alley, although he did not believe it at first. The news struck him with concern when he first heard them, but he paid no mind to them as he learned that the man could really fix the sick and diseased. It was not uncommon to find skilled herbalists capable of curing the most regular afflictions.

Concoctions like the one Arvid brought with him, though, were a different matter. Such secrets were only used to induce a deeper bond with the gods, to cure the ailments of the soul. They were not meant to be sold, gifted or used indiscriminately. Such mixtures could bring a man to accept subtle commands, to obey them without taking notice, and even to confess deep truths and deliver dangerous secrets.

THE LAWGIVER

"...and one said that her brother swears he saw a ritual of some kind in the middle of the night.
Arvid’s words seem to pick the Lawgiver’s interest, since he bends over the table and finally chews on a fruit. “Ritual? Of what kind?” – his manners aren’t any less tense, but at least he seems focused now.

I would like a talk with them. I'm interested in why they d...assuming you didn't already sent them to Neifelheim.

“No, no, my friend, they are very much alive…” – he hesitates for a moment, marking his words and thoughts. “I wouldn’t take the Jarl’s right to pass judgement, even though the responsibility has often fallen to me, with his condition and Einar’s concerns, as you know too well…” – he pauses for a moment, a rapacious glimmer passing through his eyes.

“Alas, your request would not come to pass… If only it depended on me, my friend, I’d ask of you to see them, in truth. But last night someone broke in and took them away. From under my zealous watch… And I suspect the responsible for the deed poses a threat to all of us.” – Arvid can see the man shaking off restlessness and fear as he continues. “These lads have been involved with a certain healer from the south, a man of resources, commanding great knowledge and charisma among the poor men of Grandael. I fear he might have tried to save the youths after inducing them to do the deed.” – he shakes his head in denial and disapproval. “Please, my friend, understand my predicament. These words can’t leave these halls. Alas, I had to share such things with you, since I’ve come to fear that such a man might be gathering forces to attack land owners, workers, and even the Jarl.” – he falls silent, supposedly pondering his concerns.

[MENTION=24380]Neurotic[/MENTION] [MENTION=6855204]tglassy[/MENTION] [MENTION=8058]Queenie[/MENTION] [MENTION=2820]Fenris[/MENTION]
 

Neurotic

I plan on living forever. Or die trying.
THE PRIEST
Such mixtures could bring a man to accept subtle commands, to obey them without taking notice, and even to confess deep truths and deliver dangerous secrets.

"Worrying indeed. Thank you good priest, I'll leave you to your rest now. Rest assured, if I find out more, you'll be one of the first to know. But start quietly informing your brethren throughout the town and environs. We may have an infestation in our midst."

THE LAWGIVER
Arvid’s words seem to pick the Lawgiver’s interest, since he bends over the table and finally chews on a fruit. “Ritual? Of what kind?” – his manners aren’t any less tense, but at least he seems focused now.

"I'm sorry, Lawgiver, that is all I know. I didn't stick around to listen to two maids gossiping. Ritual of some kind may be sign of a nefarious cult. Or druids chanting under full moon. But given general tension and this last event with the boys...I'd say we're having a cult of some kind."
Arvid stays calm at this show of innocence. The man might be corrupt, but not corrupted to some evil cult, just looking for himself first. Still, he was given a position and misusing the authority is dishonorable at the least, insult to Forseti at worst.
[/QUOTE]

“No, no, my friend, they are very much alive…” – he hesitates for a moment, marking his words and thoughts. “I wouldn’t take the Jarl’s right to pass judgement, even though the responsibility has often fallen to me, with his condition and Einar’s concerns, as you know too well…” – he pauses for a moment, a rapacious glimmer passing through his eyes.

“Alas, your request would not come to pass… If only it depended on me, my friend, I’d ask of you to see them, in truth. But last night someone broke in and took them away. From under my zealous watch… And I suspect the responsible for the deed poses a threat to all of us.” – Arvid can see the man shaking off restlessness and fear as he continues. “These lads have been involved with a certain healer from the south, a man of resources, commanding great knowledge and charisma among the poor men of Grandael. I fear he might have tried to save the youths after inducing them to do the deed.” – he shakes his head in denial and disapproval. “Please, my friend, understand my predicament. These words can’t leave these halls. Alas, I had to share such things with you, since I’ve come to fear that such a man might be gathering forces to attack land owners, workers, and even the Jarl.” – he falls silent, supposedly pondering his concerns.

