Gallowsbird (2016)

For whom does the Bell toll?

After the group splits I go back and retrieve Zane. I march back to my apartment complex and hand him off to Belltoll for the day. As I am doing so I run into tweedle dee and tweedle dum, Bear’s two goons. They ask me to go see the Bear as soon as possible so I follow them back to the “Small and Tall” tailor store. We head back to the office where the tall one knocks once and opens the door. Bear is inside at his desk so I enter and we have Bear Conversation 9 part 1. We leave the store to head back to my apartment. On the way we spot Broderick walking away from the general location of my apartment complex. The moment he realizes he has been spotted he turns and bolts. I call out to him but he doesn’t slow and is soon out of sight. Bear hisses at the sight of Broderick and states he will deal with that later. I make a comment that if he stole anything from me he’ll have to wait in line and Bear makes it perfectly clear that Bear WILL get Broderick. We make it back to my apartment and it looks like nothing is out of place. Inside Lady Amethyst is waiting and we have Bear Conversation 8 part 2.

He leaves and I return to my apartment. Inside Viola is holding the door to her bedroom with her knees trembling. “Come on… few more steps…” she says to herself. I get her a glass of water and put it on the table. “A reward for when you make it. Keep it up!” I then I then pack Sam’s journal in my backpack and head to Falconflight’s office. I have Falconflight Conversation 3 as soon as I walk in the door. Afterwards I go inspect a book called the ‘Pillars of Fate’. I briefly skim the book looking for a description of how Sam or the conduits fit into the story. I see a lot of imagery about how the pillars silence the ‘makers and breakers’, and it mentions a ‘banished place held distant’. Nothing specifically states their role is besides being a ‘maker and breaker’. Satisfied for now I lead Falconflight out of his office.

I take him to the apple and introduce myself and Falconflight to the task force. I show them the square books and tell them they are to keep any eye out for them. I also pair them up and inform them that Falconflight will be showing each pair to a bell-tower. They are to remain as inconspicuous as possible. They are supposed to gain as much info as possible about the tower, including who goes in and out and any potentially hidden entrance. I leave them to their work and leave.

My next stop is the Castle. I secure the office and then write a letter to each of the chosen requesting they show up tomorrow at 3. For Richard’s letter specifically I add that we will need that elemental fuel. Also if he has access to souls or knows how to procure them that would be beneficial. I instruct him to keep this secret and to burn this letter. I cast Illusory Script on the letter and hand them all over to my courier.

I go to the remains of the rat embassy and speak to the receptionist there. I ask for a conductor. Unfortunately one will not be at the facility till around 4 pm. I note the time and leave for Broderick’s homeless shelter.

I ask around his shelter for the Friend of Man living there and I find Jevash. We have Jevash Conversation 1. After I leave the shelter I return home and summon the demon again. We have Catemusinorrath Conversation 2.

It’s fairly brief so I head to the Castle to get Thomas’s report. His search provides the following: "Tito Graven is not popular. He has few friends, as he is seen as too focused on unpopular ideas – he believes that the laws forbidding magic and religion are a disservice to the city, and that there will be a reckoning.

He lives by himself, fairly close to the meatsmiths in the Blue Poles. You have his address.

He has an estranged daughter named Bethania who he believes is dead, but Thomas confirmed was at least up until recently trapped in a evacuee center in the Blue Poles. Thomas can’t confirm she is still alive, just was recently.

He doesn’t fear death – he fears leaving the city worse than he found it."

Satisfied with the report I head out to attempt to recruit him. I arrive at his little house and the smell of savory food is coming from within. I knock on the door and Jacket opens it. There is a very awkward moment. Jacket pretends we haven’t met before and invites me in and I keep up his ruse. Inside Tito is in a rocking chair reading a book. After I enter Jacket returns to the kitchen where some pork is simmering. We have Tito Conversation 1. During the conversation there is intermission as we all sit down to eat. It is a warm meal. Jacket tells a story about the peculiarities of livestock in a city such as this. We all conjecture on where the foods the captains come with originate from. I learn Tito hates red wine. Jacket clears the plates and then excuses himself. We continue Tito Conversation 1. He agrees to meet her and we leave for the Castle.

Along the way we spot Bear standing on a corner. After he notices us he quickly approaches. He acknowledges Tito before we briefly step to the side. Bear informs me he is having 2 sending stones delivered to my place later. He also has detailed instructions on how to use them. I give him a status update and agree to meet here. I’m informed that Fischer will have a representative at the meeting tonight before he leaves.

We arrive at the Castle and I drop Tito off at the meeting room before I go into the office and pray for Samantha. She arrives and we have Samantha Conversation 31. Afterwards we start negotiations with Tito. It’s summarized for time constraints but even though the situation is slightly awkward Lady Amethyst is able to paint a clear picture of what the organization does. He eventually agrees to join the Amethyst Court.

After that is settled I leave and head back to the Ratfolk embassy. I am able to meet a conductor. I am introduced to Epheus and we have Epheus Conversation 1.

When it ends I return back to my apartment and wait for the stones Bear promised to be delivered. After that I head toward the meeting.

Public: The DEADline is revealed

I put on a new cloak to hide my new arm’s appearance and then go to retrieve Harrison from the ones watching him. I take him in a bag to the Apple where we are to meet for the day. Inside Broderick’s office I dump a restrained Harrison corpse, now with more torso, onto a desk. Broderick is rightfully confused. A long winded explanation begins about how Zane was captured, with Richard providing in more details than I wanted. I was able to claim that we intentionally tracked down Zane. I give a general explanation of what all he stated last night, the most important being that a Kingdom of Man ship will arrive in 2 days.

