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Game: War of Many Facets -- Phase I: Delivery

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Game: War of Many Facets -- Phase I: Delivery

Sigil, City of Doors  Day 1 of the War of the Facets, Peak

"Here is the package I need you to deliver."

Thalivan, the arcane trader, pulled a tome-sized bundle from a chest and placed it gently on the table.  The general shape was a box, but the box was wrapped in a sack made of faux velvet.  The soft, wine-red fabric shimmered as the light played across it.

"Please be very careful with it," Thalivan instructed, "The contents are valuable and I need them delivered safely.  Under no circumstances are you to open the bag or the box.  Doing so will ruin the goods and make them unusable.  Should I find that the delivery has been compromised en route, I will not pay the remainder due to you.  This is fair, yes?"

Next, he pulled out several small sacks made of the same material that jingled with coin.  An invisible servant delivered each sack to each of the small band.

"Here is your advance," the arcane said, "Five hundred gold, provided in platinum coin.  As previously discussed, I will pay the rest in two days' time, in the City of Glass, as long as the package is safe and unspoiled."

Finally, he placed an envelope on the table and slid it across to you.  The envelope contained several papers.  The first paper had directions and an address written on it in a neat script.  The second had a name of an inn, the Blue Seahorse, as well as one voucher for each of you.

"This envelope contains both the directions for my customer's shop and the location of the inn where I have arranged your lodgings until I arrive in the city.  Present these vouchers to the innkeep and he will take care of your rooms.  He and I have done business together, and I trust you will find the lodging quite adequate."

Instructions given, the arcane sat back and smiled.  He laced his long, slender fingers -- fingers with one more digit than most humanoids -- in front of him and looked you all over once more.  Then, he stood, voluminous robes cascading down his impressive height, and bowed slightly.

"If you will excuse me, then, I have business to attend to.  I hope to see you in two days after I arrive."

The City of Glass Day 1 of the War of the Facets, 2:00 A.P. (After-Peak)

You crossed the portal from Sigil to the City of Glass about two hours after Peak and landed in the busy central market area of the city -- and you were hardly the only people arriving.  The market had sprung up around a cluster of portals leading to and from various other planes and it was packed.  Even after the familiar portal disorientation passed, it took you a couple moments to gather your wits and gain some bearings on your position.  Once you settled and maneuvered through the throng of merchants and shoppers, you were able to take in where you were.

Many Inner Planar travelers frequently referred to the City of Glass as the "Sigil of the Inner Planes."  The name was well-deserved.  People of all shapes and sizes milled about through the market, each going about their individual business.  Over there, a pair of arcanes towered above the crowd, their elegant, slim frames draped in dark clothing.  Over here, a small group of sahaugin argued with some locathahs over the price of octopus blood.  The odor of fish mingled with the aroma of spice and the stench of bodies and hung heavily in the thick, humid air.  Where Sigil was smoggier, drier and dingier, the City of Glass was humid and dank and clear.  You could see the city's dome in the distance above you, marked by a faint glare and the schools of fish and other sea creatures passing by like birds overhead.

"Fresh Seafood!" a sea elf dressed in ratty, damp cloth called from his nearby booth, "Pulled from the Deep just this morning!  We got fish, we got eels, we even got some giant starfish in today's catch!  Get it while it's cheap!"

The din of chatter, deal-making, and hawking was almost loud enough to drown out your own thoughts.  But you managed to get the ground comfortably under your feet and prepared yourselves to take on the wonders of the City of Glass.

Please take some time to introduce your characters and interact a little.  You may interact with each other or initiate casual interaction with a merchant or passerby that I will respond as.  Just don't get too in-depth since I will be moving things forward in a few days.  Remember, the 500gp Thalivan gave you is already figured into your starting gold, so don't add it to your sheet.  Throughout the game, I will be using red text as OOC notation relevant to the posts.  I encourage you all to do the same -- you can use red or another color as you wish, but please make sure it is both legible and easy to differentiate from the main text Smiling

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I don’t like it. I

I don’t like it. I don’t like it one bit.

 

Coal looked up at the glass dome covering the city and swallowed hard. Above him, below him, all around him, inside the city, and surrounding it – cold, clammy, and thoroughly wet, this place was. The azer didn’t use to be an easily panicked or paranoid man, and he mostly regarded himself as having an outspoken and social spirit. Recently, he had actually grown fond of seeing alien sights and savoring drastic new experiences – seemed like a good way to use the time he had left.

 

But this place… Dampness thick in the air, half of those that brushed against him seemed soaked to the bone. He knew what the feeling was. It was the idea that the whole atmosphere might accelerate his unique situation. It was the nature of the plane, it’s antithesis to his own nature. It was the blasted, all-encompassing, fire-dousing element that suffused the plane: Water.

 

Pull yourself together. You’ve been over this before. It's not like you haven’t tried bathing or swimming in water before… Even if they were all horrible nightmarish experiences.

 

Coal exhaled - had his usually steamy breath been diminished since they arrived or was it his imagination? He had been thinking about death quite a lot lately and one thing was certain – he would rather consume himself in the fire he had left than drown.

 

***

 

The azer envelopes himself thoroughly in his dark red cloak and pulls the hood well over his head to hide his almost extinguished fiery hair and beard. He musters a faint smile and glances over the market place, asking an open question to his companions and any residents passing by them.

“Would anyone happen to know a dry place in this city worth seeing?”

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"Wow.... This is an

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"Wow.... This is an astonishing sight"

Okeanos smiles and absorbs everything around him, the strange people, the incredible glass dome, the smell of new caught fish... but the smile does not persist for very long. A series of flashes, pictures runs through his mind with incredible speed.  Memories that he wish he could hold on to and remember again, but he simply cannot. 

"I need ale, a big...no a huge mug of ale...

He then realizes that he is now standing alone and his companions are gone.

