The Red Hand

King's Sacrifice, Queen Sacrified

The Václavák Salon has something of a reputation within Coldspire Academy. Serving as the home to the chess club founded by Vikkard Broju, its membership is generally limited to the organisation’s higher rung. Exquisitely decorated by ornate glass chandeliers, gilded guéridon and walls of pure white marble, the venue is an ostentatious display of wealth and power. At all hours of the day players can come to test their skills in the tranquility of its halls while semi-translucent servants offers choice of delicacies and fine wine. The salon has something of a otherworldly aesthetics to it, which should not come as a surprise as its design had been inspired from one of Master Broju’s many extraplanar escapades.

Chess was a distinguished form of entertainment, that Althea herself sometimes indulged with her acquaintances. She had recently arranged for Master Broju to teach the game to her pupil. Hasdrubal figured that it was a way to rear him to more sophistication. After all, his teachers of today would be his equals of tomorrow, it was time to adopt a past time befitting his station. Hasdrubal’s mere presence here also served this very purpose. The Václavák Salon was a proper place to show oneself, spending time with someone of Broju’s position served to elevate his stature.

Hasdrubal surveyed the puzzle before him with a furrowed brow. He was anxious, as he, uncharacteristically, seemed to hold the upper hand in this particular game. Hasdrubal was trying his earnest to close the deal but he knew full well that he had a tall order ahead of him. Master Broju had been the Academy’s best chess player during his youth and remained an extremely talented player. Hasdrubal, on other hand, had never played the game before joining the academy and showed no inclination or particular affinity towards it.

This abstraction of war did not play to his strength. Chess rewarded those approaching it with patience and a methodological approach, two things Hasdrubal sorely lacked. The man had become a force to be reckoned with on the battlefield by drawing on his primal instincts, and he approached many aspects of his life with the same reckless abandon. This translated into his play, trading pieces tit for tat, making them clashes in a violent and chaotic display, if rarely a successful one. Master Broju quickly realized that his only hope in making a decent player out of him was to teach him a chess school befitting his predisposition. He settled for the «Dorian school» characterized by brash gambits and an open, tactical game. A style focused more on artistic expression, rather than technical mastery or long-term planning. For its practitioners, winning was secondary to winning with style.

-«You have something on your mind, yes?.» inquired Vikkard, breaking Hasdrubal’s train of thought.

It was true. Something else was weighting on his mind. Something he wouldn’t dare share with Althea… But a door had opened, an opportunity to get it off his chest.

-«After we retrieve what is sought…»


Hasdrubal moved a piece forward, not leaving his eyes from the board.

-«…what will be expected of us?»

Spending eternity as an archangel for the new arbiters of life and death held no appeal for him…

Vikkard leaned in, lowering his voice:

-«You and I… We cut of same cloth, yes? Then no need to worry. Just enjoy creation… perfected… Yes?»

Vikkard straightened himself and nodded, smiling reassuringly to his opponent. He looked certain that he had shared some grand revelation.

The cryptic reply did little to assuage Hasdrubal’s apprehensions. Where did he and his companions would fit in the grand scheme of thing one it would all be said and done? Their mentors might be confident to prevail in doing a deed many times attempted and failed, to catastrophic repercussions, but he was not so. This whole endeavor filled him with dread and yet, against his better judgement, he could not stop himself from going forward. At the end of the tunnel glimmered a sliver of hope that kept drawing him further…

-«Would it… Will it make it possible to bring someone back? Someone long gone?»

Vikkard stroked his chin, processing the question.

-«Ah, from the other side, yes? It would be but trifle.»

The cat had played with his prey long enough, it was time to spring the trap. Master Broju reached for his knight and slid it into position. The piece now threatened both of his opponent’s King and Queen. Hasdrubal grunted in frustration, his fortune had done an about-face, his situation was now hopeless.

-«You wish to concede, yes?»

Hasdrubal slinked his king out of harms’ way, looking at Vikkard square in the eyes.

He would fight to the bitter end.

Vikkard spared no time responding, picking his knight and toppling Hasdrubal’s queen, seizing its place on the marble board.

-«Very well. Let’s keep playing, yes?»

Samir's adventure log - dream on! - Part 2

All right, ladies and gents. Sit tight, ‘cause it’s gonna be a complicated retelling of the events following our encounter with the Tengu clowns we just beat up to a pulp.
I will try to give out as much insight as I can (understand) into our conundrum, because even though we’re stuck in the dream plane with no way out until we find the thingy of power Babagava threw in there (she will be the one bringing us out if I listened enough to make the proper inference. Helloooooo, backstabbing! It’s not like she’s an evil Dream Hag or anything like that. Can totalllly trust her!), we’re kinda stuck at the options we are now facing in order to retrieve the tokens necessary to meet the big boss man in charge and kill it (or recruit to become an Academy professor of Tarot cards if Rhea has any say in it I guess).