"That is unfortunate, vinr, I'm starting to think them innocent. That is, they did attack and burn that ship, but it wasn't their will that controlled them. The priests talk about a healer from the south helping the poor. But some potions he offers weaken the will along with healing the sickness. He commands respect around Lavenders alley so it may be wise not to storm the place. But I would like your contacts in that part of the town to keep their ears to the wind. Are there any dead or wounded among your guards? Who and how many attacked them? Note that there might be some that will turn this against you, be extra vigilant in your duties and make Tyr and Forseti proud."


Later, as the sun sets, an old būr returns to his stead with two sons riding in the cart. Some minutes later, in that not-yet-darkness, time of shadows as the suns last rays shine between the branches four men carry the garbage outside. When challenged by the guards, one of them tells of butcher that refused their swine after discovering it had some disease.
"He bid us take it out of the town and burn as a sacrifice to Eir to have our stock healthy in the future." says Arvid disguised as one of the men

Thus, all eight men are safely outside the town by the nightfall and on the way to hopefully better life. Arvid and Ulm return in their own forms as the moon raises up.


FOLLOWING SEVERAL DAYS OR WEEKS
That night and many others following, Garmmörk lurks around Lavender Alley, learning the ways of the healer and his companions, looking for secret places and entrances. During the day, he calls upon local hunters, asking for places with bad reputations as haunted, about people disappearing or animals mutilated. He asks about river caves, sea caves or any secluded spots. If questioned, he just waves it away
"The priests asked me to give meaning to some omens they were given. You know the surrounding area and I'm asking for something to match the vision."

When he has time, between his normal duties, he takes a horse and one or two guards and visits the places indicated by the hunters. Most of them are, of course, old ruins and just scary looking. In one, he found street urchin cleverly using cave acoustics to frighten the visitors. But what he was looking for was traces of blood, extra green grass in place where the blood was spilled. Marks, runes or bones in the surrounding area. A place where Garmmörk might lurk for some time to catch the cult in the act.

He will focus on the nights of dark and full moon, traditionally powerful times for sacrifices and ceremonies. The town is not big enough for cult to take all its victims from its streets, but it is big enough that he cannot be everywhere at once. Thus, he finds a nice place ABOVE the town where he can monitor comings and goings in the surrounding area.

Translation:
- vinr - close friend, person one cares about that is not family
- būr - peasant, farmer
- Eir - goddess/valkyre of healing
 
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Archon Basileus

First Post
GARMMÖRK/ARVID

"That is unfortunate, vinr, I'm starting to think them innocent. That is, they did attack and burn that ship, but it wasn't their will that controlled them. The priests talk about a healer from the south helping the poor. But some potions he offers weaken the will along with healing the sickness. He commands respect around Lavenders alley so it may be wise not to storm the place. But I would like your contacts in that part of the town to keep their ears to the wind. Are there any dead or wounded among your guards? Who and how many attacked them? Note that there might be some that will turn this against you, be extra vigilant in your duties and make Tyr and Forseti proud."

To Arvid’s concern, the Lawgiver confirms four injured men, as well as a pair of deceased ones. Whether it’s the result of other confrontations or another trick of the Lawgiver, Arvid cannot say. For all that is worth, the Lawgiver ignores the number of attackers as well, allegedly because of contradicting testimonies from his men. After the hard news, the Lawgiver says his goodbyes, a promise resting on his lips to use his resources and share his discoveries for the benefit of Grandael. In this particular case, he lies, and Arvid knows it.

That night and many others following, Garmmörk lurks around Lavender Alley, learning the ways of the healer and his companions, looking for secret places and entrances.

The task is demanding, but meticulous observation leads to solid results. Clearly, the complex does not receive all its movement from the surface. Sometimes, those who seek help spend days ‘under care’, supposedly never leaving the healer’s house. Nonetheless, Garmmörk recognizes and follows these men and women through the tortuous alleys of the southern city as they run errands, exchanging packs and harnessing information, above all concerning the eight fugitive brothers. After seeking for hidden ways out of the house, the beast uncovers a path leading to another two-store building, possibly opening to its basement. A second opening arrives at a concealed gallery by the northern bank of the river. The entrances are under constant, albeit subtle, watch, and as far as the beast suspects, they might have connections to other subterranean paths, leading outside the walls.

But what he was looking for was traces of blood, extra green grass in place where the blood was spilled.

