Vita est ludus
The thin line between fantasy and reality...













Tarrastra Adventure 71

Caelesti's notes




Mavis and Yoshi headed out to check the wagon that Tan Kuran located had located. They had little trouble finding the wagon, and someone that looked a lot like the king. Something about "the king" did not look right, and he did not seem to be a prisoner.

Yoshi and Mavis moved off to confer. They thought that they could easily overtake the two guards, but considered summoning the others. As it was getting dark, Yoshi returned to Leamer to report and get information from the dragons.

After discussing what Yoshi had learned, the party went to talk to the dragons. They were in the commonroom. Yoshi asked Donal, "the smart one", for a private meeting.

When they were alone, Yoshi inquired about the costumes he saw. He described a blue costume with heron wings (worn by the regular guard). The dragon said that gamesman would be an Elator, one who can quickly transport from place to place. Yoshi then described the costume of "the king", being brown with glass speckles. The dragon did not recognize that one. Because the dragon had been drinking, Yoshi did not want to tell the dragon much.

At bedtime, the party kept watches. Nothing eventful happened.

In the morning, the party located Mavis in a copse of trees near the wagon. While they talked, a horse approached. It was the sickly "king" from the inn. Yoshi and Mavis snuck up to listen. The sickly "king" said he came back to freshen up. The blue and brown costumed figures dragged a groggy king out to a stump. The brown-costumed king stared at the real king, and his features started to look more like the real king. The two fake kings then stared at each other, and the sickly "king" began to look more like the real king. The sickly "king" said that that would hold for another day and rode off.

Yoshi and Mavis returned to the copse of trees to report. The final plan was for Caelesti, the Armiger, to advance with her pooch (Carric) and pawn attendants (the others). Mavis used her disguise kit so she would not be recognized as a demon, and Caelesti donned her Armiger outfit. Caelesti then cast Fly and Mage Armor on herself.

The party advanced, with Caelesti flying slightly off the ground. As they approached the wagon, Caelest gave a friendly greeting. The "friendly" gamesmen invited Caelesti to food by the fire.

Carric the dog climbed into the wagon and turned back into his Assimar form. Carric looked upon the groggy king and cast Neutralize Poison on him. Carric put a hand over the king's mouth so he wouldn't yell. When the king calmed down, Carric let him go. The king recognized Carric as the Shifter, and briefly described how he was caught.

Caelesti asked about the brown costume. The man was a little hesitant, but said he as a Mirrorman, and admitted that they were mistrusted. Caelesti continued to make pleasant company.

After Carric and the king left the wagon, the king strode boldly forward and told the varlets to kneel before him. Everyone, except Yoshi and Caelesti, kneeled. The king asked that the Elator be knocked out and drugged so that he could not travel. Yoshi pummeled the Elator until he dropped. The king then thanked the rescuers.

Yoshi suggested that the gamesman be questioned before returning to the inn. The king invited Caelesti to join him; Caelesti cast Charm Person (unsuccessfully) on the Mirrorman before she advanced. The king questioned the Mirrorman. Yoshi whispered to Caelesti to mention Huld of Hell's Maw, and she did. The Mirrorman flinched. Caelesti cast Charm Person again on the Mirrorman (successfully). When he pleaded to Caelesti to save him from the king, she said it would be best if he confessed. The Mirrorman said he was just following orders from Huld, the Demon leader of Hell's Maw.

The group returned to the inn. Yoshi, Mavis, Nessey, and the king went ahead. Carric drove the wagon with the prisoners. Caelesti fly next to the wagon. The king led the others into the king's quarters. The fake king looked frightened. The king made him kneel while the others tied him up. The prisoners were put in a storeroom.