After most of the information has been conveyed we relocate to Richard’s new warehouse to talk about what we plan to do. I tell the group I’d like to use the bell towers as portals to get onto the ship so that our forces can actually attack it. Broderick wants to have a city wide evacuation. I am given both the square books owned by Broderick and Richard respectively. Broderick asks us to show up tonight at 10 pm for a city wide meeting to deal with the threat. I get stuck with Harrison for a while longer and we split for the day.

The Moon Assault

Thomas’s Actions:
- Found Salisbury, and he send some people to a trader in order to secure the plague cure. Also requested he and his remaining friends show up at the Castle in the evening.
- Went to Atticus and informed him the guards for the trader have been secured. Convinced him to get his followers to accept apprentices.
- Went to Piggabrick and asked him to buy a tenement building with 800g in his name. Confirmed he is fine with his older children getting apprentice jobs.

After our group splits I weave my way back to the Colony. I take off my disguise and head back to my place. There is some brief confusion about my still disguised face but after that I store my souls and head out. I briefly try to look for Richard but I am unsuccessful. I eventually just go to the Small and Tall. There I act like I’m a courier for Pearce and wait for the Bear. Later on he arrives and silently beckons me to follow him to his office. We have Bear Conversation 7. The Bear, Duchess, and I leave and head back to my apartment. I tell them to wait downstairs and enter. Samantha is sitting on the couch watching as Viola is exercising by crawling around. I ask her to give us some room and she crawls to the spare bedroom. I Inform her of the situation and we have Bear Conversation 7 part 2.

After Bear is dropped off I return to the apartment and ask Belltoll to go gather her friends at the Castle. We have Samantha Conversation 29. During the conversation I get the pepper statue and hand it to her so she can store it. Afterwards I leave to have a few words with Viola as we have Viola Conversation 7. After that we store some of the souls and get ready to leave. I write Thomas a small note in case the worst happens. We leave it on the table and head out.

“If you read this then things went wrong. I’m so sorry Thomas. Viola can give you some answers. Look after her for me

We arrive at the Castle to find the others have already gathered. There are still civilians around so we go upstairs to the meeting room. We have The Castle Conversation 1. After the pep talk we all file out and start to head for the ratfolk embassy building located in the mids. We are stopped to ask why we’ve brought such a large force. We state our purpose and after it is confirmed they let us into the building. We enter the mirror room to see the device has been set up. Conductor Knoblitch is talking with several ratfolk when we arrive. We exchange greetings and he tells us that the device is ready but he can’t predict what will happen. Lady Amethyst says goodbye to the Pepper statue and it is placed in the machine.

A sharp, bright light emerges from the machine, striking the sending stone. A ratfolk touches the Pepper statue to the light, and it changes color. I see a dark fold open. Slowly, it opens, from the bottom to the top. We can’t see anything past it. Unlike what we saw before, this is a thick, black screen. There is confusion and I eventually touch the darkness to find out it is actually water. This starts a chain reaction of water flooding the room. Salty, brackish sea water pushes its way into the room at high speeds, smashing into the machine. I’m able to avoid instantly being swept by the tide and look inside. There is a room of some kind behind this waterfall, I catch sight of it before the candles get wet and people start shouting. I see a stone alcove. I see a boney skull and forearm clutching at a black box. It looks like Harrison. The skull looks startled in my direction. Then the darkness separates us.

After the initial shock I call out for light even as i grab my sword and enchant it with daylight. Lady Amethyst begins to glow brightly herself and the alcove is illuminated. We are definitely under water, looking up into an alcove. We realize the portal is under water, beneath an alcove, and its flooding out water that is not infinite – you can’t see directly into the ocean, although you think it would connect somewhere below the portal. As the water starts to drain I pull out a soul and toss it to Belltoll. “Give her this. We need it! Everyone else advance! Restrain the skeleton! Lookout for magic!” I shout and we all advance into the room. The skull, shoulder, and arm move to hold the box close. We hear slithering and other demonic noises coming from behind the portal, cut off from this room. We have Harrison Conversation 1. During this I instruct Lady Amethyst with telepathy to consume a soul and use her telekinesis and move the box all the way into the sky.

After the conversation ends we rush back through the portal fleeing whatever was making noises in the sea. We look through the portal to discover a bladder-covered wooden vessel. It rams the portal, letting Richard and Mortimer jump out of a hatch. We have Richard Conversation 7. During the conversation we walk outside onto the streets. At my direction she moves the box high into the sky before triggering it. A huge explosion happens in the sky as the moon rapidly appears. It is much closer to the city than before but otherwise is hanging there as normal.

As people come outside to investigate the disturbance I heard the group back into the remains of the embassy building. There we have Harrison Conversation 2 after I remove his restraints. I leave the corpse with Richard and leave with Amethyst to go find Salisbury. He is waterlogged but fine. I request he look after Harrison tonight at the Castle and he agrees as long as he get’s the next day off. I agree and promise him a drink before he heads out. I then head to find a ratfolk diplomat. I offer my sympathies for the situation and then suggest they try to contact the Ratman. He confirms they are preparing to do that and that we will be allies if the mission was successful. I gather up our forces and then I dismiss them all for the night.

Amethyst and I head back to my apartment. We have Samantha Conversation 30 part 1 when I return. During the conversation we agree to send me to the Library. She sends me and I am suddenly in a dark place. Every half-second, I hear metal striking metal, the clang of forging. The sound echoes off the strange geometry and it is difficult to pinpoint the origin of the noise. I feel naked and check for my swords to see they are already in my hands. I enchant one with daylight and illuminate the area. I see the familiar site of the library interior and the clanking ceases. It pauses for a moment before the rhythmic pounding continues. As I look around the library is overgrown with plants. The books look damaged but not destroyed. The various torches have all gone out. The smell of brine is thick and the floor is still damp. I notice that the plants resemble kelp and seem to be coming from a hallway. As I head that way I see glinting on the wall and floor. Bone fragments of small things and the salty decay of corpses freshly washed ashore are everywhere. After a short journey I full rat corpses and swords hanging on the walls. I find a few at first but as I keep going the number of weapons of various types increases. I take a second to examine one of the weapons. It looks masterfully crafted but otherwise I don’t notice anything special.

