Friday, December 31, 2010

Corner the Markets

For the next couple of days; I'd like to spend Friday night and most of Saturday making merchant contacts in my territory. Contacts that I can rely on for alchemical and poison components as well as any potential distributors of my alchemical processes.

At best I’d like to find one trusted supplier for each ‘component element’ to work with; earth, water etc. (four suppliers) as well as buyers for potions and such within my territory; eventually expanding to other suppliers and distributers to ultimately corner the poison, potion and alchemical substance Stormhaven market.

12/29/10 Review

Early Friday morning we awoke to elusive dream-like feelings of likely divination upon us that we all agree failed during our sleep. As we stir and prepare for the day, it is agreed that the tavern be called The Dragon’s Hoard and the building proper, the Cinder Block.

4am. A recon of the Sunbow Mansion- their busiest time of the day- uncovers the presence of capable and alert house guards and many patrons. Talk of a plan commences in regards to going in and actively searching for Buki or mayhap drawing him out. We decided on the later. Jaren forges a Sevens document with an application of exquisite kiss to draw him into the open and therefore within our weapon’s reach.

Meanwhile Versel and Durg keep watch for activity at the Sunbow Mansion whereby they observe two house guards and three other armed individuals who later, we discover are Knights of the Wave. A name of Rothwell was overheard.

5:30am. We retreat to the worthy gate while Durg and Auge stakeout the Edana Estate in hopes of one or the other of pair of us spotting Buki. The Edana Estate was busy with laboring activity.

8am. Back to Sunbow where we were waived in by house guards who proved friendly enough to inform us that a group of individuals were looking for us. Splitting up Durg and Auge wait outside while Versel and Jaren are invited into the Mansion and held palaver at great length with the manager on duty about Buki and how to address our need for a confrontation.

8:30am. Continued watch for Buki yielded nothing so we head to see Obadiah to explain our progress regarding the traitorous assassin. Conversation leads to what happened to the Edana clan and his sudden outrage about what we claim transpired. Obadiah quickly assembles a spellguard strike-team to investigate immediately while he assembles the Council.

10:30am. Following the spellguards and through their magics Durg and Auge see that the Whites are somehow maintaining the ruse that the Edanas are alive and that all is well within their Estate. The spellguards say they will investigate but Auge sees that their disposition towards the Edanas is being magically swayed to be more agreeable.

Noon. On our way to the Driftdowns we observe many victims of pirates at sea and burning ships, eventually we meet up with Captain Pryor who tells his tales and experiences of the Evening Isles and the Volcano landmark that remains. After our talk we encounter Godin and warn him to stay away also warning Pryor of Godin as well. Seeing our assets safe we make our way to the Crumpled Playbill where we meet Elcorn, a Tiefling bard. Jaren and Elcorn hit it off immediately and make arrangements for entertainment for the Dragon’s Hoard and auditions for such to be held in one week. Our meeting with Elcorn was cut short by harassing tactics of the Whites and a warning for us to keep to our agreement….

2pm. Return to the Cinder Block where we find a Volcano dwarf-smith from the Evening Isles, waiting to do business with Jaren and to, looking for shop space. 25,000 for two stoves and six months rent.

We begin next session the next day, Saturday.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Tales of The Gentlemen's League

“Fighting academies and martial donjons are not the only sources of swordsmen and show fighters in the Rats Nest. We have already seen some of the local pub fighters, and an ample supply of competent (?) personal security. But I have uncovered a different group of blades men, almost exclusive to the Rats Nest. They are an “underground” culture that follows and surrounds a group known as The Gentlemen’s League. There are about 20 members. Some are martial students, but most are known as dandies, the decadent young adults of the minor nobility. Members of the league earn a breast pin, that are often adorned with ribbons as tokens, as proof of membership by winning a challenge duel in front of 3 of the 4 fencers known as the Gentlemen’s Court. {Each of these blades men has at least 1 level in the prestige class duelist}. Only these 4 Gentleman Judges can award the pin that shows membership.”

“The four Judges are:

1) Elar Dolin, of the East Isles Trading Company. Elar is a bard, and a sailor originally from the Evening Isles. He has won the most duels since they’ve been keeping track. He is rumored to have struck riches as a pirate, and retired here off his plunder. He has no retinue, apprentices or the like.

2) Aramis, a specialized sea ranger who works the shuttle boats between Stormhaven and the shipping exchange islands. He is the most popular Judge, with the largest entourage and the most apprentice duelists. He is perhaps most famous for his talking parrot animal companion.

3) Althainis Silverleaf, a ½ elf with a small gang of dandies, but few additional followers. He has a water priest of some sort in his gang.

4) Anya Rowen, of Dahmoll, a woman, with a small gang, and a few followers of the group.”

There is also an up-and-coming blades man named Aser Kumlok. He is a tiefling, rumored to be deadly quick. Is most likely going to be the next to join the League, and he has been promised a challenge duel soon, very soon. Anya is the Judge said to have offered her sponsorship to arrange the bout.”

“The Judges don’t regularly travel together, or even patronize the same places, but if they call a meeting between the 4 of them, it is usually at the Dragons Breath, and it is usually just the 4 of them, without the retinues.”

The other half-dragons nodded and listened. Durg the Wise was the first to speak

“This sounds like a good group to get interested in our club”

“ I cant help but wonder if the tiefling wouldn’t make an excellent house fighter, especially if we could arrange for his challenge fight for our club” Jeren replied.

They all agreed it was something to think about as they headed to the kitchen to eat some roasted pigs.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

A Return message to Tamros from Jeren

I am very interested in your offer, and I appreciate your frankness. It is obvious that we could be very successful business partners, but I do have a few questions.

When you say that I will "have" a territory, what does that mean? Will I have to tribute to maintain position? What responsibilities will I incur by claiming a territory? How many people will I have to answer to? If I join, will it preclude joining other guilds or associations?

