AAR [7M][E]: Pillars of Sin (2020-12-11@2359 GMT)

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predajey
Posts: 221
Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2020 9:27 am

AAR [7M][E]: Pillars of Sin (2020-12-11@2359 GMT)

Post by predajey » Fri Dec 04, 2020 4:37 pm

LFG: [7M] Pillars of Sin
Time: 2020-12-11 @ 2400 GMT (7PM EDT, on December 11)
GM: Pub
Difficulty: 7M
Rumor Source: Event

Rumor: A small group of up and coming merchants has strangely become exceptionally wealthy. The Eye of Throal normally doesn't look into such trivial matters, except that their records and logs don't seem to account for how they've come into this new source of wealth. What holds particular interest is the influx of gold and electrum coins that have begun circulating in the area. The currency doesn't match any of the mints in the area.

Location: Skyreader Island

Note: Up to 5 players
Last edited by predajey on Sun Dec 27, 2020 5:14 am, edited 2 times in total.

sigfriedmcwild
Posts: 270
Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2019 6:59 am

Re: LFG [7M]: Pillars of Sin (2020-12-11@2359 GMT)

Post by sigfriedmcwild » Fri Dec 04, 2020 5:17 pm

Name: Elisen
ECR: 7 (96180lp)
Last played on: 2020-12-02
Discipline: Cavalryman 6 / Troubadour 5
Quote/Unique: Deliverance flies on silent wind
Notable Abilities: Inspiring Sparkly Zoak power! (and a last chance salve)
Downtime: Animal training step 14 (10 + karma), Item History 18 (rank 5; 10 + 2 karma), Research 18 (rank 5; 10 + 2 karma)

Anoush
Posts: 112
Joined: Wed Feb 22, 2017 10:53 pm

Re: LFG [7M]: Pillars of Sin (2020-12-11@2359 GMT)

Post by Anoush » Fri Dec 04, 2020 7:14 pm

Name: Bloodbeat II of Syrtis
Image
ECR: 6
Last game played: Nov. 8
Discipline: Nethermancer 6
Quote: Tsch!  I hate birds!!
Unique/Notable Abilities: Experience Death, Friendly Darkness, Frighten, Last Chance, Soul Armor, Spirit Talk, Summon Ally Spirits, Viewpoint
Downtime:
* Alchemy (rank 2, step 9)
* Forge Weapon (rank 1, step 8 + karma)
* Item History (rank 1, step 8 + karma)

Xzandrate
Posts: 320
Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2020 8:28 pm

Re: LFG [7M]: Pillars of Sin (2020-12-11@2359 GMT)

Post by Xzandrate » Sat Dec 05, 2020 6:22 pm

Name: Lazulin
Date of Last Game Played: 2020-12-08
ECR: 7
Discipline: Raider (7)/SunHerald(6)
Unique: Combat and combat related accessories, and the guiding light of the sun.
Downtime: Research 3(9)

bronzemountain
Posts: 516
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2020 10:02 pm

Re: LFG [7M]: Pillars of Sin (2020-12-11@2359 GMT)

Post by bronzemountain » Mon Dec 07, 2020 6:43 pm

Name: Juniper
ECL: 6
Discipline: Shadow who Quests for Lochost
Quote/Unique: "Power to the people!"
Notable Abilities: Streetwise, Looks good naked, people person
Downtime: Drugs, poetry slams, volunteering, romantic entanglements
Last Game Played: 2020-12-02

OR A'horangi (ECL 8 Detective)
OR Temur (ECL 8 Outrider)

Pick Juniper for social and sneaky things.
Pick A'horangi for polite detective things.
Pick Temur (unlikely) for joyous high velocity murder.