Eventually I come across the body of the Ratman. His cloak and trappings have dissolved and he is essentially naked. He is a construct of some sort, a hinged compartment is his toroso has broken off. Inside is a glass reservoir with some substance in it. His both is weathered and smells of seal life. He has set up a crude forge and is pounding away at another blade. He displays no sign of noticing our arrival and continues his process. My attempts at calling out for him are ignored. I kneel in prayer and signal to Amethyst that the coast is clear. I feel a hand on my back and turn around to find no there. Amethyst’s voice calls out wondering where I am and with my light and voice I guide her to me. We have Samantha Conversation 30 part 2.

Samantha touches me to bestow the blessing. I feel my bones elongate, pressing against my muscles. I feel like my organs are being pressed. I look down and see her eyes reflecting the light from my sword. In the reflection I see myself sitting in my dark apartment, holding the book I first encountered Samantha through. I see the letters and words unscrambling on the parchment. The pain in my body begins to escalate and becomes too much to bare. I start to scream in agony. Samantha pulls her hand back and the pain begins to fade. She asks if she should continue, I nod my confirmation. I take a deep breath and her hand touches me again. I can feel something on my bones, organs, everything inside is moving about. It feels like room is being made. I feel myself being drawn into psychic combat, a place of the mind, and I submit. I feel myself get drawn in but instead of the usual blackness I’m at a desk in my apartment. Details constantly shift about the room. Objects appear at one place then seem to move to another. I see Samantha’s diary sitting on the desk in front of me, the book seems water damaged. I’m suddenly hit with the revelation that the book will change me, and a compulsion to let it do just that. I pick up the book and open to a random page. Ink starts to spill out of the pages onto the floor. The book is quickly draining and the liquid starts to fill the entire room. I look around and all of the exits to the room are gone as the ink continues to rise. With no other option I try to read something, anything, in the book. The ink then starts to rise and surround me, almost as if it were a living thing. As it begins to cover me I feel connected with the ink. My memories start to become fuzzy as my identity starts to fuse with the ink. In an effort to resist I start repeating facts about myself. I continue my mantra as the ink reaches my neck and then eventually my entire head. For a brief second I am nobody, my entire identity forgotten. Then I hear a whisper, my own voice, that begins to echo everything I was saying. As I hear the facts about myself my memories return until eventually I am whole again. I gasp as I am in my apartment again.

My body is wracked with pain so I begin to gingerly remove my clothes and inspect my body. I immediately notice that I am significantly lighter. I tap on my wrist and realize my bones are hollow now. I check my infection and now the whole arm has turned the red color. My burned hand now resembles a bird of prey even more. Despite the change it operates in an intuitive way, as if I had always had it. I piece together that my memories most likely have been changed since I remember doing things with my new hand even though it is brand new. I go check on Samantha’s diary and discover that it is not harmed. Curious about something I go check one of the elven history books I restored and learn that the text is still written in a cipher but the former elven script now appears to be common.

While I confirm that everything is okay I heart fart noises coming from my guest bedroom. She seems to be sound asleep although smelly. I try to vent the room and she wakes, we have Viola Conversation 8. After I turn in for the night.

Public: The Group Meets their adoring fans
Except Richard, who they don't recognize

We meet up the following day at the ruins of the Weather HQ. We negotiate terms and Broderick takes us to the old Apple HQ, which is still standing somehow. We enter and debate on what to do next. We take a quick interlude for me to punch Broderick, it’s not quite as satisfying as I was hoping. After much debate we decide to go investigate the bell tower on the border of the Mids since Broderick claims to know the way in. We all take a short break to go retrieve temple disguises we’ve all collected at some point. We all arrive at the tower and Broderick pulls out a piece of paper. He looks at it as he goes to the side of the tower and hits several bricks in a certain order. This opens a secret door in the side of the tower that opens to see several people inside.

We are slightly alarmed when we see a masked guard, named Sylvester, and a woman inside the tower. There is brief alarm since they are equally surprise but eventually we go in. She almost immediately recognizes Broderick and I. After we drop off her weapons she states that she is Cholly Xander, Administratum of the Temple and she is investigating Patricia. It seems she stole several things, including a large sum of money, from the temple district before her death. We answer her questions to the best of our abilities in exchange for an escorted tour of the tower. Unfortunately she does not take us to the basement.

After we leave try to figure out what we can do to get in. Broderick is inspired and leads us deeper into the temple district. He finds a guard to lead us to Cardinal Berlin. We go deeper into the Temple to a large building. Brodericks states that inside the tower was a portal that led to this building. He obtained this knowledge by a “memory walk” of someone looking for Harrison. It seems to be some sort of religious building? We go inside and are led to a room that is presumably owned by Berlin. Inside we find a man in religous garb. Broderick appears to have dirt on the Cardinal. He claims to know what happened with his daughter 20 years ago? The girl’s mother was named Levia and apparently lived long enough to tell others. This convinces the Cardinal to help us. He gives us robes to help us blend into the area and agrees to come up with a way to get Cholly and her guard out of the room.

We go back and wait a while before Cholly is removed from the building to be purified? We go down to the basement. Inside we find a large machine set up similar to the Docks belltower. On one end is a large iron band on the flood surrounded by burn marks. There are various levers on the walls and a hole where it seems something can be inserted. There are also several canisters similar to the one who housed the elementals but these are empty. We use an arrow head to push a button in the hole and gather up some liquid in the canisters to put into the machine. It starts to hum to life and a rift opens up. A cat like creature starts to come through the rift when we decide to close it which cuts the creature’s head in half.