Nessey's notes

Nessey: Mavis and Yoshi rushed off because they are quieter than everyone else so they can sneak away together without anyone hearing.
Nessey: They claim they are going to "rescue the King" which might be something like "find the sausage."
Nessey: As they are running silently down the road - at what time of the day?
Nessey: Can they see or not?
Nessey: It is late afternoon approaching twilight.
Nessey: Mavis says they only know King went riding off in this direction
Nessey: Yoshi reminds that Tan'kuran thinks he saw the right gypsy wagon, not that far away.
Nessey: It is 2 hours before dark.
Nessey: Mavis uses a horse until they are near. Yoshi trots along companionably.
Nessey: Mavis borrows Fanny with reluctant permission from Nessey.
Nessey: Mavis leaves Goldie the Mule as collateral for the loan.
Nessey: We come up the looming hills between which the road bends.
Nessey: They come up.
Nessey: Mavis leads Fanny into the woods and ties her up, so she will be there when they come back
Nessey: Mavis and Yoshi creeep along the road.
Nessey: As they creep near the edge of a group of trees, they see a gypsy wagon perched on the edge of the road.
Yoshi rolls Sk:Move Silently (d20 + 10 + 2): [15 + 10 + 2] = 27
Nessey: Sitting - at = the campfire - next to the wagon - are two men - sitting at IT.
Nessey: Men are wearing brownish clothing with reflective glints, perhaps pieces of glass.
Nessey: They are sitting by the campfire, animately talking to each other.
Yoshi rolls Sk:Move Silently (d20 + 10 + 2): [6 + 10 + 2] = 18
Nessey: Mavis and Yoshi creep through the woods towards the men.
Nessey: There is a guy there who looks like the King.
Nessey: This guy is different in some way, not quite the King. Looks more like the King than the other imposter.
Nessey: The other looks fuzzy and ill. This one is a better copy and yet not qute right somehow.
Nessey: They talk about a Leamer and a tavern wench.
Nessey: Whatever that means.
Nessey: Yoshi says to Mavis, let us back away, they are clearly guards.
Nessey: Mavis - but why have one of the King's guards look like the King if the King is prisioner in the wagon.
Nessey: Yoshi - they need a spare? I don't know. Good question.
Nessey: Yoshi - you can see that this guy is not the King either, right?
Nessey: Mavis - yup, can't my finger on it, but yep
Nessey: Yoshi - doppelgangers?
Nessey: Yoshi recalls doppelgangers are not fuzzy.
Nessey: Yoshi - there are only guards. We could overwhelm them. OR, we could pretend to be friendly and make an excuse to enter the wagon OR we could send for our companions for back up.
Nessey: Mavis - So our assumption is that the real King is in the wagon, tied up? Both "guards" appear to be wearing costumes of some kind. But i can't place it.
Nessey: Mavis - they almost certainly have powers we don't understand, but what are they, we don't know.
Nessey: Yoshi - then we should seek back up.
Nessey: Mavis - let's not approach yet, then,
Nessey: Mavis - we don't want to warn them of our presence.
Nessey: Yoshi - have our friends just remain in hiding and not approach.
Nessey: Mavis - let's do that tommorow.
Nessey: Yoshi - okay, we will send Tan'Kuran first thing in the morning.
Nessey: Mavis - we stay here overnight and send Tan'Kuran in the morning.
Nessey: Mavis - how do we describe costumes to Tan-Kuran so it can be researched?
Nessey: Yoshi - Don't think we can. I will run back in the dusk that is getting darker by the minute. I look to the moonlight.
Nessey: There is only 1 moon to be seen and that is the waning bright moon less than 1/4 full, but enough for Yoshi to follow the road.
Nessey: Yoshi leaves Mavis to watch, He goes for a frolick in the moonlight.
Nessey: Mavis - ask the dragons about these costumes.
Nessey: Yoshi - I will meet you here in the morning. Ooops, what if they have moved?
Nessey: Mavis wonders why they are so close, only 2 miles away. They have some reason for staying close to the king. I bet they will stay within "range" for whatever reason.
Nessey: Yoshi returns alone to his friends. Tan'Kuran stays with Mavis.