LadyDragoon
Posts: 119
Joined: Wed May 27, 2020 2:11 am

Re: LFG [7M]: Pillars of Sin (2020-12-11@2359 GMT)

Post by LadyDragoon » Tue Dec 08, 2020 9:03 pm

Name: Azurea M.D. (S.O.A.P)
Circle: ECR 8
Discipline: Shadow 8/Purifier 5
Last Played: 27/10/2020
Quote/Unique: I am the soap that cleans the dirt between the toes of the world from the shadows. Limited time 25% discount on acupuncture at my spa.
Notable Abilities: Shadow blades and SURPRISE!!! Oh wait let me heal you.
Downtime: Alchemy 4 (10)
Booster Potions - 2 days for 2
Small Light Quartz - 4 days
Absorb Blow Charms - 4 days

predajey
Posts: 221
Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2020 9:27 am

Re: LFG [7M][E]: Pillars of Sin (2020-12-11@2359 GMT)

Post by predajey » Sat Dec 12, 2020 6:22 pm

AAR: Pillars of Sin
GM: Pub
ECR: 7
Difficulty: Medium

Player Rewards:
Azurea: 13000 LP, 775 SP, 3 TIPs
Elisen: 13,000 LP, 775 SP, 3 TIPs
A'horangi: 13,000 LP, 775 SP, 3 TIPs
Lazulin: 13000 LP, 775 SP, 3 TIPs
Bloodbeat: 13000 LP, 775 SP, 3 TIPs

Journals: 650 LP, 193.8 SP

GM Reward: Calina (1400 LP, 275 SP, 3 TIPs)

Downtime:

Elisen:
Animal training step 14 (10 + karma)
Item History 18 (rank 5; 10 + 2 karma)
Research 18 (rank 5; 10 + 2 karma)

Bloodbeat:
Alchemy (rank 2, step 9)
Forge Weapon (rank 1, step 8 + karma)
Item History (rank 1, step 8 + karma)

Lazulin:
Research 3(9)

Azurea:
Alchemy 4 (10)
Booster Potions - 2 days for 2
Small Light Quartz - 4 days
Absorb Blow Charms - 4 days

Summary:
The Party was asked to investigate Ralph, a failing merchant who suddenly found great success and wealth. Eventually finding his shop, they discovered a pillar with Horrific intentions. After destroying it, they continued on to find additional pillars at a brothel and a tavern. Each establishment owner was convinced to return to their original location. Each pillar has been destroyed or starved. The Pillar of Greed was destroyed with the party on site. The Pillar of Lust was adversely affected by Elisen, and starved a few weeks later. The Pillar of Gluttony starved after a couple months.

Anoush
Posts: 112
Joined: Wed Feb 22, 2017 10:53 pm

Re: LFG [7M][E]: Pillars of Sin (2020-12-11@2359 GMT)

Post by Anoush » Fri Dec 18, 2020 10:18 pm

Bloodbeat's Journal:

One evening in Throal, I was enjoying some spirits (the liquid kind) with a group of friends. A’Horangi, Elisen and Lazulin were there, and they’d brought along a troll companion, Azurea, a troll Shadow. It was a usual night in the Dahnat. Until the unusual happened.

A man, an odd-looking dwarf, at the bar was spending money like water. He was buying drinks for various tables, splurging on everything available. We collectively thought, “How do we get him to buy our drinks, too?”

So Elisen approached him with this in mind. Sure enough, the big spender — who introduced himself as Ralf — paid for our drinks and another round. Elisen talked to him for a while and we learned that he was a very prosperous merchant from down near Skyreader Island. Apparently his business was making so much money he couldn’t spend it all, and thus his generosity at the bar. When Elisen pressed him for details, Ralf refused to say more.

The shop was supposedly on the opposite (or East) bank of the Coil River, between Clear Creek Crossing and Skyreader Island. The location he gave for his shop, as vague as he described it, seemed odd; there wasn’t much of anything near where he said his shop was, so how did he get his business? Strange. Most travelers stay on the West bank of the Coil, through Kampung Gajah and on South.

Elisen’s impression was that Ralf wasn’t an honest merchant. Ralf was dressed in fine fabrics that didn’t really belong here, at a tavern in the Dahnat; and his purse was leather, not silk. We guessed that Ralf’s business had only very recently become a success. Yet, his hands had no calluses, from either a weapon or manual labor, so how had he come into the money?

One of the group also noticed a few guards in the tavern that were staying close to Ralf. Perhaps guarding him, or waiting for him?