Not sure what else to do there we leave and go back to the large building with our new robes. We end up going to a room Broderick once saw Friends of Man in. It turns out to be a sort of lobby and no sign of the Friends of Man aside from some blood spatter. I use my object reading and hear a man should “No, we had a deal!”. The voice of Funeralis responds with “Your coup ends, Friend”. A large bearded man stabs and leaves the stain. I relay this to the team and we hear someone start to come in the door. We all hide, and the servant finds Richard. He attempts to bluff his way out but fails and the servant looks like he is about to run away. Being invisible I sneak up behind him and stab him.

We leave the room and head towards a section of the building called “AL-Exporting” which we quickly realize is After Life. We systematically go through the rooms and figure out one is a nursery, one kills the child, and the final room extracts the soul to be put on a shelf. As we walk in-between I go invisible and sneak into the soul storing room to pocket 4 souls. During this time the other two follow some officer who appeared in the area. We get separated and eventually I find them. When I do I find a person seemingly dead or unconscious and we all split up and run away.

Broderick's Info on the FoM

As part of my agreement to join Broderick he agreed to share with me knowledge on the Friends of Man.

  • Have allied with several districts but the Temple District is the main focus of their efforts. Their safety largely depended on cooperation, which the FoM leadership found embarrassing.
  • Believe a divine being, or several, are within the city. They are an affront to the Kingdom of Man. The Temple District was supposed to kill some of them, but they only managed to rally allies to the divines’ cause.
  • Something about the “Kingdom of Man”.
  • They claim they’re not interested in taking over.
  • The Temple District wants the conduit from them as part of their agreement. This seems to contradict the idea to destroy all the conduits. Broderick didn’t have an answer for this.
  • The Friends of Man somehow took the Afterlands.
  • Wants the Temple District to destroy the Ratfolk.
  • They claim to be from a different city.
  • One of them came to the Senate asking for a place to speak. He was denied as he didn’t have the proper papers.
  • They were snooping around the Docks District at some point.
  • I’ve heard rumors that they’re making up fiction about an afterlife.
  • Their points of worship are the belltowers. Their primary point of worship is the Belltower deep in the Temple, as opposed to the one near the border. That tower was destroyed by an unknown faction.
  • They are searching for and trying to destroy the Conduits. They showed up here because they were tracking one but it turns out there are multiple.
  • They are taking a census of the homeless, will later take a census of the employed. They claim they’re trying to help members of the city.
  • They delivered the Blank Square books
  • They are from the Gauntlet. The Guantlet is a sort of hub that connects various planes of existence. There was likely a door to the Guantlet in the Temple Belltower. Any kind of civilization is better than the Gauntlet. Kingdom of Man are trying to civilize the Gauntlet.
  • They had their underlings gathering information on the homeless and anyone who asked too many questions about the census.
  • Have had dealings with Cassius and have been to the Rightway Cluster. The Rightway Cluster is the Senation Land given to the Mids as part of the agreement to make Broderick a member of the Lower Council. The Ratfolk Embassy is currently located there.
  • Broderick has a member of the FoM in his possession who has agreed to give info in exchange for housing/protection
  • The Friends of Man are emissaries for the Kingdom who determine whether our plane should be allowed to even exist.
  • The Gauntlet has Leviathans “Well, whether it was a memory or a real time view, I was shown The Gauntlet through one of the stones. It has horrifying leviathans the likes of which would not go unnoticed in the city. They’re either the Kingdom of Man or the reason that there wasn’t any civilization before the Kingdom of Man took over. It was difficult to see. But I could see several of them. Best guesses, they ranged in size from as big as a district to larger than all of Gallows. I didn’t even recognize them as living at first they were so large. Only their movements hinted at the fact that they were living.”
  • “Chalex was my original source of intel. He was the one that Harrison killed. Jevash is my current source. He is staying at the Homeless Shelter. He has been very forthcoming with information because I told him I would protect him and his brethren from the Temple District. He wants a way back to the Gauntlet, which can’t be allowed. But he hasn’t indicated any disloyalty to the FoM or the Kingdom. So I assume if he ever finds out we’re working to end them he will become less willing to give information.”
  • “The Bear has some leads on suspected Conduits. He only told me about two. One in the Mids and one in the Matroni. The homeless of the Matroni district are rallying around what they’re calling an ‘angel’. I have asked some of my homeless contacts for more information, but only recently so I haven’t had any response yet. I don’t expect much intel from them though. As for the Mids, Bear thinks there is a Conduit related to the Dawnmakers, an upstart cult-type group here in the Mids. He requested my help infiltrating them sometime ago, but I declined. He implied he knew of more, but refused to say anything about them to me. He’s kinda a jerk, you know.”
  • “The Conduits are used to go between planes. The FoM seem to think their existence is destabilizing the Gauntlet, so they want the Conduits dead/destroyed. I assume so that whatever transportation power the Gauntlet has stays the only source, but that’s a guess. However, as their current goal has changed to just getting back to the Gauntlet to inform the Kingdom to destroy us, I suspect they’d be willing to use the Conduits for that purpose. I would say we should attempt allying with the Conduits, whatever or whomever they may be, to learn more from them about their role in all of this. But I think destroying them to prevent the FoM from returning may eventually be our best choice. For now, though, you have full authority to ally with and learn as much as you need to from the Conduits, so long as you keep me in the loop.”
  • There is another bell tower located in the Temple near the Mids.

Known Members:

Making Appointments

Our group splits up around 3 am. I immediately return to the council members as well as Yates and inform them of what happened. Captain Yates says some words to her men and they leave. The two council members shake hands and prepare to depart. I try to convince them to continue to help the city but they both decline, offering only council. Tito gives his address and then they both walk off. I go to Yates before she leaves and give her a similar pitch. She claims how that would be different than a mercenary and since I was unwilling to give more info she left.