As you can see, there are many details to work out. You can answer by message or by person at our tavern hall, where I will be working on expanding "Neutral Grounds", our new fight club. Evening dinner hour is the best time to catch me.

Post Script: Do you brew ale or beer? I have developed an interest in home brewing!!

Crossed Swords & The Players’ Court (PLAYA!)

When the young toughs of the Rain of Blades Academy & the School of the Winter Blade are not dueling on the bridges of Rockhammer Square, they are fighting here, at the juncture of the Rat’s Nest’s two widest lanes. At any given time, two or three academy swordsmen are lounging here, itching for a fight. Guard patrols are never far away, though they interfere only to prevent fatalities.

At the intersection of five of the Nest’s meandering lanes is the Players’ Court, so named for the daily, heated games of cards & dice played here. The area is popular with rogues and bards looking to relieve the dandies of a few coins. Guard patrols linger in the area, often bribed to act as muscle for the confidence men.

Sunbow Mansion

Sunbow Mansion is a brothel frequented by the elite of Stormhaven society and Daphne Kellington (human female) is still the house madam.  Though the passing decades have erased her youthful beauty, she is still cheerful and flirtatious, and counts many of Stormhaven’s most powerful citizens as friends.  Her “family” members are as beautiful as ever, a fresh “niece” or “nephew” appearing as soon as one retires.  Located at the heart of the Rat’s Nest’s winding maze of streets, Sunbow Mansion is a two story townhouse surrounded by a carefully tended but overstuffed garden of yellow roses.  Commissioned to serve as the headquarters of the Sunbow Company, a little-known adventuring band that met their fates while looting a kraken’s lair three decades ago, Sunbow Mansion is riddled with secret passages, hidden rooms and one-way mirrors, all of which are put to enthusiastic use by the mansion’s current owner and her guests.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Broken Barrel Fight Agent Rolly

This fellow is always nervous, rarely standing still.  That said he isn't threatening and when you think about it was fairly helpful. After Vercel's victory he tells you to call him Rolly and wishes you well.

At the broken barrel when Vercel agreed to fight he was the individual who went over to the small group at a side table to discuss terms you assume.  The people over at the other table had magical aura's, all of a low power. In fact the magic seemed the same.  After some study you realized that there must be some shared spell and you suspect its power level was hidden somehow or cloaked. Also Auge's dagger tugged in that direction when you were in the bar.

A Message from Tamros to Jaren Delivered on Wednesday while working

Lesser on the left, greater on the right.

I assume by now your brother's have discussed my offer.  Frankly I need a skilled wizard and can't risk it being someone not in our organization.  Your territory would be the Black Crown and by that alone you could easily rise into one of the most important members of the LC. Because your position could become so important, we need a show of strength to solidify your standing among us.  As I am the leader of a profit making enterprise such as ours it is important that I enact measures that keep us ahead of the competition, one step in front of fate even.  It is because of this responsibility that I utilized several diviners prior to the arrival of so many new visitors and from amongst the information gleaned, one rather valuable and pertinant bit of news was learned, namely two very valuable rods called a Rod of Blood are arriving into the city of the lesser and greater variety.  From the divners descriptions I had an artist friend of mine prepare these drawings.  I believe if you find one it should eventaully lead you to the other. Luckily for you Jaren I believe I have discovered to whom the lesser rod is to be delivered. If you recover the rod, I will be able to present you to the council and you will be sufficiently rewarded with the afore mentioned rod and I'm certain, on the path to finding the greater version as well.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Tamros' Teachings

Alchemical Items

Alchemist's Mercy: A fine powder that, when mixed with water or fruit juice and consumed, eliminates the effects of a hangover. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Alchemist's Mercy 1 gp

Armor Soft: This slippery red oil has a mild corrosive effect on most metals. Although long-term use of armor soft is detrimental to any suit of armor, it provides the short-term benefit of easier movement and less noise.  Any suit of metal armor treated with armor soft has its armor check penalty reduced by one. The effects of armor soft last for 1 hour. Each application of armor soft causes a cumulative 5% chance of the armor failing. The check is made after the duration of the armor soft has expired. Any armor that fails as a result of armor soft's corrosive effect is rendered useless. Armor soft does not reduce the armor check penalty of nonmetal armor, but the corrosive properties still apply.  Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Armor Soft 50 gp

Blackwater: A single vial of blackwater rapidly affects a 10-foot cube of water. Any aquatic creature that breathes blackwater must make a DC 10 Constitution check each round or begin to drown. The DC for this check increases by 1 on each round after the first. The creature can also try to "hold its breath" (as a creature going underwater would normally do), using the rules from the DUNGEON MASTER'S Guide. Blackwater affects creatures that can  Breathe water due to a spell or effect, such as water breathing, but it has no effect on creatures that can only breathe air. Author: Eric Cagle. Source: #298. Blackwater 100 gp

Catstink: Given the penchant of the powerful to guard their estates with dogs, more than one spy has had to make a quick getaway pursued by a pack of barking canines. A dose of catstink (which is actually an alchemical  Compound, not the urine or musk of felines) on your trail temporarily confuses the scent ability of any creature. The creature must make a successful DC 15 Survival check to regain the scent of any target it pursued before exposure to the catstink. Catstink does not prevent a creature with scent from using the ability in any other way (such as to detect or pinpoint a hidden creature); it only makes it more difficult for the creature to track by scent alone.  Author: Eric Cagle & Evan Michael Jackson. Source: #316. Catstink 250 gp

Cooling Gel: This cold blue gel can be applied to the skin. It provides fire resistance 1 for 1 hour or heals 1d6 points of fire or heat damage dealt within the last 5 rounds. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Cooling Gel 100 gp

