Gallowsbird (2016)

Friend of Man Resistance

After our group splits for the day I head to the office of Falconflight. As I arrive I see a dwarf emerge who shouts “Just have it removed in 48 hours” as he leaves. I am taken to the back of his offices where I see several files written in Draconic. We have Falconflight Conversation 2.

As I am leaving Falconflight’s office I see Lancette walking down the street. At the sight of me she covers her frown with her hand, turns around and walks away. Concerned why she is randomly avoiding me I call out to her and she starts running away. I give chase and she starts screaming that she is being chased, I respond with a bluff that she stole something from me that calms the few people who see us. As we are running two beardless dwarves emerge from a building and grab her. “She been stealing, it be okay. We solved it.” They say as they block the entrance. I try to engage in conversation and in response they try to pickpocket me. I pull back and they take the opportunity co close the door. Now alone I listen at the door and hear the voice of Lucky Dogan coming from inside, giving some sort of speech. In a window frame a piece of wood was placed with “Free Lecture” written. The door isn’t locked so I go inside.

Inside I see Dogan in a formal suit with a really badly done curly politician wig on his head, the kind we associate with British judges. Just really unkept. He is surrounded by several people of which include the dwarves and Lancette. Everyone seems to be there voluntarily. I stand there and listen to the lecture.

His speech is on the structure of the planes. He describes the two theories as to the structure of the universe. One is a large web constantly being readjusted as the web itself expands. Connections are snipped when no longer needed and new ones are added to support new growth. He hypothesizes that Gallows is a single thread connected richly with other planes, which might explain why so many bizarre things happen. He offers that the demon invasion has had more to do with cosmology than Gallows itself. He goes on. If gallows is richly connected to other planes, why do we see so few intelligent outsiders? Dogan explains that the event we call the calamity may have had more to do with the other planes than with us, perhaps the gods didn’t die or flee, but we’re disconnected from Gallows by an even larger inside force. One that shapes the planar web. He ends his speech with encouragement to search the secret places of the world, and to never stop being curious.

After his speech I see the beardless dwarves try and steal from Lucky. I call them out and prevent them from fleeing with his money. They drop the money and run deeper into the building. Lucky Dogan comes over to pick up his gold and we have Lucky Dogan Conversation 1. It ends with a knock on the entrance to the assembly hall. At Lucky’s request I go open the door. A member of the Friend of man was there. They ask who the owner of the property is and I claim that the owner is currently not here. They ask again and I tell them they will have to ask the owner for the name of the owner.

After expertly getting them to leave I go talk to Lancette and have Lancette Conversation 1. It’s interrupted when the dwarves try to exit the building only to be stopped by foreign mercenaries. I draw my sword and try to figure out what is happening. They don’t really respond, just keep shouting “Down on the floor” and pointing crossbows. I grab Lancette and run off deeper into the building. As I run off I hear them shout “Find the witch doctor.”

As we run into the building we find dogan trying to get out a boarded up window. I stand at the entrance as Lancette goes to help Lucky. As the mercenaries get close I put a gash in one and force him to retreat to drink a potion. As reinforcements get close I hear Lucky shout that the place is open and I flee. The mercenaries wearing heavy armor are quickly outran and we escape. Lucky is moving erratically: climbing over walls and through buildings. Not confident in my acrobatics I chase after Lancette instead and we have the rest of Lancette Conversation 1.

I leave and decide to go sabotage the portal the Friends of Man are supposedly building. Initially I wanted to use the aqueduct to sneak in. I remember that the aqueduct has temple forces who use it for unknown purposes. So instead I go use the temple/dock underground route Jacket informed me about long ago. I avoid some demons along the way and near the entrance I hear humanoid voices. I am able to get into the entrance without getting seen.

At the entrance to the passage I get my light and proceed in. I hear the voice in the darkness. “You look a little lost. Exit is back the way you came.” I say I’m not looking for trouble and I try to continue. I see a ratfolk with an eyepatch and a long stick that is poking my chest. I introduce myself as “friend of the ratfolk”. That seems to jog his memory and he says he remembers me. As long as I don’t tell people he’s down here I’m free to move on. The path has other passengers, some robed and some not. Half are ratfolk and the other half are various surface races. At the other end I find a ladder that extends to a small room in a cantina building. I avoid talking to people as I exit. I put on my disguise I got from a courier.