“where in the nine hells are the others"

***

With a bit of effort he finds the others not far from him. He walks to towards the group and when he is close enough, he shakes their hands ( those who wants to )

“ I am sorry for my quick disappearance but this City robbed me of my mind for a second there. It reminded me of something in the past… “ Okeanos makes a sigh

“ well we didn’t have much time to introduce ourselves before at Thalivans place. My name is Okeanos Something and I am pleased to meet you all “

Upon Coal’s question about a dry place Okeanos gives out a little laugh and claps the Azer gently on his back.

“ I guess there would be less damp inside the Inn we are going to but before we proceed tell me your names and profession since it might make things easier if a difficult situation should present itself “   

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Coal raises an eyebrow,

Coal raises an eyebrow, appreciative of the genasi’s friendliness though questioning his naïveté.

“Difficult situation? Now, I wonder why you’d expect that. Might it have something to do with the fact that we’re doing a job for an arcane in Sigil? I would sooner have expected to deal with the Lady herself.”

 

The azer takes a long suspicious look at the package they are to deliver, trying to get a sense of what magical auras it projects. He sighs, banishes his pessimism, and returns the greeting in kind.

“Ah, but pardon my sarcasm, Okeanos... This place unsettles me and I have not been… myself, as of late. Pleased to make your acquaintance. I’m known as Coal of Neimon, and I should like to think I’m a fairly well versed Inner Planar historian, notably with regards to prominent influencing forces of the Elemental Planes. Oh, and I dabble a bit in the Art.”

 

Not content to stand idle about, Coal orders an exotic-looking local snack from the nearest food stand at a whim, before returning to address his own former concern.

 

“The inn does not sound like a bad idea, though I’m in no hurry. I was thinking a little tour of the city would be nice, especially if it features some warmer locales to visit. Better to spend the time we have here as interesting we can.”

It’s not really clear whether the last remark was philosophically intended or not.

10 Bonus for Arcana to do study package
I rolled 1d20+10, the result is 17.
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"My goodness," Seigi

"My goodness," Seigi thinks as he catches himself after the moment of portal nausea. "The universe always finds some way to surprise one, doesn't it just? Maybe I should have come to visit this city sooner ... But the Cage seemed to be so full of opportunities. Seemed ... Ah, well."

The elderly-looking human shakes his head with a rueful smile, and flicks a speck of non-existent dust from the lapels of a well-woven, finely-tailored suit of black cloth with a long-tailed coat. Clearly, this is a man who likes his little luxuries; fine clothes, a nicely made gentleman's cane of ebony with an ivory handle to lean on, silver-white hair neatly cut and combed. But for all the little niceties, Seigi is clearly not exactly in his physical prime any more; there are wrinkles at the corners of his eyes and mouth, and his dark eyes are deep-seated behind heavy lids and yet more wrinkles.

"Hello, hello," he says, genially enough, as he shakes Okeanos' hand, then turns to offer it to Coal as well. "The City of Glass is quite the sight, isn't it? Remarkable! If we perform the task that we have been allotted with due alacrity, mayhap there will be time to take in some of the, ah, tourist attractions in town."

Seigi's speech patterns betray a reasonably high education -- or else a talent at acting. In any case, the older gentleman seems pleasant enough. There are a few small discrepancies, however; a short sword with a stylized lightning bolt on the sheath hangs at the gentleman's belt, and he is wearing a traveler's pack. An older human, preparing to vacation in a less than completely secure location, perhaps ...?

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There are few enough times

There are few enough times when Formula regrets not being a flesh and blood being and this is one of them. He would have liked to smile, but the unbending metal of his face remains the same. His contentment at having returned at last to his adopted hometown is evident when he finally breaks his silence and breaks into the conversation.

"This unit would be most glad to give you a tour of what sites this unit knows of in the city friend Siegi, but it may be that this units tastes may run a bit more towards acadamae than those of yourself, but it has been told to this unit that some of the warm water baths here are quite splendid."  He pauses and looks out over the crowd, his smooth domed head, burnished to a near mirror polish, standing out at over most others in the crowd. Formula is tall for a warforged, and even the heavy tunic and breeches he wears do little to conceal the harsh angularity of his elongated figure, spindly and drawn out of proportion. "In addition there are some few locations where one can, and this unit speaks from personal experience, enjoy many interesting and diverting sites. One of this units personal favorites is the Ebon Sands Theater, quite an enjoyable establishment if truth be told, and one that often features the latest plays by burgeoning talents. If it's ale you want the few dwarves here import a great deal from both the Primes and Celestia, while a number of the natives brew a thick brew from the local seeweed. This unit apologizes that he cannot offer you a assertion of any taste-based value they may have. Most of what this unit knows of other than the theaters and the libraries is word of mouth, but he thinks there is a well established system of touts within the Market district who would be all to happy to give us the grand promenade for a small amount of jink. Oh and if introductions should be in order Friend Okeanos, this units preffered mode of adress is Formula. I am a local, as you may or may not have guessed, and I like to think of myself as a wizard of some talent but you may judge that for yourself."

Indeed, there is a large orb that glows with an internal light embedded in his chest and an oilskin satchel full of thick tomes hanging from one shoulder.

"Friend Coal already knows this unit from...previous operations, yes? Oh and be careful with what you order, this unit is told that some of the local delicacies are quite unplatable to outsiders."

__________________

Mondays...

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Seigi chuckles gently, and

Seigi chuckles gently, and pats Formula as high on the back as he can reach. "My dear unit," he says, "I appreciate your information. Theater or a decent library sound like just the ticket. Sadly, I'm not much of a one for beers, ales, stouts and licquors; at my age, a man has to be cautious of his stomach. Mine, for example, is a fickle friend. He'll serve me stoutly, so long as I provide him with the things he likes. But only upset him once, and he'll grumble for days on end."