So we’re in a dream bubble and we’ve just saved some chef from a band of bullying Tengus and our dear Mother Goose Orfée proceeded to heal him. The other scribes find his appearance and demeanor… exaggerated somehow? They even make parallels to my short life as Samira, appearance-wise. No idea what they’re talking about.
So the chef, still agitated, repeatedly asks us for our help in what I could only understand as making him cook again.
The short of it is around those lines:
- His mistress, Sonoré, was killed by something like nine conspirators and each one of them took a piece of a kepenia (some type of scarf) and separated the current dream-bubble plane into nine different realms, each one of them becoming its masters.
- Bernadee-tee, or whatever that name is spelled, is the conspirator/master of our current location.
- The chef cannot be calmed down and wants to wander around, looking for other adventurers to help him cook again. For who, I have no idea, and apparently so does he. He seems kind of stuck in a loop in that regard, which I find really strange… and seem to be the only one thinking it. Since I have a tendency of listening to half of the scribes’ tedious conversations anyway and missing out on some irrelevant information that the scribes usually label as “important” or “vital” or “Samir doesn’t need to know or he’ll do X”, I decided to shut up, as their tolerance of my antics seems to chafe them more than usual lately. They want to appear important and freely forewarn enemies of their might so that they can better prepare to kill us for some reason. They all must have noble blood either inflating their egos or clouding their brains I say. Bah! I can’t wait to go the entrepreneur way and be free of the lot of them, even though I’ll miss them, quirks and all. Hmmm, maybe I’ll make a room for each one of them in my domain someday for when they’ll visit.
- The big bad guy is a dragon, and we’ll need to get all the tokens in order to meet him. Or is he the last one to hold a token? I don’t remember. (shrug)

So we’re off to enter this little marquee over there. We cannot see what’s inside, but I can hear distant fare/circus music coming from inside somewhere. Orfée, afraid that the Chef will wander around until he gets attacked again, decides to remain in place to take care of him for the time being. Fortunately, she loans her precious wand of healing booboos to Nasah.
Oh, Rhea and Nasah split a deck of tarot cards the Dream Hag gave them and in which they plan on throwing cards at things or people randomly for some reason…


Well, what do you know, the interior is a lot bigger than its outside representation. I’m shocked. SHOCKED I tell you, that such a thing is even POSSIBLE in a dream plane!
We seem to have made our entrance directly inside the stage where a show is being performed. At the opposite end of our location is a round cage too dark to see what’s inside. On each side of the cage are bleachers filled with an audience, sometimes cheering, oftentimes jeering at the show presently being performed. The performers are a stone giant, juggling a bunch of different items while four big bears are riding awkwardly around on unicycles, to the delight of the crowd.

As our presence is detected, the crowd starts to jeer at us, throwing insults. The performers, hungry for the crowd’s approval, turn toward us with violence in their eyes. The fight is on!


The fight was a weird one. Bears kept falling down their unicycles and awkwardly trying to get back on, to the roars of laughter from the crowd. But these little fuckers kept zigzagging between us, striking us with their paws. And they were FAST!
My performance in this fight was subpar. I first made the illusion of a wall of smoke, cutting off the view of our party from the giant and two other bears, but nothing came out of it. They just ignored its possible dangers and ran straight through them. It’s possible that the illusion had no effect whatsoever on these creatures, because even the crowd, blinded to the show going on further than this wall of smoke, kept cheering/booing at the event going out outside their field of view. Weird, that.
We soon found out that their will to fight was directly related to the crowd’s attitude toward them: the more they cheered them or laughed at their antics, the more violent their intents were; inversely, the more they laughed of cheered at OUR actions the more apathetical they’d become.
Hasdrubal was in his element. His sword maneuvers, once out of Rhea’s black tentacles (who grabbed poor Mavrikos solidly in its grip) was the stuff of legend (I really should sneak into one of her master’s little soirée one day…). He killed a bear if I recall, and his sword moves made the crowd go wild in our favor. A bear became so depressed by Hasdy’s showmanship that he picked up his broken unicycle and left the tent, head bowed in shame, in a “Screw you guys! I’m going home” kind of way. “Hasdrubal Thesh. So good with the sword, he once made a bear cry” shall be what’s written on his headstone, should he ever die one day and I have any say in the matter.


After the fight is over, we go toward this dark cage and see some type of a crocodile humanoid, sitting down among a bunch of chairs and tea-pots. The crocodile is sipping tea and seems to be waiting for us. He’s even wearing a top hat and everything! I have no idea why, but I’m secretly disappointed that there is no Hare with him and that they’re aren’t celebrating someone’s un-birthday for some reason…
So our head arcana nerd, Rhea, takes charge of the negotiation. We soon ascertain that Bernadee-tee is one of the conspirators and in possession of one of the tokens we’re supposed to look for.
Rhea ended up playing a game of “spot the lie”, with five chances, to win the token without the use of violence. If we were able to spot a lie from the crocodile-man AND be able to prove it, we’d win the token! As I was trying to get Rhea’s attention to the crocodile’s hands (his left hand was in his right arm and vice-versa! Looked like we were dealing with the image of a mirror or something. Really weird. I kept wondering when we’d see a rabbit, scrambling about, late to see a queen for some reason).
Rhea won the contest of wits by asking Bernadee-tee her name, which it replied with “Samira”.
Well, that was easy! And here I was, wracking my brain, trying to find a question we could ask that would make it impossible for the creature NOT to lie… zero for two so far for good ol’ Samir…


On our way to another realm (forgot which one. They all have weird names like the “machine candelabra” or “the vast void of terror” or silly things like that. Ok I wasn’t listening when the names were discussed), we encountered an annoying Rabbit King, pissed off about the lawn, thinking it was out to “get him” and prevent him from escaping or whatever. Turns out he was one of the conspirators, too, and Nasah tried to win his token with a game of paper-rock-scissors. He lost. But Rhea tried her luck and won. Boy was that one easy. The rabbit was an idiot, and decided to play a game (multiple times!) instead of exchanging the token for a lost piece of his blade that he lost (probably still in Sonoré’s corpse… you know, from all that backstabbing these fuckers did. That notion is surprisingly out of my scribes’ minds for some reason. I’ll NEVER understand them I tell you. When Samir acts inappropriately towards bad people their eyes roll behind their heads in exasperation, but those same holier-than-thou hypocrites politely discuss deals with murderers or enlist human-eating monsters to the Academy, where CHILDREN live! It’s. The… BAH! I really think I’m starting to resent them…).


