Old Dorks Zeitgeist

Update Ten

Fortress

Zeitgeist Ten: Fortress!

After the extended hike, Blake’s team arrives at the coastal fortress. The Duchess’s forces have seized control of this strategic strongpoint. Its tall walls are arranged in a pentagon, with the northern point extending into the sea. In place of that point is a massive sea gate which can be opened and closed to allow ships access to the docks of the fortress.

Tanya’s team’s mission was to open the sea gate while Blake’s team was to fire off a Pyrotechnics ritual from the Fortress’s lighthouse. Now both tasks must be accomplished by a single team in order to allow the Risuri navy to enter the fortress. There are two gates into the fortress, on the northwest and northeast walls, near the shoreline. The group is equipped with a Passwall scroll and a Water Breathing scroll, however, and may find them useful for alternate means of entry.
Dec 1, 2011

Kat:
Cazara scans the area.
Dec 1, 2011

Kat:
can I get a percetion +8 and an insight +3 for anything that would indicate the easiest way in?

Dec 1, 2011

Michael:
Qarina follows suit.
Dec 1, 2011

Michael:
perception +5, insight +0

Dec 1, 2011

Kat:
“So, boss, how do we want to do this? Aside from passwall and a sea entrance, it looks like we could make it over the top of the walls if we were quick and quiet about it.”
Dec 2, 2011

Me:
Blake’s brow furrows and she takes another look at the fortress.

“Hmmmm,” she mutters thoughtfully, “I didn’t see that… over the wall is better than trying to fight through a door. Good thinking… if the rest of these can be quick and quiet, I mean.”
Dec 1, 2011

Kat:
“If they can’t be, perhaps it would work to split up? We do have only one team for two jobs as it is,” Cazara says, chewing her lip.
Dec 1, 2011

Me:
“I’d thought of that and quickly dismissed it,” Blake says gruffly, “Aside from needing to focus our firepower, the Dumb One can hardly stay on her feet with everyone backing her up – I shudder to think what she’d do with half a team at her back.”
Dec 1, 2011

Kat:
“Cool. You’re the boss.” Cazara flashes a toothy grin and looks around for the best place to start climbing.
Dec 2, 2011

Michael:
Qarina punches Blake in the face, pleased at the satisfying crunch her fist makes.
Dec 2, 2011

Scott:
you get 24 hours to follow up on this game-disrupting event, just like when it’s your initiative in combat.

By my count, that should be about 9am Pacific time on Saturday.
Dec 3, 2011

Michael:
No problem, I’m out. Good luck storming the castle.
Dec 2, 2011

Scott:
SURPRISE ROUND?
Dec 2, 2011

Erin:
Just something about Xian’s characters. You can’t hardly help yourself.

Dec 2, 2011

Me:
Blakes guns are in her hands and levelled at Qarina’s head before she has even stopped stumbling backwards. She spits a thick gob of bloody spittle as she looks down her sights at the woman.

“You’re done,” Blake says coldly and without emotion, “Does anyone else want to resign their position?”
Dec 2, 2011

Kat:
Cazara exchanges glances with Malkie. She steps away from the altercation
Dec 2, 2011

Erin:
Malkie leans over to Cazara. “I’ll wager thirty on the Chimp. I don’t think a bullet to her head would affect her much.”
Dec 2, 2011

Kat:
Cazara smirks. “You’re assuming the boss’ll aim for the head,” she murmurs. “You’re on.”

Blake shoulders her pack and makes sure it is snug to minimize sound as she walks. She turns and stares each team member in the eye.

“Quick. Quiet. We do this fast and we get out. Quiet.”
Dec 1, 2011

Kat:
Cazara points out the guard(s) posted for this section of wall for the benefit of the less visually endowed.
Dec 1, 2011

Me:
“Anyone have anything for these Danoran bastards,” Blake asks in a low hiss, “Something quiet..?”
Dec 1, 2011

Kat:
“I can hit pretty silently if it comes to that,” murmurs Cazara. “And Malkie could make a good assassin if she wasn’t always… crowing. But these guys aren’t expecting us. We should be able to sneak right by if we’re careful.”
Dec 1, 2011

