D&D 5E (IC) Fitz's Folly

Fradak

Explorer
"You're right, I can see now how much they invest in here... But you were going to give us instructions on how to find the entrance to the Serpent's Coils..."
 

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FitzTheRuke

Legend
The Grand Souk

Not far from the Weave of Life and utterly unmissable, is the Grand Souk. Traders from up and down the Sword Coast come to this market to buy timber, spices, medicines concocted from jungle plants, dinosaur skulls and claws, iron, tiger pelts, carved ivory, Batiri and Grung handiwork, coloured feathers, tropical fruit, monkeys, plesiosaur meat, and all the other riches of Chult.

Business begins before the sun comes up, and dealing doesn’t stop until well after darkness edges across the city. It’s a noisy, jostling, aroma-rich circus. Guards are numerous, but less numerous than the urchins and pickpockets. Street performers and tabaxi minstrels add to the cacophony. Colorful awnings protect the market from sun and rain but also trap the heat and smells.

Nearly everything one could imagine is available in the Grand Souk, as well as things unusual to the foreign eye. For example, as the group of newly-arrived allies ventured to the market for their first time, the first thing they came to was a large pen, and an auctioneer was taking bids on a triceratops. Well-trained, according to it's handler.

It would be easy to spend the rest of the day here, exploring the various stalls and speaking to the people.
 


FitzTheRuke

Legend
OOC: Not in the Grand Souk, but now that I have a proper map...


Chrysagon had slowly been taking stock of the city's temples and so far was not pleased. Grand as some of them were, they were dedicated to Gods of Wealth, Trade, Crafts, and Vanity.

Isolated atop a rocky formation in the sea, the Temple of Sune is reachable only by an elevated causeway from Temple Hill or by boat. Steep steps wind up the cliff from the temple’s small harbour. When seen from a distance, the temple’s roof seems to float in midair. Chysagon saw this temple while coming into harbour on the Swordcoaster.

The Temple to Waukeen is a magnificent structure that residents call the Hall of Gold for its shining, golden roof and for Waukeen’s focus on trade and wealth. Mount Sibasa is the highest point in the city, and when the sun is shining, light glinting off the temple roof can be seen for miles out at sea. Chrysagon saw this temple while travelling up the hill toward the Tavern, high on the hill's peak.

The boxy stone Temple of Gond, deity of craft and construction, looms behind the royal docks. It’s popular among Port Nyanzaru’s many artisans, craftspeople, smiths, ivory carvers, and hydro-engineers. Where most such temples have a forge as a centerpiece, this one features an immense fountain whose water jets shift continually to create amazing shapes. Chrysagon saw this one across the Harbour while waiting to speak to the harbormaster.

In the Grand Souk, Chrysagon learns of a temple that might be closer to his liking:

The Temple of Savras is one of the oldest, grandest buildings in the city. The tiled roof of its great dome resembles an unblinking eye, staring skyward. Savras is a deity of wizards, fortune tellers, diviners, and those who unfailingly speak the truth regardless of whether listeners want to hear it. His symbol is a monstrous eye, or a crystal ball filled with eyes.

He also hears that Tymora, goddess of Luck, has a Temple in Malar's Throat, outside the city walls.
 

EarlyBird

Explorer
As the group moves through the crowds Dellrak listens for that familiar sound of hammer on steel. But the path the group follows seems to be bereft of smithies, and the Great Souk is so large that they just may be in the wrong area.

He watches the auction along with the others with great interest as the astounding beast looks like it would make a better pack animal than any mule or horse could ever become. In between the bidding he hears a sound that brings his head around quickly. The *thunk* of an axe hitting wood draws him towards a large Calishite in the local garb. He holds an axe of obvious dwarven make (slightly bloody) in one hand and a thin spiral of horn in the other.

merchant.jpg "Al-mi'raj for sell! Get your Al-mi'raj horn here!" he cries holding the horn aloft.

Dellrak's eyes go from the horn to the axe and back one more time, before the dwarf wonders what kind of creature produced the unicorn like horn. The gruff dwarf's eyes widen at the small furry rabbit lying on a wooded block, its lifeless eyes staring back, a small bloody circle in the center of its forehead.