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"I on the other hand

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"I on the other hand would love a good brew of seaweed ale and the opportunity to experience what this city has to offer, but I must confess that I feel that we should concentrate on the assignment at hand and save the tourist expeditions for later"

Okeanos then turns towards the Azer

"Who is this lady you speak of?" and the Genasi shrugs

"Well my point is that this item we carry is of great importance to Thalivan. He hired five experienced adventurers to protect... what ever it is... and so it must be very valuable. Therefore I urge you all that we should stick together and wait for the arcane trader to arrive at the Inn but I do agree with you Coal. It is a good idea to take a tour around the city and get a better impression of the surroundings, perhaps Formula would be so kind to lead the way? "

***

Description:

The Water Genasi is wearing very fine, expensive, clothing in the colours of marine blue and white. His tunic, matching his clothing, covers his barely visible white hide armor and the tunic has a large silvery symbol of a teardrop at his right chest. He is also wearing a beautifully custom made dark blue cloak that seems to have living black veins inside of the fabric. He carries a longsword at his left side and a dagger on his right side. He also carries a small quiver with a few javelins in it on his back along with a backpack next to it.    

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Rock

Rock wrote:

"Hello, hello," he says, genially enough, as he shakes Okeanos' hand, then turns to offer it to Coal as well. "The City of Glass is quite the sight, isn't it? Remarkable! If we perform the task that we have been allotted with due alacrity, mayhap there will be time to take in some of the, ah, tourist attractions in town."

Seigi's speech patterns betray a reasonably high education -- or else a talent at acting. In any case, the older gentleman seems pleasant enough. There are a few small discrepancies, however; a short sword with a stylized lightning bolt on the sheath hangs at the gentleman's belt, and he is wearing a traveler's pack. An older human, preparing to vacation in a less than completely secure location, perhaps ...?

Coal readily accepts Seigi’s hand, happy to be working with a fellow educated man.

“I would not worry about our time schedule… Seigi, was it? Two days seem enough to comfortably marvel at much of what attractions the city might offer.”

 

GunsmackIt wrote:

Indeed, there is a large orb that glows with an internal light embedded in his chest and an oilskin satchel full of thick tomes hanging from one shoulder.

"Friend Coal already knows this unit from...previous operations, yes? "

“Indeed we do, my friend, and allow me to say once more that it’s very good to see you again. You look quite different when not covered in soot, though, and you seem to have had a few… modifications, since we served together.”

Coal taps curiously at the orb embedded in the warforged’s chest.

“Never would have figured you’d move to this place, Formula. So, I take it your old squad found a new sergeant?”

 

Atriden wrote:

Okeanos then turns towards the Azer

"Who is this lady you speak of?" and the Genasi shrugs

“A full blown Clueless, eh? Never you mind about her, kid. Probably safer that way.”

 

Atriden wrote:

"Well my point is that this item we carry is of great importance to Thalivan. He hired five experienced adventurers to protect... what ever it is... and so it must be very valuable. Therefore I urge you all that we should stick together and wait for the arcane trader to arrive at the Inn but I do agree with you Coal. It is a good idea to take a tour around the city and get a better impression of the surroundings, perhaps Formula would be so kind to lead the way? "

“Adventurers? I’m a scholar, kid, not a trap-springer. Though the idea does have some appeal... we had quite the daring-do’er back at the Royal Bronzepeak Academy - Doctor Jonas had the most outrageous tales between his little expeditions.”

 

“Make no mistake, however; there is definitely something fishy going on with this delivery. Thalivan’s kind never, ever, ever go to Sigil. On their life they will avoid it. No reason to hurry our way to what trouble that might entail, though, so a tour it is… Personally, I wouldn’t mind stopping by that Ebon Sands Theather Formula mentioned.”

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Dunamin

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Dunamin Wrote:

 

“A full blown Clueless, eh? Never you mind about her, kid. Probably safer that way.”

 

The Genasi clearly looks insulted by Coal's answer but pushes his anger aside and grumbles:

 

”As a scholer you should know that ignorance is not a bliss. Knowledge is the key to power and enlightenment. And yes, I am somewhat clueless, and to stay so must be the biggest crime anyone can make. Either way, I am pretty sure that if I stay a clueless it will only result one day to my own misfortune, like getting eaten by something horrible or worse, take the wrong portal and end up somewhere unpleasant “

 

Okeanos takes his time to recollect his thoughts and emotions. He then takes a big breather and continues

 

“ I am sorry for my sudden outburst but you are the fifth person that has given me such an answer. If I had the time to look into who this lady is at the library, I would, but alas I did not. I simply ask you since I do want to know and it doesn’t have to be a long tale. What’s her name, title, role in Sigil is more than sufficient at this time “

Now he is finally at peace and brings fourth a little smile

 

Dunamin Wrote:

 

“Make no mistake, however; there is definitely something fishy going on with this delivery. Thalivan’s kind never, ever, ever go to Sigil. On their life they will avoid it.

 

Okeanos has now a puzzled expression on his face and looks at the rest of the group

 

“Do you concur with Coal’s statement about Thalivan? If so, what was he doing in Sigil in the first place? …And who are these arcane traders anyway“

 

Okeanos takes a quick glimpse at the package they are carrying and the smile vanishes

 

“I have a bad feeling about this“

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A bit surprised at

A bit surprised at the genasi’s outburst, Coal makes an apologetic bow.

“Well, I beg your pardon, Okeanos. It may not have been constructive advice, but it was rightly intended. The Lady of Pain is who you stay clear off in Sigil, in person and in thought – not that any such encounter should be hard to avoid. She is the undisputed keeper of the Cage, a mysterious entity that controls the portals and keeps the powers out. You oppose her too much and you’ll find yourself flayed or trapped in an extradimensional maze. You care for her too much and you get the same treatment. Thus my suggestion: don’t mind her.”

 

The azer lifts his snack close to his nose and takes a sniff, bringing a mixed expression of nausea and intrigue on his face.

“Whale-eye?” He munches down without further ado, a sizzling noise heard as if the snack has hit a red-hot frying pan.