Me:
“Dead is better, but reality is what it is.”
Dec 2, 2011

Eric:
Durakh-al mentions that he climbs like a big-horned sheep. If someone gives him some rope, he could help the others over the wall.
Dec 2, 2011

Me:
“I hope big-horned sheep climb quietly,” Blake comments as she produces rope from under her poncho and tosses it at Durakh-al.
Dec 2, 2011

Eric:
Durakh-al grabs the rope and looks for a good place to put his skills to practice, wondering silently how big-horned sheep wouldn’t climb quietly, but then, he doesn’t really understand women and what they say, except Qarina, and Malkie, and, well, Cazara; maybe he just doesn’t understand old people, or gun-toting bossy types. Anyways, here’s a good spot
Dec 2, 2011

Eric:
Athletics +13
Singing docker songs drunk with Malkie while climbing +28
. . .
Dec 2, 2011

Kat:
Cazara keeps an eye on the guards while Durakh-al climbs. She will jump and kill if there’s any trouble.
Dec 2, 2011

Scott:
waiting for the fist/gun fight to work itself out before I update for the rest of the group.
Dec 2, 2011

Kat:
Understood.

Dec 2, 2011

Me:
Blake urges the team up the wall while she holds Qarina at gun point.
Dec 2, 2011

Kat:
Cazara pauses directly behind Blake as she sizes up the jump.
Dec 2, 2011

Kat:
Cazara will wait for an opportunity when the guards aren’t paying to much attention, then she’ll use Eagle Claw Strike’s movement action to fly to the top.

Dec 2, 2011Kat:
“Those coins around her neck will be useful. Don’t let her leave with them.”
Dec 2, 2011

Me:
Thank you kindly!
Dec 2, 2011

Scott:
While Blake and Qarina deal with their shit, Durakh-al begins his ascent. He makes it up the wall easily enough, and the guards seem to not notice him. The only two in sight are busy smoking.

Durakh turns to set the rope for the others and notices Zara standing next to him on top of the wall.

Dec 2, 2011
I’ll let you call Mike’s game
If when that happens, Blake will rip the coins off of her and order her to start walking the other way.
Dec 2, 2011

Scott:
If-when we get to 24 hours after his punch, you can narrate the resolution yourself any way you want if he hasn’t made any further response.
Dec 2, 2011

Me:
A’ight – so I’ma write that shit at 10:20am or as close to that time as I’m awake. Just so’s ya know.
Dec 2, 2011

Scott:
I’ll be asleep. I’ll make sre to post a warning in response to his punch.
Dec 2, 2011

Scott:
give him until about 11:00, since that’s when you posted your response.
Dec 2, 2011

Me:
k
Dec 2, 2011

Kat:
Cazara crouches low to avoid being spotted. She peers into the fortress, plotting out the next phase of the job.
Dec 2, 2011

Kat:
Stealth and perception, I guess? :3

Dec 2, 2011

Scott:
Cazara makes a map of the area in her head.
Dec 2, 2011

Scott:
The party climbed the wall at “3”

file

The Inner Wall is taller than the Outer Wall, so she can’t see what’s inside the keep, other than the tower in the middle.
Dec 2, 2011

Kat:
Cazara wonders about the significance of the double pentagram, then realizes that such musing is better suited to the starseer’s mind. >_>
Dec 2, 2011

Scott:
she’s probably seen some of these around.
Dec 2, 2011

Kat:
that’s just cool.
Dec 2, 2011

Eric:
About to say – looks like a star fort ;)
and yes, tres cool
Dec 2, 2011

Kat:
I was telling scott that during my primary education days, I would stop paying attention to history lessons about the time gunpowder weapons started being a thing – something about the way lessons shifted in the way they were taught, I’m sure. If they’d talked about star forts, I’m equally sure that I would have paid much better attention. :3
Dec 2, 2011

Me:
I had the opposite experience in history class.
Dec 2, 2011

Kat:
perhaps you had better teachers for it.
Dec 2, 2011

Me:
To be honest it was mostly because of a book the teacher had us read (first text book I actually went out and bought to have and still have it – we had in-school loaners). The actual teacher was the biggest fucking ass I have ever had the displeasure of learning under.
Dec 2, 2011

Kat:
lol. Well, I don’t believe I had the benefit of a good book, then.
Dec 2, 2011

Me:
Completely unrelated story about said teacher: We had term papers to do and I chose to do mine on the the Trojan War and one of my sources was a book (again, that I bought) called something like “The March of War – From the Trojan War to Vietnam”. The dude stopped me after class and demanded that I bring the book in because he was certain that I was cheating because he’d read that book and there was no mention of the Trojan War in it. FUCKER! It’s in the MOTHERFUCKING TITLE. I’m still carrying around a little bit of resentment.
I really feel like my teachers dropped the ball when they shifted focus from “hey look, different cultures and stuff,” to “and on this day, this guy did this with an army.”