The Temple society has a smaller amount of land than most of the districts, so it has built vertically, with several bridges connecting overhead above the thin, winding road. Most people wear the robe color I have. I’m able to find the general area that Viola described. There is a bell tower on the side of a square. The square is curtained off with a construction project going on in the center. Nearby are two people in patched overalls having a conversation with a robed man. They are complaining that the thing they are trying to build is not “art” however the robed man said that the “guests” had very specific instructions and were paying handsomely. As I continue to scout out the perimeter I see more robed figures with metal masks covering their face guarding the plaza.

I start to approach the tower next to the plaza and see a Friend of Man exit from an alley. When I go look at the alley it is a dead end. Confused but short on time I proceed. I begin casting a spell which alerts the armored, robed figures. Before they reach me though I place my hand on the stone and a large portion begins to melt. It spews out on the floor, surrounding me like a heavy rain, it cracks into liquid. I see Friends of Man inside, staring into my face, at least a dozen. There is some kind of assembly going on inside, but everyone just looks at me, confused. For that one moment, we lock eyes, but I don’t let my concentration crack. The wall bubbles out, tearing along a tight seam. I recognize two faces from the ones amongst the files. But the wall cracks. I run. Screams start. the metal man stops running, stunned. There isn’t time. The wooden columns inside the tower splinter to matchsticks under the mismatched pressure. I see it bow slightly, then the stone begins the fracture. The building tips. The top starts falling. It fractures off, exposing the long corridor of stairs that reach upward to the bell tower. I see a Friend of Man tip and slip from the staircase. He falls off. I see his neck break, and I learn at least some Friends of Man have innards that resemble human. The tower falls, wind and debris threaten to knock me down.

The place is in chaos. You enter the cloud of dirty debris. You hear sobbing and shouts of help. I see the overall brother trying to pull the still form of his friend out, but I can tell he is dead. I notice they were twins. Its hard to make out the statue, but from what I can tell there was a marble structure that has now been thoroughly destroyed. I see strange cords and beams – foreign things that resembled metal when split amongst the ruins, but I cannot tell if they were from the staired tower or the proportionally small statue beneath. I round to where the structural damage is least on the statue. There was at least one human-figure, I can see a few pieces of debris. Squares are on the sleeved arm I found – a pattern of squares, over and over again, with irregular shading that is uncomfortable to look at. I take the statue arm and flee the scene.

I’m quickly able to find an alley where I disappear before I fly back to the mids. As I fly back I learn that the winds rapidly get faster the higher you get but otherwise return safely. I return to my house and go check on Bell and Thomas. Bell is looking much better and is recuperating. I give her a general update on what’s happening in the mids. While I’m there I ask Thomas to go oversee the delivery of the magi-tech equipment to which he agrees.

With the bells chiming I go upstairs and look for Samantha and Viola. Instead I find a note: “We are at the bar I used to go to, do you remember the one? Or we will be there if you run faster than we can dawdle.” Object reading confirms it was written by the two so I stash the statue piece and the disguise and go after them. As I head to the Jiggling Gypsy it starts to rain. Inside Samantha and Viola are at a corner table playing cards with some strangers. I notice that Viola’s “squeeze” seems to have a new lover, much to Viola’s dismay. As she sees me enter she excuses herself from the table and drops a napkin as she passes. Reading the note it says to check the table in the back, which reveals there are several Friends of Man sitting at the table. Viola comes back and I reach out to her with my telepathic bond. We start Viola Conversation 3. During that I sit down next to the Friend of Man table and try to act inconspicuous. I hear Friend of Man Conversation 1. I eventually notice Samantha and Viola are leaving so I exit as well. Samantha seems to struggle with the concept of being subtle but we all meet up a block away. We continue Viola Conversation 3 and then split up.

With them gone I wait outside for the other members to enter. Outside of getting soaked nothing happens for an hour and I eventually go back in. They are now all dressed in leather armor and watching the performers. I go to the barkeep. I inquire about the group and learn they had a fourth member with them. A strong looking human with broad shoulders and brown hair. He states the man might be with the weather society and after pressing I learn the fourth was accompanied by a halfling in the weather attire. I wait a little longer at the bar and find Salisbury entering and approaching the Friends of Man. He puts a bag on the table and I hear him say “The War Council has agreed to give you temporary housing. Please follow me.” They all shuffle out and I follow.