As we puzzled over this with another ale, another dwarf approached us. We all agreed that we’d seen him before, in various parts of Throal, and rumor was that he was an agent of the Eye of Throal. The dwarf introduced himself as Andy (which I’m sure wasn’t his Name the last time I saw him). Conspiratorially, Andy steered the conversation to Ralf and his mysterious business. Andy talked about how it was important for Throal’s security that we find out more about Ralf’s business. What was he actually trading in? How was he making his money? Fair questions. Andy offered to pay us, so we agreed to check into Ralf’s business.

After finishing that round, we collected our gear and headed South on the well-trodden road to Sky Reader Island. A couple days out of Throal, we saw some villagers on the road ahead of us, going South as well. They looked remarkably like the guards that accompanied Ralf in the tavern.

Elisen called out a hearty “Greetings!” as we approached them from the rear. They stopped, turned and reversed course to greet us. They insisted on a Greeting Ritual, so we obliged. Nothing conclusive was learned. Several people — both us and them — performed very poorly. Still we chatted with them and learned that they were heading to Skyreader Island, too. We argued that we should all travel together. After all, a group of villagers could always use the protection of others, no? They agreed and we continued together.

Over the next few days, we checked them out astrally, or tried to. The most that we could learn was that one of the human villagers was a magician.

On the last night that we expected to be together, we camped across from Skyreader Island on the West bank of the Coil. A’horangi was on watch shortly after midnight when the “villagers” quietly packed up and left. A’horangi woke us and we followed, none too quietly. The villagers actually swam across the Coil, and entered a lone building, a general goods shop. It was an isolated location. no foot traffic; an odd place for a store of any kind.

We approached the building, trying to be stealthy, and once at the side of the building, I cast Viewpoint to see inside. There we saw a basic General Store layout: racks of goods, stuff hanging on the walls, a counter and a door leading to the back. The five villagers were there, and all of them were armed. Four were deep in discussion, but the last one seemed to be listening intently. Hmm, maybe we hadn’t been as stealthy as we thought?

Behind the store itself was a fenced in back yard. The fence was solid and excessively tall, 20’ at least. I cast Viewpoint again and beyond the fence we saw the back door to the shop and a small (3’ square) building in the center of the yard with a large padlock on its door. Could this be the privy? And if so, why would they lock it? Astrally the whole area was tainted. Azurea examined the area with Earth Bond and really didn’t like what she saw/felt. The shed and the earth around it in particular were nasty. She also reported that the earth around the shed couldn’t grow plant life.

We made a plan. Lazulin and I entered through the shop’s front door, as if looking for the villagers who’d left in the night. Meanwhile, the rest would wait at the back door and burst in when needed.

Once inside, Laz and I asked questions of the villagers — acting like crazy stalkers. Why did they leave in the middle of the night? Why were they here at this shop? Who’s shop was it? (Not theirs, they said.) We didn’t get any useful information from them. But they all seemed surprised and nervous. Then the door opened, and the generous merchant, Ralf, stood in the doorway. Ralf was naturally confused; he didn’t expect to see us there certainly. Ralf blurted out, “Why did you let them follow you here?” And after a moment of recovery, ordered “Get them out of here!” Lazulin grabbed Ralf and put a spear to his throat as a threat, and when Ralf tried to wriggle free, Laz conked him over the head and Ralf was unconscious on the floor.

Melee ensued. I don’t remember much of it. One of the villagers — an archer — shot me with an arrow as soon as combat began. What an arrow! More like a giant spear. I was knocked down and woozy and nearly unconscious. All I could think was to cast Friendly Darkness and hide, but never could weave the thread. Luckily, my companions fared better and took down the villagers. At the end of the combat, most were dead, but two (Ralf and one other) were alive for questioning.

The villager, an elf, was from a village to the Southeast and wouldn’t say much. All the villagers bore the insignia of a Scourge Cult. Why anyone would want to bring the Horrors back to Barsaive is insane, but that’s what they wanted. Ralf was more talkative. He told us that the cash came from the shed in the back. In the shed was a golden crystal pillar of some kind. He claimed that everyday coins would appear in an alcove next to it, sometimes silver, or gold, or platinum, or even more valuable metals. He just took the money and spent it as he pleased. He also told us that he’d relocated his shop from Skyreader Island to this location at the suggestion of a stranger. Ralf found the crystal here, and built everything else around it.

