Old Dorks Zeitgeist

Update Nine

Out of the Mine

Zeitgeist Nine: Out of the Mine!

The only resistance Blake’s team finds in the mine is the one crazy miner and his strange minions. The industrious Danorans hung convenient signs in the mine providing exit directions. These signs are easy to follow, and there are even some handy kerosene lamps illuminating the journey.

At the mine’s exit, there is a small clearing surrounded by forest. The trees surrounding the clearing exhibit many fresh sword cuts and bullet impacts, almost as if the forest itself were involved in a recent fight. The center of the clearing is dominated by a low mound of recently-turned earth.

Vague memories of forgettable meetings aboard the RHS Impossible leave most of the team with the impression that the target of their disastrous mission is off to the northeast of their current location. A dirt road leads off to the east from the clearing. It seems likely that the network of roads on this island would include the fortress, but an overland trek through the woods could have advantages as well.
Nov 26, 2011

Scott:
to be clear, since sometimes it’s hard to tell when I’m asking for a decision to be made: Through the Forest and Down the Road are the two options provided in the adventure. I am, as always, open to other ideas.

Nov 26, 2011

Me:
“…did someone get a proper burial in this gods forsaken place..?” Blake ponders aloud as she walks to investigate the mound.

“The forest seems a better path for us,” she offers as she lets a handful of dirt from the mound slip slowly back to the earth, “I imagine there are fewer people watching the woods than might be a road… I am, as always, open to other ideas.”
Nov 26, 2011

Kat:
“Forest sounds good to me,” says Cazara.
Nov 26, 2011

Michael:
Qarina nods. “Is good idea.”
Nov 27, 2011

Erin:
Malkie nods, and is the first to scamper into the underbrush.
Nov 27, 2011

Erin:
Stealth at +9, bitte?
Nov 27, 2011

Scott:
done!

Lass Scamper activated.
Nov 27, 2011

Kat:
Cazara’s gonna do similar. +11, I think.
Nov 27, 2011

Scott:
ahoy!

Nov 28, 2011

Scott:
Malkie and Cazara scamper off into the woods, expertly traveling through the wild terrain, making barely a sound as they go. Blake is able to easily keep up, but the other two trail behind, having a bit more difficulty picking their way through the underbrush.

Before long, Cazara picks up an odd noise from the forest: a metallic grinding sound and the thump of heavy footsteps moving in her general direction from the assumed direction of the fortress. The sounds are growing closer.
Nov 28, 2011

Kat:
Cazara catches Blake’s eye and signals that something is up. She then climbs a nearby tree, just high enough to get a better look.
Nov 28, 2011

Kat:
Perception +8, plz.

Nov 28, 2011

Me:
Blake drops to a low crouch and tries to signal the others to do the same even as she rolls her eyes at the futility of hoping that the group will obey or even understand.
Nov 28, 2011

Kat:
Cazara drops from the tree and joins Blake and Malkie on the ground.

“There’s a big iron golem about a hundred yards off. Looks like it’s been injured – it’s missing its head, and there’s this, like, glittery black oil coming out of it. Dunno if it would even notice us, the way it’s crashing around.”
Nov 28, 2011

Me:
Blake rolls her eyes again.

“There seems to be all kinds of conflict going on here with or without us – what in the hells is going on,” she asks of the skies above her.

“I don’t know if such a thing would miss us, but I don’t know if I care – opinions?”

She glances about the group.
Nov 28, 2011

Kat:
“The oil is weird enough that I wouldn’t mind a closer look. Otherwise, I don’t see value in engaging the thing in combat. Or even letting it know we’re here.”
Nov 28, 2011

Erin:
Malkie makes a face, like she’s imagining how the oil would taste. “Pass, thank you. Although I’d be interested to learn what decapitated it. I doubt we’ll want to have a toussle with that either.”
Nov 28, 2011

Kat:
“Another thing we’d have to get closer to determine.”
Nov 28, 2011

Michael:
“Maybe we are not only people trying to kill Duchess,” Qarina muses.
Nov 30, 2011

Eric:
“Once,” Durakh-al interjects, “I spoke with a seer—-perhaps more touched than is usual—-who said that the dead, the souls of the dead, that their souls could be drawn down to points of light.”