Dec 2, 2011

Scott:
Some dude named Tito wanders by and wonders why all this chatter is going on in here.
Dec 2, 2011

Me:
“High Five, Tito,” says Blake.
Dec 2, 2011

Kat:
Cazara kills Tito.
Dec 2, 2011

Scott:
Tito dies a glorious death, his life’s purpose served.
Dec 2, 2011

Me:
Jermaine and Michael come shrieking down the wall to avenge their brother’s death.
Dec 2, 2011

Scott:
But they get in a petty argument and then nothing happens for a while.
Dec 2, 2011

Scott:
Meanwhile, Cazara surveys the star fort while Durakh secures the rope for whomever is following.

Cazara Notes that the town inside the fortress’s outer wall seems nearly abandoned. A few soldiers pass back and forth, but there are no civilians.

She spots the lighthouse in which the Pyrotechnics ritual is intended to be used. It is just east of the sea gate, meaning this job may be easier to achieve with only one team than was originally thought.

The main problem now (once the others catch up) is deciding whether to descend and make their way to the harbor via the town, or to try to travel along the wall, which is more consistently guarded.
Dec 3, 2011

Kat:
Cazara motions for Malkie to start climbing.
Dec 3, 2011

Erin:
And climb she does. Or more accurately, she struggles up the rope, swearing under her breath the whole way. Climbing hand-over-hand is harder when your arms are shorter.
Dec 3, 2011

Erin and Random:
Athletics 1d20-1: 10

Dec 3, 2011

Me:
As Malkie reaches the top of the wall Blake approaches Qarina. She holsters one gun with a well practiced motion and snaps the necklace of coins from the other woman’s neck.

“Now, walk – that way,” Blake commands. “If I see you again I am flipping one of these coins to decide if it’s death or charges for you.”

Blake watches warily as Qarina walks away and then climbs the rope after her companions.
Dec 3, 2011

Me and Random:
Athletics+7: 1d20+7: 8
Dec 3, 2011

Me:
Fuck.
Dec 3, 2011

Scott:
haha
Dec 3, 2011

Me:
You. :)
Dec 3, 2011

Me:
At least she waited until Qarina lithely walked out of sight before getting all cozy with the earth. :) Smooth, Blake, smooth.

Dec 4, 2011

Michael:
As Qarina stalks away, she pauses next to Durakh-al,
Dec 4, 2011

Kat:
Who is thirty feet up on a wall.
Dec 4, 2011

Michael:
Thankfully, Qarina anticipates this, slipping on her air necklace, jumping 30 feet in the air, managing to slip them into the big guy’s pouch, then landing nimbly and scooting away. =p
Dec 4, 2011

Scott:
all while Blake is shooting her in the head.
;)
Dec 4, 2011

Michael:
She’s very talented..it’s all that athletics/acrobatics training. =)
pressing two small amulets into his hand. “She will get you killed,” she says. “This will help.” She then disappears into the mist.
Dec 3, 2011

Scott:
Blake gets about halfway up the wall before losing her grip and falling.
Dec 3, 2011

Scott and Random:
Acrobatics 1d20+9: 17

Falling damage: 1d10-8: -4
She lands on the soft earth embankment without trouble.
Dec 3, 2011

Kat:
Cazara pokes her head out over the side of the wall to see what’s up. She grins at Blake, then motions for her to hurry up – the coin dangling from her left hand catches what light there is to catch.
Dec 4, 2011

Scott:
Blake probably tries again..
Dec 4, 2011

Scott and Random:
1d20+7>=10: Success (19)
..and gets to the top of the wall with most of her dignity intact.
Dec 4, 2011

Me:
Her dignity is far more fragile than that, I’m afraid. :)
Dec 4, 2011

Me:
Blake brushes dirt from her clothes as she crouches next to her companions.