Nessey: Yoshi describes wagon and costumes to us and suggests consulting the Dragons.
Nessey: Carric asks Dragons about the costumes without telling why he is asking.
Nessey: Yoshi says we should be more forthright.
Nessey: Nessey - I trust the dragons, They might want to come and help us. We should tell them the truth.
Nessey: Carric - yes, we have already told them our suspicions.
Nessey: Yoshi - we should not mention scrying, though.
Nessey: Nessey offers to talk to the guards.
Nessey: Carric and Yoshi in unison - NO!
Nessey: Nessey - tell the Dragons you followed the King's route and saw another fellow who likes the King, but isn't, and is wearing strange clothing and thought that was suspicious.
Nessey: Carric finds the Dragons in the evening while false King is away. We all go together in case anyone might be replaced. We go to cloth door of smart dragon.
Nessey: It is 10pm ish at night.
Nessey: We are at the Inn, not on the road. We go to smart dragon's room.
Nessey: Yoshi looks in Common Room first and spies them, still up and drinking.
Nessey: False King is not there.
Nessey: Lots of other people in earshot, including "wenches of the moment."
Nessey: Yoshi requests a private room. Smart Dragon puts down mug and stands to follow.
Nessey: Far end of common room.
Nessey: He brings his mug.
Nessey: He is drinking strong ale.
Nessey: Yoshi introduces himself.
Mavis: Donal
Nessey: The rest of us lurk nearby.
Nessey: Yoshi asks about a costume he saw.
Nessey: He describes a blue costume with heron wings.
Nessey: Dragon says that an Elator.
Nessey: He says they transport from place to place, only if they have seen it, even from a distance, can travel very quickly.
Nessey: Can go as far as needed, if has seen the place.
Nessey: The Elator is not the one that looked like the King.
Nessey: Yoshi describes other costume - brown with little glints of reflecting glass set in.
Nessey: Dragon says that is not a common Gamesmen costume.
Nessey: Dragon doesn't recognise it.
Nessey: Dragon is confident it IS a gamesmen costume, not a pawn, but doesn't know it - must be a rare one indeed.
Nessey: Yoshi goes to bartender and asks for refill for Dragon.
Nessey: Bartender AT BAR.
Nessey: Nessey asks why we didn't tell the whole truth.
Nessey: Yoshi explains, kindly, that the Smart Dragon was too drunk to be discreet.
Nessey: Carric - says he didn't know anyway.
Nessey: Yoshi says we need to handle it ourselves.
Nessey: Yoshi says we should all go with him in the morning and stay back while he and Mavis approach or another pair approach and pose as travelers and pump them for information.
Nessey: Carric - but we need to prepared in case they have seen us in the company of the King.
Nessey: Nessey - we pawns might not be considered as suspicious then - whether they have seen us or not.
Nessey: Yoshi - that is a very good point, Nessey and Carric. Perhaps Nessey and I should approach tomorrow.
Nessey: Yoshi - let's set watches tonight.
Nessey: Nessey - oh, Carric, are you going to turn into an Owl and watch outside the King's window again?
Nessey: Yoshi wants the last watch.
Nessey: Nessey offers to be on first watch.
Nessey: Carric says it might not be necessary to turn into an owl.
Nessey: Nessey tries to convince him that is the best plan, though, for not being recognized.
Nessey: Nessey offers to be on first watch.
Nessey: Carric and Caelesti are on Second watch.
Nessey: Where are we when we watch?
Nessey: Yoshi - keep our doors ajar.
Mavis rolls d6: [3] = 3
Mavis rolls d6: [6] = 6
Mavis rolls d6: [2] = 2
Nessey: Yoshi we don't want to call attention to ourselves as we are watching.
Nessey: Nothing terribly suspicious that we notice happens that night.
Nessey: In the morning, a large ball of plasma rises and awakens us.
Nessey: We go join Mavis. Nessey rides Goldie the Mule.
Nessey: We approach where we hid Fanny and Mavis comes out and signals to us.
Nessey: Mavis says they spoke of Huld and Hells Maw. I have no idea what is meant, but they do seem to have been sent to do mischief here.