 

“No one really knows why the arcane has such an extreme reluctance to entering the Cage. Perhaps they collectively got on the Lady’s bad side. Another mystery, one that might very well complicate this little task. Of course, the prospect of trouble is one of the reasons I signed up in the first place.”

Coal smirks, licking his fingers with an absent look at the package.

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"Okeanos, dear boy," Seigi

"Okeanos, dear boy," Seigi adds in a soothing tone, "something to mind is that 'Clueless' is merely Sigil slang for those not initiated in the city's deeper mysteries. Not the most flattering of terms for a scholar, to be sure, but better than some things one might be named. There was this one town I visited where those not initiated in the local culture were called 'wandering meat'. Sigil's colloquialisms are downright flattering, compared to that.

As to this package ... What to do, what to do? If we tamper with it and the Arcane gentleman finds out, we do not receive pay and probably do receive a bad reputation in Arcane society. Not to mention what else a merchant with opulent wealth might have done to us, hm?"

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The package, Coal noted,

The package, Coal noted, didn't seem to have any visible magic auras.  At least, the faux-velvet sack didn't.  It was hard to tell what was inside the boxlike shape without actually seeing it and you'd been very strictly instructed not to see it.

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Rock Wrote: "Okeanos,

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Rock Wrote:

"Okeanos, dear boy," Seigi adds in a soothing tone, "something to mind is that 'Clueless' is merely Sigil slang for those not initiated in the city's deeper mysteries. Not the most flattering of terms for a scholar, to be sure, but better than some things one might be named. There was this one town I visited where those not initiated in the local culture were called 'wandering meat'. Sigil's colloquialisms are downright flattering, compared to that. 

Okeanos turns to face Seigi

" Well, I am not much for colloquialisms but I guess you are right about it is better to be called clueless than being called wandering meat"and Okeanos grins

Rock Wrote:

As to this package ... What to do, what to do? If we tamper with it and the Arcane gentleman finds out, we do not receive pay and probably do receive a bad reputation in Arcane society. Not to mention what else a merchant with opulent wealth might have done to us, hm?" 

" Even though I have a bad feeling about this delivery, I still believe it would be unwise to tamper with the package. What ever situation awaits us, I recommend we go with the flow since the dices have all ready been rolled... and its really turning out to be a rather interesting job" 

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As you milled about through

As you milled about through the market, you found yourselves approached by a rather short man.  He had white skin, the color of freshly-fallen snow and short, dark blue hair that looked frosted over.  His sleeveless tunic and baggy pants clung to his lean form, saturated with wetness, and beads of condensation formed continually on his skin and hair before running down his body.  An aura of cold air surrounded his presence, which explained why he looked so drenched in this humid city.

"Hey cutters," he broke into a friendly grin, "You look lost.  Need a tout?  They got us here, too, just not as many as th' Cage.  Name's K'zink and if you got the jink, I can take you where you need to go!"

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Formula nods graciously

Formula nods graciously down at Seigi and Okeanos and again when Coal taps the orb embedded in his chest, "Yes friend Coal. This unit had a number of experiences involving others...stealing his tools, so he decided to do the smart thing and insure they would never be stolen again, and unfortunatley I have not spoken with my squad recently, given the...circumstances under which I departed." He listens politley and quietly to the conversation on collequilisms and then adds, "Indeed, on one of the primes where this unit's kind are common the 'forged have any number of derogatory terms for the living. Meatbags, bloodsacks, breathers, and a number reffering to your...distasteful habits of eating other living things and then...excreting them." He falls silent again as the tout approaches and nods to him, "Indeed Friend K'zink, this unit's companions have made it quite clear that a tour would be most enjoyable, and this unit confesses he does not know as much about his home town as he would like to. Perhaps you could give us the highlights, yes? We will of course, insure that this turn of events ends profitably for you."

Formula turns back to the others and say, "It seems you needn't rely on this unit for a tour after all. Shall we go?"

__________________

Mondays...

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Tamara seemed disinterested

Tamara seemed disinterested in the babble... no, conversation. Conversation is the word. Tamara seemed disinterested in the conversation of her companions, content to look about at the bustling marketplace. She'd been to a number of other large multi-world markets before - Sigil, Braal, Tradeship Helheim - but it was always interesting to her how something like the local ecology made them all so different. To anybody paying attention to how she was not paying to them, Tamara's attentiveness seems arbitrary - the sorts of things one would usually find interesting she ignores to count the number of tiles in front of a store.

 K'zink's approach, however, pulls her attention back to the space around her.

"How much is it to show us around the city?"

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"Full tour of the burg?"

"Full tour of the burg?" K'zink asked, grinning, "That'll be 2 jinx a person.  Big city has some big music."

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"Just so long as said music

"Just so long as said music is not, in fact, big band music," Seigi says with dry humor.

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Formula blinks slowly, metal

Formula blinks slowly, metal eyelids sliding over his glowing green eyes. "This unit likes big band music, friend Seigi. It's quite groovy" He stares at Seigi for a long moment then blinks again and turns back to K'zink. "Certainly, please allow this unit to pay for his friends." He digs in his pockets a moment and then  draws out a handful of coins. Blinking at them and then making a fake cough noise, "Ahem. So sorry, but this unit can't remember. How much are each coin worth? This unit usually trades services..."

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Formula: …and a

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Formula:

…and a number referring to your...distasteful habits of eating other living things and then...excreting them."

Okeanos drops his jaw and is completely shocked " ...that’s... that’s just wrong... but I must say you have a way with words my friend…" and Okeanos wonders what colloquialisms Formula and other forged may have about beings that takes a dump

Relieved that the tout came and offered him something else to think about, he nods at the suggestion to take a tour of the city.