Inside the powerful walls that surround Grandael’s Hill, the woods lay in silence as the predator roams. The refreshing shadows are visited by the perfume of pine trees during summer, and even in starry nights a thick fog serpents among the oaks. Trails cut the grass towards wall and coast alike, turning the lonely old road into a stern grey face that cuts the mountains as it marches into the continent.

For days, no signs are found. It becomes quite clear that, if the cultists are still present in Grandael, they have become far more cautious. In fact, after almost a week searching, Arvid locates a set of scattered ruins within a clearing. Traces of blood and signs of fight are recent, as Garmmörk is able to confirm during a nocturnal visit. Runes, scorched areas and stranger signs confirm the pair’s suspicions even further. It is just a matter of time until they use the area once more for their nefarious purposes…

It is not hard for him to find a spot to watch both the city and the surrounding woods, paying special attention to the ritual clearing he uncovered. An opening within the wall, several meters above the woods, allow him to spot movement and move down with great alacrity and precision. Should any entourage leave the walls and try for the ruins, he’d be able to intercept them soon after their arrival, right in the middle of their services. Such efficiency bears almost immediate results. The following night, no moon in the sky, he sees the fog reflecting the blur of torches spiraling and twisting from the walls towards the ruins. The lights are numerous, far more numerous than he’d imagined at first. Still, it is a rare opportunity, especially considering the subtlety and cautiousness the cult has exercised for the last weeks.

[Go down, call for help, take help with you beforehand, …?]


@Neurotic @tglassy @Fenris @Queenie
 

Neurotic

I plan on living forever. Or die trying.
The beast climbs over the house and drops onto current courier the letter disappearing into the night even before the message landed. He trusts Ulm fully and he may not have much time to prepare his own ambush.

The beast move quickly toward the cult meeting place, noting places he would set the guards and looking how he could neutralize them without being noticed. He takes the position he deems safe to observe the proceedings. He observes the placement of the guards as he can and starts planning the order of disabling them.

OOC: couldn't keep constant help available, but there are steps taken. Close by, one person / beggar / child / 'lady' is paid to deliver message received with utmost speed to certain tavern. In the tavern, Ulm awaits the message with multi-pronged instructions.
1. Inform Lawgiver by giving his Guards a message - probably again with the and of a courier.
2. Bring some warriors from Einars house, those trusted by Arvid who pine under sedentary Jarl and want some action.
3. Get the priest and whatever following he can get in such short notice.

Bring them all as silently as possible close to the clearing, but far enough that guards cannot spot them. Priests and druids might help with this.

Once the guards are neutralized, come closer and again wait. This time much shorter time while Garmmork gets into position.
 
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Archon Basileus

First Post
The cultists have given away their position all too easy. As Garmmörk arrives at the spot, he sees bonfires lit around the ruins, their lights barely reflected against the murky waters puddled amidst the ruined walls. No one would dare come near this old fortress these days, except this cursed lot. As the legend goes, a general used this place to try and seduce a skjaldmaer endeared by Sif herself. When she refused him, he decided to kill the maiden, along with her companions. Sif would have cursed the place, sinking it to the ground to hide the sad memories crowding its corridors.

A place of dread for the fated. And they’re used to it.

The guards won’t give in so easily. They stand upon the ruined walls, looking out for any movement, bows at hand, arrows ready. Their faces are covered, preventing anyone from recognizing them immediately. Inside the ring, others are equally concealed, covered in furs. They attend to a ritual, chanting in a strange language, following the words of the ring leaders. These, hands held high from large robes, daggers in their hands, glance at the grey waters, expectantly. In front of them, upon a half-column surrounded by filthy water, something agitates itself within a bundle of skins. Something small, something quite alive.
Several feet behind, the soldiers Arvid requested await. They lay low, keeping their silence and trying to avoid the guard’s attention. Immobile, they wait for a sign or a command.

Meanwhile, the chants reach high. Apotheosis seems at hand. As the ring leaders rise their voices, the murky waters before them break their mirror-like stillness. Soon, a figure emerges from within, followed by two more! Damsels, naked and pale, rise and stare at the officiants, followed by several others. Once they might have been divine in beauty, when their rosy cheeks and golden tresses were alive still, but now… The likeness of death has fallen upon them, taking their fairness and subverting it into a cruel memory!
The first one points at the bundle. The ring leader, face concealed, cuts the strings tying it, bands the head and retreats, revealing a child, it’s rosy skin struggling against the fresh air of the night.