Ok, so we’re at the door of the Tic-Toc Man’s realm. At the base of some stairs. We see Fire-Dwarves, armed with hammers. As they see us, they start taunting our group. Rhea (or was it Nasah?) tries the diplomatic/friendly way as a retort, to disastrous consequences. The politeness of their words only serves to anger the four dwarves further, who then start hammering at the columns flanking the stairs our group is on. Each blows threatens to make the whole place fall on our heads. Hasdy and I, quickly cast a fly spell and start going up in order to evade anything coming out. Fortunately, the scribes figure out what’s what and throw insults of their own. The dwarves LOVE it, and let us pass through.


We decide to enter an inn that we soon find out is ran by a grumpy giant that is refusing to serve us, since we aren’t giants ourselves. As the scribes negotiate, I spot a big key, lying on the counter and try to palm it with my ranged legerdemain ability. This key surely is the one that opens the back door of the establishment (which the giant tells leads where the Tic-Toc Man resides). No luck. The giant spots the key, floating above his head (no scribes tries to get the giant’s attention away from us, so I’d be able to finish the “borrowing” of… with my limited successes with this trick, I’m starting to think I should’ve went either the Veiled Illusionist or the Shadowcaster way… oh well), grabs it and tells us that either we pay one thousand golds per head to frequent his business or we should leave, and quick. As we slunk outside the place, I propose that I combine my hat of disguise’s ability with climbing on the shoulders of one of the fighters in the group, so that we’d appear giants (I’d just have to craft an illusion of a very long robe after all), which seems to AGAIN make the scribes queasy at the idea of looking ridiculous. Such a weakness… tsk.

I soon grow tired of their debates (irritated, really) and just tell them to throw a void pellet at the wall, thus bypassing the damn door of the inn and we wouldn’t have to hurt our precious images to deal with an angry giant. Hasdrubal provides his pellet and I throw it at the wall, creating a HUGE, gaping hole in the wall… where we see a Fire Giant standing, confused at the wall. I quickly cast the illusion of the wall back, confusing the poor sod even further. Before planning the next step, our “leader” Rhea steps through the illusion and introduces herself, probably wanting to make it another one of her pets.

That giant turned out to be even angrier than the innkeeper! He’s ranting against the Tic-Toc Man and how he transformed his buddy into stone (we can see a HUGE stone face in the corridor. Guess that’s him), that he is a “size-ist” (whatever that is) and so forth. He’s also on a hunger strike for some reason…
I soon grew bored of the conversation and stopped listening, but we ended up with a new companion following us into the Tic-Tic Man’s lair. Off we go I guess.


Wow, I’ve never seen so many machines in the same place in my life! There’s EVERYTHING! It’s really the machinest machine room to ever exist!

Hey… what of that thing Kohl Meanie wanted from me again? A Delithium Matrix thingy, right? What if… THERE! There’s one! That Ranged Legerdemain better work this time. Let’s see.

[META: that wasn’t addressed in the game, so no idea if it worked or not]


Ok, so we’ve negotiated the Tic-Toc Man’s token in exchange for 6 “grubs” (some type of material needed to maintain his machines here) that another conspirator possess. We can’t kill that guy, because the whole realm would destroy itself or something? Or at least, that’s what the Tic-Toc Man says. How convenient!


So after dealing with the annoying rabbit king on our way to the other conspirator’s place (forgot the name again), we arrive at a building where there’s lots of wax statues of bearded mental masturbators that were alive hundreds of years ago. While searching the two adjoining rooms I was able to find a secret door, then another within that secret door. Anyway, we end up in a big room with a giant ant, some dwarf lady and three big globs of wax. Before even introducing ourselves, the ant shrieks that we are here to kidnap her babies, which are worms, writhing on the table nearby (three total) that are apparently the “grubs” we are after.

Boy do these globs of was fast AND hurt! Before we could even draw our weapons we were attacked and our fighters were badly wounded! Not a good sign…

Rhea and Nasah were able to calm her down with soothing words, which stopped the attack. Before getting kicked out, we were able to strike a deal: her token for the Tic-Toc Man’s head.
We’re kinda getting swamped with deals here!


Aannnd that’s where Rhea decided to have a moral crisis about dealing with assassinations and darks dealings with murderers. She began sweating and hyperventilating out of nowhere. She had to take Mavrikos aside to have a discussion about the faith of Phos, which she took up when dealing with the Hag as a price for something I’m not entirely sure I understand at all yet.


Since we don’t seem to have enough problems yet, the group decided to go to yet another place to get a token. We are soon faced with a bizarre show: a unicorn, a pear on its horn, is having an argument with a goblin wearing a unicorn mask, desperately trying to eat the pear on the horn. The unicorn refuses to give it to it, stating his hatred of lowly, dirty goblins.

Nasah tries to calm both parties down and offers solutions to both parties, but neither will bulge. The unicorn refuses to give the pear to filthy goblins; the goblin refuses to eat the other pears, because they are dirty and all have “fear not” written on them.

The lack of action from the scribes is really annoying me lately, so I decide to take charge, from the shadows, so to speak. I palm a “dirty pear” and use my ranged legerdemain ability to snatch off the good pear from the unicorn’s horn. Success! I then quickly cast a figment on the dirty pear, making it appear “clean”. When I tell the unicorn that I have the pear and make both see this fact for themselves, I quickly give the “dirty” pear to the goblin, who happily run away under a tree and starts munching on it. The unicorn is really pissed off at me for that though and calls me “an asshole” (never thought I’d get “called an asshole by a unicorn” off my bucket list though). I urgently whisper to him and ask him to calm down, that I have the real thing here and I give it back to it. Win-Win, right?
Nope, that fucking unicorn proceeds to scream at the goblin and telling him of the ruse, thus resuming in taunting him.