"Ah, Master Dwarf, interested in the pelt? Softess in all the Realms." the fat human says grabbing the creature by the ears and lifting the carcass close enough to touch. "Your kind have little use for the horn powder as it is said to be a great remedy for an poison that may ail you. But the pelt is good and the meat when roasted crisp is divine"

"You...you," Dellrak gets himself visibly under control. "Your using that axe as a butcher knife?!"

Turning his face away from the merchant, for fear he might punch that smugness in the nose, he sees another Al-mi'raj alive in a small cage. A deep sigh escapes the dwarf as he loses himself in the sad eyes of the scared creature.

"How much for that one?" he asks throwing a thumb over his shoulder at the cage.

"Umm..." thrown of by the offer the merchant stumbles for a price. "It is my last one. Say ten golden lions.?" ,he answers knowing a dwarf will haggle down to the copper.

"Make it twenty," the dwarf counters, stunning the man. "I'll pay half now and the other when I take delivery. And since you won't be needing this again..." he adds swiping the axe from the merchants hands. "... I'll take it as collateral, towards my purchase."

Still stunned as he counts Dellrak's coins, the dwarf turns to add as he walks away, the axe causally over one shoulder. "If anything happens to my bunny until I have had the chance to collect him, your going to lose your horn, Master Merchant."

Turning back he notices the others watching and holding in their smiles. "Wha-? Eyes needed an axe," his face slightly a blush.

[sblock=Al-mi'raj]
Almiraj.png[/sblock]
 
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Ancalagon

Dusty Dragon
Rodrigo does his best to suppress a delighted smile.

"Ah, master Dellrak, a fine axe to be sure. Most interesting haggling method too".

Rodrigo felt that the axe was a crude, inferior weapon to the sword... when wielded by a human. Dwarven shoulder anatomy changed things. He hope that this companion was up to the task... and with that thought the smile faded.

"Right. Based on the map the entrance is over there, behind that old tower. Now should we set up an ambush or given them the chance to surrender the artefact?"



Sent from my SM-G930W8 using EN World mobile app
 

gargoyleking

Adventurer
The Nameless goes back into his "Harb" persona as they left the meeting. And upon arriving in the market proceeds to 'wander' through the stalls making sure to examine any medicine stalls he comes across, especially those who make use of local remedies. He makes no purchases, but occasionally attempts to draw information from the sellers about ingredients and preparation. All the while he moves closer to the entrance.

Squirrels are evil!
 

Kobold Stew

Last Guy in the Airlock
Supporter
The smells and colours of the bazaar fascinate Miss Imogen, and she strains her ears to hear the bidding on the triceratops. Children pull at her skirts and she wants to place a copper in their eager open hands, if only to see their smiles. She knows that will set a precedent and make forward travel even more difficult, and she doesn't want to appear a soft touch.

She seems to glide through the crowds, one hand on her purse at all times, holding the lid closed. She is not tall, but with her perfect posture she is still a presence.

An incense seller offers her a sandalwood bracelet which she pushes aside with a smile, and she accompanies Dellrak as he makes his purchases. She is charmed by the care he takes, and the seriousness in his brow. When his shopping is done, she is pleased that it's Rodrigo who encourages them to the task. She doesn't want to be seen to be pushing them towards this job, and she is reassured that she is not, in the end, the only one undertaking it.

"We might want to ask some of these urchins to be our eyes and ears," she suggests. "They stick out a lot less than we do."
 

FitzTheRuke

Legend
In the final bid, the Triceratops goes for a stunning 500 gold pieces. A fortune to be sure, but probably worth every copper.

Merchants haggle with hundreds of buyers as the group moves through the market. The urchins would do nearly anything for coin...
 

EarlyBird

Explorer
"Ah, master Dellrak, a fine axe to be sure. Most interesting haggling method too".

"Damnable merchant miss usin' it," Dellrak says checking the blade. "I hads to save it, ya understands."

And whether he meant the axe or the bunny is unclear, possibly both.

OOC: A dwarf is like an onion.
no no not in that they smell -
They have layers...layers. haha
 

Kobold Stew

Last Guy in the Airlock
Supporter
Miss Imogen leans over to the Nameless, and says, "Someday, we'll have a triceratops." There's a smile on her face and a sparkle in her eye, signalling that this would be fun.