We secured both Ralf and the elf, and rested for the night, recovering. The villager made a couple attempts at suicide during the night, and the final one succeeded. That left us with Ralf.

The next day, we investigated the shed. The crystal was huge, about to burst through the shed’s roof. There was one gold coin on the shelf next to it. The crystal was neither a Horror nor a Horror Construct, but beyond that we couldn’t tell any more. Our best guess was that it was an Astral Construct of some kind. At most we could determine that the crystal was here to help a Horror in some way. There were no spirits in the area, in fact, they were actively avoiding the area. We then attempted to destroy the crystal, with tools and magic. By the end of the day, the pillar was destroyed and the land purified.

In the morning, the pillar had grown back somewhat, but the the taint was less. The crystal was back even though we’d eradicated it all, including the roots, on the previous day. Some outside force must be at work here. But what? The crystal seemed to be growing from the shed’s alcove outward. So, that day we destroyed both the crystal and the alcove. The shelf was just floating above where the structure had been by the end of the day.

Yet, the next day, the pillar was back. We took the coin it offered, and the crystal grew a bit more. Next we put a few coins back onto the shelf, and the pillar shrank back. Aha! We took all the cash we could find in the shop, on Ralf, on the villagers, and put it on the shelf. The crystal pillar finally collapsed and was gone. After it was gone, we found a tiny amber seed on the ground. Studying it carefully, we realized that an even tinier raven’s feather was embedded in the seed. After all that, the astral was pretty clear and improving. The seed itself was tainted, but not enough to spread its taint further.

Exploring the shop, we found notes on other places of interest.

We strongly warned Ralf to return to Skyreader Island and open a legitimate business. We threatened him sufficiently that we thought he’d do as we told him. Then we went to the closest of the two other locations.

The first location was a brothel. It was busy, very busy. Patrons were engaging in all kinds of procreative acts on the tables and floor, and paying for the privilege. Mammals are strange. Various workers tried to seduce Elisen and A’Horangi, but to no avail. What were they thinking?? We talked to the proprietor about a crystal pillar and she readily led us to a back room with a large pink pillar. Even I had to laugh at the suggestive irony of it all! We convinced the madam that nothing good could come of having her business here, that the pillar would eventually crush the life out of them, and that she should close up shop and go somewhere, anywhere else. With some strong encouragement, she agreed, taking all her employees and many of the patrons with her. We boarded up the building and continued onward.

The next location was a tavern. The host pointed us to a table. The place seemed normal enough until we realized that all the patrons were obese, easily three or more times the normal weight for their race. And they were all eating like the food was going to disappear, shoveling more and more into their mouths. An ork waitress was delivering platter after platter of roasted goose and other dishes to the tables. We spoke to the manager who told us that they got their food supplies really cheaply, so they could charge cheap prices and get a lot of clientele. When pushed, he admitted that his suppliers were shady. The manager denied that any pillar crystal was on the premises, but we found that the cellar door was locked. The manager explained that the suppliers brought the foodstuffs directly to the cellar and then the food appeared on the main floor. He was a little fuzzy on how all this happened without him or his employees actually going into the basement. No doubt the pillar had bewitched him. We broke down the surprisingly heavy cellar door and found an orange crystal pillar, about ready to burst through the cellar’s ceiling and into the tavern above. At this, we were able to strongly convince the manager to close the tavern and move his business elsewhere. The thought of eating Horror-tainted food was the final straw that got him moving. Moving the obese patrons was harder; many couldn’t walk more than a couple steps on their own. So we prodded, rolled and carried them out of the place and boarded it up.

We set off down the road to Skyreader Island, which would eventually bring us to Throal. We caught sight of one traveler on the road ahead of us, approaching. He was carrying a heavily laden sack. Greeting him, we learned that he was delivering water fowl to the tavern behind us. We tried to deter him, explaining that the tavern was closed, but he insisted. He also told us that the birds came from near Skyreader Island. Then we noticed the Scourge cultist insignia on his cloak, about the same time that Lazulin noticed that the delivery man had allies in the brush nearby.

A fight ensued, and the cultists were killed. After all that, I began to think that I’d have to revise my thoughts on birds; I vowed never to eat another one, just kill them and burn the carcasses.