“Accept our offering, oh, ladies whose beauty never fades! From the depths of your fortress, please, tell us of the secrets we seek! Tell us of the eight that eluded our grasp and of our scourge!”

The ladies smile, the remnant of their youthful beauty destroyed by rotten, yellowed teeth and cruel visages, like the gazes of hungry trolls or cruel giants.

“So be it” – they begin a slow march forward, to reach for the child!

[During the ritual, Garmmörk can issue commands, try to take down the soldiers, act normally, and so on… I've written all the description so the map would be explained right away. We can edit any happenstances if need be. Feel free to use the map, position the character in it, move the soldiers, etc. While you’re at it, please, go for a stealth test. Also, the image of the ladies brings dread to the heart. After their apparition, you have to succeed in a will test to continue your actions. :)]


MAP LINK

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1q8fMnYQAgxGuym8Gfq3_6rwldZygKbR1VaTrG0iS8Ec/edit#gid=0

[MENTION=24380]Neurotic[/MENTION] [MENTION=6855204]tglassy[/MENTION] [MENTION=8058]Queenie[/MENTION] [MENTION=2820]Fenris[/MENTION]
 

Neurotic

I plan on living forever. Or die trying.
OOC:
The map refuses access :)

Garmmörk wouldn't try to take down such obvious guards. He leaves the message for the soldiers, take out guards with bows once the commotion starts.

He will take whatever opportunity attacks are coming his way. If he thinks he can afford slowing down, roll acrobatics...he will use his climbing speed to get on the closest wall even if that means coming toward the guard - it is one opponent as opposed to the whole cult and others will not be able to climb after him so fast.

Final thoughts, I'm glad I bought Oil of Bless weapon :)

EDIT: I just re-read Lawgiver post. What do you mean, two dead?! Garmmörk used non-lethal throughout!


Seeing the bundle moving Garmmörk decides it is the intended sacrifice. At this it is irrelevant if it is a child, an animal or something else, it will disrupt the ritual. He tries to approach unnoticed while the cultists chant. He tenses ready to grab the bundle if the cultist leader raises a knife upon it. But he pauses, shivering for the moment once the women get out of the water. He runs forward, grabbing the child and pelting full out of the circle of the damned. As the howls of protests and curses arise behind him, the beast issues a wolf howl and arrows thud into the guards as the woods around the ruins come to life.



Will roll: 1D20+6 = [15]+6 = 21
Stealth: 1D20+10 = [10]+10 = 20
Stealth to approach the sacrifice: 1D20+10 = [15]+10 = 25
 
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Archon Basileus

First Post
GARMMÖRK

The sly approach of the beast is not enough to keep it away from prying eyes as it takes the bundle and runs. A litany of curses and cries of “attack” follow, indeed, but it is the inhuman, high-pitched screams of the ladies in the water that freeze the heart of the feral warrior. He howls, calling out for the powers around, and he feels their faltering will before such monstrosities. A moment later, though, arrows fly from the trees, targeting the remaining guards and several cultists, as the foliage murmurs all around. The group is caught unawares, except for a couple of armed men, that decide to take cover as the area is under attack.

Garmmörk leaves the area in a rush, but as he looks over his shoulders he sees three of the naked figures in the lake moving their hands and lips, their eyes firmly locked on Garmmörk’s figure! As they do so, the others leap forward with tremendous speed, their hands clutching the air as claws, their cries turning to the blackness of nightmares! They go straight for Garmmörk, trying to claw his life away from him! Most of the strikes miss the creature, but the one of them targets it right in the middle of its back! The cut burns in a fever-like state as soon as the skin opens! [4 points of damage]

“You have profaned our resting place! Now you’ll JOIN US!” – the lady yells as she continues to fight.

[Ok, I’ll patch up access to the map and you can reposition character and NPC’s as you wish! So far, the cultists are flat-footed, and your aids are attacking openly. Two guards are not caught by surprise and find cover, and the ladies in the water are acting right now. I assume some of the guards will be down already, since Garmmörk decided to clean up the area and leave only the core to be attacked. Three of the ladies are still there, weaving a spell, purpose still unknown. EDIT: For some reason I can't share that map. :( It looked so nice and it's locked away for now. I'll try again later!]

[As for the lawgiver, well… He mentioned two dead. :) Did he lie? Did someone else kill the guys? I’ll leave these questions for you, hehe.]