She continues. "What do you think? Send some of the children to see what the opening of the tunnels reveal?"
 


Fradak

Explorer
All this effervescence, this agitation, this... life, warmed Chrysagon's heart. He smiled as some kids playing pirates and buccaneers bumped into him, checking his purse as they ran away. Glancing up, he faced the triceratops. Those creatures are marvelous, Chrysagon wandered whish god could have created them. Then his dark thought came back and the smile fade out. All those people were carefree, going about their daily choirs. But the balance is disrupted. The Death Curse is upon us, waiting for the dying to approach her reach. Death is not a disorder and can not become one. He must not fail and has to restore the balance. But why Kelemvor doesn't give him the power to destroy this Curse?

Closing his eyes, Chrysagon whispered some words to not let this useless questioning clouds his mind.
"Where I walk, I walk in your light. With your compassion, I heal. With your Wisdom, I learn."

"Father?"
Chrysagon opened his eyes, getting out of his meditation. An man holding a dead child was standing in his path, the traces of recent tears was still present on his face.
"My son... help him... please." stammered the man.

But it was too late. Chrysagon felt his doubts coming back and with it, a latent rage in front of this injustice.
Reaching deep down to get back his equanimity, he replied "Walk with me, my son. I can't help him, but I can help you."

Chrysagon took a walk with the bereaved man, following with a distance the steps of his companions across the souk. The boy died in one night from a common fever, common for Chult at least. The local priest did his utmost but without any result. The sight of Chrysagon rekindled the flamme of hope, feeble as it was. If the priest of the living are powerless maybe a paladin of Death will do something. The god of Death had to do something!

Chrysagon's words touched deeply the man and comforted him. When he left the paladin, he was in peace. Death is a necessary part of the cycle of life, not something grisly and abhorrent in itself. Chrysagon could not bring back the kid but he saved the father from despair and hopelessness. That's all he could do for now, absorbe the despair of others and bury it inside of him. Catching up, the sight of his companions cheered him up and he thought "But soon, we will find the source of the Curse and bring back the balance in the Realms."

Responding to Miss Imogen proposition, "I like the idea. The only possible draw back is that they could be some members of the local thief guild. At least we will help some in need"
 

Kobold Stew

Last Guy in the Airlock
Supporter
"Usin your coin not mines," the dwarf grumbles.

"Me-Lady" he adds with a slight nod of his head.
Miss Imogen corrects him, "I am not nobility. 'Miss' is fine. And of course I am willing to pay to accomplish our ends." She is not going to haggle with a dwarf.

Miss Imogen notes Chrysagon's care, and she reprehends herself for feeling surprised.

"You did a good thing there," she says when he rejoins them. It is a compliment, and a statement that requires no answer.
Responding to Miss Imogen proposition, "I like the idea. The only possible draw back is that they could be some members of the local thief guild. At least we will help some in need"
Miss Imogen is not so optimistic that the children will see any of the rewards of their payment, that they have elders who will take anything they gain whether they are connected to a guild or not. The importance for the party supercedes that care. "Hmm," she agrees noncommittally.

She buys an apple from a fruit vendor to make change for herself, and then gathers some children round her. She takes a bite, and is surprised at the pungent taste -- a local fruit she's not tried before, and not an apple at all. She laughs at herself, and realizes that she'll have to get used to the fruit in these climes.

"Do you see that entranceway down there? I'll give you two coppers each to go and see what you can. There's a silver piece for the one of you who tells me the most detail, another silver for the one who tells me how many people are armed, and two silver if anyone can bring me back a key from one of their pockets."

With that, she lets the children go. Some will be content with the initial payment, she knows, but she hopes several of them will be lured by the promise of greater rewards.

Miss Imogen will watch from a distance, leaning on a market post and eating her fruit.

Her intention is to gather what information she can, and pay promptly. These kids are professionals, and she might want to use them again. Even if the pack descends on the guards below, it should be a nuisance and nothing more. She wants their silence.

OOC:
1 cp for the fruit.
4 sp for prizes
2 cp x up to 19 kids = 38 cp. (it's okay if there's not that many, but she'll pay for up to that)
2 sp for a second key, if it appears -- still less than a gold piece total.