Nessey: Yoshi - can we justify going in fighting then or should we cautious.
Nessey: Expect LOTS of typos.
Carric rolls Listen (d20 + 5): [5 + 5] = 10
Nessey: Mavis - Domains game against other Domains. Could be that. But doing something with King himself might be breaking the rules. I don't know. They have gone in wagon.
Yoshi rolls Sk:Listen (d20 + 9 + 4): [13 + 9 + 4] = 26
Mavis rolls Mavis Listen (d20 + 16): [8 + 16] = 24
Caelesti rolls Initiative (d20 + 4): [19 + 4] = 23
Nessey rolls d20: [3] = 3
Caelesti rolls Skill (Listen) (d20 - 1 + 2): [2 - 1 + 2] = 3
Nessey: Some of us hear a horse coming along.
Nessey: Yoshi says just one horse.
Nessey: We queit down and are still in hidden copse
Nessey: It is the King - in gold robes and crown, the sicky one.
Yoshi rolls Sk:Move Silently (d20 + 10 + 2): [12 + 10 + 2] = 24
Nessey: "king" knocks on door of wagon. Blue costume guy comes out, "oh, it is you."
Nessey: Blue - coming to freshen up, eh? Want to come in?
Nessey: "King" says " it is stuffy in there, bring him out."
Nessey: Blue - you are so regal, hah, hah
Nessey: Blue comes back with brown costume guy and between them they drag poor fellow who looks like real King.
Nessey: Brown costume guy King looks sickly too now, but other looks sicklier still.
Nessey: They set real King down on a stump He looks woozy.
Nessey: "Do your thing."
Nessey: Guy in Blue stands and hold arms and tilts real King's head up. Sickliest King stares at his face and looks more and more like the real King.
Yoshi rolls Ability:Wisdom (d20 + 4): [3 + 4] = 7
Mavis rolls d20 + 3: [2 + 3] = 5
Yoshi rolls Ability:Wisdom (d20 + 4): [3 + 4] = 7
Mavis rolls d20 + 3: [7 + 3] = 10
Carric rolls Stat - WIS (d20 + 3): [3 + 3] = 6
Caelesti rolls d20: [19] = 19
Nessey: Copying takes place - face transfers.
Nessey rolls d20: [9] = 9
Nessey: Caelesti says sounds like looking into a mirror and a mirror of a mirror. That's why you need to do it twice.
Nessey: That's why they need 2 - one to be the double and one to be the mold. One to be first mirror and other to reverse it back.
Nessey: Carric offers to be a dog.
Nessey: He offers to pee on the back of the wagon and sniff around.
Nessey: While Nessey and Yoshi talk loudly.
Nessey: Turn back into a human-like creature and do neutralize poison.
Nessey: Nessey - you want both guards out of the wagon?
Nessey: Copy king left back on his horse.
Nessey: The fuzzy-wuzzy guy.
Nessey: Mavis says how these guys are such inferior copies.
Nessey: Yoshi says for others to come up shortly thereafter.
Nessey: Yoshi tells Caelesti to wait 18 seconds.
Nessey: Or 12. Or 20.
Nessey: Nessey asks why doesn't Caelesti just try to sleep them?
Nessey: Yoshi says it is not likely to work on them
Nessey: Caelesti says she was going to make the traveler fall into a fit of laughter - Blue guy.
Mavis: Elator
Nessey: Yoshi still wants Caelesti to wait.
Nessey: Caelesti wants to approach with an entourage - us.
Nessey: Yoshi suggests Mavis make up as someone else.
Caelesti rolls d6: [4] = 4
Nessey: Yoshi - does Caelesti still have her games outfit with her?
Nessey: No.
Caelesti rolls d20: [8] = 8
Nessey: Mavis comes out of the bushes looking taller and very different.
Nessey: We almost attack her and then find out it is her, by her voice.
Nessey: Caelesti has her Armiger outfit with her and changes but not in the bushes.
Nessey: Yoshi looks away and blushes. Ties his shoes.
Nessey: Caelesti casts fly and Mage Armor on herself.
Nessey: Carric is a big wolf-like dog.
Nessey: Nessey pats Carric on the head.
Nessey: He tries to pee on my leg and hump the other.
Nessey: Okay - not really.
Nessey: Carric is one mean, ugly dog.
Nessey: Caelesti flies gracefully, close to the ground.
Nessey: a stone = 14 pounds
Nessey: fig newtons
Nessey: 890 newtons
Nessey: 52.3 is a newton or is a stone?
Nessey: 200 lbs. weight of Carric the Ice Cream Eater.
Nessey: We have reached the wagon.
Brianna Recenters everyone's view!
Nessey: --here we are
Nessey: Caelesti - oh, hi, a fellow gamesman, good-morning and flies to them.
Nessey: Carric/dog immediately runs to pee on back of wagon.