I go home and find the others asleep. I attempt to summon Jacket. As I put the book down someone is already at the door. I open the door slightly and see Bear. I head outside and we have Bear Conversation 6. He leaves at 5:30

Shortly after he leaves, Jacket knocks on the door. I let him in and accept his zucchini bread. We have Jacketman Conversation 10. He leaves at 9:30.

I briefly talk to Bell to ask about her “distant” behavior. She states she is just stressed from everything happening. I talk to Thomas and he tells me his advance is for a ring so he can marry Belltoll. I gently tell him that is a horrible horrible idea. I leave their place at 10:30.

I arrive at the Rat Embassy and talk to Conductor Knoblitch. We have Knoblitch Conversation 4. As I leave I note Richard is downstairs and is walking into the ambassador’s office.

I then leave and head to Atticus and have Atticus Conversation 3. He wants lower prices for the colorblight cure so I go talk to his supplier. We negotiate and he agrees to lower the price if I can supply him with two guards to help protect his caravan through the docks.

I head home and meet up with Thomas. “He tells you about his day. He went out to find out about Piggabrick, and found one of the orphans. He learned Piggabrick’s new address through the vague childish descriptors the orphan gave. He met with Piggabrick and made a plea that went very well. Piggabrick said he would help if it helps his kids, and Thomas brought up healing. Piggabrick says he will convert when he gets the blessing.”

The meeting happens without Pearce but goes rather well. I thank him and he heads back down. I restore a 3rd elven poetry book and go check on viola. She is just waking up when I enter the guest bedroom. i fetch her some water and we have Viola Conversation 6.

I pull out an old book Pearce has had and begin clearing space in the living room so I can draw a circle. Its a large, complex shape, representing the phonemes in the name through angles. Its a complicated art you didn’t think you’d have reason to use. But in the center is a circle. Its small compared to the design around it. I put my claw hand out and pour a mental point into the circle. Invoking the name of Catemusinorrath.

I hear a tear, a pop, and then I see a small form, vaguely humanoid with an oversized face and mouth. Its small hand is reaching into a bag at its side. It puts something in its mouth, and closes it. It chews, looking out at you with oversized circular eyes. It doesn’t seem to blink. It hasn’t yet. I have Catemusinorrath Conversation 1. After the conversation I modify the circle to prevent demons from entering.

The Fall of the Weather

We arrive on shore to find Lenny in his hut. Broderick distracts the others while Richard and I go inside to figure out if we can help him. Between our knowledge checks and my object reading we figure out that the collar contains some sort of evocation spell that will probably blow up if we don’t open it the correct way. We also note a keyhole. We agree it is best to leave it alone rather than risk blowing him up. We also check him for compulsion magic and note he is under some sort of enchantment. Richard is able to remove it and Lenny becomes very distraught. We comfort him but tell the sailors to keep him under guard and move on.

We notice their is a barrel. Richard explains that is what Lenny picked up at the coast. The barrel is supposed to contain blood. We make sure that doesn’t go inside and we head inside with the guards. Inside we find a small temple structure with a statue of Harrison holding out his hand at one end. Besides that there are two entrances blocked by stone door without any way to open. One is called “Faith” and the other “Sacrifice”. A young boy is also in the room. He identifies himself as Robert and says that his sister left him outside. Various methods are tested to open the doors. We search Robert and find a half-finished scroll of Knock. Eventually I notice the statue’s hand has dried blood on it and ask Richard to put his blood on the hand. That opens the sacrifice door.

We all enter and find a hallway with various stone doors. We try knocking on one but no one on the other side responds. A door behind us however opens and we find a barracks of sorts with 2 children inside. At the sight of armed people they “play dead”. It does not work. We interrogate them and learn that they are supposedly raised there. They leave when they reach a certain age, until then they don’t have a name. Also apparently the only way to open the doors is via the Knock spell. We eventually leave them alone and close the door.

Richard proceeds down the hall and he tells us to hit the dirt. Nothing happens and he claims he heard magic coming from one of the rooms. At the end of the hall we find a room marked “Father”. Broderick brings Yates and her soldiers to help interrogate Robert. When he’s gone Richard uses Knock and opens the far door. The others come back and we enter.

Inside is a giant study with rows of bookshelves and desks. There is also a bed on the far side, with Adreana nearby. On the far end the upper council are chained on the wall with sacks on their heads. Areana says she did all this to open up negotiations. Apparently she has sent 3 diplomats, who were all removed or arrested for treason by the War Council. We ask about the barrel of blood and apparently it’s used to go back and forth. Lenny is under an enchantment cast by a student. It is also revealed that Harrison has a means to protect the tower from the demons. She is also the “daughter” of Harrison. She claims her father has faults but that he will save the city. He has been studying the conduits and believes they are the key. She offers up the council members and Lenny’s collar key in exchange for us leaving and never disturbing them. She also claims if we do not, the children here will attack us to the death.

We ask for a moment to collect our thoughts. Outside we debate. Falconflight believes that Harrison is responsible for a lot of the problems in the city and leaving him alone is a huge mistake. We enter again and ask for the sacks to be removed and confirmed the council was unharmed. We agreed to wait and give Harrison a chance to explain himself. We gathered the council members, Lenny, stole his boat and left he spire. Along the way we are attacked by two water demons. The combine forces are able to take out of one but Broderick’s attempt to throw a barrel of blood resulted in Margarette being covered and both she and her boat went under.