We head towards the Senation district and the rain increases. I follow them to a square met for diplomats and see them enter a building next to the one for the sewer district. I wait a few minutes and when he doesn’t leave I approach the building while avoiding several patrols. I’m able to telepathically communicate with Salisbury inside. After the initial confusion of our communication he states he is aware that they are dangerous but they are currently the “prisoners” of the War Council. He is charged with guarding them all night along with several others. Satisfied I leave and head back home.

When I arrive I find a note from the Bear:
“Pearce

The Ruler of the Bluepoles has agreed to the Sanctuary, and the Docks has been taken care of, at least as much as it can be. Meet me at my Mids office tomorrow night at 9pm. We need to make an official document to bind the interested parties.

-Bear

PS. I followed up on a small lead on your friend. Unfortunately, it did not lead anywhere. My Temple contacts are still searching diligently though."

Samantha is playing with cards by herself and Viola is “taking a walk” when asked. She arrives shortly after I do. We continueViola Conversation 3 again. We decide to try and revive her tonight and have Samantha Conversation 24. We all agree to do it and after some calculations figure out that there is a 50% chance of success. Viola agrees. We go to the theater. Samantha has Viola lay down on the stage. She puts some kind of plant in Viola’s mouth. Viola’s form lays still, and the small insect-like creature emerges. Samantha tries to touch it, but hesitates. She gently shoos the bug to another section of stage. She takes out her book and a bottle of tonic and begins writing something down. Samantha writes some things down. If you can see the book, trying to read it hurts your head.
The words move and tangle in the book, connecting in strange ways, sometimes creating a pile of random letters, sometimes turns of phrase. Her writing doesn’t seem to correlate with where text is in the book.

Sam: “It is… Pearce, we have to break her shell. Something is hampering my writing. I only get one try, Pearce. We have to expose her soul to bring her back.”
Me: “You want me to cut open the bug?”
Sam: “Down the middle. You have to slice it down the middle exactly. If any one section of it gets exposed early, it will be ruined. Longways, Pearce!”

I slice the insect. The soul emerges, like a fuzzy, tight cloud, and floats lazily upward. Samantha finishes writing. There is a flash of light and you can’t hear. I have a horrible buzzing in your ears that has deafened me, and I cannot see due to the light. I am knocked backward by a powerful force. Somehow I have Samantha’s book in your hands. I see some garbled sentences on the page and know I need to read it aloud. The light suddenly stops, and I hear Samantha crying as she rushes back on the stage. I turn to look at where Viola was, where the light was. She looks smaller than before, and one look at her legs assures me she will never walk again. Samantha brought her back to the moment before she died, after several days of torture that she was never intended to survive. She is missing most of her fingers and her legs have been shattered.

Samantha is crying, holding the unconscious Viola. “I can’t do it.. I tried… I can’t do it….” I pick up Viola, “She needs food, liquid, and some healing. Let’s go” We walk back home with Samantha babbling about how she tried. She immediately locks herself in the bedroom when we arrive back home. I position her in a way so that I can get some liquids down her throat before I get Thomas to take care of her medical healing and I go to sleep.

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Public: Richard's Birthday!

Day 2/7 to property payment (300g)

In the morning before I go to the office I find a note at my door:
“Pearce, the Temple Ministry of War has agreed in principal to your Sanctuary idea. I’ll ask the Blue Poles next. No word yet on Viola, but I’m working on it.

Bear"

I and Broderick arrive to the office early to see Davidson’s desk outside. Apparently our office has been taken by the war council to be a meeting room. Also it is apparently Richard’s birthday? Before we can ask questions Richard himself shows up. We awkwardly congratulate him and he claims that it isn’t his birthday. He also isn’t surprised about the office takeover since he is apparently in the war council.

Before we can talk more Davis tells us that Richard has a present from his father. Who Richard claims is dead. Apparently everyone in the office saw an older Richard come by who claimed it was Richard’s birthday. We take the present outside and clear out the street. Richard opens it and finds a ship in a bottle along with a letter. We ask what the note says and apparently it’s a request from the deceased Lenny to meet him at the aqueduct, located at the temple, at noon. Unsure of how to react we go to a nearby tavern to collect our thoughts.

As we come in we see Margarett Thatch follow us in and sit at our table. She seems to be conflicted about the new Warmaster and reminds us that we don’t work for it. We apparently have free reign over what we need to do as long as it’s for the good of the Mids. She leaves and I begin to give my report.

I tell the group that Druff is made using rat hair but the Sewer District denies any responsibility. Broderick states that he’s seen some partially transformed people with a lot of druff that might be related.