“According to her—-she was a dwarf of some age—-Danoran industrialists burned this distillation to power their machines.”
Nov 30, 2011

Michael:
“Soul slaves,” Qarina spits, disgusted at this revelation.
Nov 30, 2011

Me:
Blake grimaces at Qarina’s outburst, but addresses the group, “Is this information somehow relevant in any way or can we continue?”
Nov 30, 2011

Scott:
The woods seem to grow quiet in antici
Nov 30, 2011

Kat:

Nov 30, 2011

Me:
pation.
Nov 30, 2011

Kat:
Cazara thinks, fiddling with the coin bound to her wrist.
Nov 30, 2011

Kat:
Makin’ some knowledge checks.

Nov 30, 2011

Kat:
Cazara frowns at the coin.

“Nah, doesn’t seem important right now. Good to know, I guess, if we run into any that still have their heads.”

Cazara shrugs and stands, and begins moving forward again.
Nov 30, 2011

Me:
Blake motions the others to fall in.
Nov 30, 2011

Scott:
Blake’s troops move on from the odd sight, continuing to pick their way across the forested island.

After about fifteen more minutes of travel, a fifty-foot high pillar of flame reaches into the sky from a point about a hundred feet ahead of the group, but not in their direct line of travel. As quickly as it appears, the fire is gone.
Nov 30, 2011

Me:
“Gods, this whole island is irritating,” Blake mumbles to herself. She turns to Cazara, “Shall we investigate..?”
Nov 30, 2011

Me:
Stealth +10

Scott added Erin Dec 1, 2011
Dec 1, 2011Scott:
investigations!

Blake and Cazara skulk off to the source of the fire pillar. They find a perfectly normal clearing, except for a few singed branches on some of the surrounding trees.
Dec 1, 2011

Me:
“Shall we wait a few minutes?”
Dec 1, 2011

Scott:
They wait a few minutes.
Dec 1, 2011

Kat:
“The fire was definitely… influenced… by the duchess. (Who may or may not be dutch.)”
Dec 1, 2011

Scott:
And Malkie catches up.
Dec 1, 2011

Me:
Lucky bastard.. woulda staked her otherwise.
Dec 1, 2011

Scott:
She’s the Dutchest!
Dec 1, 2011

Kat:
I was about to do that…
Dec 1, 2011

Kat:
Baking has influenced my spelling for the poorer, this night. Baking and whiskey.
Dec 1, 2011

Me:
Baking is a helluva drug.
Dec 1, 2011

Me:
Is there anything indicating a source..? Or is it just random fire..?
Dec 1, 2011

Scott:
Nothing indicating a source.

Dec 1, 2011

Scott:
The three investigators find themselves hip-deep in a purple swamp (neck-deep for Malkie). A blue sun overhead illuminates the scene. A yellow frog nearby hops into the water.
Dec 1, 2011

Kat:
“Dreaming,” says Cazara. “The Duchess,” she says, by way of explanation.
Dec 1, 2011

Erin:
“Ew ew ew ew ew,” says Malkie.
Dec 1, 2011

Kat:
Cazara’s senses are on high alert.
Dec 1, 2011

Kat:
Perception? Insight?
(+8, +3)

Dec 1, 2011

Me:
Blake’s lips curls in disgust but she remains silent.
Dec 1, 2011

Me:
How to get out of illusion: Arcana +2

Dec 1, 2011

Scott:
And, an instant later, they are all back in the recently-singed forest clearing. Their clothes from the hip (or neck) down are soaked.
Dec 1, 2011

Me:
“For the record,” Blake says pointing at Malkie, “I blame you.”
Dec 1, 2011

Michael:
“Maybe they explode,” Qarina muses. “You think we go after?”
Dec 1, 2011

Scott:
The group trudges on. It’s a hard hike through the woods, but eventually they reach their goal…
Dec 1, 2011

Scott:
Group Athletics/Nature check. I will use your higher skill. If you have a power of some kind that you want to use to influence this, let me know.
Dec 1, 2011

Scott:
no negative effects from the Perilous Terrain!
Dec 1, 2011

Eric:
Durakh-al is an Athletics badass: both the NHL and the NBA want him, but he plays rugby.
Dec 1, 2011

Michael:
Athletics +8 is my highest.
Dec 1, 2011

Eric:
+13: you get to play tennis ;P
Dec 1, 2011

Michael:
with my Acrobatics at +12, I’m more like a champion gymnast.
Dec 2, 2011

Eric:
shutup, tennis pro; your feet are too big for gymnastics.

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