All for naught.
The creatures inhabiting this realm are so weird, almost like they are empty beings, forced to live a pre-written script of someone’s making… (shrug).

Well, the uni-douche relents and gives me 5 “dirty” pears for my trouble, so I hand one out to each of our group (might come in handy).

All right. We arrive at another of those realms. Yay… more things we’ll owe murderers for tokens they STOLE from a CORPSE they KILLED! And I’m the rogue without a conscience in the group. (spits)


We come upon a book written in a foreign language none of us is able to decipher. On closer examination, I see that the quill’s point is made of obsidian! This might be the token we’re looking for! So of course, I ask my new buddy (screw those scribes! I’m making my own friends! With blackjack and hookers!) to grab it. (Forgot to tell you! Casted my first Mud Buddy spell today! He’s AWESOME! Helps quite a lot! The other scribes makes light of my choices of spells, but they can’t hide their relief when my buddy enters rooms first, thus triggering any traps there would be in there. Suckers…)

As soon as the quill is picked up there is a telepathic voice inside our head. It’s another conspirator!
And guess what!? No no, guess!!! You’ll never find it I swear!
Give up!? Well, the ghostly hag wants…. A deal in exchange for her token! Mind. BLOWN! Right? Right!?

Of course the scribes want a deal. We should save murderers for the good of a higher power, who’s probably watching us through fingers, both hands on its face in stunned exasperation…

So the deal? We will need her eyes, tongue and heart back (other conspirators have them) OR the same items, but from a mortal (not a dream puppet of whatever form of “sentience” “live” here).

Tried to exploit the spell “sculpt corpse” to sculpt pieces of myself (my ring of undead makes me immune to pain when activated) into those parts, but we came to a consensus that the “sculptures” would not be working as proper organs. Oh well, because trying to exchange the token then running away before the fraud was found out would be a terrible idea and would probably go against the group’s fucked up moral compass, right?

I hate feeling this irate towards those damn scribes lately…

So we have to steal the babies of a murderer (grubs) for a token, kill a murderer for a token (remember, WHICH IS BAD!!!!), find a piece of broken sword for a token we already have (if I recall properly), steal the organs of a murderer from other murderers, OR steal them from an innocent sentient being (dead preferably I guess – the scribes’ ethics is confusing to me).
I can’t wait to see what else we’ll need to do to get out of this nightmare realm. Yay!

… (sigh) I miss Orfée’s level-headed thinking right now…

Second Letter to Priam Khassit
Dated 16 of Eleint 342 AF

Your protege still lives, Priam. Please pardon my tardiness in providing you with tidings. I recently realized to my surprise that it had been more than two years since I last sent a missive your way. Time at the academy can sometime seem like a dream when we are toiling in our studies without the benefit of a sun regulating our lives. However, this is more than an simply an impression, I suspect. The academy itself feels like it operates along its own timeline irrespective of the world surrounding it.

We long concluded our passage in Wahdi, which ultimately was brief but intense and impactful. The intervention of our group, known under the name of «the Howling Kings» (althought you might hear us being known under a less tasteful nickname, I assure you this is due to the slandering tongues of some jealous, less successful adventurers) saved the city from being overrun by the undead of its necropolis. So central was the group’s role in the crisis’ resolution that the grateful citizen of the city graced one of their public square with a monument depicting my person. I promise I will share with you the tales of our exploits in greater details when we meet face-to-face.

I now write to you from Arazi where my companions and I are the behest of our mentors to fulfill another of their errands. I can hardly contain my anticipation at testing my mettle against the colossal lizards that roam the island, said to be amongst the most dangerous creatures in all Lyria.

We are now two members short since I penned my previous letter. Much to Nasah’s chagrin, Rhialla chose the life of a renegade, forsaking everything to cast her lot with some extra dimensional warlock. Eydan suffered an even worst fate, falling victim to the capricious and sometimes lethal manner in which the academy professors provide education to their pupils. His death was a reminder to us all of the precariousness of our station. To the common man outside we might be giants but at the academy we are naught.

Luckily the rest of my peers have fared better.

With Eydan’s passing, Rhea became the most accomplished caster of the group. Rhea as picked up this mantle with aplomb and worked hard into supplementing her arsenal with evocation magic. She is no longer the liability in combat she used to be. Now it is quite the opposite, to be exact. While she is incontestably our senior in the academy’s pecking order, she has not sought to lead the group, which maintains a collegial structure mirroring the relationship our mentors have with each other despite the differences in stature of their respective office.

I encouraged Nasah in following the path of the arcane archer and he was quite receptive of my counsel. I am happy to report the elf is blooming into a superb archer. Sadly, he lacks the killer instinct that would make him truly exceptional. He is clearly more at ease hitting targets on the practice range rather than his enemies on the battlefield. Poor Nasah, sometimes the sheppard must kill the wolf to save the flock!

I recently learned that Orphée is of Samsaran stock. I wonder if those of her race all share her particular outlook on life, pairing the serenity of a monk and the curiosity of a child. Orphée successfully petitioned in taking Eydan’s vacancy under Master Therin Skalag. While I can applaud the wisdom in abandoning the teachings of the lesser school of enchantment in favor of the school of Evocation, I sincerely hope she has not signed her death warrant from one of Master’s Skarlag failed «experiment».