The next topic is the “Book Report”, the report about the Square Books and the dangers the present. I tell the group that those associated with them, the Friends of Man seem to be abducting people and that they might be the source of an epidemic of a disease known as “Colorblight”.

I also inform them about the plans for the “Safe Zone”. They seemed to respond positively to. Broderick mentioned that the Senate was setting up more refuge camps for the Dock refugees that they could use.

After that we decide to go to Richard’s meeting with the deceased Lenny. Richard enters a building and find several people attacking him. Apparently he has a bounty on his head for 1250 gold. We fight them off and bring one back with us to interrogate.

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Creating a Safe Place

My first stop is to the Weather Society. I ask to speak to Fischer and I get an appointment scheduled for later. While I wait I ask around about the bird masks. Apparently they represent a common person since Gallows is typically depicted as a bird in art. While I’m asking around I notice my talons on my marked hand are beginning to ache. With more time to kill I head home.

At my house I find several Friends of Man at my door. They are banging on the door shouting “Census”. I also note that this includes a Female FoM, which is a first. Concerned I use my telepathy to contact Bell and learn she is ill. I draw my sword and demand the FoM leave. The female asks for clarification and I refuse to give it. She decides to just mark the area as “high lawlessness” so that she can leave. Before she goes I recognize that her voice is the exact same as Viola. Alarmed I begin to follow them and enchant my sword, which causes them to run. Before they can get too far I activate haste and quickly overtake them. I strike with nonlethal force at the small female and knock her out while she shouts for the other to go get the “weather something’s”. I hoist her over my shoulder which causes some locals to come stop me. I get behind cover, activate invisibility, and escape to my place.

Samantha is sleeping after what seems like generous tonic drinking but otherwise unharmed. We have Samantha Conversation 20. I drop off Viola, re-glove my hand and head back for my meeting with Fischer. Once there I give up my weapons and enter his office to see Fischer being attacked by two assassins. I call for the guards and they assassin’s are drug out. We have Fischer conversation 1.

I leave and go check on Bell, who is supposedly ill. Inside I find her and Thomas and we proceed to have Thomas Conversation 2. During the conversation we go upstairs and that conversation leads to Samantha Conversation 21. During the course of that I decide to talk to a bug that crawled out of Viola’s corpse with ‘Insitgate Psychic Dual’. I enter the void and instead of a bug I see Viola along with an orc and an elf. I have part of Viola Conversation 2. I project a beam of light to attack the elf and he quickly evaporates. The orc attacks and I see the image of a floating castle against a dark background – impossibly large – larger than the city you call home, floating in a void. I exchange blows with the orc and eventually he too evaporates leaving me and Viola. We have more of the Viola Conversation 2. I break the spell and put the bug back on the corpse. We have the rest of Viola Conversation 2.

I leave to go find healer Atticus Samson. I wait through the line at his office and talk to an elven secretary named Roseberry who tells me the doctor will arrive in an hour. I go home and prepare everyone for the visit. I ask Viola about the disease and she confirms she had a rash but has no idea. I have Atticus Conversation 1. It ends with him leaving a new chosen. I briefly ask her why her ‘blessing’ failed. Apparently she needs the library in order to access her domain. She has to do it currently with her blood. With that piece of info I leave for the Rat embassy.

I safely travel to the docks, bells continue to ring, and I’m escorted in. I’m immediately shown to the ambassador. We have Knoblitch Conversation 3 (which also includes the ambassador). After the conversations I leave.

At home I find Samantha watching Viola, who is reading. I offer to take her out of the apartment for some fresh air, to which Viola tried to join. We go to the newly bought Theater. Inside we see that birds have apparently taken to sleeping in the rafters. Sam is curious about the birds and I notice as we enter that the bird droppings, of which there are plenty, start gravitating towards her. We inspect it closer and realized they are excreting a form of the Hollowberry tonic. At this realiziation the birds start to fly around the theatre and erupt into light. It now looks like a complicated light show centered on Samantha who is laughing at the center. She confirms that these are the birds she created. At her command they dim and return to their roost. I tell her that the entire building is now hers to use. She does a dramatized status report to an empty audience. I play along as we both come to realize our goal is closer. I start to list off things still necessary when I see her start casting Prestidigitiation. When I ask about it she suddenly stops, unaware of how she did it. We determine that the variety of her followers might have been the cause. After this pleasant surprise we head home.