Firestone: This small orange stone can be hurled as a grenade like weapon. When it hits a hard surface, it bursts into a puff of flame that deals 1d6 points of fire damage and ignites any flammable materials within the 5-foot square where it strikes. Fires lit by a firestone burn normally. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Firestone 50 gp

Flash Powder: This silky gray powder is a mild explosive. Flash powder burns too quickly to cause more than minor burns even in large quantities. What the powder lacks in explosive force it makes up for in visual effect. Used occasionally in warfare as a diversionary tool, flash powder has become a mainstay of a burglar's equipment. The blinding light it produces often provides enough of a distraction for a skilled rogue to get out of danger. Even a small quantity of the powder burns brightly enough to cause those looking directly at it to take a -5 penalty on Spot checks for the next 5 rounds. The flash also provides enough distraction to allow someone under observation to make a Hide check. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Flash Powder 20 gp

Flashstone: The flashstone is a hard, shiny pellet that glistens in light and glows slightly under both normal vision and darkvision. It is the same size and shape as a sling bullet, and it is used in a sling as often as it is thrown. When a flashstone strikes a  hard surface, it vaporizes instantly, releasing a blast of light (15-footdiameter burst). Any creature caught in the blast must make a DC 16 Fortitude save or be blinded for 1 round. Once the 1-round blindness has passed, the creature takes a -2 penalty on Search and Spot checks for 1 minute while its eyes recover. Author: Eric Cagle. Source: #298. Flashstone 30 gp

Holdfast: Since the tanglefoot bag's invention, scholars and adventurers alike have looked for more ways to use the powerful but short-lived adhesive. One of the most successful variations is holdfast, a small bundle of the same adhesive attached to the end of a rope. When the rope is thrown with enough force and accuracy, the bundle breaks, creating a temporary means of securing the rope to the surface it was thrown against. Quieter than a grappling hook and easy to transport, holdfast has become an item of choice for those who must infiltrate a walled structure or cross a dangerous chasm. To attach the rope to the desired target, the character must make a ranged attack. A holdfast container has a range increment of 10 feet. Armor Class modifiers for size apply. Thus a character trying to hit any point high on a 30-foot wall must try to hit AC 0 (the desired area of the wall is Huge, but Armor Class can go no lower than 0) with a -4 range penalty (three range increments). A character who wants to hit a spot within 1 foot below a 2-foot-wide window high on a 40-foot wall would have to hit AC 2 (+2 size modifier to AC because the desired target area is Tiny) with a -6 range penalty. Any missed attack has a 50% chance of causing the holdfast bundle to break against another surface (use the rules for the deviation of grenade like weapons to determine where the holdfast struck on such a failed throw). One bag of holdfast can support 200 pounds until the adhesive loses its effectiveness. Holdfast lasts 1d4+3 rounds before becoming too weak to hold the rope in place. Creatures struck by holdfast can pull off the sticky bag with a successful DC 27 Strength check. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Holdfast 50 gp

Ice Crystal: When immersed in liquid, this small piece of rock crystal becomes as cold as a piece of ice and remains that way until it is removed from the liquid, whereupon it reverts to its normal temperature. Ice crystals are used to cool liquids in laboratories and keep drinks cold. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Ice Crystal 5 gp

Insect Repellent: This strong-smelling liquid can be applied to the skin to repel insects. It keeps Tiny or smaller insects at bay for 4 hours per application. Larger insects and those under the control of a spell must make a DC 12 Will save to approach a protected  character. This benefit is lost if the character attacks the insect. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Insect Repellent 5 gp

Liquid Ice: This viscous liquid becomes extremely cold when exposed to air. A vial of liquid ice can freeze the surface of a 10-foot-square area of water or smother a like area of fire. Used as a grenade like weapon, a vial of liquid ice deals 1d6 points of cold damage on a direct hit and 1 point of splash damage. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Liquid Ice 30 gp

Night Eyes: This thick grease, when applied to the naked eye, grants temporary low-light vision. The grease takes one full-round action to apply and lasts for 10 minutes. Torches and other faint light sources provide light normally for a character, but any source of bright light (like sunlight or the daylight spell) causes the night eyes user to take a -1 penalty on attack rolls. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Night Eyes 25 gp

Powdered Water: This fine white powder sparkles faintly. An ounce, mixed with a single drop of water, becomes a gallon of drinkable water. The powder is usually put in a vessel that can contain the full gallon of water before the drop of activating liquid is added. The vessel is then shaken to agitate the mixture. It takes a full round for the gallon of water to form. The powder must be kept in a watertight container to remain effective, but it is an easy way to transport large amounts of water over great distances. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Powdered Water 5 sp

Shriek Paste: The shrieker, a common fungus found in the bowels of the Underdark, is sometimes cultivated by drow societies, creating a first line of defense against intrusion around their cities. In addition, drow alchemists harvest the fungus and render it down to a base substance capable of reproducing the shrieker's howl. Shriek paste is an oily, smelly substance with a slightly purplish color. When smeared on a surface, it retains the same consistency almost indefinitely. When the paste is exposed to a light source equivalent to torchlight or greater, it rapidly crystallizes. During this process, the paste emits a high-pitched screeching noise, making it a useful signaling device. The shriek is loud and easy to hear (Listen DC -10) This sound lasts for 1 round before the paste dries up entirely and is rendered inert. Author: Eric Cagle. Source: #298. Shriek Paste 50 gp

Slimebane: This concoction breaks down oozes of all types (see the Monster Manual). When used as a grenade like ranged weapon, it deals 1d6 points of damage on a successful hit and 1 point of splash damage. On the round following a direct hit, the ooze must make a DC 15 Fortitude save or take an additional 1d6 points of damage. Slimebane does not affect creatures not of the ooze type. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Slimebane 15 gp