“Staying on the walls would be my preference and more straight forward, but I don’t think it’s doable.. we should probably go through the town. Thoughts?”
Dec 4, 2011

Kat:
“No, the wall is way too exposed. I’d prefer to get down where there’s cover. This side of the fortress doesn’t seem to matter much, so we should have an easy time of it for a while yet.”

Cazara addresses whoever has the icons.

“We should redistribute those. What do they do?”
Dec 4, 2011

Me:
Blake looks at them for a moment and shrugs.

“They don’t seem to be worth much, but they may have meaning to someone,” she says in hushed tones and tosses them to Cazara.
Dec 4, 2011

Kat:
Cazara catches them and has a look.

“Hey, skyseer,” she murmurs. “You seem to be up with all the hip astrology these days. What do you make of these?”
Dec 4, 2011

Kat:
Cazara will do a check on them, too. Arcana or religion, take your pick DM-guy.

Dec 4, 2011

Eric:
“There are powers imbued into the signs on these tokens,” says the goliath. “These grant qualities to their bearers; given a few minutes, I can tell what they may be.”
Dec 4, 2011

Eric:
Durakh-al needs a short rest to find out.

Dec 4, 2011

Kat:
“Okay. Let’s get down on the ground and find a good hiding spot first.”

Cazara looks around for a likely spot, then leads the way.
Dec 4, 2011

Kat:
Perception (8) and stealth, (11) I guess, to find a good way to go?

Dec 5, 2011

Scott:
Cazara leaps down off the inside edge of the wall, taking the rope with her. She holds it for the others to follow.
Dec 5, 2011

Scott and Random:
Acrobatics 1d20+11: 18

Falling damage 2d10-9: -1
Dec 5, 2011

Scott and Random:
Athletics assists for

Malkie 1d20+8>=10: Success (23)
Blake 1d20+8>=10: Success (24)
Durakh-al 1d20+8>=10: Failure (9)
Dec 5, 2011

Kat:
Sorry Durakh-al. :(
Dec 5, 2011

Scott:
Malkie and Blake get +2 to their Athletics checks to climb down (DC10). Durakh-al gets a -1, but that’s not going to be a problem for him.
Dec 5, 2011

Eric:
Yeah – no prob – what, he’s +12 now? Pshaw.
Dec 5, 2011

Me:
<nudge> Climb down.
Dec 5, 2011

Scott and Random:
Durathletics 1d20>=2: Success (4)
Dec 6, 2011

Eric:
I keep forgetting about this too
Powerful Athlete Goliath Racial Feature
Benefit: When making an athletics check to climb or jump, roll twice and take either number.

It’ll be an epic day when ol’ Durakh-al fucks up a jump or climb.
Dec 6, 2011

Scott:
holy crap. nice
Dec 6, 2011

Eric:
You wouldn’t think it, but yeah, how often is there a damn table/wall in the way?
Dec 6, 2011

Scott:
for Durakh-al, never. If he actually does fail, he’ll probably just crush the intervening obstacle.

Dec 5, 2011

Me:
Blake grabs the rope with a deep breath and winces as she descends. She manages the trip with a smooth motion despite her bumps, cuts and ego bruises.
Dec 5, 2011

Me and Random:
Athletics: 1d20+7+2: 25

Dec 5, 2011

Erin:
Malkie follows. This is more workout than she’s gotten in months.
Dec 5, 2011

Erin and Random:
Athletics 1d20+2-1>=10: Success (16)

Dec 5, 2011

Kat:
Cazara leads the way to a good spot to rest for five minutes.
Dec 5, 2011

Scott:
DM makes a group stealth check.

Dec 5, 2011

Scott:
The group finds a quiet already-looted house to hunker down in for a bit. Durakh learns about the icons.
Dec 5, 2011

Kat:
“All right,” Cazara says, grinning and sitting in front of Durakh-al. “Tell us a story, Grampa.”
Dec 6, 2011

Eric:
“I hold two, and you hold one, of these talismans of power, and they are connected to other places, far away,” Durakh-al begins, sitting cross-legged, his mottled face impassive.