@Neurotic [MENTION=8058]Queenie[/MENTION] [MENTION=2820]Fenris[/MENTION] [MENTION=6855204]tglassy[/MENTION]

 
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Neurotic

I plan on living forever. Or die trying.
"Yes, yes, doom upon us all." the beast murmurs to itself as it runs toward supporting guards. Knowing they might shoot at him if he comes at them at full run he chooses their outliers as the target. These appear to be Lawgivers soldiers, hopefully trustworthy. The wound burns, but if he slows down he will be overwhelmed. His only way out is darkness and the forest.

Before the allies can get a clear picture of him in the dark, he shouts well in advance
"I'm an ally, carrying saved sacrifice! Don't shoot at me, but at those following! Priests, we need you! Bless the weapons!"

OOC: still cannot edit. And given the position I'm not sure how he got the child, but luck and surprise are powerful tools. He's running toward N45, but yells well in advance.
I would put priests in the middle, not whole the way back, both for protection and range. Line of archers would help, but I guess each one can just drop a crossbow when melee threatens.
 

Neurotic

I plan on living forever. Or die trying.
[MENTION=6855545]Archon Basileus[/MENTION], I put Garmmork on the map (marked with A(rvid) since G marks the guards.

I marked his way toward the allies - assumed half move for move action (since he had to approach and take the child) and full move for standard. Second round after taking damage is full move (diagonal 4 and 5 the rest) shouting.
 

Archon Basileus

First Post
[you can arrange the pieces as you see fit, no problem! I only put them in disarray to represent a sudden arrival, but you would have had the time to prepare the surprise attack!]

A salve of arrows follow the running warrior as he shouts his words for the allied troops. The men take immediate action against the pursuers, advancing and filling the air with war cries! Five shots almost reach the beast, but all miss! Garmmörk is able to seek shelter amidst the trees before a second salve comes from the ruins. As for the soldiers, they run past the beast, seeking to destroy it's pursuers! The sound of metal clashing echoes through the dark protection of the canopies, loosing itself around!


[you can continue with your move. I'll let you organize the line as you prefer, and I'll update the map as follows! This might be a good way to recover the thread, by the way!]
[MENTION=24380]Neurotic[/MENTION] [MENTION=8058]Queenie[/MENTION] [MENTION=2820]Fenris[/MENTION] [MENTION=6855204]tglassy[/MENTION]
 

Neurotic

I plan on living forever. Or die trying.
Garmmörk runs to the closest guards and pushes the child into hands of one of them.

"Take the baby and run back into town. Quick, but don't fall in the darkness. You can be heroes, saviors."
As two men stare at the beast, not sure if they should take the baby and run, run it through or pretend it never happened.
"GO!" the beast growls and atavistic fear of wolves takes over. The men disappear into the darkness with lots of noise. In opposition to them, the wolf looks across the line of helpers.

"Archers, get the guards on the wall first. After that pick anyone carrying a weapon, those closest to you first. Priests, there are undead apparitions, think on how you can protect as many as you can and conserve spells that can harm them. Guards, advance, remain under the cover of the trees and guard the priests. Everyone, forward!"
Without waiting anyone to take good look at the person giving advice, he melds into the tree disappearing from view.

OOC:
Moved people around, Arvid went to two men who afterward went back (yellow), I marked original fields of the people with color, but didn't bother to mark each with it's own, you'll have to trust that I counted 5 or 6 squares from the original position, remaining behind the trees.

Next round, he goes for the ring-leader assuming undead retreat.

[roll0] add two if darkness conceals him

 
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Archon Basileus

First Post
As the priests begin their chants, the men follow, singing the sacred words in unison. The women hiss and cry, some of them retreating towards the murky waters, sinking once more with terrified gazes! Three of them stand still, though, elevating a broken chant into the night! They begin to slowly ascend from the waters, marching towards their enemies, breaking their will with a cacophony of strange, inhuman curses!

The leaders raise their voices as well, summoning obscure incantations through forbidden names and forgotten words!

[Ok, we're on! Initiative and war!]

ENEMY SOLDIERS - 20
ENEMY LEADERS - 14
LADIES IN THE LAKE - 15
ALLIED SOLDIERS - 22
[MENTION=8058]Queenie[/MENTION] [MENTION=2820]Fenris[/MENTION] [MENTION=24380]Neurotic[/MENTION] [MENTION=6855204]tglassy[/MENTION]
 

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