Slippery Oil: This oil provides a +5 bonus on Escape Artist checks for up to 1 hour or until removed with an alcohol-based liquid. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Slippery Oil 50 gp

Slumberweed: When dried, ground to a powder, and inhaled or ingested, the leaves of this plant induce a sleeplike state resembling death for 8 hours. Sometimes spies pack a dose of slumberweed into specially made necklaces with holes on either end that can act as an impromptu blowgun (usable only for delivering the powdery toxin). At other times, slumberweed is ingested by the spy himself, for the purpose of feigning death. A successful DC 12 Fortitude save negates the sleep. Author: Eric Cagle & Evan Michael Jackson. Source: #316.  Slumberweed 500 gp

Sneezing Powder: This fine powder can be thrown as a grenade like weapon. On a direct hit, the target must make a DC 12 Fort save or take a -1 penalty on all attack rolls, saving throws, ability checks, and skill checks for 1d4 rounds because of sneezing and watery eyes. Creatures immune to gases or poisons are immune to sneezing powder. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280.  Sneezing Powder 60 gp

Softshoe Powder: Rubbing this powder on feet or footwear makes moving silently easier. Applying softshoe powder provides a +2 competence bonus on Move Silently checks. Unless all of a creature's feet or footwear are treated, there is no benefit from the powder. The effects of the powder last for 10 minutes after its application. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280.  Softshoe Powder 25 gp

Soupstone: When dropped into a container of water, this small smooth stone turns the water into a hot, nourishing broth of a flavor chosen when the stone is made. A soupstone can transform up to 10 gallons of water before it becomes inert. It has no effect on water based creatures like water elementals. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Soupstone 300 gp

Spy Button: Several versions of these specially designed buttons exist. They can be fancy or plain and are made to blend in with the clothing they are sewn on. To use a spy button, the wearer must rip it free from the article of clothing to which it is attached as a free action and throw it against a hard surface. The most common types of spy buttons are as follows. Flash: This button creates a brilliant burst of light on impact. If a flash button detonates within 5 feet (1 square) of a creature, that creature must make a DC 15 Fortitude save or be dazzled for 1d3 rounds. Sightless creatures are not affected. Smoke: This button produces a cloud of impenetrable black smoke that fills a 10-foot cube. It dissipates in 2 rounds, or a single round if affected by moderate or stronger winds. Thundering: This button mimics the effect of a thunderstone (Player's Handbook, page 129). Author: Eric Cagle & Evan Michael Jackson. Source: #316. Spy button, flash 50 gp Spy button, smoke 30 gp Spy button, thundering 40 gp

Stonecloth: This heavy, gray cloth is woven from special mineral fibers. Making it requires the Craft (tailoring) skill in addition to the Craft (alchemy) skill. The fire-retardant cloth does not catch fire unless exposed to flame for more than a minute. Thus, Someone wearing stonecloth takes the initial damage from a fire attack, but does not catch fire and take burning damage on later rounds. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Stonecloth 100 gp

Tangle Wire: Tangle wire, a thin spiked wire coated with a less-adhesive, longer-lasting form of the substance found in tanglefoot bags, is made in strands of up to 10 feet long. The adhesive makes tangle wire hard to transport and handle, but easy to string across a narrow opening and doubly effective against those who encounter it. Tangle wire comes wrapped in a tight bundle, and once unwound, it cannot be rewound and stored for later use. To avoid tangle wire, a character must make a successful  DC 15 Spot check. A character who fails this Spot check is caught by the tangle wire and takes 1d2 points of damage per round unless he remains completely immobile and cannot move out of the square containing the wire until freed of its grip. Anyone caught by a tangle wire can make a DC 20 Escape Artist check to escape or a DC 15 Strength check to pull away. A caught creature with a slashing weapon can free himself as a full-round action. As long as the creature is willing to take the damage from the wire he can act normally while caught. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Tangle Wire 25 gp

Tongueloose: When ingested—usually dissolved in a drink or sprinkled over a meal—a vial of this powder induces a lethargic state for 1d3 hours, during which the subject is highly susceptible to suggestion. A successful DC 14 Fortitude save negates this effect. Anyone interacting with someone who has failed the save against a dose of tongueloose receives a +4 circumstance bonus on Bluff, Diplomacy, and Intimidate checks against that person. Author: Eric Cagle & Evan Michael Jackson. Source: #316. Tongueloose 150 gp

Traveler's Solace: This fiery, unpleasant liquid allows the user to temporarily circumvent the effects of fatigue and exhaustion for a short time. Fatigued or exhausted characters that drink a vial of traveler's solace can run and charge normally. Fatigued characters under the effects of traveler's solace take no penalties to their Strength or Dexterity. Exhausted characters take a -4 penalty to both ability scores (instead of the usual -6 penalty). The beneficial effects of traveler's solace last for 1d4 hours, but the aftereffects last much longer. Exhausted characters who use traveler's solace to lessen the effects of exhaustion require a full 8 hours of rest before they become fatigued. Fatigued characters who use traveler's solace require at least 8 hours of bed rest before they become fully rested. A vial of traveler's solace has no effect if another has been taken within the past 8 hours. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Traveler's Solace 50 gp

Truth Wine: This sweet white wine of elven origin loosens the tongue more effectively than other alcohol based drinks. In addition to suffering the wine's normal intoxicating effects, a character who drinks truth wine must make a DC 15 Will save to tell a lie. The wine's effects are short-lived, lasting only 10 rounds -1 round per point of the drinker's Constitution bonus. (For example, a character with a +2 Constitution bonus would suffer truth wine's effects for 8 rounds.) Creatures must drink at least 1 glass (8 oz.) of truth wine to suffer its effects. Elves are unaffected by truth wine. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Truth Wine 75 gp