We reported all that happened to Andy — now using a different Name — from the Eye. They checked on a pillars a few days later and found that they were all collapsing in on themselves. The Eye expected to continue checking on the pillars and would keep us apprised.

sigfriedmcwild
Posts: 270
Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2019 6:59 am

Re: LFG [7M][E]: Pillars of Sin (2020-12-11@2359 GMT)

Post by sigfriedmcwild » Sat Dec 19, 2020 12:04 am

From the memoirs of Elisen of clan Adorjan, Haressa-tis and Lore Keeper

As I wandered back into Throal, I saw a very large troll wearing what looked like half a living crystal mine (Norg son of Morg, self titled Brother of Earth and Sky and self appointed Throalic privateer, Gauntlet) call for other adventurers that had encountered the Scourge in the middle of the Grand Bazaar. Unsurprisingly this was causing a rather large commotion and not just because of how loud they were being. They could recite an impressively long list of Scrourge plots they had foiled, although from their telling "stomped on like an angry dyre" may be an apter description.

Together with them was a windling magician adding their own tales of the Scourge, who I eventually recognized as Zivilyn of clan Skyreader, master of most magician disciplines and master to the late Nib. I let them know of my own experience near Synevir (described in my Songs of Passion), collected their own tales, including the rather alarming fact of a flying fortress controlled by the cult, and set to spread the warning as far an wide as I could.

It was thus a few weeks later before I found myself in Throal again, having lunch with friends (and hoping this would not be interrupted by a murder like it always happens in Sosanopa... what is wrong with that town?) when a dwarf decked up in fancy clothes and jewellery walked in an started buying rounds for everyone. A good way to get shanked in a back alley really.

For the future the others joining my table were:
- A'horangi Ha'hana Syrtis, t'skrang Monk, Bodyguard and investigator
- Azurea, troll Shadow and self accredited M.D. and S.O.A.P.
- Bloodbeat II Syrtys, t'skrang Necromancer and Weaponsmith
- Lazulin, troll Raider and Sun Herald

A non descript dwarf some of the others recognized approached us, claimed to be from the Eye of Throal, gave us an obviously fake name and aksed us to look into the sudden wealth of the generous dwarf now sitting at the bar. I made my way there and started chatting, they introduced themselves as Ralf and were rather unwilling to explain their source of wealth but mentioned they ran a shop near Skyreader Island, in a location that did not sound particularly promising for trade.

Azurea joined in asking if they wanted some bodyguards given how obvious they were being with their wealth, but Ralf pointed to a table informing us he was already covered. At the table sat two elves, a dwarf, and orc, and a human. They all had the look of journeyman adepts to them, the elves and the dwarf had bows nearby, the orc looked ready for a scrap, and the human had that supercilious air that magicians tend to get.

Given we weren't making any inroads talking, we figured checking out the shop was our next best bet and we set off. A few days later, when we were close to Kampung Gaja, we encountered a group of peasants that looked surprisingly like the bodyguards. We hailed them, they demanded a greeting ritual they themselves failed, and we joined them on the way to Skyreader.

Another couple of days of travel took us to Skyreader Island and we camped on the north shore of the Coil. During the night the "peasants" left the camp and we followed them at a distance, crossed the Coil and tracked them to a shack with a shop sign, which we assumed to be Ralf's shop.

Bloodbeat used one of her spells to let us spy inside, where the "peasants" were hanging around. Behind the shack was a walled yard which contained only some feeble grass and an outhouse secured with lock and chain. After some debating we decided to burst into the shop with A'horangi, Azurea, and I coming in from the yard, while Lazulin and Bloodbeat took the front.

Just as we were trying to keep them off balance to glean more information, Ralf walked in and ordered them to get rid of us. What followed was a short but brutal fight, Bloodbeat almost got taken out by one of the dwarf's arrows, the human Nethermancer scared me out of my wits and the others did some serious damage too before we turned the tables.

Ralf did not seem to really know what was going on, but A'horangi believed the one surviving elf was a Scourge cultist. Between them and a letter we found on the human's corpse we pieced together that the Scourge is "growing" severn pillars around the area to aid in a summoning ritual. Three were described as being hidden in a shop, inn, and brothel. At this point we were rather wary of what we could find in the outhouse, but it turned out to be a crtyal pillar that would produce coins every day and regrow from nothing every day. Eventually we realised that it fed on greed and got it to wither away by giving it coins instead of taking them.