Nessey: "hullo, young Armiger."
Nessey: Cae - Hullow, young Elator.
Nessey: E - what do we attribute to your visit?
Nessey: Cae- just passing and saw friendly folk.
Nessey: E - I see your pawns and where is your dog?
Nessey: Cae - he has lots of energy and likes to run around.
Nessey: E - come sit by me by the fire and share some cheer.
Nessey: they offer to toast cheese for Caelesti.
Nessey: Carric/dog goes to front of wagon and under a flap.
Nessey: Carric/dog is in wagon untying King, as Carric again.
Nessey: Caelesti is talking about worm sausages.
Nessey: Caelesti asks about Brown man's costume and what is his talent.
Nessey: He is dodgy and says he won't say.
Nessey: Caelesti compliments sparkly outfit.
Caelesti rolls Skill (Diplomacy) (d20 + 13): [5 + 13] = 18
Nessey: Caelesti charms Man into admitting he is a Mirror Man and most people don't trust him.
Nessey: Caelesti says she is from far from here and didn't know she was an Armiger until recently. She flew into camp and is flying now.
Nessey: Caelesti says she wasn't trained formally and doesn't now the rare forms.
Nessey: He preens for her.
Nessey: Carric does neutralize poison on the King.
Nessey: Drugs and poison leaves King system and he is himself.
Nessey: Carric puts a hand over his mouth and whispers situation to him.
Nessey: King struggles, then listens and understands and settles down.
Nessey: King says they tricked him and hit him over the head.
Nessey: Carric wants to take King out with him through 2-ft flap. He changes back into a dog. King recalls Carric is a shifter.
Nessey: They are coming out. They don't have a plan. But Carric is a dog.
Nessey: King offers to overwhelm them and so Carric might not have to be a dog and isn't for now.
Nessey: King exits flap first, then Carric (doggie breath)
Yoshi rolls Sk:Listen (d20 + 9 + 4): [2 + 9 + 4] = 15
Nessey: We can't see what is going on on other side of wagon.
Nessey: But Yoshi is watching it rock and looking underneath.
Nessey: Men don't pay attention to pawns.
Nessey: Yoshi whispers that one of us should stay near Caelesti, so he does so.
Yoshi rolls Initiative (d20 + 4 + 2): [3 + 4 + 2] = 9
Nessey: King comes striding forth in his majesty.
Nessey: Nessey surtseys
Nessey: King demands everyone kneel before him.
Yoshi rolls Sv:Will (d20 + 6 + 4 + 1): [19 + 6 + 4 + 1] = 30
Mavis rolls Mavis Will Save (d20 + 9): [8 + 9] = 17
Nessey rolls Nes - Will Save (d20 + 3): [15 + 3] = 18
Carric rolls Save/Will (d20 + : [8 + 8] = 16
Mavis rolls d20: [3] = 3
Mavis rolls d20: [4] = 4
Nessey: Everyone except Yoshi drops to knees and protrates themselves to the King, Yoshi drops to one knee. Caelesti hovers in flight.
Caelesti rolls Save (Will) (d20 + 3): [9 + 3] = 12
Nessey: Caelesti feels an unfamilar twinge in her mind.
Nessey: King admonishes "you two" (the villians).
Nessey: king looks intently at Caelesti and Yoshi. Caelesti smiles at King. Kings says they are well advanced in their careers. He doesn't recognize Yoshi. King says he could send them to their knees if it were important enough. He tells us to bind and knock out the the Elator and just bind the Mirror Man.
Nessey: Yoshi pummels the Elator into unconsciousness, in a nonlethal way.
Nessey: Hapless Mirror man is easily tied up.
Nessey: King calls us his friends and thanks us for rescuing him.
Nessey: Yoshi asks that rest of us be released from our knees.
Nessey: We can rise.
Nessey: Nessey remains modest.
Nessey: Carrics asks real King to return the Inn to deal with the Imposter King.
Nessey: King explains Mirror men always travel in pairs.
Nessey: Nessey - oh, but your majesty, why would anyone want to do this?
Nessey: King - I don't know who has declared Game on me. I don't really employ any devulgers.
Nessey: Yoshi - we might help in that respect.
Nessey: King - if we had a Demon, we could get the information.
Nessey: King - wasn't there a Demon with you. Or we might find a Devulger.
Nessey: King - but we will find some means of getting information out of them.
Nessey: Yoshi suggests we interrogate them before returning to the Inn.