" Let's see what this city have to offer! And I think it's ten of those " Okeanos helps the forge to pick the correct  coins for the tout’s payment ( 10 gold pieces ) 

“ It’s very kind of you to pay for us. Remind me to buy a pint of beer …” Akward pause ” I mean pint of oil … or something... for you” Akward pause again and Okeanos clears his throat Shall we get going? “

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Formula looks at Okeanos a

Formula looks at Okeanos a long moment then nods, "Thank you friend Okeanos. I appreciate the sentiment even if I cannot enjoy the taste. Let us just enjoy the tour for now. No recompense is necessary."

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Tamara nods. "It's

Tamara nods.

"It's possible you won't show us the whole city. We're only here for... a short time."

After another glance around, she continues.

"Why a big glass city, though? Isn't trading with the aquatic natives enough?"

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"Oh, but there are always

"Oh, but there are always things that the sea can't provide, aren't there?" Seigi suggests, smiling. "Such as beef, pork, cabbages, tomatoes, parchment ... And there are things that one simply can not do under water, such as forge metal objects, or play football."

Turning to the tout, Seigi tut-tuts and forestalls Formula and Okeanos. "A gentleman," he says, "never allows a friend to pay his way for him, so long as he has a few coins left in his pocket. I heartily and gratefully accept your sentiment, my good unit, but not the act. Here you are, sir." Seigi calmly counts out the money for the tour.

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“I concur with Seigi,

“I concur with Seigi, though I do appreciate the notion old friend.”

 

“And certainly,” Coal turns to the assumed cold genasi with a pair of inadvertently heated coins playing in his palm. “Our cunning tout will see that we are thoroughly entertained in absence of the commonly expected group discount.

 

Once the tour is underway, Coal approaches K'zink with a hushed request.

I have a rather specific query to test your tout knowledge, my good man. Might the city by chance feature any temples, hospitals, or other institutions particularly capable of dealing with rare ailments?”

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K'zink cheerfully took the

K'zink cheerfully took the gold from everyone, but suddenly dropped the two coins the azer gave him.  He hissed sharply and shook his hand, face scrunched in pain.  The coins, meanwhile, bounced on the ground, oblivious to the temperature changes running through them.  After a brief moment, K'zink blew on his palm, then reached down and collected the two coins.  "Sorry," he said, breaking into a happy smile again, "Hot coins."  Quickly, he pocketed the jink and led you off as he addressed the questions posed to him.


"Why a big glass city, though? Isn't trading with the aquatic natives enough?"

"Your friend kinda has the dark of it," the tout explained, "Lotta bashers can't breathe water like the natives here, so this burg provides a safe place for them to do their business.  A lot of greybeards say the glass isn't completely necessary.  See, there's no pressure out in the Deep like there is on a Prime ocean, so even if the glass dome broke, chant is not much would really change.  Well, except the burg might see some sea beasties falling out of the sky."  K'zink looked thoughtful at that.  Some condensation dripping into his face shook him out of his considerations.


I have a rather specific query to test your tout knowledge, my good man. Might the city by chance feature any temples, hospitals, or other institutions particularly capable of dealing with rare ailments?”

"Well," K'zink pondered a bit as he walked, "There're plenty of temples here.  Not heard of any that focus on rare problems but the biggest temple is the temple to Istishia.  We're coming up on it now."  The genasi pointed up ahead at a tall, elegant building made of glass.  Spires reached up over the city in grand, flowing shapes resembling waterspouts shooting up from the city streets.  A magnificent fountain stood in the entry courtyard, decorated in the shape of a giant squid, with spouts for tentacles.  It was actually quite lovely, in an unusual way.

"Most of the temples here are dedicated to powers of water," K'zink explained, pausing briefly to give you a chance to take in the sight of the temple, "Istishia's is the biggest, but they got others like Poseidon, Deep Sashelas, Umberlee, and Eldath here too.  The sahuagin even got a temple to Sekolah built in another part of the city.  Trade powers have the next biggest chunk of worship here.  There're dozens of little shrines to gods of commerce in the marketplace.  Waukeen has a pretty nice temple on the other side of the market, so do some of the other trade gods like Hermes and Yacatecuhtli.  You'll see other powers here, but can't think of one that's especially good for healing."

After a little bit, your hired guide took you on a tour of the rest of the city.  He showed you several major points of interest, including the Council Hall, where the city's ruling council worked, the Steam Baths, a public bath popular for its ability to accommodate both air- and water-breathing people ("Never been in there, too hot for me, but chant is it's great," K'zink had said), the Deep Garden, a large greenhouse of aquatic and land plants of all shapes, sizes, and colors, including "assassin seaweed," and the Seashell Chalet, the city's most refined and wealthy inn, catering to the upper crust of the merchants and visitors traveling to the city.  The Chalet was designed to look like a giant, open clamshell with the main building nestled in the middle.  K'zink said it offered entertainment for people of most classes and heartily recommended the frozen salmon on salt-rice at one of the restaurants inside.  Of course, by this time, you'd all been informed or realized that K'zink was an ice genasi, which explained why Coal's coin stung, why he avoided the Steam Bath, and why he liked frozen food.

He also told you what places to avoid.  K'zink especially warned against going to the sahuagin section ("Nasty berks lookin' to scrag anyone leatherheaded enough to go there") and the fish wharf ("Place stinks worse than the Hive on some days.  Least the Hive gets a wind blowing through it sometimes.").  Some three hours later, your city tour was complete and the tout guided you to the delivery location so you could drop off your package.  It was a small, somewhat gaudy shop with a bright red door and gold trim around the windows and doorframes.  A sign above the door advertised "Alendos's Alchemy" and included a picture of a stylized hand holding a vial.  It was really quite quaint, the kind of place one would never see in Sigil.

"Well," K'zink turned to you and doffed an imaginary hat, "If there's nothing else, I'll be going on.  Best of luck to you cutters and if you need a tout again, I'm in the marketplace every day from dawn to peak!"