Vapors of Sleep: When applied to a cloth and held over the nose and mouth (or other breathing orifices), this liquid forces the target to make a DC 13 Fortitude save or fall asleep, as if affected by a sleep spell, for 1d4 hours. The attacker must successfully grapple the target in order to use the vapors of sleep on her. A vial of the liquid can also be thrown as a grenade like weapon. It does not cause the target creature to fall asleep, but the creature must make a DC 13 Fortitude save on a direct hit or take a -1 penalty on all actions for 1d4 rounds due to drowsiness and disorientation. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Vapors of Sleep 50 gp
Free Foot:This quick-drying oil makes one 5-foot square exceptionally slippery. Creatures moving through the affected area must make a DC 15 Dexterity check to keep their feet. Trying to stand requires a similar check, as does moving out of the square once footing has been regained. Large or multilegged creatures only suffer the effects of free foot if all of their legs are in the covered area. Free foot and tangle wire can make a fearsome improvised trap. If either check to move out of the square is failed, the victim cannot move out and is subjected to the effects of both substances again on the following round. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Free Foot 25 gp

Courier's Ink: Courier's ink is a special invisible ink that becomes visible only when dipped into a revealing solution. The efficient formula for the ink actually produces the revealing solution as a byproduct of the creation process, making the two relatively inexpensive. Courier's ink is common enough that blank pages found among captured documents are routinely dipped in a revealing solution to look for information hidden with the ink. Revealed courier's ink is always red, so most people with sensitive information to hide write or draw on a page first in a differently colored ink. This serves to draw suspicion away from pages treated with the special ink. Once the revealing solution is applied, messages written in courier's ink are permanently visible. Courier's ink cannot be used to record a spell. Until it is dipped in the revealing solution, courier's ink is invisible. This makes drawing the precise symbols used in magic spells impossible. Author: Jesse Decker and Stephen Kenson. Source: #280. Courier's Ink 20 gp

Friday, December 17, 2010

12/15/10 Review

We began our session flying over Stormhaven soon after we departed the Edana estate. Youvalan tries in vain to negotiate for the life of Kallistrate; however Durg would have none of it. Youvalan magically vanishes and departs. We finish off Kallistrate and dispose of her body and accoutrements save for her arm, as per Durg’s agreement. We make for the lair for some needed recuperation before we set out again that night for a visit to the dwarf Tamros.

8pm. At Tamros’ tattoo shop Auge, Durg and Vercel meet with the dwarf and make headway into the inner workings of the Liquor Commission as a thieves guild. Auge agrees to membership with Twilight House as his territory and receives a special marker to his watermark. Durg makes good on his end of Tamros and his agreement and gets paid. Many other subjects are discussed: Invisibility Amulets, The Muse is an agent of some kind, Giblet (the demon-blooded giant) as well as galvanizing the market on poisons in Stormhaven and the planned aggression toward Invidia and the Whites.

10pm. At The Dragon’s Breath we spark a late-night party where partake and create a contact with Ulf who expressed great interest in helping us with our fight-club endeavors. He directed us the Broken Barrel and possibly the Raging Seas where staircase guards go to blow off some steam. After the Dragon’s Breath we returned to the liar for some rest.

Monday morning brings the Habibs who, come to discover, deal in spice, ivory and specialty slaves. The agreement is for 50 gold a month to which they paid for three months in advance and don’t need to pay again for six months. A short time later Ulf arrived to tour and offer advice on fight club; what would be named Neutral Grounds. We discussed many things ranging from ticket sales, entry fees, promoter contracts and payouts as well as a Winter Solstice Fight Event.

Noon. Catching Larrimore as he departs from Twilight House we approach him non-aggressively to catch up on current events and to ask him if he knows where a new arrival to Stormhaven would go to supply themselves and how the logistics of such would be carried out. He said to explore an Evening Isles angle to our query. Because Invidia translated to King’s Tongue means Envy. (Possibly look into asking Pryor on our next trip to the Driftdowns). The rest of the day was filled with Auge familiarizing himself with his territory (Twilight House and warehouse and Rat’s Nest) and Jaren laboring on his fire-place.

Update from Elgin: Buki is at an Upside whorehouse.

During our three-day break to labor at our various tasks, we visit the Broken Barrel on Wednesday to find three-quarters of the occupants drunk and raring for a fight. We make contact with a charismatic fellow who does everything he can to get Vercel to fight. At first it was talked about between Vercel and a Minotaur combatant but when that didn’t pan out, Vercel squared off against an air-totem monk. Using misdirection and wing feints, sneaky-dragon style, Vercel emerged victorious!

We begin next session (1/5/11) on Friday where we plan on going after Buki and possibly going to the Driftdowns to check on the Pryor and Black Kraken crew.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Tales from the Underwriter's Guild

“I know Raptorans can fly here from there but then everyone would see just how many are coming” Dambode disgustedly explained to his aide, “I have no desire to inform the public of our new additions! Nor am I interested in what makes things easier for you or any of the ship captains!” Dambode turned his back on his aide and walked up the rear steps from his office upstairs to Deidre’s office. Dambode was careful not to step on the middle of the stairs to avoid any tell tale sounds of his ascent. Arriving at the top of the stair he patiently waited and listened at the door. In all his time working for Deidre he had yet to figure out if Samsa was her lover but he was always there and had never liked Dambode. His ears revealed nothing but garbled conversation so he gave a short rap to the door and waited for his invitation to enter. Samsa called for him to come in and he pushed open the door to Deidre’s office. The grey haired warrior stood by the window looking out into the afternoon bustle, the office in its standard state of disarray, papers and ledgers spread out all over, shelves filled to overflowing with paper weights and other gifts of office. Deidre was seated behind her cluttered desk, looking through its drawers, disinterested in Dambode’s arrival. For someone whose term was ending as head of the Underwriter’s Guild, his boss had yet to pack a thing.