Mavrikos has so far failed to live up to the promises I had seen in him when we had first spared. As I predicted, his insistence in using a lucerne hammer despite his scrawny physique has proved ill advised. Verily, if stubbornness was a virtue, the man would be the holiest of all! Mavrikos has the physical attribute to be a warrior of renown provided that he practiced a style that catered to his strength, favoring agility over brawn. Despite the man being of a different faith, as such I wish him no ill will. If he swallowed his pride and asked my for assistance, I would endeavor to make him my equal in combat and do so gladly.

I have to confess I have a bit soured on Samir‘s antics. His odd and sometimes crude demeanor reflects badly on his the rest of us and to some extant, the academy itself. However, if putting up with his shenanigans is the price to pay to keep my neck firmly on my shoulders, then it is a price I have no problem paying. Having faced many danger with the man I can honestly say he is without a doubt the most resourceful member of the group. His quick, out-of-the box thinking saved our skins more than once. Samir always keeps his cool in combat and, after an early brush with a trapped sarcophagus, has rarely, if ever, put himself in a precarious situation since. (He does have a knack at attracting trouble outside of combat however…) I had wrote him off as a mad genius, but I learned since that he has more ambition than the dissolute rogue image he projects. Maybe there’s a method – and a reason – to his ‘madness’…

As for myself, I am satisfied with the strides I have been making in my studies. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the path of warrior was threaded by relatively few amongst those gifted in the arcane. Consequently, fewer spells have been devised to further such pursuits. I am not merely content to simply ape the great masters of old and took it upon myself to leave a mark in my own right. I use every set-back as a inspiration to devise new spells to provide for contingencies. Let it be known that Hasdrubal Thesh will not fall victim to the same perils twice!

As our magical ability grows, so is our standing within the Academy. The leash has loosen somewhat and we are now offered a certain autonomy in taking our assignments. I was given a chance to return to Sekunta and I hope you will forgive me, but I passed on the opportunity. Truth be told, I considered it premature to do so. While I am confident I could now run roughshod on Sekunta regional gladiatorial circuit and make a good account of myself in the capital’s Colosseum, know that I am will not satisfy myself in merely being good or even great.

I shall walk home a hero and leave a legend.

Ananrath prevails!

Hasdrubal Thesh

Samir's Adventure Log - Dream on! - Part 1

“More grapes, Samir?” she murmurs, nibbling at my ear.
“Of course, Sweets” as I open my mouth to be fed by that gorgeous creature I had a fling with back in Whadi; the sister with the hair-limbs.
“So tell me, what would you fear losing most in your life?”
“Huh? That’s not sexy thoughts… Me want sexy thoughts! A narrative to make even Mavrikos melt with desire! And you know Mavrikos, yes? He’s…”
“Soon, love. But my curiosity must be satiated” she purrs, her hand slowly rubbing my chest.
“Well, impotence would be a major ‘downer’, if you know what I mean” I lightly reply, making my trademarked eyebrows ‘move’, my ever-present grin growing wider.
“Don’t be silly!”
“Ok, so I guess I’d go with my trusty undead ring here. It saved my ass countless times, and stabbing myself while laughing and running around naked to make the Academy students sick makes it my most prized possession” I lazily reply, popping a grape into my mouth.
“Samir, this is serious”
“Eh? But I am serious, Mindy”
“My names’ not Mindy”
“Really? Huh. Ok fine, by ‘most important’ I’m sure you mean something like the rest of the scribes would say, some deep philosophical concept or something to do with that holy morality of some ethical ethics of morals thingy?”
“Errr, something like that I suppose”
“Well, if I had to pick something that’s not more important than the ‘trivial’ present that I actually DO think is more important, I’d have to go with my freedom”
“Interesting” she murmurs, to herself.
“Yeah, sure. I found that out when it was removed from me by that damned Academy. Indentured to a bunch of scheming scribes! Pah! When I become powerful enough I’ll own the world’s largest information market that will make kingdoms fall, should I ever wish to meddle for fun. And I’ll know things that will make the Academy loosen its leash on me so much as to make my ‘servitude’ irrelevant, in name only. You just watch me, sweet cheeks!” I vehemently rant, surprised at my own seriousness.
The sister smiles, triumphantly, reaching to her face, her nails digging through the skin. “That will do” she says, her smile growing darker.
“I’ve made plans, you know! There’ll be golems that will roam my inn as security measures”
“Samir, look at me”
“…of course, they’ll be dressed as flamboyant whores, painted faces and all…”
“…and you know why? Because NOBODY would risk getting killed, or worse, beat up, by ‘constructs of the night’, if you know what I mean…”
“Samir… I’m trying to show you something”
“…they keep writing me off as this mad fool, but there’s a method to my madness you see, the absurd stumps the self-righteous, for they foolishly imagine scenarios of reactions to their epic moves and whatnot. Really silly puppets the lot of them I say”
“SAMIR! Look upon me!” the voice, enraged, guttural, snaps me out of my mental masturbation session.
As I gaze upon my inconsequential lover, I see her dig deep into her face with clawed hands, ripping it off completely. I now look upon this horrible creature with blue skin and tangled white hair, rising up to tower above me.
“I name my price!” the creature shrieks, pointing a bony finger towards me


I wake up with a yelp, cold with sweat. “Holy shit! I nearly shagged a hag!” I say, incredulous. “Hehehhee… ‘shagged a hag’. I’ll make sure to tell the bard to add this to one of his Whadi songs”.
As I sit up, I look upon my trousers, now adorned with a generous wet spot. “Well, guess I shagged it after all… Oh well, it’s not like I won’t do worse one day” I muse to myself.
I look up and lock stares with Hasdrubal, looking at me like he’s having a stroke. You know, the face they make before kicking the bucket? “Hey Hasdy. My turn for the watch? No? Awesome, g’night, mate!” I lay back down and close my eyes. Ever the optimist, I’m simply happy I didn’t shit myself like all those times I did, trying to find a loophole about those pesky gremlins inside our heads.