We return to the Mids and as we get close to the Weather Headquarters we see a fire. As we approach we see the building is on fire and the Weather banners have all been ripped down. We leave the Council Members and Yates behind and go to investigate. There Broderick goes to man named Forward General Marcus, who is leading Senation troops. They announce that the invasion is a success. Broderick asks for a courier to be sent back and for the food lines to be sent. He then turns to us and offers both jobs after making a lot of claims about how the district is in much better hands, blah blah blah.

Job: Pearce will be named Righteous Blade, and be given a badge to show his title. His one and only responsibility will be to deal with the FoM problem. Brodie can disagree/advise Pearce on this matter, but Pearce has final say on how he handles the FoM, regardless of Brodie’s protests. Pearce will have something similar to diplomatic immunity while performing his job within the Mids. He is allowed to perform small crimes and such. This does not include murder or any crimes against the Senation government. He is freely allowed to move back and forth to the Senation district, provided he shows his badge at the security checkpoint. He is also allowed one permanent pass that he can give to a subordinate that allows that subordinate to travel back and forth to the Senation District. The pass is not transferable, and must have the subordinates name on it.

Task Force: A task force will be formed to assist Pearce in his responsibilities. It will be no less than 5 soldiers, hand picked by Brodie. Pearce has the ability to suggest members for the task force, but Brodie has final say. This Task Force will report directly to Pearce.

Financial Resources: Pearce will be provided a budget of 500 gold per week to help him in his job. 150 gold of that will be his salary. He can spend this money as he sees fit, but Brodie has the right to review how the money is being spent.

Prisoners: Pearce is allowed to free any prisoner that he wishes that was taken prisoner during the Senation takeover.

Group Dynamics: Brodie is not allowed to pull rank when it comes to acquiring loot. Brodie is requested to pull rank as infrequently as possible in all other matters.

Plot: Brodie requests that he and Richard be allowed to help Pearce in his FoM quest, as that seems to be the main plot, but Pearce is allowed to deny that.

Cheap Shot: Pearce is allowed to punch Brodie one time with zero repercussions. Brodie is not allowed to defend himself in any manner. Ben will roll a Will Save (DC determined by Cal). If Ben fails the Will Save, that means that Brodie flinched and protected himself. Pearce will then be allowed a second punch and the process will repeat until Brodie is able to man up and take an unprotected punch. Any crying on Brodie’s part during this process will not be mentioned by either Richard or Pearce at any time.

Fire: The fire that destroyed the Weather Society HQ will be investigated. If it is deemed to be the fault of the invading army AND unnecessary to securing the district, reparations will be made as best as possible to help cover lost housing and equipment.

Prisoners: Any prisoners will be held for a short time and interviewed. Any prisoners not deemd threats to the state will be released and we sincerely wish them the best in their journey to become contributing citizens.

Housing: Temporary housing will be found for anyone who lived in the building. Further actions must be deliberated (see: fire).

Employment: No former WS employee is guaranteed a job. However, jobs will need to be filled in the new government and many will be considered.

Job: Richard will be named Director of Purification, and be given a badge to show his title. His one and only responsibility will be to deal with the Demon problem. Brodie can disagree/advise Richard on this matter, but Richard has final say on how he handles the demon, regardless of Brodie’s protests. Richard will have something similar to diplomatic immunity while performing his job within the Mids. He is allowed to perform small crimes and such. This does not include murder or any crimes against the Senation government. He is freely allowed to move back and forth to the Senation district, provided he shows his badge at the security checkpoint. He is also allowed one permanent pass that he can give to a subordinate that allows that subordinate to travel back and forth to the Senation District. The pass is not transferable, and must have the subordinates name on it. None of his powers extend to activities with the Senation District.

Task Force: A task force will be formed to assist Richard in his responsibilities. It will be no less than 5 soldiers, hand picked by Brodie. Richard has the ability to suggest members for the task force, but Brodie has final say. This Task Force will report directly to Richard.

Financial Resources: Richard will be provided a budget of 500 gold per week to help him in his job. 150 gold of that will be his salary. He can spend this money as he sees fit, but Brodie has the right to review how the money is being spent.

Prisoners: Richard is allowed to free any prisoner that he wishes that was taken prisoner during the Senation takeover, granted they are not deemed hostile to the Senate.

As negotiations are happening we see a bucket line forming to help put out the fire before it spreads. I ask about prisoners and we’re informed that they have been moved but the soldiers there don’t know where.

Heading to the Spire

Our group splits up and me and Broderick head towards the Mids. As we are sneaking back we stop by the fallen tower to see if the Ratfolk are still around. We find two guards by the entrance and approach them. We ask to see their leader by claiming to have info on their attacker. A pudgy scholarly looking ratfolk emerges later. We ask for scouts in exchange for information we discover when we raid the facility. They agree to a single scout. We all nod agreement and then leave into the night.

We make it to the Weather Society HQ unharmed. We see who is still on guard at this time of night and discover a handful of milita members and guards. We talk to the guard captain who identifies herself as a halfling woman named “Yates”. We try to convince her that it is an emergency and inform her that the upper council are in danger. She agrees and we leave her to gather the troops. We need to get supplies so he leaves to get potions and I go try to get info out of the Bear.

We split and I go to “Small and Tall”. The door is locked and I use my skeleton key on the door. I check the office and find no one home. As I approach his office I notice someone else has entered the store behind me. I draw my sword and turn to see a half-orc woman with a sabre. We have Duchess conversation 1.

After that I leave and return to my apartment. I find Samantha and Viola sleeping next to each other. I gently prod Samantha awake and we move into the other room. We have Samantha Conversation 28.

On the way back I stop by Falconflight’s office. I tell him that we have found the location and are raiding it tonight. He agrees to go. Along the way he confides that his real name is Roy and that Harrison’s real name is Zane. Also apparently Zane blinded him at one point. He also claims that this is probably a trick, and hopes to kill Zane. I remind him we’re going to save the council and we wordless return.