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" Thank you for the tour

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" Thank you for the tour K'zink, It has been most interesting. I wish we could have stayed longer at the steam baths though. I am definitely going for a swim later "

 

Okeanos turns to look at the shop. “ this shop doesn’t look to bad... Now, shall we proceed with our delivery? Or do you guys have other matters to attend to before we enter “  

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"We should hurry with the

"We should hurry with the delivery."

Tamara glances around uneasily, making sure there's nobody dodgy-looking in the immediate vicinity. (There probably is, but Tamara's not sure what she could do about that.)

 "I've got a bad feeling about this package."

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“Right, let’s get to

“Right, let’s get to it. I’m not going to wait around until I croak on this doorstep.”

 

It’s hard to tell whether the azer is joking. He opens the door without hesitation, steps inside, and takes a look around.

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The City of Glass Day 1 of

The City of Glass Day 1 of the War of the Facets, 5:03 A.P. Alendos's Alchemy

Coal opened the door and found himself greeted by a rather pleasant surprise.  A faint wind rushed inside as the humidity equalized.  Even with the open door, though, the azer noticed the shop's interior was very dry -- far too dry for the Plane of Water.  Even more curious, many vials had toppled over, but whatever liquid they once held had completely evaporated.  No people called a greeting as the little bell on the door rang.  Indeed, the inside was completely silent.

In the back of the small front room, a door hung slightly ajar, leading to a well-lit back room.

Perception to look around Arcana, Thievery, or Nature to see if you recognize any of the contents the now-useless vials once held (check DC and relevant skill depends on the item, but just make one check for all of it if you're interested) Other skills as you feel they might be appropriate.

Keep your rolls to this thread and keep an eye on your Private Messages.  I will send you the information via PM.

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“… No hunch or gut

“… No hunch or gut feeling matches the insight granted by the Rekindler,” mumbles Coal cryptically while slipping an intricate handy cylinder out from his sleeve. A closer look reveals it to be heavily inscribed with strange script and avian symbols, and its end fashioned into a beak that holds a slowly pulsing white gem at the tip.

 

“Careful fellows, these might be the signs of a struggle. Let’s stick together and investigate.”

The azer sniffs the air for any trace of alchemical reagents that may have been spilled and given rise to the unusual dryness, and scans the vials and mystical components at the scene.

 

[Natural 20!! Nice way to kick off! Smile]

10 Bonus for Arcana to do identify alchemical remains
I rolled 1d20+10, the result is 30.
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"Who ???... Well we don't

"Who ???... Well we don't need him to see that there is something fishy going on "

Okeanos walks in the room and clearly does not like the sudden aridity of the room.

" Where are the people whom live in this barmy place" 

He walks past the Azer and stops infront of the door to the well lit room.

" Is anyone home " he say's loudly

Regardless of what happens, he takes a moment to listen if there is somekind of response (  a voice answering his inquiry, quicken footsteps, chanting and so forth) and then he pushes the door open with his left hand while keeping his right hand on his sword, ready to strike anyone who could surprise him from behind the door.

 

4 Bonus for Perception to do To figure out if someone or something reacts to his inquiry
I rolled 1d20+4, the result is 12.
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 Nobody answered the water

 Nobody answered the water genasi's call, but a sight did greet his eyes.  The back room was small and messy, furniture and vials strewn about the room.  There'd been quite a struggle in the room.  Soot and sear marks dotted the wooden walls where alchemist's fire and acid splashed on them.  Everything was in disarray, especially the bodies of the two unfortunate losers of whatever conflict ensued.

The two were probably human and both were male.  But strangely, their bodies were shriveled and desiccated, as if something sucked all the water out of them.  They lay amid the debris, arms and legs all akimbo as if they'd just been tossed where you found them.

It was strange.  How, in the most humid of all planes, could something be sucked dry of all fluid, leaving behind only a dead, dried out husk?

Perception checks to discover clues

As a side note, if you don't receive a PM from me on your roll, it generally means you didn't find anything out.  If you think your roll is high enough to possibly learn something, feel free to drop a PM.

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The genasi grimaces at the

The genasi grimaces at the sight of the bodies. He then quickly pulls forth his waterskin and gulps

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what he haves left lustrously before he say's:

" I believe I have found the owners... and they are a bit parched...and not moving "Okeanos pauses for a moment to take another look at the poor sods before he continues his way into the room. 

" there are clear signs of a strugle in here, so be on alert and make sure you drink enough fluids "

The first thing Okeanos does is to check the bodies of any personal information or notes and then for any valuables ( items and gold ). After he is done with that he checks the room for the same things.

OOC: Are there any windows in the room or other doors? I would also want to make a knowledge arcana skill check to identify if the dryness is made from some kinda of magical effect and what may have caused it: An item, spell and etc.

4 Bonus for Perception to do Find clues: Personal information, notes and valuables
I rolled 1d20+4, the result is 16.
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OCC: Sorry, didn't know how

OCC: Sorry, didn't know how to roll twice with the dice roller

11 Bonus for Konwledge Arcana to do Identify if the dryness is a magical effect and what caused it
I rolled 1d20+11, the result is 13.
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"Whoever or whatever did

"Whoever or whatever did this," Seigi notes, "seems to have a mighty thirst. Those vials we saw contained alchemical components in liquid state, and now ... dust." The older man looks around, his deepset eyes looking perhaps a bit sharper than they did before. "I speculate, of course," he says, "but might some native entity have a technique to drain all fluids from those around it? And ... a question occurs. Are these two unfortunate gentlemen the ones who we were supposed to hand the package over to in the absence of the Arcane?"

 Suddenly, something seems to catch Seigi's eye. Moving calmly, he inserts his cane through a loop on his belt and loosens the sword on the opposite side, easing it from its sheath. "Lady and gentlemen," he says in a light tone, "I notice there is some ... salt residue on and around these unfortunate dead. And no exit from this place save for that exhaust vent" -- Seigi suddenly snakes his blade forward and points the tip at the vent in question -- "and I dare say even a halfling would find it a rather rough means of egress or entry. Mayhap our murderer is, in their natural state, a liquid?"