The next stop was the brothel. I must confess I had never been in one before and I don't really understand what was going on. Insider there were several people grappling or cuddling, making noises that sounded like pain or whatever Juniper gets up to in the backrooms at his parties sometimes.
We were greeted by the owner of the place and a windling that acted about as aggressively eager for companionship as Aethryllia (Aethryllia Redwing, windling Beastmaster). When we informed the owner of what we were looking for they took us to the back, where a large pink crystal pillar sat. Once we explained in more detail all the workers were eager to get out and the patrons had no choice to leave too, at which point it looked like the pillar started withering.

We finally went to the inn where we found many grossly obese patrons gorging themselves on foodstuffs. Once again we talked to the owner, explained the situation, went over how sometimes deals really are just too good to be true, looked around for the pillar (which started withering once the patrons left) and went off to search for the supplier of suspiciously cheap meats the inn was using.

Luck was on our side as a courier was approaching the inn just as we left. Turns out the courier was also a cultist and had friends hiding in the bushes. It also turns out that we took them out with little trouble.

We returned to Throal to inform the Eye and Azurea reached to her purifier contacts to check on the three pillars and to search for the other four. I made sure to update Norg on yet another Scourge plot.

Xzandrate
Posts: 320
Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2020 8:28 pm

Re: AAR [7M][E]: Pillars of Sin (2020-12-11@2359 GMT)

Post by Xzandrate » Sun Jan 17, 2021 6:59 pm

***The intricately covered ice blue journal contains a single blue crystal on the centre, with the simple gold lettering below it 'Lazulin' ***

Page 14

Suspicion follows stupidity, as it did the merchant we encountered at the bar. Far too well dressed for the place, and throwing around far too much money to have been a successful merchant.

Elisen was there and tried to get to the bottom of this fellows wealth. The suspicion only grew greater. It seemed that he had started a successful business south of Skyreader Island . . . where there was no foot traffic. As there were a few others known to us, we quickly communed and agreed that this needed to be investigated.

We head out before he and his bodyguards to try and determine the location of this shop. Strangely we came across a group of villagers travelling who looked suspiciously like the merchants guards. We offered to travel with them for protection, as they apparently had no weapons. While in Skyreader Island they attempted to skulk off in the night. A'horangi and Azurea noticed this and woke us all. We followed them into the wilds and across the river to a lone shop in the wild with a large palisade in the rear. Bloodbeat allowed us to peer through the wall and determine their actions. All were armed and appeared to be discussing something. We knocked on the doors and confronted the travellers, shortly after we came in the merchant arrived behind us and ordered them to remove us.

A quick battle ensued, we offered their surrender while trying to use the merchant as a bargaining chip, however he tripped while trying to run and knocked himself unconscious. They attacked like rabid animals, biting deep into us. We took advantage of the chaos a small space afforded and dispatched all but one. This one refused to speak, and attempted to escape on more than one occasion but we eventually returned her to the Eye of Throal.

The back had a crystal pillar growing and generating coins for this merchant, and there were notes detailing two other locations, a brothel, and a tavern. It took a great deal of time for the group to determine how to disable the pillar. As it produced coin, we needed to flood it with coin to destroy it. Such was a similar case at the brothel and the tavern, we needed to remove the sources of lust and gluttony. Each owner was asked to move to this location and rewarded with some strangeness that they did not question. The tavern received a steady shipment of high quality foodstuffs, and as we left the location after having cleared it, we encountered the delivery man. As well as his cohort of assassins.

Battle was again joined and they were cut down to a man, no assassin would escape the light today. Elisen explained that this was to do with a strange cult growing in Barsaive, and that their goals were rather extreme. It is good that we exterminate all we find.

Our group was a well honed weapon, cutting through the decay that these Scourge cultists present.

The more I adventure with Azurea, the greater I see a reflection to my own. I lead from the front with light and fire, while she attacks from behind with shadow and heals her allies with cold. For all of this it was calmly reassuring to have her presence, much like being at home.



***A great Iced Claw adorns the bottom of the page ***
Image

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