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Public: Frontlines

Day 1/7 to property payment (300g)

We meet up at the Weather and are told by Dave that we’re wanted on the front line. We agree to help and head towards the Temple district. Along the way we run into an archer standoff which we quickly end. The militia there direct us to a building where the general of the “army” is commanding people. She says some Weather forces have forced Temple troops into a building with a hostage. She wants us to go mediate, to which we agree.

We sneak past more Temple forces and find a large massacre of homeless people, all of which appear to have their souls extracted. Nearby are the Mids militia we were looking for. It is quickly relevant that the entire group is on various drugs. They say they cornered the people inside and have the place under siege. Outside of the building we see a body of temple diplomat riddled with arrows.

After much debate we reluctantly leave our weapons with the troops and agree to go talk to the trapped troops to try and negotiate. We are let inside and talk to a “High Lord Funeralis”. He seems very religious. We explain the situation and state that they can be taken as prisoners of war if they agree to surrender. Funeralis does not seem keen on the idea. More negotiations are made and we leave Richard behind while the rest of us leave to wait for Funeralis to make a decision.

As we wait outside we talk to the druggie troops. I ask them to return our weapons and they seem to have forgotten where they are. Several threats and insults from Pearce, with Brodie trying to defuse the situation, and we find our bag. They are snorting some substance called Druff which is allegedly made by ratfolk in the docks. They refuse to answer questions when I ask about a source and Broderick must defuse the situation again. We learn the soldier’s name is Icari and the rest of the troops are likewise on drugs.

Before Pearce can make more threats Richard leaves the building with the temple forces in tow. They have agreed to surrender. We take the troops and escort them back to the general. There I’m informed it seems that the Militia was responsible for the homeless massacre. With that we conclude our time on the front line.

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The Bear and the Bear

When we split up I go find Richard. We have Richard conversation 3. He eventually relents and we go to the Matroni district. Along the way Richard tells me he feels uneasy and we pick up the pace before we finally reach the general location. I ask which building the man in the wheelchair is staying and Richard figures out we’re here to see Venyard. Richard immediately wanted to go home but I convinced him to stick around and we find the building. I tell him to go in and explain he’s possessed, electing to stay outside since I don’t know how my agreement with Venyard will work.

While Richard is inside I keep myself busy by going up to a garbage fire with some homeless.
End up having a conversation 1 with Jim Flikkit.

Richard exits and says that he is indeed possessed and that if they can provide a soul Venyard is willing to fix him. We continue Richard conversation 3. After that we return to the mids. We spot some guards denying refugees but otherwise the travel is uneventful.

After we separate I head to the docks to a bar called the “Monkey’s Knuckle” looking for Bear’s bear. I’m able to get past the bouncer by declaring myself a part of Red Ear’s crew. I spot the bear in the back of the bar so I order a drink, act like I’ve had 10 and have Blackthorne Bill conversation 1.

It turns out the Bear might have been lying so I leave and return to the Mids. I go to the store “Small and tall” clothing store. There I leave a note for the Bear that says “I don’t work with liars. Take your money”. I leave the note and the money at the shop.

I stop by the Weather Society morgue room and ask to look at the bin belonging to Yarrick. I use object reading and see Richard emptying the bag. It seems to be Richard. The bin seems to contain some robes but nothing else of significance.

I head to my place and find out that Jacket has left and his rock is gone. Sam seems worn out from the last night and asks for time to heal. I have a note with an address for a person who sells property. We haggle and eventually I get a theater building in the Mids. For 300 gold a week for 12 weeks.

I return to my house and summon Jacket. He arrives as usual with muffins. We exchange pleasantries. He asks for his wand back which I hand over. He refuses to bring up the subject he wanted to talk about on the moonless night and says there currently isn’t a job. I give him the gold for the magi-tech machine and he says it will be delivered.

The conversation gets interrupted by a knock on the door. It’s Bear. We proceed to have conversation Bear Conversation 2 to end the day.

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Public: The Weather Goes to War this Time
I'm starting to notice a pattern

The next day when we return to the Weather. It seems the society was hit pretty hard by the attack. Lots of people are missing including Dave. Broderick is pulled into an emergency council meeting and shortly after we’re told we can enter as well if we wear bird masks. In the meeting it seems the few remaining council members are trying to decide what to do. A man named Fischer, the spymaster, says that they need to declare war and need a general for the army. He volunteers himself. A man named Tennesse also volunteers but goes on about roads? Richard steps up and states that Fischer is the man for the job. The vote is cast and the council elects him Warmaster.