When we arrive Broderick is there with half a dozen potions. We join up with the soldiers under Yates and we head out. Broderick asks about the Bear situation and I give him a summary. We pick up our scout and we head back to the Docks.

When we arrive Richard has a dozen sailors to pilot 4 rowboats to shore. There is a lot of deliberation but eventually we get everyone loaded and head out. Along the way we are attacked by a giant aquatic demon. It attacks the boats a few times before Broderick unloads several dozen pounds of druff onto the beast. It was successful in disabling the creature and we reached the shore.

The Search For the Council
-20 gold

Shortly after we split up Broderick approaches me. He thinks searching for the council should be our top priority. I agree and we agree to meet at the Weather HQ in two hours. When we split up I go back in and find Fischer in his office. He is sitting in a chair with his head in his hands. We have Fischer Conversation 2.

After that I return home to check on everyone. Viola is deep asleep so I leave her alone. I pick up my swords and go downstairs to talk to Bell. Inside I see Thomas has a swollen limp. We comment on each other’s wounds and I ask Bell to heal me. I drink one of the remaining potions and store the rest. I ask Thomas if he is any good at tracking people. He agrees to help and we leave. After we leave he comments that Bell has been distant lately. We stop by Falconflight’s place He comments that it will be “dicey” finding Harrison and agrees to join us since he’s still working for me.

We all return to the Weather Society to meet up with Broderick. Introductions are made. Broderick states he thinks they are in the Docks but not much more. We agree to go to Batch’s house in order to let the tracker’s do their thing. Thomas and Falconflight start investigating the area and Thomas finds the trail. He says it looks like she voluntarily went along for at least part of it. The trail starts to lead towards the Docks and Thomas points out a blood splatter on the ground near the border. We advance further into the docks through the streets. As we are following the trail we spot Richard laying on a rooftop.

He climbs down and informs us that he is tracking the mysterious packages he keeps receiving. Apparently they are brought to this point so he is staking it out. We question what he is staking out and he points us to the spire. The spire is a large tower made of black stone, barely visible, that is way out in the ocean. He further states he doesn’t need to do anything till the night so he is free to help us with our investigation. We turn to our trackers and they point out that the trail becomes “three” people here but otherwise ends. Thomas suggests we follow the third trail.

That trail leads to a nameless tavern filled with sailors. A sailor/guard/bouncer tries to escort us out. Falconflight ends up bribing him. I leave momentarily to tell Thomas to go home, he mentions he wants to purchase something big but otherwise heads home. I enter to see Richard and Broderick talking to some ugly sailor. I try to walk in nonchalantly and avoid money getting thrown at me. As I approach Broderick is asking if he can sell some Weather Society uniforms. Pete says he can ship it to them for a modest price. I ask if he also delivers messages to the spire and start to catch the attention of the rest of the crowd as Ugly Pete gets anxious. Richard asks if he has seen anyone unusual. Pete claims he is not a snitch and Broderick quickly ends the conversation.

We leave and try to figure out what to do next. Falconflight states a rowboat seems to come to shore recently. Richard states that whoever delivers his packages comes by rowboat at night. Everyone except Broderick thinks there is probably some correlation, who insists we should look into the the missing uniforms. We debate but eventually me and Broderick leave to go follow up on the uniform lead while Richard stays behind to resume his stake out.

We split up and I let Falconflight return to the Mids. Afterwards Broderick reveals he has a contact we can go see. As we head to his contact I’m explicitly told not to ask or think about her wife. We go to his apartment and we have Tom conversation 1. We follow Tom’s advice and travel to a sewer grate with an arrow painted above it. Down said hole is a small cleared out section for a shop. The store has a few stacks of disguises: patchy Temple robes, moth-holed Matroni suites, etc. All fairly real looking. The store is owned by a older female ratfolk. We inquire about Weather uniforms and she informs us that the “demon fighters” have a standing order for them. After more inquiry she says they also go by “Harriers”. After asking she says they come by every day. We make some small purchase and leave.

After we leave I have a short conversation about the Harriers with Broderick in Broderick Conversation 4.

We return to our meetup spot and find Richard on the shoreline talking to a heavily robed man near a rowboat. Nearby we see Richard’s knife. Using object reading I see that Richard left to go confront the man on the shore when it approached. We end up going to approach the pair. As we approach the identity of the cloaked figure is revealed to be Lenny.