“Guildmistress Deidre we have confirmed their numbers greatly exceed our agreement, there seems to have been some confusion in our exchange rates.” Dambode explained, quickly hurrying onto the rest of his report before Deidre could launch into her latest diatribe against the treacherous Money Changers. “We need to find someplace or multiple places that can handle the two hundred additional troops. Shall I work on this development or do you have a suggestion in mind?” To Dambode’s surprise Deidre smiled at him, replying, “This isn’t a complete surprise Bodie.” Her use of his nickname made him stiffen but he kept his composure as she continued, “I have some favors to call in with the Liquor Commission as well as a few others, I’ll handle this particular problem.” She then nodded at Samsa who left the room.

“Dambode, I have several reports here on your rudeness and the firings of many mercenary guards. One note claims that you are going to put everyone out of work. Do you want the particulars or do you acknowledge what I say to be true?” She asked with a smirk.

“The reports are true Guildmistress.”

“Keep up the good work, I need the attention on you. “ She stood and shook his hand which Dambode was surprised to discover had a gem in it. “This is a bonus Dambode, I know you aren’t a fool and can put two and two together. I want you to know how much I value your work and how big a part you’ll play in our future.” Deidre returned to sitting, quickly going back to her search of the desk and Dambode knew he was dismissed. As he returned to his office along the back stair, he stared at the gem she had placed in his hand, a diamond of considerable size and value. Dambode was sure now that the Guildmistress would be making her move this winter. He admired the diamond and prayed he was on the winning side.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Journal Entry (Auge Von Bulle) "To Hell With the White"

Journal Entry:
Poisons are quickly becoming a passion, more than I ever would have conceived during my first reasoned thoughts at the Twilight House. Like the warrior and his array of weapon choices to fit any battle, hammers and flails against the undead, siege engines against the orcish hordes, so too are the variance of my poisons. There is a poison for every enemy and a use for every instance. I just need to uncover them; discover their lost secrets or invent them anew.

I am beginning to see devious tactics now. Subtle ways I can discreetly envenom our enemies- or potential enemies, so that my actions are not noticed until a moment of my choosing and by that time it would be too late. My first mark in this: Fascino and the half-whites. My tactics will not be direct at the tip of the blade or political subterfuge; I’ll leave that to my brethren where they have shown that they are capable. No, my war with these interlopers will come in the form of days of delicately poisoned drinks, followed by meals of food that contains then next ingredient that when mixed with the final component, will spell their ultimate demise.

Lab Entry:
My new found experience in religious research and practical field applications has yielded a great breakthrough!

Blasphemix: Said to be refined from the spilled ichor of a demon, devil, or other fiend, blasphemix corrupts not only the body but also the soul. Perpetually warm, greasy, and possessed of a vile blackness that seems to writhe of its own accord. Despite its origin, this poison affects creatures of all alignments and faiths.

If the subject of this poison fails the initial saving throw, its ability to cast divine spells is hindered. For the next 10 rounds, the subject must succeed on a caster level check (DC 15 + spell level) each time it attempts to cast a divine spell. Failure means the spell is lost and has no effect.

Regardless of the outcome of the initial save, failing the secondary save applies a –1 penalty to the victim’s caster level for all divine spells it casts for the next 12 hours. If a creature is subjected to another dose of blasphemix before the effect of the first dose has run its course, the duration of the first dose’s effect ends. In addition to a Craft (alchemy) check, creating a dose of blasphemix requires a successful DC 15 Knowledge (religion) check. Source: Complete Scoundrel pg. 111, Poisons. Cost for Auge to create 712g, 5s. (Hoard value 750g) DC22.

12/8/10 Review

Our session began early Sunday morning where it was evident throughout the Upside that Sunday is the most common day off. Lifters guild is at half staff and house guards are at a weekly low because it is assumed that house members are at home and that the need for heightened security would not be necessary.

Durg had an errand that needed to be completed so he enlisted the help of his capable brethren. Approaching the Worthy gates we came across Youvalan, a human spellcaster accompanied by two spell-scale children as well as some men-at-arms, who were quite irritated about being recently fired from their guard duties. The two younglings insisted that their mother, Kallistrate Edana, was ensorcelled and somehow in love with a man named Fascino who recently arrived to Stormhaven with dangerous icy creature-guardians. Youvalan claimed his divinations revealed Kallistrate’s unusual behavior and that she was in danger- he was here to help; we were here to kill her.

After some brief preparation we broke off from the younglings and flew to an upper balcony that let to a multi-chambered bedroom suite. Battle ensued with an ice devil, winter wolves and a half dragon ice-elemental monk who eventually fled from us.

Once the immediate threat was in retreat we discovered a gruesome scene in the suite as well as an individual, Garendale Finch(Director of the Sky-High Orchestra) in another suite. After gathering 1500 gold in miscellaneous valuables we were directed to the receiving room on the lower floor, where orc-blooded guardians called  Urgal and an ice-fey (Yukionna) were waiting for us. More battle ensued before we opened the receiving room doors and discovered many more opponents waiting for us.

Jaren castled Kallistrate and after a few tense moments, we were allowed to leave with our lives and Kallistrate, provided we destroyed her. Such was our task in the first place.

We were awarded 2000 xp. When we begin next session, we will be outside the Edana estate with the matter of Youvalan to deal with.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Invidia's Guardians

James asked if they were Goliath's and I said they could be.  Here is a picture that is a more accurate depiction.

Journal Entry: Jeren

Magical creation is quickly becoming an obsession more than a past time for me. The possibilities and functions of magic have even begun to rival the allure of gold for me, as i can not help but consider liquid assets as a building material for the creation of unique enchantments and ensorcelled tools. After much deliberation within my own mind, I have decided to list my newest creation as property of SON Commodities, rather than keep it for myself. I feel it will become a much desired item, especially among the nobility, and could become a real driving force behind the financial expansion of our company. I have decided to call the Son Stove.