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Formula tilts his head

Formula tilts his head slightly as he enters and looks around the room in disarray, standind quietly for a moment as he scans the room slowly then breaths a wheezy sigh, "What a waste this is. Whoever made this mess clearly has little respect for Science." He cautiously follows Seigi as he  moves into the room and stares at the salt,  "It is, of course, a possibility, but if that is so than the salt should have dried into fluid rings or trails. If what we have is instead either crystalline matter or a dust this unit postulates that they must either be coated in salt, perhaps from working at a refinery, or have some ability to produce it perhaps, maybe it is instead some form of mummy? This unit confesses that his knowledge of such creatures is unfortunately limited, and he is reduced to grasping at straws. However given that friend Siegi has pointed out that the vent is the only means of egress this unit respectfully submits that it is more than possible that the creatures had some ability to shift either within planes or from plane to plane, especially given the nature of the city." Formula kneels, metallic joints popping and creaking, and inspects the residue and the bodies as he wracks his brain for any mention of creatures or spells that could do this to a person.

 

+11 Bonus for Arcana to do determine what could have dessicated the men
I rolled 1d20++11, the result is .
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(Oops. Don't mind me. Just

(Oops. Don't mind me. Just fixing dice.)

11 Bonus for Arcana to do figure out what could have dessicated the men.
I rolled 1d20+11, the result is 17.
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Tamara peers around the

Tamara peers around the room, emitting a low hum as she probes the space around her with her senses. Upon seeing the dessicated dead the hum grows noticably louder; she puts a hand to the rod at her belt, and the hum dies down again.

"Remind me again who has the package. It (and our liquids) must be well-guarded."

She looks around again, checking under tables and behind curtains.

"If we're carrying something wanted by another, whoever killed these men is likely still around."

1 Bonus for Perception to do
I rolled 1d20+1, the result is 16.
6 Bonus for Arcana to do
I rolled 1d20+6, the result is 23.
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“Many of these dried up

“Many of these dried up vials seemed to contain volatile chemicals – there should have been burn marks or the like upon their exposure to the atmosphere,” Coal remarks. “Yet there are no signs at all, as if they’ve been neutralized in the process of being drained…”

 

Atriden wrote:

" I believe I have found the owners... and they are a bit parched...and not moving "

Rock wrote:

" Are these two unfortunate gentlemen the ones who we were supposed to hand the package over to in the absence of the Arcane? "

“Poor sods, though I wouldn’t say we can be certain they were the recipients of the package or even the owners of this shop.”

The azer glances about for any paintings or other illustrations that might depict either of the two men, indicating that he or they were in fact the proprietor(s).

 

“These signs look like bad business for you in particular, kid,” Coal notes with a grave look at Okeanos. “Pipe up if you feel like something’s missing from your essence… I can relate.”

 

Rock wrote:

"I notice there is some ... salt residue on and around these unfortunate dead. And no exit from this place save for that exhaust vent" -- Seigi suddenly snakes his blade forward and points the tip at the vent in question -- "and I dare say even a halfling would find it a rather rough means of egress or entry. Mayhap our murderer is, in their natural state, a liquid?"

Coal nods and directs the gem-tipped end of his tool towards the vent, speaking in a calm and low voice.

“Very possible, many elemental beings have such amorphous forms. Now, what really unsettles me is that I cannot detect even the slightest trace of the Art in the vicinity. I think that whatever did this, it did it through some innate means. Perhaps some sort of water elemental that drains its surroundings to sustain itself.”

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After several minutes of

After several minutes of searching, worrying, and wondering, you all noticed the natural humidity of the plane began creeping back into the small shop.  Bolstered by the open door, the pressure changed and a slight breeze wafted in, carrying the thicker, water-laden air with it.  It was a natural occurrence, and with the presence of water vapor, decay of the two bodies was an imminent, albeit slow future.

After this little scene, you will all get to head to your inn and will have about a game day to do whatever you want or need to do in the city before you have to meet Thalivan at his inn.  Once things seem to wind down here, or when you decide to leave the shop, I'll move you all to the inn.  From there, you'll have a little bit of free reign to shop, visit locations, etc.  If nothing major seems to be going on, I'll advance you all to the reunion with Thalivan in about a week.  If there are major hooks underway, I'll be attempting to bring them to a close so I can advance by late next week.

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The genasi gathers some of

The genasi gathers some of the papers he found scattered across the room and reads them at the table. If the formulas are useful in anyway he keeps them otherwise he throws them on behind his back. While sitting at the table he discovers a pouch full of gold and the genasi's face lightens up a bit." Well, at least the spoil is our for the taking " With no remorse he starts to count how many gp's there are in the pouch and divides them into five piles and shoves one of them down his own pouch. " now we know for certain that the killer wasn't after their gold or other valuables which strengthens the theory that the killer was here to acquire the package"

Rock: "I notice there is some ... salt residue on and around these unfortunate dead. And no exit from this place save for that exhaust vent"

" Salt? What kind of salt?" and Okeanos collects a sample and puts it in the pouch he found erlier. " What ever did this didn't necessarily escape through the vent. The killer could casually have walked out of the front door and be the one who left the door to backroom ajar" Okeanos checks if the exaust vent has any residue of salt on or in it. " Perhaps some of the Neighbours can help us identify those corpses and who knows, maybe they have heard or seen something that could be useful" 

Dunamin:“These signs look like bad business for you in particular, kid,” Coal notes with a grave look at Okeanos. “Pipe up if you feel like something’s missing from your essence… I can relate.”

The water genasi grimaces even more than before. " I can't imagine a worse way to part from this world ". Okeanos looks very worried. " Thanks for the concern Coal, but I think I am all right " Suddenly his facial expression changes from fear to anger. " nobody is going to suck me dry, thats for sure! "

Bob the Efreet:"If we're carrying something wanted by another, whoever killed these men is likely still around."