Richard is pulled into a short meeting with Fischer after which we return to our office. Dave has returned and he is really really drunk. Seems he lost his daughter during the attack. We awkwardly console him and he tells us that Brother Nathan was reported dead before the attack. Supposedly that’s what caused them to attack. We’ve been charged with investigating and find out what happened.

Also supposedly the diplomat was stolen from the Weather morgue by Richard, or at least someone who looks like him. We decide to investigate that first. We go down to the morgue and find out that Richard definitely isn’t allowed in. We go in and find that Yarrick is indeed gone and his personal belongings are gone as well. Questioning the guard doesn’t get us anywhere so we leave.

We try to go to the graveyard where Nathan was staying and find a sniper guarding it. Richard and I act as bait while Broderick sneaks around. He eventually chases him off but doesn’t get the kill so we quickly go down and explore the ruins. We find blood stains but besides that nothing of interest. We leave and go to a nearby sewer where Brother Nathan’s body was supposedly found. We find nothing there either. As we try to leave we find Temple forces at the entrance. They want us to surrender. Instead we flee and head back to the Mids.

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Pale Moon

After that I’m awoken to the sound of glass breaking outside my apartment. I head towards the door and hear someone shout “Find the rat-freak”. I hear pounding on the door. I draw my sword and ask who is there. Jacket identifies himself. Before I can let him in several arrows hit the door and I open the door to see him holding a wand over some now smoldering remains of rioters. We have Jacketman conversation 9.

We exit the magical portal we entered in conversation 9 and take stock. I have conversation 19 with Samantha and then hurry off into the night. I arrive at “Ma’s Diner” to find it on fire. Salsibury is nearby cradling the owner as he drags her away. He identifies her as his mother who apparently owed debts. Noticing he is injured I offer him a potion as he starts to break down. I console him briefly but tell him I need to keep moving. He agrees and decides to come with me after making his mother look peaceful. We head out into the night.

We arrive to the embassy to find thousands of rats of all shapes and sizes fighting off demons. I grab my sword and it begins to glow brighter until it’s as bright as the fabled sun and charge in shouting “FOR THE LADY AMETHYST”. Many of the things there, including Salisbury, are stunned and he along with rats regroup with me. Together we fight and destroy some of the nearby demons. The rats in awe proclaim we have the “Glory of Ratman”. We point out that we are servants of Amethyst, Allies of Ratman, and we continue to fight on. An hour later the fighting starts to die down as the demons retreat. I note that the demons are no longer disintegrating when we slay them. The ambassador, Marcus, calls us and we have a conversation with him and Knoblitch Conversation 2. After that we leave out again.

I ask how Salisbury is holding out. He says he’s feeling overwhelmed which I sympathize with. We head back to my place and slay a few additional demons along the way. When arrive we find Samantha sitting and staring at her book, occasionally coughing up tonic. Bell states she is sick and refuses to take more tonic. We resume Samantha Conversation 19.
Salsibury, Thomas, and I wait in the living room.

Sal: “So… what is going on back there?”
Me: “… The lady is doing what is necessary to help the city”
Sal: “She more powerful than she appear, Pearce?”
Me: “She is. She just doesn’t always remember it”

I hear loud, chaotic laughing coming from the bedroom. Light seeps under the door frame. Bright light.

Sal: “Uh…”
Me: “Just be calm”

The door opens, and a blinding, bright light comes out of it. We hear the flapping of wings and a bird call and then the light is out the front door. I go outside and find there is a new bright light in the sky. A gigantic ball of tightly flying birds as bright as daylight.

Bell emerges from the bedroom with an empty case. Apparently Samantha consumed all the souls. Pearce angry that she did something so reckless momentarily flips out and consequently flips a table but otherwise they all just stand there for a moment. Bell says that she did it to shine away the darkness and then she fell back into the bed. I enter to see huge bird-wings on Samantha but otherwise seemingly unharmed. We survive the night.

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Diplomacy

That morning I awake to find a letter underneath my door. It says “Pearce. Here is the address I promised you.” Its an address to store called “Small and Tall”. The letter is unsigned.

The firstbegins with me meeting up with Broderick in front of the Apple. We have Broderick conversation 1.