So our journey is uneventful for the first week or so, aside from Orfée who woke up one night, screaming her heart out. (shrug) Probably broke a nail or something.
Rhea is adamant that we continue our journey to see Babagava without sleeping and under the Keep Watch spell. I don’t ask questions and spend the extra waking hours practicing on my ranged legerdemain skills.


We come upon a small hill overlooking a river. Across from it, we finally get to see small herds of dinosaurs roaming about. Those are big ass creatures!
As we make out way to the clearing, we see a wounded dinosaur, running away from something. Instead of passing us by, it goes directly to Mavrikos for some reason. However, there is some kind of symbol on the creature, shining with light. From Mavrikos’ reaction, I’m guessing this symbol is from his godling, Phosphorus or something like that.
We feel the earth shaking a little. Something BIG is coming. Oh, it’s Samir Time!


I quickly cast an illusion of Mavrikos’ new friend and put it directly between us and whatever wants to eat it in order to buy us some time.


And it’s a success! Soon after that an enormous T-Rex crashes into view, hungry for its prey and pouncing into my illusion, affording our group more time to deploy and hurt it.
The fight is on!


Hasdy is becoming quite the warrior. Aside from Rhea and Nasah’s light scores on the creature (and my missed mudball spell to blind the creature…), Hasdrubal took care of this huge monster quite easily. He first ripped its lower jaw, thus freeing Mavrikos from its maw, intent of killing the beast with holy food poisoning or something. Then, as it tried to flee in humiliation, he completed his job by ripping the whole lower jaw and slicing its aorta clean through! It was majestic!
Here was Hasdrubal, covered in blood from head to toe, making his little victory dance. I would definitely pickpocket a ticket to see that again in an arena, that’s for sure!


The creature slain, we take a moment to collect our thoughts. Well, THEY take a moment to collect their thoughts. I, the scrounger of our company, am too busy slicing away to get that the stomach, as I’m sure the monster ate a few stupid adventurers.


Gold! Bull’s eye! Akunamatata! I’ve found treasure!
Of course, the cool stuff (scrolls and wands) are too damaged by acid to be useful anymore, but I found more than enough gold to be worth it!


The gods hate me! My boots of Plan B are destroyed by the stomach acid! I’m cursed to end up “flush”, am I?


We finally arrive at our destination, guided by a hillbilly bullywug. A hillbullywug, if you will. Ah, clever me!


So it turns out that the hag in our dream is actually Babagava. And she’s no common hag, too! She’s a DREAM hag, with powers of stealing dreams and destroying minds and whatnot.
Still ugly as a troll, but that power… hmmm…


Rhea takes charge of the negotiation for the return of that ‘thing’. It turns out that the thing we named in our dream will be the price we will each have to pay in order to get the item.
For some reason, Rhea paid my portion instead of me, which is nice of her. The paranoid shut-in is even bargaining to pay the price of others in our group, too! Surprising, as I thought I was annoying her more than anything else with my antics. I owe her big time I suppose…


As the negotiations stretch, I soon grow tired of pestering Hasdy on who he was doing the naughty with in his dream with the hag (I bet it’s that master of his) and I start exploring my own options.
The seed of an idea slowly forms in my genius of a brain: since I want to be a broker of information and intrigue, such an ally would sure make me take a huge step towards my goal, so what if… what if I seduced this powerful creature? She’s not THAT ugly, if you close your eyes that is.
Fuck it, I’m going for it! Teehee.


Nooo idea if it worked or not. I just woke up, sprawled on the ground, and nobody wants to answer if I scored or not. Frustrating, really.


So the thingamabob is inside a dream bubble, in a dream plane. And Babagava simply dropped it somewhere in there. Guess we’ll have to go fetch it ourselves.
Something’s weird in our group though. Many cast suspicious looks at Mavrikos, and Mavrikos seems to have inserted a bigger stick up his ass, too. What the hell did I miss? Seriously, I missed something here. Hope it was when I was passed out so I’d have a good excuse to be in the dark. Huh…


So we a brought to hammocks in Babagava’s shed and put to sleep. Off we goo!!


We arrive at this weird-looking carnival, big tent and all. There are four Tengus present, bullying this poor caricature of a chef, asking for gossip. Orfée, ever the soft-hearted, approaches them, then enters into a shopping stall for some reason. She entreats them to appeal to their good hearts and stop hurting that poor Chef that looks so much exaggerated that I’d be willing to bet that he’d live at the corner of, say, a Sesame Street and another random name of a street, like Swedish. Of course, this only serves to draw their attention to herself and she soon receives a few pecks of her own.
A battle has started.


Again, my skills with illusions helped my compadres. They wanted gossip and were ready to bully the weak for it? Then how would they react if a fucking Ettin would appear to them, asking THEM for gossip?
Didn’t work as good as I wanted, but I still managed to draw two of them little bastards towards MY bully, which helped the others take care of the isolated Tengus.
I’ve also immolated one of them, so I have that going on for me, which is great.


Fight is over! We won! And none of us are badly injured! Now to talk to that Chef… Børk

Conundrum of Mavrikos faith by Orfé

Well, these last few days have been interesting. We have travelled to the old monastery of Mavrikos to find clues of where the next piece of our quest would take us. I must say it has become a spiritual challenge for our friend Mavrikos. Firstly the meeting with his old abbot tainted by mistrust and military display followed by the ruins of the monastery where we met an inquisitor of his church and defeat them barely.