Son Stove
This squat open fire place looks like a slightly concave iron disc standing upon four sturdy legs about two feet tall. The frame is usually lined with brick or stone, for appearance and safety for the household using it. Upon command the stove erupts into flame, creating a 5 foot diameter sphere of fire in the disc. The stove is quite heavy, providing for improved stability. The fire place burns very hot, dealing 3d6 fire damage to anyone falling into it, and the flaming sphere can not be dislodged out of the disc. The fire is magical, and since it burns no fuel, it produces no smoke. The same command word turns it off. The fire will cause any combustible it comes into contact with to catch fire as normal.

Prerequisites: caster level 3rd, flaming sphere, extend spell feat, creator must be an evocation specialist

Cost to create: 5,000 gp, 10 days Market Value: 10,o00 gp

Monday, December 6, 2010

Tales of Recent Arrivals

Govannon Gennadiy grabbed the scroll from the messenger, hastily opening it and read its contents in a remarkably short amount of time.  He hastily scribbled a note upon the same scroll, sealed it with a wax seal and paid the messenger to take it Brix at the Lifter's Guild.
After dismissing the messenger Govannon turned his gaze back to his guests, "The crafter has arrived, we will not be ready until he proves his skill with his first creation." Govannon provided all three of them with a knowing conspiratorial look when the other two weren't looking.  His skills as a mimic were always improving.  "As investors you three alone will be able to market and sell his creations, which I assure you are beyond the normal abilities of anyone else in Stormhaven."
After further discussion, his guests departed, pleased with the latest developments, completely unaware of who they truly were dealing with.  Changing forms, Govannon awaited his next group of investors.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Egil's Contact

"I'm pretty sure he just thinks I'm part of the furniture!" the halfling chuckled.  I've seen him in the steam baths a few times, he's the only one I know of that can afford to stay here as long as I do." Myles noted. 
Myles was a fixture of the Rat's nest, having worked several jobs with Egil early in his career. By chance Egil ran into the excitable halfling in the parlour of Sunbow Mansion.  They shared a drink and spoke of their current work, Myles a member of the liquor commission and Egil mentioned his search for the swordsman Buki.  The halfling practically flew out of his chair, asking Egil if he looked like this and so to an nodding and agreeing Egil. All of Egil's efforts to find Buki only to find out he was here at the same brothel.
"Who is Buki spending all his time with Myles?" The halfling made a disgusted face and said of all the women he could be with, he chose the madame of the house, Daphne Kellington.  Egil finished his drink and excused himself from the halfling.  He felt a tinge of guilt knowing that he should hurry back to Sun Commodities immediately with the news but unfortunately for them, he had paid for his evening's entertainment before learning the news.  Egil would report on Buki on Monday, he wouldn't be going anywhere.

Tales from the Reflecting Pools of Rockhammer Square

Mathers hated the term dandie, he was certain the bards meant it in a less than complimentary manner. As much as Mathers hated to admit it, tonight he and his three cronies were certainly dressed the part. Each of them wore a fine suit and leather jacket. They were dressed properly for argument at the Hall of Voices and truth to tell they hoped to draw some of the upstart students from Mishi's Winter Blade school onto the bridges for several duels. One of their students carried a "champion's blade", a gem encrusted blade similar to their katanas, that he claimed would go to the first person to beat him in a duel. After hours of waiting for the schools retinue to arrive and argue against a recent tariff on "exotic" weaponry. Mather's and his mates waited for the warriors to finish stating their case before they began to yell from different locations in the crowd oppositions which soon devolved into accusations of market manipulation and cultism. Their plan worked like a charm as one student stood and turned towards Mathers who had called out the latest insult to challenge him to a duel for staining his honor.

Mather chose the first canal bridge as the location of the duel, knowing that the crowd who followed them would be better able to see them fight. The ornate bridge widened at the center peak with two slopes of stone that ran off into the canal. The terms of the battle were simply the first to yield or fall. The student announced himself as samurai Lefor and presented the gem encrusted katana, "should you find a way to defeat me, the champion's blade is yours." Mather's replied, "I present my father's longsword glacier, the deliverer of many an icy death". This statement was given at almost a yell, Mather wanted the crowd to hear their terms. Mather chuckled to himself and wondered when his friends had poisoned his simpleton opponent. They had worked this trick a few times before and Mather was certain they would come through as they had before.

The battle started with Mather and Lefor at opposite ends of the bridge. A woman from the small crowd called out for them to begin and the two approached each other at the center of the bridge. Mather could see that his friends must have indeed succeeded, Lefor was moving a little slower and blinking, allowing Mather to reach the high ground first. Lefor was in truth a much better swordsman that Mather. Even in his reduced state he gave Mather a vicious go of it and almost won but the poison proved too much and Mather finally knocked Lefor over, knocking him unconscious to the delight of those watching the fight.

Mather lifted the ornamental katana high above him and loudly claimed the "champion's blade". At his announcement the crowd was sated and drifted off. Mather's partners were busy fighting off Lefor's schoolmates leaving him little time to rifle through the rest of the Samurai's belongings.

"The term's of this duel are to the death." a voice, a woman's voice sounded from within ten feet of Mather who stood and spun from rifling the unconscious warrior. Blinking, Mather stared at this masked woman, a crossbow in her left hand and exotic blade in the right, she had taken the high ground without him even hearing her approach. Her soft calm voice belied the threat Mather now felt, "Arm yourself swordsman and draw your last breath's, this battle is upon you." Mather presented his blade, fear gripping him as she seemed to grow in size as she approached him. Her left hand shot forward, a thwack sound and rifling of air, Mather could hear himself screaming as the crossbow bolt took his hand, piercing it and the sword he held, binding them together. The strange bastard blade on her back quickly became drawn deflecting Mather's now weak attack. Her blade whistled, the last sounds the young dandie would hear, taking him sharply in his shoulder and up through his neck. Leaving the fallen samurai his life she quickly stripped the two of their belongings, save for Mather's dueling weapon of course. Less than fifteen seconds later, the only things visible on the bridge was the Mather's blood corpse and Lefor's unconscious form, had anyone been there to hear it, they would have heard a woman announce, "Soon you will recognize the new champion of Rockhammer Square."