“The one you hold shows the dark star,” he says, pointing at Cazara’s trinket. “Nem, The Dark-eater, the Devourer, Vampire-of-starlight.”

“You should not hold this,” the goliath admonishes, “for it should be hers,” he says as he points to Malkie.
Dec 6, 2011

Erin:
“Aw, sorry Cazara. It appears you’re not a scary-enough predator for the big, scary dark.” Malkie reaches to swipe the medallion.
Dec 6, 2011

Eric:
Durakh-al pauses a moment, seemingly astonished that skywritten fate has been reduced so.
Dec 6, 2011

Kat:
“Fuck you,” explains Cazara. She extends vestigial claws from her fingers as Malkie makes a grab for her wrist.
Dec 6, 2011

Kat:
After a brief tussle ending in stalemate, Cazara turns back to Durakh-al.
“Sorry,” she says. “Go on, please.”

He holds forth a second medallion, upon which is a primitive depiction of clouds, birds, and three stars. “These stars are what some call the ‘Eagle.’ The symbols are connected to Avilona, the place of the firmament, of air, of the ether surrounding us on all sides, of the sky under the sky, all that is sublunary.”

“This one is yours, Cazara,” Durakh-al declares, “for it will allow you, on occasion, to take to the air and fly; further, things of the air will be drawn to you as your protector.”

“This last is Urim, the band of shattered rock and metal in the sky, and it is of the earth, as am I, and so I shall carry it. Urim is Strength and Terror: The Skyfalling Rock and the Protector of the Earth-bound. Urim will, through me, protect you all, for that is ordained - written in the sky,” he says, and hangs the talisman round his neck.
Dec 6, 2011

Eric:

Golden Icon of Avilona Level 2 Rare
Wondrous Item (Neck Slot or Off-Hand Slot)
Property: When you use an action point, once before the end of your next turn you can fly your speed as a move action.
A person holding the icon or wearing it as a necklace gains a jump speed equal to his or her walk speed, and can influence air magic. Most notably, air elementals are drawn to it, and they defend the bearer and obey his or her orders.
Dec 6, 2011

Eric:
Golden Icon of Urim Level 3 Rare

Wondrous Item (Neck Slot or Off-Hand Slot)

Property: When you use an action point, you can create a wall of stone 2 squares high, which fills 3 contiguous squares within 5 squares of you. The wall lasts until the end of your next turn.

A person holding the icon or wearing it as a necklace gains Resist All 5 while not bloodied, and can influence earth magic. Most notably, earth elementals are drawn to it, and they defend the bearer and obey his or her orders.
Dec 6, 2011

Erin:
ooh ooh, what’s the third one do?
Dec 6, 2011

Kat:
Gives darkvision. Kinda redundant for malkie, really.
Dec 6, 2011

Kat:
Though a “jump speed” does sound awesome for Cazara. :/
Hm. Hm.
Dec 6, 2011

Eric:
I’ve no idea: Durakh-al is making the decision based on the darkness. I assume Kat knows.

Dec 6, 2011

Kat:
Cazara nods at Durakh-al’s explanation.

“Thing is,” says Cazara. “I’m already pretty good at the jumping thing, and Malkie’s already pretty good at the darkness thing, you know? I think splitting the icons up the other way evens out the groups abilities better. Maybe Malkie wants to finally be able to not trip over her absurd blanket, you know?”
Dec 6, 2011

Erin:
Malkie is torn. On one hand, Cazara can kiss her ass. On the other, she’d like to not trip over her absurd blanket.
Dec 6, 2011

Kat:
“But I understand if you want it the other way,” sniffs Cazara, with an air of taking the high road.
Dec 6, 2011

Kat:
“Thanks for taking the time to explain all that, by the way. Your wisdom seems very useful to us here.”
Dec 6, 2011

Eric:
“Ever is it our own choice, irrespective of the fate the heavens lay before us,” says Durakh-al.

“But know this: you are drawn to the darkness - as you have shown here - and it may well defeat you.”

Durakh-al hands the airy medallion to Malkie. “Avilona may not be to your liking either, for you are not a creature of the sky, and its lightness may burn you and hold you fast.”
Dec 6, 2011

Me:
Blake blinks and glances at the others in bewilderment.