Me: “Wait. Lenny actually sent the letters? I thought he was dead”
Rich: “So did I”
Bro: “So what’s going on here?”
Rich: “He says Areana is at the Spire waiting for Harrison to return. The Upper Council are there too”
Lenny: “… sorry… I didn’t have a choice.”
Me: “Elaboration needs to happen”
Rich: “Harrison has an exploding collar on him as well as some…magical persuasion”
Me: “Is this related to the chemical? The persuasion I mean”
Bro: “Then we need to go to the Spire. Like right now.”
Rich: “We need to rescue the upper council, kill Harrison for real this time, and free lenny from his control”
Bro: “All of which is at the Spire.”
Me: “Hold on. Lenny. What is this spire like? Does he have guards? How many? Does everyone have those collars on? Can we break this compulsion?”
Lenny: “Its terrible there. Full of traps and monsters. And the demons lived out there too…. but Areana said they won’t come back ‘yet’”
Me: “Till Harrison returns right? Are the upper council speaking the same mind controlled gibberish?”
Lenny: ‘I don’t know what they do. They disappear into the ruins. I stay on the surface… I’m not allowed inside the ruins. The bodies I hauled were brought into the ruins. I don’t know what happened to them. I’m sorry."
Me: “… the bodies? Were they dead when they were brought in?”
Lenny: "I didn’t get a good look. I was told to row. "
Me: “Who took them in”
Lenny: “Areana and some undead. The brainless kind… they have cadaver-packs they put the victims in.”
Me: “… Lenny. Are you some undead with a brain?”
Lenny: “I don’t know. Harrison didn’t either. He called me a curious sort of failure. Only reason he kept me is bait. I am sure of it. I’m sure even now I am just bait.”
Bro: “Guys, I need to talk to you in private”
Me: “Lenny why did you row out here tonight? They were taken two days ago”
Lenny: “I needed to get a package from the courier… he meets me here in half an hour.”
Bro: “Well, let’s clear out and ambush him too.”
Me: “I’m good with that. Although. Question Lenny, now that you’ve seen us will you do anything differently? Will you report us?”
Rich: “How much control does Areana have while Harrison is dead? or Lenny?”
Me: “Well if they had control they haven’t fled. They’re still there and Lenny here has been delivering stuff to her. Since he can’t go down”
Rich: “He didn’t flee because of the explosive collar”
Bro: “Alright, let’s lie in wait.”
Me: “Which we still don’t know how to disarm. My point is. If we don’t ambush the courier. They won’t know we’re about to invade. We can go and get reinforcements and come tomorrow”
Bro: “No. We can’t. I need to talk to you.”
Rich: “We can still get the courier he’s just dropping a package.”
DM: The group retreats to the roof.
Bro: “I’ve been pushing so hard for us to investigate this today/tonight, because I know that something big is going down. To quote: ‘The future of the Weather Society will be dead by the morning.’”
Me: “…who the fuck said THAT?!”
Bro: “…Is there any chance we can avoid that and just take my word for it?”
Me: “Broderick if I said that would you take my word on it?”
Bro: “I got all my information about the missing Council Members from the Bear, okay? I doubt he’d want me to reveal we worked together on this, but I don’t see any choice now.”
Me: “… so the Bear says they’re going to be dead by the morning? How does he know?”
Rich: “This is apparently Harrison’s secret stronghold. We’re still pretty banged up from our misadventure this morning. It’ll be dangerous to go in ill-prepared.”
Bro: “He didn’t say. But I’ve heard rumors of something big going down tonight, so I’m inclined to believe him. And to ease your worries, Richard, we can employ the remainder of the Weather guards for this mission. That’s the best I’ve got. But I’m going after them tonight.”
Me: “Grrrr fine. We intercept the courier. We go get reinforcements”
Rich: “Are we not intercepting the courier together?”
Bro: “Also, how do we get to the Spire?”
Me: “The rowboat?”
Bro: “The rowboat with all of our forces?”
Me: “I mean do you have someone who is willing to lend us their boat?”
Rich: “There’s that whole bar of drunken sailors. I’m sure we convince someone to give us a ride”
Bro: “Yeah, we can make that work, especially with our troops.”
Me: “Okay. Does someone want to stay here to get that together? While the other two go back?”
Bro: “I have to go back. I’m a lower council member, so I’ll have extra authority to draft some guards. Plus, I was planning on supplying our health potions from my business’s personal stock. Pearce, will you accompany me? Having a second person will help sell the importance that we need guards.”
Rich: “I’ll try to secure us a means of transport”
Me: “Then let’s head back”.

Public: The end to the war?

Day 6 till payment

  • Called into War Council
  • Fischer by himself.
  • Says we will lose war. Need to surrender. Suggests giving sea-something. Some land.
  • Wants us to negotiate peace since upper council has to do it. Escort waiting
  • Upper council are all MIA the day Harrison was doing his thing.
  • There is a prisoner exchange. Funearlis for Pin, wouldn’t reveal who Pin is.
  • Apparently Temple sent another diplomat. It never arrived.
  • We agreed to go do it
  • I drop off my sanctuary papers. One to the council, one to Broderick.
  • We go to the Apple, Richard says he left someone there to leave a message. Person is now gone?
  • Discuss Fischer being fishy.
  • Apparently Fischer accused Harrison/Richard of murdering Nathan.
  • Richard admits to meeting the bear. Says they talked with Broderick outside. Wanted to get in touch with Fischer. Also wanted to meet with Broderick. Claimed he didn’t go.
  • Broderick claims the Blue Poles might go to war.
  • Also has some robes that mark him as a diplomat.
  • We go to Margerette’s House. It’s locked and object reading says she was the last to open it
  • We go inside. She was in there at least a day or two ago. Had a meeting with her knitting group yesterday.
  • We hear someone outside and after a lot of complex hand signs we open it to a old person. We tell her to move along after she informs us Margarette wasn’t seen yesterday.
  • We move on to go find the General. She says they will probably lose.
  • She also says they haven’t gotten any orders in 2 days. Seems suspicious when another group is suggested to be our escort. Sends reinforcements.
  • We go to Fischer’s location. Several Weather killed and replaced by foreign soldiers.
  • We kill or chase them off. One is bleeding so we decide to follow him next session.
  • We loot the bodies and find out they were mercenaries by the stones they carry.
  • We find the man nearby. Richard’s hand glow and he stops the bleeding.
  • We carry him to a nearby building and he eventually wakes up.
  • According to him he was working for UNKNOWN group from the Matronis. They came here because someone is buying weather uniforms in the Docks. (They also buy druff there). They claim they did this unofficially.
  • I kill the man who was murdering for gold.
  • We put on the foreign ambassador robes and enter the mids.
  • A cloaked man in full armor herds us to the “Administration of War”
  • We are disarmed and then led to a meeting room
  • Broderick asked us to agree to be “aides” and he does most of the speaking.
  • The Temple wants the weather to disband so that the mids can dissolve into lawlessness and they can invade. We say no. They say they want a tithe to pay for the damages in the war. We say no. We eventually agree to give the Shanty Sea area and have the leader of the milita resign for his crimes of killing diplomats
  • We return and tell Fischer and the Council.

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