After that I head to the rat embassy where I try to find Knoblitch the conductor. I am taken upstairs, then into an attic. Its hot and smells of garlic and preserved fish. I see a number of ratfolk moving around thin mirrors, positioning them as if to reflect something back into a central point. They are moving things at the direction of a small rat with a large head. He looks older and somehow weaker outside of the library. His head is supported on some sort of wheeled gurney. He looks up at me and squeaks. He doesn’t seem to speak your language, but he recognizes you. I feel heavy breathing and turn to see Shansley. “Whatter you for there then?” he says to me. “Need’n my wordswork to translate?” I agree and have Knoblitch conversation 2.

I return home to deliver the message to Sam. Bell hands me a package with what I assume is Viola’s toe in it. I take it inside and use object reading on it. In the memory I hear Viola gagging and fighting back, and some people speaking in Old Common (similar to Renaissance English). They are ignoring her and talking about something pedantic. I take the package and gold and bring them to Falconflight. I’m let in, hand him the gold, and tell him to go find her. I stop by the Weather Society and write Broderick’s letter and give it to Davis.

After that I go about finding intel. I follow up on the nurse and find out he is typically a good person. I try to figure out where Venyard went off to and hear of a wheelchair bound man living in a halfway house in the Matroni district.

I return to my place and use my book to summon Jacket. He knocks on my door and brings some casserole. We have Jacketman Conversation 8. That conversation ends when Samantha gets my attention. We have Samantha conversation 18 and it ends with her teleporting to my room so she can sleep here.

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Shadows and Fortunes

After we split I go find Batch. She is sitting in the same spot I first found her so I join her on the Bench. I inform her that I was offered a seat on the lower council by the Bear. She claimed she didn’t know who he was. I gave her the general info I’ve learned and explain his offer as well as explaining that it seems he already has people on the council. She says she wants more info to which I say a formal request will have to be placed or guarantee of more compensation. She agrees and hands me 100g for remaining loyal. I leave and find Salisbury and learn that the Viola missing person report has been filed but probably won’t get any attention.

After that I decide to go talk to Grounds Kipper in the Weather cells. When I enter I find him un-moving and staring at the tower. He does not appear to be blinking or breathing. Frax takes me aside and says the guy refuses to eat and accused us of kidnapping him. He asks if I want privacy and say I will return momentarily and then I will. I go outside and contact Samantha with my mirror. I ask her to watch the scene to see what she finds. I return and have Grounds Kipper conversation 1. After that I rapidly flee the facility shouting at Frax that’s Kipper is a caster.

Oustide in an alley I try to contact Samantha to get answers. According to her the library is acting up. Lights are going out and Ratman started commanding his rats to do something. She also felt sick. She believes that was a divine who is now trying to enter the library. I’m asked to pray to help her fend it off. She eventually says that it seems to end. I ask for any info and learn that the books call it “Darkness” and “Shadow”. She thinks it now knows where the library is and how to enter it.

After I make some prayers I fetch a scribe and a courier from inside and send a letter to Broderick. “This is Pearce. Need to meet you briefly. Will be outside the Society building our usual meetup time.” After that I find Frax looking for me. Frax Conversation 1.

I go shopping and buy some armor and a backpack

After that I go home and get some of the souls before I head out to find the Gypsies. I’m able to find the elderly blind woman from before. We have Baba conversation 1.

On the way home I run into Lucky Dogan operating a cup game booth. “You look down. Has fate been unkind to you, Pearce? Lucky Dogan can help. Do you want Lucky Dogan help?” I accept and play his game. I successfully pick the right cup. He puts it behind my ear and he returns his hand he is holding three cards. Pale Moon, Maiden, and Turnabout. He asks me to pick a card to remove from my immediate fate. I choose the Pale Moon and the card bursts into flame. Lucky just comments that no one knows what that will do and starts to walk off. I ask if he has heard of devils? He responds “Yes, but what I haven’t heard of is angels. No idea what that word even means, okay.”

I go home and knock on my mirror. I have Samantha conversation 17. The rest of the evening is spent finding more intel on the nurse. I discover that he provides for a lot of criminal injures. I can tell he does not discriminate.

That night I come back and continue conversation 17.