I must say that it is unusual to be persecuted by one’s own church but apparently Mavrikos is one of those unfortunate of his faith. The interesting part of his faith is that a few of the believers think and worship both aspect of his god, one that is martial and just while the other represents death and some evil. But the people believing in both aspects see both gods as one that completes one and another.

I must say this conundrum is really interesting and challenging one’s beliefs, especially for Mavrikos that does not seems to be able to accept and realize what lay before him. His old abbot and mistress – I am pretty sure were – sorry, are adapt of the dual beliefs and are subtly influencing him in this way. From what I am seeing this is not working well, actual Mavrikos seems very resistant to this concept, and maybe even narrow minded in his unique belief. I am trying but I don’t see myself being able to past his armor of faith any time soon. All beings are balance against good and evil, law and chaos, life and death, black and white. This is a simple recognition of the complex part that create us as living beings and we are but part of a whole universe that transcend each and every one of us.

Well Mavrikos my friend, if you wish to talk balance and to some degree faith in life, I can certainly take the time. The great path of life is not one that can be understood in our first passage. I myself have been through the cycle at least once before and will most likely be for a few ones in the future. Take the time to balance your beliefs and in yourself, then I dare say you will know where lies your true path.

Samir's Adventure log - Arazi - Part 1

So after our little encounter with sea spikes, we’re back at the Academy, ready to go at a new place to get that thingamabob we want for… you know… [wink] [wink].


So after our Masters are done with our reports, we are to meet a masked stranger for a briefing to our next location, an Island called Arazi.
So it’s an Island with a mega-fauna, meaning big… BIG critters walking around the place. So I estimate a few hours lost with our dear scribes arguing on the best way to fit a triceratops through our Academy portal in order to train him to become a teacher or something. Great!
And there’s a settlement somewhere there? But it’s a cover for a hidden city, filled with the descendants of the heretics of Mavrikos’ godlings or something? This speech sure is heavy on irrelevant details.
“Big Island. Hidden City. Big Monsters roaming about”. BOOM! Done! (sigh)


Oh great, there’s also these complicated social mores and traditions in that city where people always wear masks and value their private lives over everything else? Should I ever want to have a harem of other men’s wives, I’ll make sure to exploit this ridiculous custom, that’s for sure! Oh, and shops aren’t identified, too? This will be GREAT! I can feel it!
Oh yeah… the whole city is also protected against minor divination spells.


Ok so I chose a mask of myself, but with green eyes instead. It’s fool proof! Ha!


Ok so we’re off to Arazi! Our guide brought us to the hidden city and our mission is to get info about the beached ship we explored a few days ago called the Prancing Mermaid. The ship was part of an expedition that stole that thing [wink] [wink]


First things first though: we need to locate an inn in this cursed place. I guess we’ll have to knock on a few doors and hope for the best.


Ok, found an inn. Time to gather some info. I suggest going to the port authorities, for surely they would have ledgers and archives about this ship. I mean, who’s to say it originally came from here and this place was not just a short stop between their voyage?

“That’s a great idea, Samir! We should definitely start looking for information where the INFORMATION is!” said no one… I have a sinking feeling that my scribes do not take my opinions seriously. I mean, I’ve been nothing other than a solid tactician throughout our adventures. My methods are eccentric for sure, but the results speak for themselves, right? Am I dead? Of course not! So I sit at our table and will let the social awkward scribes smooth talk their way into being pointed at the Port Authority building. No chances of me getting bored at that. No Siree…


Hahahahahha! Rhea tried to get info from a sailor by first insulting him, just to loosen his tongue, THEN tried to pass herself as a grieving wife and mother, waiting for her lost sailor husband. Thing is, the ship broke down something like 20 years ago! Ha! (Note to self: ship was beached a long time ago… [cough])


Orfée is flirting with an old man, too! And he’s a baker! Who got sold into slavery in the gladiatorial arena and won his freedom (along with a kickass parrot).

Oh wow are we getting closer to our goal now! Ha!


At some point in this entertaining night the crowd fell silent as some kind of scary-looking guards came inside on their rounds. Some kind of holy guards called “The horns” I believe. (shrug)


So we’ve decided to split into two groups: one will explore the city, mostly around the Cathedral (Orfée, Hasdrubal and Rhea) while Mavrikos, Nasah and I will go to the Port Authorities to take a look into their archives.


So Mavrikos takes the lead and, after a few awkward inquiries about the location to the port authorities, we were finally given the direction to this damn place. Once inside, Mavrikos tries to get access to the archives, which we finally get. Once upstairs, we are met with a lot of ledgers to examine, which will take a while I guess.
But never fear! Samir’s here! I simply gave a random clerk 5 gold pieces to help us find this damn ship, the Prancing Mermaid. When I say the name of the ship, I noticed the clerk seemed to jump at its mention. Something fishy is going on here…
The clerk wants us to wait upstairs while he goes downstairs to fetch books to help in his search. Yeah, I won’t leave him out of my sight, that one!


It’s funny, really. The best way to deal with manmade absolutes has always been with chaos for me. Men have this tunnel vision directed at their goals and any disruptions going their way shake their resolves. The more absurd said disruption is, the more confused they get, thus making their goals shine like a beacon, so concentrated they are to get back to it. (sigh) and I am seen as this bumbling fool by the others… Oh well. Underestimation is a weapon I won’t shy away from.