(the 1 cp left over is for the tip given at the inn; 2 gp (1 gp for the room) have been deducted from character sheet).

GM: do you want to track precise coins carried? I can do so if you prefer that, or else assume that change can be made.
 

Ancalagon

Dusty Dragon
Rodrigo purses his lips

"While it's a good idea to have our own sources of information... do we have time? The smugglers could arrive at any moment, and if the first team botches the job, the smugglers will move quickly...

... well what is done is done.
"

Rodrigo, one hand on his purse, looked somewhat anxiously around, trying to spot a potential group of smuggler going for the entrance of the Coils...
 
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FitzTheRuke

Legend
There was no time to tarry in the Grand Souk, so after a quick walk-through, the group continued on, travelling along the High Street closest to the city wall. They passed two of the three gates (the third gate, leading to the Old City, was already behind them, being beyond the Grand Souk). The first they passed led to Malar's Throat, a slum built along both sides (and the bottom of) a great ravine.

As they passed that gate on their right, on their left, the land rose in one of the city's four largest hills. On the top of this hill was the Grand Coliseum. The roar of the crowd could be heard watching some spectacle, as the day's show came toward its final bouts. Urchins gathered to beg and steal from the masses that would soon let out as the show ended with the day's light. Here, miss Imogen gathered a small throng.

Not long after, the group passed the Thundering Lizard, which helped them to get their barrings. The 'Lizard was, in many ways, more luxurious than the Inns of the Sword Coast, larger than most, with more servants. But here it was considered an inexpensive and raucous place. Across the High Street from the Inn was the gate that led to the Tiryki Anchorage - a slum of sailors, fisher-folk, riverfolk, dockworkers, animal trainers, and smugglers. This was where the group was going, but not by the gate.

The Inn and the Gate, were at the edge of an area known as the Red Bazaar, where Unlike the Grand Souk, which dealt in durable goods and luxury items, the Red Bazaar dealt in everyday needs: locally produced meat, vegetables, tropical fruit, light tropical clothing, insect repellent, rain catchers, and other household goods. As the group passed by, the shops were closing for the day. The group passed this area by.

The High Street wound around the base of Mount Sibasa, and the last of the day's light could be seen glinting of the domed roof of the Hall of Gold (temple of Waukeen), which dominated the peak. The urchins skipped along, wondering where these strange foreigners were taking them, and if the task would be worth the coin. Finally they came to the cliffs of the far east-side of the city. Here, overlooking the wider Bay of Chult, was the Dye Works, now closed for the day. The Chultan love for bright colours made this a large operation, and the rocks below the cliff were perpetually stained bright orange, blue, red, green, and yellow, as the workers cast their spent dye-baths off of the cliffs to the sea.

Here, somewhere down a lane between Dye-buildings, was the entrance to the Serpent's Coils. The tunnels would lead under the city walls to an 'unused' hut by the docks of the Tiryki Anchorage. Miss Imogen sent her pack of urchins to look, and they came running back, saying they were chased out by two armed men. No - three, a child said - another was hiding behind some hanging, drying cloth on a balcony over the lane. One of the children smiled gap-toothed and held up a small, iron key.
 

Kobold Stew

Last Guy in the Airlock
Supporter
Miss Imogen watches the children as she finishes her fruit, and is sucking her fingers clean when they return. She pays them and takes the key. Pressing her finger to her lips behind a smile, she enjoins them to silence as she sends them off. She has noted Rodrigo's frustration, but is now ready to proceed. "Three guards. I can take one, maybe two at range, but it will attract notice. Or we can try to bluff our way in past them. Or something else. Let me know your preference."

With the last sentence she dips her head and shoulders, a courtesy with her face, deferring to the others.
 

EarlyBird

Explorer
"Why don't da' both of yous take a stroll down dae wrong way, and engage the guards on the ground," Dellrak says pointing to Rodrigo and Miss Imogen. "While I take Mister Silent and we work our way ta' the roofs. We be enough to handle the guard in the balcony."

Looking at Chyrsagon he says, "You, you can pray for us. Come on suns going down."
 

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