In the library she grabs my scarred hand, which pulses with some raw energy, and I disappear into the dream-scape. I find myself in a throne room. Before me is a large throne and a smaller throne beside it. Sam is no where to be seen. I hear her voice “This is… symbo-… sit in…. Pearce.” which is cutting in and out. My scar is pulsing with a blue light. I feel strangely calm and know that the scene is waiting for me to react. I hold my scarred hand in front of the thrones. It glows purple at the larger throne and black at the smaller throne. As I approach the smaller throne the scenery briefly shifts before stabilizing. Unsure I stand by the thrones as if I was a guard. A moment later a door appears and a winged woman emerges. The wings are large, white, unfurled wings, sort of a cross between a bat and a bird. Its seems to continue from her hair. The person doesn’t seem to have a specific face – it changes as you look. She is wearing a light purple gown. I am aware this is a more true representation of Samantha. She walks forward and I bow and offer her a seat on the larger throne. Following a hunch I kneel at her feet. I feel my hands burn and reform and I leave the dreamstate. The scars on my left hand are now blue and my fingers are more like talons. I also am aware that bells now ring when I’m near.

I accept her gift and retire for the day.

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Public:Brother Nathan
Harrison Strikes Back

We meet up in the morning as normal. Before we can do anything we are told by Davis that we have a visitor. A emissary from the Temple named Yarrick. He comes and says that there are zombies who are leaking into the Temple district from the Mids. He was told that Pearce and Richard are the people to go to solve this problem. This immediately concerns us as both Richard and I know that this is most likely tied to Harrison. Broderick is even more confused. We try to explain that we deal with internal review and probably aren’t the ones he should have brought this too. Broderick presses for info and Richard reveals that he was tasked by the upper council to hunt down Harrison. There is a mild argument as Broderick keeps asking for more and Richard refuses to give all the details.

Broderick goes to the lower council to figure out how they will respond and Richard goes off to the upper council. This leaves me with the Temple emissary.
Yarrick: “What is the deal, here. I come and warn of zombies and… who should I have told?”
Me: “The mids ambassador?”
Yarrick: “There isn’t one in the Temple.”
Me: “Well… maybe you guys should consider one. Avoid this whole pickle”
Yarrick: “Certainly, but what I’m looking for here is to avoid this looking like an invasion. Just come down there and agree there is a problem so I can move forward.”
Me: “Look. I can’t approve that just as you can’t approve it if a bunch of weather went into the temple”

Both come back and it’s agreed we should investigate the disturbance. We follow Yarrick and find ourselves in a graveyard that borders on the Mids/Temple border. Around this time I notice his robes are rather large and he hasn’t really shown us his hands. We start looking for signs of people being here and notice a headstone has been moved recently. Everyone except Broderick begins to move the stone and it accidentally falls onto Yarrick. As we pull him out from under I notice he has both hands. We also notice that the headstone was covering an entrance to a dungeon. We leave Yarrick behind and descend into the tomb. As we enter we find lots of tombs, seemingly of elvish descent. We open one casket that has been disturbed and find it has chloroform in the bottom, it gets all over Brodie’s shoes. We enter another room and find a gigantic beetle statue that has been painted gold. It has an elven phrase “Protect our dead” written on it. I remember that people used to believe bugs bore the souls of the dead into the afterlife. We fight some zombies that show up and I find that they have an unusual amulet around their necks.

Richard says he saw some being made of fire in the first room and as we run back we notice that the entrance we came through is gone. We head down another passage and find a man around a giant purple magical circle. He introduces himself a researcher on souls that has left the temple. He claims that souls are the source of magic. We ask about the zombies and he claims that someone burst in a few days ago and reanimated all of them before leaving. We tentatively believe him and as he continues talked to Richard I see Broderick sneak away. He says he’s going to go searching the man’s room. I agree to be lookout. When he leaves I start poking the magic circle. I find out it’s a spell used to communicate between two places.

I attempt to use the device and find my mind being pulled, much like when a divine attempts to contact me. I see a vision of approximately fourteen people riding across a desert wasteland on something resembling a horse. It is mechanical with long limbs and smog coming out of it. I see a small dot on the horizon before the vision collapses and I’m bleeding from my ears and nose. The light from the circle is gone. I try to activate it and learn it’s out of power and needs a soul to reactivate.

Broderick comes out and is slightly annoyed that I’ve disturbed the scene. We go and find the two and quickly leave before he figure out what is going on. Broderick reveals he found some fabric in his room with the chloroform on it. And I avoid the questions about the circle. I point out that the spell used is most likely stoneshape which means it will probably be thin. I use my keen sword and drive a hole through it to prove my point and by some measure of luck puncture a container which disables some explosives. At this point Richard pulls a battering ram seemingly out of nowhere and we break out.

When we exit the facility we find Yarrick dead, stabbed. We go back to the Society and write a report on the events.

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