“Well,” she announces finally. “I’m glad that all makes sense. Shall we proceed to the sea wall..?”
Dec 6, 2011

Kat:
“Yeah, I’m ready to go.”

Cazara rises and checks at the door to make sure it’s safe to leave.
Dec 6, 2011

Kat:
Perception +8 plz&ty.

Dec 7, 2011

Scott:
Cazara sees more or less the same situation as before. She believes the group will have no trouble getting across the town to the harbor wall, which must then be crossed to reach the sea wall.
Dec 7, 2011

Kat:
Cazara waves for the rest of the group to join her. She slinks out the front door in the direction of the harbor wall.
Dec 7, 2011

Kat:
Stealth if needed. +11

Dec 7, 2011

Eric:
Durakh-al rises, arms himself, and follows along.
Dec 7, 2011

Me:
Blake tries to stick to the shadows as much as possible as they move.
Dec 7, 2011

Scott:
The group finds the trip exceedingly easy. Within a few minutes, they are able to make their way to the harbor wall, which has two gate houses. Each of these gate houses is guarded by a pair of soldiers. The gates themselves are open. From time to time, a small patrol of six to ten men will pass through one of these gates with little more than a nod from the guards.

The top of the harbor wall is as lightly guarded as the outer wall was.
Dec 7, 2011

Me:
Blake points silently up with a raised eyebrow asking the silent question.
Dec 7, 2011

Kat:
Cazara nods, then points to Malkie, indicating the icon that gives her a “jump speed.”
Dec 7, 2011

Eric:
Durakh-al points at himself with a questioning look.
Dec 7, 2011

Kat:
Cazara shrugs her ambivalence.
Dec 7, 2011

Me:
Blake rests her head in her hands and just waits for it all to end.
Dec 7, 2011

Kat:
“You started it,” Cazara whispers, smirking. "So, we seem to have three options. Malkie can jump to the top of the wall with that air icon and a rope for us to climb,
Dec 7, 2011

Me:
Blake takes one hand from her face and points silently at Cazara at this point indicating her vote.
Durakh-al can climb the wall, or we figure out a way to get in through the gate."

As she speaks, her eyes dart around – wary for eavesdroppers or guards.

“My thinking is that a jump would be a bit quicker and quieter. Also, no offense, Durakh-al, but you’re a pretty big guy to try and hide. If we have you climb a rope instead of a wall, it could shave valuable seconds off the time you’ll be most visible.”
Dec 7, 2011

Erin:
Malkie tilts her head. "We could also go in through the gates.
Dec 7, 2011

Kat:
“Said that already. Try to keep up, Malkie.”
The guards don’t exactly look attentive. Bouncing halflings might make them attentive, though."
Dec 7, 2011

Me:
Blake buries her face in her hands again.
Dec 7, 2011

Kat:
“Yeah, I’m pretty sure boss Facepalm here already thought of that one and rejected it.
Dec 7, 2011

Erin:
“Is that what she’s doing? I was afraid the old dear was nodding off.”
Dec 7, 2011

Me:
Blake waves a hand at Malkie urging her to just go.
I know your other job’s all about destroying authority, but in law enforcement, it’s pretty much jump when boss says jump. You ready?"

Cazara grins wide and tilts her head at the wall.
Dec 7, 2011

Erin:
Malkie fiddles with the coin. “Sunward it is.”
Dec 7, 2011

Erin:
Stealth +9 to get to (and up) the wall without drawing attention.

Dec 8, 2011

Scott:
Amazingly, the flying undead halfling draws no attention. It must be that “cover of night” people are always going on about.
Dec 8, 2011

Kat:
Athletics to climb a rope, then? :)
Dec 8, 2011

Scott:
aye. DC 10
Dec 8, 2011

Kat and Random:
1d20>=2: Success (8)
Dec 8, 2011

Kat:
+ Stealth @ +11

Dec 8, 2011

Me:
Blake looks a little less reticent to climb the rope this time but still swallows hard as she starts off.
Dec 8, 2011

Me and Random:
1d20+7>=10: Success (18)

Dec 8, 2011

Eric:
Durakh-al climbs the rope.
Dec 8, 2011

Eric and Random:
1d20>1: Success (3)
Dec 8, 2011

Scott:
And the Dm will get a map up tonight (hopefully) for further planning.

Comments

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