" True, we have to watch our backs from now on. When we get to the Inn, I recommend that we make shifts to guard the package so that it doens't get snitched from us while we sleep "

OCC:

To Center of All: Where there any useful or valuable formulas? How much gold is in the pouch? Do I need to roll a perception check to examine the vent for traces of salt?

To Bob the Efreet: I have no idea who has the package, but I could carry it if the group wishes

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Formula sighs and stands up,

Formula sighs and stands up, brushing off his knees before turning to the others, "This unit must admit, this is most puzzling to him as well. This unit knows not of any creature or spell that might do this to anyone, let alone one that could also escape through such a small vent. Should we perhaps...inform the local constabulary as to the disposition of these units? This unit confesses that he finds this situation both highly confusing, somewhat distressing, in that he will not be able to complete his given job, and also nauseating in that these units appear to have been turned into salt pork, an appearance not altogether becoming to most humanoids."

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Atriden wrote:"What ever

Atriden wrote:
"What ever did this didn't necessarily escape through the vent. The killer could casually have walked out of the front door and be the one who left the door to backroom ajar." Okeanos checks if the exaust vent has any residue of salt on or in it. "Perhaps some of the Neighbours can help us identify those corpses and who knows, maybe they have heard or seen something that could be useful"

"A good plan. But there was no commotion outside, implying neighbours and passersby didn't notice anything overt."

Tamara pauses to look over her shoulder at the door, as though there could be someone lurking there right now.

"Or were involved."

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GunSmackIt: Formula sighs

GunSmackIt: Formula sighs and stands up, brushing off his knees before turning to the others"Should we perhaps...inform the local constabulary as to the disposition of these units?"

Okeanos nods. He takes forth the pouch where he collected his salt specimens and poors most of the content on one of the corpses. Then he attaches the pouch, still with a little salt in it, on the victims belt. "Yes, that is a good idea but we got to make sure this doesn't come back to our employer, to us or our mission. The authorities could force us to open the package and that would ruin our job. And the fact that we some leverage to bargain with " Okeanos takes a look around the room to check for any obvious valuables that are in sight and stuffs it into his backpack but doesn't fill it to the maximum capacity since he doesn't want to look too suspicious, when he leaves the shop. " I suggest we make it look like a regular robbery and get rid of anything that could be valuable. Our story is that we are but simple customers looking for supplies but accidentaly found the two men like this and as good folks we are, we informed the constabulary" The genasi takes a breather and continues: " afterwards we could try to get some information about our employer, try to look up information at the library that could explain the death of the victims and why there was so much salt on them" 

Bob the Efreet: "A good plan. But there was no commotion outside, implying neighbours and passersby didn't notice anything overt."

Okeanos stops to listen to Tamara and smiles widely. " Aye lass, you are entirely right! The neighbours have not heard or seen anything overt but perhaps they have perceived something of importance and are unaware of its significance. They could help us confirm our theory that the killer came up or fled through the vent, give us an description of the last customer and more important when he or she was here, and help us identify who the victims are. Are they the shopkeepers? Do they have any relatives that needs to be contacted? " The genasi starts to walk in circles while looking at the others, one by one. " Well, we need someone with people skills to pull this one off, any volunteers  " Then he stops with an apologetic expression on his face and turns to look at the group: " I am very sorry. I was so caught up with my own plan that I forgot to ask what you thought about it....so... What do you think?"

OCC: there are 4 piles of gold on the table with 4 gp's in them each, please make sure to post that you take one them, if ya want one.

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Atriden wrote:"Well, we need

Atriden wrote:
"Well, we need someone with people skills to pull this one off, any volunteers?" Then he stops with an apologetic expression on his face and turns to look at the group: " I am very sorry. I was so caught up with my own plan that I forgot to ask what you thought about it....so... What do you think?"

 

"Getting information isn't hard. We just ask if anybody saw anything."

Tamara moves towards the door, as though it's been decided.

"Unless there are any other ideas?"

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Formula stares at Okeanos

Formula stares at Okeanos and then shrugs, "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law. This unit will await in the street. He sees no need to participate in either duplicity or theft." He turns and walks calmly and quietly with Tamara to the street. "He will help you search for clues among the residents therein."

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A look of disbelief crosses

A look of disbelief crosses Coal’s face and he shakes his head.

“Poor taste, kid. I’ll have no part in petty theft or a cover-up that dishonors the deceased.”

 

“On a constructive note, I’ll gladly aid in interviewing residents. If possible, we could also investigate local piping on the off-chance that we’ll learn more about where the supposed liquid attacker has been.”

 

[Perhaps collaborative Diplomacy checks are in order for the questioning? The highest roll is the “lead” and other rolls that pass DC 10 are uses of Aid Another to grant +2 bonuses?]

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You all spent time talking

You all spent time talking to nearby residents, but for a long time it seemed to be proving fruitless.  None of the residents claimed to have seen anything, but without a clear idea of what time the attack happened, it was hard to really gather the proper information.

Finally, your efforts seemed to pay off.  After you knocked on a door, a wizened, stooped old human man answered.  You presented your questions and his old eyes widened.  "Yeah, I seen it," he said in a voice a little to loudly, "Seen it just before dawn.  Some sods walked right on in, then walked right back out!"

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"What did these sods look

"What did these sods look like?"

The old man's demeanour seemed a bit dodgy to Tamara, but she figures further investigation is the only way to ferret out the horrible man's lies.

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The old man squinted at

The old man squinted at Tamara.  One could almost hear the old, squeaky gears turning in his head as he tried to recall what happened.  Then, he hobbled back a few feet and looked the woman up and down.  Finally, he nodded to himself and answered.

"They was about your height, missy," he said, sticking a finger at Tamara, "'Cept these berks was all soddin' white.  Walked right in, walked right back out about a half-hour later."

He nodded, sounding confident in his explanation.

Insight or Heal check

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