Friday, December 3, 2010

Journal Entry: Versel

After checking out the Hunt club, Durg went alone to his lunch date. I decided to check in at Twilight house. While there I informed Master Arkielle of the status of the Black Kracken, that it was docked #103 & the conditions of getting it in a few days ahead of schedule. He was grateful for the news since apparently he has been awaiting a delivery of his own from the ship.

He then showed me a most interesting robe the house had recently acquired. Fine black silk trimmed in red. Red runes on the cuffs & collar radiate a strong magic aura. Even though several of the other monks were interested he knew that my desire for such an item would be great. He facilitated the trade using my armor and some misc coin & gems to acquire my new robe.

When I wear the robe (that fits me more like a long jacket) I feel empowered. More alert & more powerful, I feel the need to test the enhancements of this garment. Perhaps I will go looking for a bit of sport this evening.

12/1/10 Review

Early Friday we met briefly with Egil who reported on the progress, or lack of, in the hunt for Buki. Egil was not pressing hard but had some word left with Seafoam. Also local rumor was that Driftdown potentates were involving themselves in retrofitting stolen ships and selling them for profit and that there was some kind of fracture in the hierarchy of territory control in the Driftdowns. We asked Egil to look into bounties.

9am. We presented our plan to Raice, Claret and Larratia Pauchard to stow them away on our new acquisition: the Black Kraken. With little choice, they submitted to being flown to the Driftdowns and to where we hoped to find the ship. Upon arrival we discovered an alarming activity boom. Scores of ships were systematically being brought in over the past week and it would seem this would continue on for many more days. An influx of people and goods were making their arrival after a long journey. A five-year navigational cycle was coming to fruition here and now.

A notable new feature was the appearance of a new race of flying humanoids: Raptorans.

After learning the Black Kraken had not been given berth, we headed out to sea with our companions to rendezvous with them before they made dockside. Enroute we discovered many magical anomalies including some magic dead area that was later discovered were created by some sea creature.

When the Black Kraken came into view we felt a strong draconic presence emanating from it. There was a dragon on board, mayhap more than one. Icy, slush surrounded the Black Kraken as we approached. We hailed and had words with one Captain Nero Pence and his first mate a Halfling named Me-ho. Nervous and evasive in our palaver, he reluctantly agreed to ask ‘the Mistress’ if we could be seen, since we flew all the way out here- Vercel had a proposal.

Accompanied by two large statuesque bald, shapely men- Lady Invidia, who had the air of her own icy beauty, arrived upon a floating cushion. We were immediately greeted by a feral feeling of appraisal and prowess. The deck had been cleared as a precaution in the presence of such magic between our two groups.

Invidia spoke of growing influence and staking a claim in Stromhaven, overall she was too good to spend much time speaking to us. Nevertheless, she agreed to allow the addition of Raice, Claret and Larratia to the crew and we would see to it that the Black Kraken would be docked sooner than the three days it was now faced with. With that chore behind us we returned to the Driftdowns to meet with Pryor Lanski the Harbor Master.

11am. Pryor agreed to bringing in the Black Kraken as soon as first thing tomorrow (Saturday) because he needed laborers. A discretionary fee of 300 gold was paid and we got assurances that only friendly dock hands would work this dock #103. We would have this berth all winter, no inspections, no questions and no hostiles. We would also fashion watermarks for the berth as well.

Noon. Durg has a luncheon and meets with Tamros (who believes Kallistrate is involved in blackmarket watermarks). Vercel familiarizes himself with water. Jaren oversees the progress on the renovations- then spell research. Auge begins basic religious studies at Twilight House- then lab to create four Auran Masks.

Early Saturday we went back to the Driftdowns to receive Lady Invidia, but she would have none. Her brood was seen unloading her cargo. Spending as little time as possible in the Driftdowns we returned Upside and ended the session with Durg and Vercel traveling to the Fox Run and Jaren and Auge busying themselves with spell research and alchemy.

On the calendar: Sunday, nothing. Monday, Gin & Sandi Habib tour the building. Next Saturday (one week from when we ended the session), Captain Pryor diamond trade with Vercel.

Journal Entry: Durg

5,000 gold for death, a severed arm and a ring. This is what Tamros has offered me to kill Kallistrate Edana, the spellscale transmutor. Is the gold worth siding with a dwarf against a dragon-kin? Brother Jaren has stated that this game we live, this game of thrones, is not a game of halves. We either make enemies or allies, there is no middle ground. And in the end, aren't our allies just enemies we openly work with, all the while watching for any suspiscious movements? Ah, well. The die is cast. The dwarf is an ally, for now. And Kallistrate... Kallistrate is dead.

Auran Mask

Auran Mask: This mask fits over the character's nose and mouth. The bulk of the item is a cloth packet holding a porous, sponge-like alchemical substance. It requires a move action to put on or remove, and once a single breath is taken through the mask, its benefits last for one hour (or less if taken underwater).
A creature wearing an auran mask receives a +5 alchemical bonus on Fortitude saves against inhaled toxins. In addition, the wearer can breathe underwater as if under the effect of a water breathing spell, though immersing the auran mask in water reduces its remaining duration to 10 minutes (or less, if less than 10 minutes remain). Source: Complete Mage pg. 134, Alchemical Items. Cost for Auge to create 28g, 5s. (Hoard value 60g) DC25.