Nessey: King says we have more subtlelty than the Dragons would have.
Nessey: King invites Armiger, Caelesti to talk to Mirror Man.
Nessey: Caelesti lingers behind King and casts Charm Person on the Mirror Man.
Nessey: Mavis gazes intently at Mirror man, Carric eats hot cheese. Nessey watches from a distance. Yoshi watches from close up.
Mavis rolls d20: [19] = 19
Nessey: Caelesti tries to suggest/charm that he confesses.
Nessey: Mirror Man is not charmed by Caelesti.
Nessey: Mirror Man not friendly.
Nessey: not to Caelesti, but is to King.
Nessey: Man says he is just following orders as every minor gamesman must.
Nessey: Yoshi asks about Huld?
Nessey: King - someone is Gaming against me.
Nessey: Secret Game.
Nessey: Caelesti tells Huld to the King, per Yoshi.
Nessey: Mirror man twitches and says Huld, Huld.
Nessey: King is not familiar with that name.
Nessey: Huld of Hells Maw.
Nessey: Mirror man flinches.
Nessey: King frowns.
Nessey: King says that is an ill name. Has heard of place, but not person name.
Nessey: Carric asks if that is another Domain?
Nessey: The King looks at Carric - Hells Maw or Poffle is a Domain of Ill Repute next to Domain of Pfarb Durim.
Nessey: Pfarb Durim is a city to the West.
Nessey: Poffle is Domain of Ill Repute, otherwise known as Hells Maw.
Nessey: King doesn't know Huld.
Nessey: King says nothing good come out of that domain.
Nessey: King says if Mirror men come from Hells Maw, that is all he needs know.
Nessey: Caelesti tries to Charm again.
Mavis rolls d20: [8] = 8
Nessey: Mirror Man asks Caelesti to save him.
Nessey: Man says he is but a pawn of Huld, a lesser gameman. He is just following orders.
Nessey: Caelesti repeatedly tells him to confess.
Nessey: Yoshi asks why.
Nessey: Man doesn't know why Huld wants him to impersonate King.
Nessey: Man says Elator knows more.
Nessey: mirror man says Elator can flit back to Huld and report at any time.
Nessey: Mirror man grovels.
Nessey: Mirror Man admits Huld is a Demon. He can tell what one is thinking.
Nessey: Yoshi suggests we travel to Hells Maw to investigate this further for the King.
Nessey: King wants to go to Leamer and consult and think further and question other Mirror Man.
Nessey: Yoshi wants to surprise other copy of King.
Nessey: King is not keen to disguise himself.
Nessey: Caelesti says imposter not likely to be looking out the windows for us.
Nessey: Yoshi still concerned he might and might escape.
Nessey: Yoshi asks about other special talents of Mirror Men?
Nessey: King says no, but this skill is bad enough.
Nessey: Mirror Men are shifters but in copyig and some power of seeing too.
Nessey: Very, very minor shifting and seeing.
Nessey: No higher level gamesmen. Pawns of other gamesmen.
Nessey: We return to Leamer
Nessey: Nessey will ride her horse in front with Yoshi and Mavis.
Nessey: Others bring up prisoners in the wagon.
Nessey: Yoshi still concerned imposter will see us and escape.
Nessey: King up front now with us, preceding the wagon and everyone else.
Nessey: Group 1 gets there first and goes to imposter's quarters and various guards say to stop and see real King.
Nessey: King exerts his rulerly power and they fall to their knees and let him proceed.
Nessey: King leads us into his own quarters and find the mirror man who pales when he see real King.
Mavis rolls d20: [17] = 17
Nessey: king orders Churl, the other Mirror Man to kneel.
Nessey: Churl does kneel.
Nessey: He is white as a sheet.
Yoshi rolls Sk:Use Rope (d20 + 2): [13 + 2] = 15
Yoshi rolls Sk:Use Rope (d20 + 2): [15 + 2] = 17
Nessey: We restrain him on King's orders.
Nessey: We put him in a back room. Calls Inn Keeper.
Nessey: King tells inn Keeper to put imposter into old room. Ditto with others when they are brought in. Elator given another hard knock on the head.
Nessey: We stop here.

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Copyright © 2009 by Brianna Sollandry <brianna at hambo dot com> Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu
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