So the clerk keeps insisting that I stay up with the others, while I wholeheartedly agree with him, but follow him nonetheless. He gets more nervous by my actions (which proves to me that something is afoot of course). As I follow him behind the counter, my luck runs out, as only captains are allowed back there or some such, so I excuse myself to go take a piss (ha! Classic Samir!) outside while the clerk, rather than going behind to get the ledgers, remains to make sure I get back, which I do, of course, but under another guise, mask and all.
I start to loudly complain about the clerk’s lack of respect to my importance, as he is refusing to help me, still waiting for my first version to come back. After a while, he shrugs and asks an acolyte to go get the authorities. So we’re in trouble, I guess.
Try as I might, I am not allowed upstairs to tell my friends to get the hell out, so I make as much noise as possible to let them know something’s up. After a while Mavrikos gets the message and we make our exit to the streets. Not soon after, a window on the second floor explodes outward. Nasah, holding a stack of books, comes flying out of it, landing face-first at our feet.
One of the books is thrown from poor Nasah’s grasp and lands at the feet of these horned bastards that scared the inn’s patrons last night.
Oh, boy are Mavrikos and Nasah in trouble! Ha ha ha!


What? They figured out I’m with them too? How is that even possible?? I changed appearance in-between!
Oh? They can see past illusions? That will explain them seeing me NOW, but how the hell did they associate my first version to my second though??? Bah!


So we are brought to the cathedral dungeons and the questioning begins.
Of course, Mavrikos can’t lie (poor bastard), so his replies reek of running around the bush, which doesn’t help at all.
Let Uncle Samir deal with this. We found the boat captain’s log and we were looking for more info on the book in order to see if it was worth something. You know, we just wanted to make money. There! Problem solved! We’re innocent of whatever we’re being accused of!


Nope. Forgot to think about how we found our way inside this secret city. Psshhhh. Piece of Cake! This guy with a frog mask told us. What color his mask was? Blue, of course! Where we entered the city? I don’t know, as THERE ARE NO SIGNS IDENTIFYING BUILDINGS!
This bullshitting exercise is too easy, considering no one know each other in this city.


The info seems to satisfy that horned prick, as he soon leaves, leaving us with two guards, intent on watching our every moves. So I pass the time trying to fuck with their brains, conjuring ghost sounds and the like.


Nasah switches to elven and suggests we sell out our contact in exchange for our freedom. I disagree strongly, as backstabbing an Academy asset sure won’t get us (and my us, I mean me) into our respective masters’ good graces. I’m walking a thin line already. Mavrikos agrees with me on that one.
So they keep thinking up solutions to escape, while I twirl our Academy-issued Portal key… they don’t seem to catch that one. Oh well.
I’m not too concerned for my fate, as I can activate my undead ring and fake a heart attack or something, then figure out an escape as they drag me to wherever they dispose of corpses.


An old elven patriarch finally comes in to talk to us. Looks like they aren’t bad folks and they want to help us get the thing!


The whole band is back together in the patriarch’s office. After some exploring, they found out a sculpture of the ship somewhere in the city. Turns out it’s some kind of holy ship or something? That’s why people were giving us strange looks at the mere mention of it and why we were arrested. Seems like a sacrilege or something…


Two things I remember about this encounter:

1- The thing we are after was given to this evil creature named Babagava for safekeeping. We are getting closer!!
2- The patriarch is quite disappointed in Mavrikos. Ha! I won’t let him live this down that’s for sure!
Poor guy though, he’s stuck between a rock and a hard place regarding his religion. Should he side with the heretics who are nice guys, or should he stick with the orthodox who tried to kill us a few days ago? Oh, and add his slavery to the Academy’s devious agenda…


So we are off to a dinosaur-happy trek into the island! Yay us!

Orfé's class assignment

As I prepared for our next adventure, I got to seek a special magical object. This circlet would help me understand better the things of magic and knowledge. I was a little surprised by the price to pay for this magic item. Mistress Althea was very specific in her request, show up in the art class and take a naked posture for the student, they would then practice their art by using me as a model. How strange, well I have never been a model before and look forward to the experience as it would yet another one to add to my list and hopefully a good to balance all the not so good one I had recently.

Well I showed up to the class. I was surprise to see all the student excited about this little painting exercise. I entered, took my place on the small pedestal in the center of the room and looked at all the students. I felt a little nervous having all of them staring at me with unhidden interests and curiosity. Well I must admit, it is not every day one sees or interact with someone like me, having blue skin definitely raise the difficulty of the assignment, mmm, let’s see if I can get them a little more excitement.

Looking around, I pull my robe and fix it above me, to have it over me like shower forming a high balloon. I quickly casts a light spell to change the lighting area and then take a meditative position, closing my eyes and just sitting as still as I could for as long as I could. Taking in the moment, listen to the whispers of the student and some of their swear as the light changed my skin color to dark blues, blacks and event purplish.

I think the session went well. After a few hours I could understand that most students had their assignment done or almost and were putting the final touch to it. It was obvious after I dress back and went to the canvas that some have great talent, while others are more imaginative. Overall I was more curious to see how they saw me than in the perfection of their work. I was pleased with what I offered but I am uncertain if Mistress Althea was or would be. But I think the added light made it a different challenge for everyone.

Samir's Adventure Log - The lost Monastery of Phos - Part 2

Alright! Now that the zealots are dead (except ours), we get to go south!


Sure is a boring view, what with all those hills and rocks…


Found the hidden staircases in the hills close to the path! Me! Again! I’m sure getting good at finding non-lethal and/or non-dangerous stuff.


Mavrikos and Hasdrubal take the lead and eventually, we arrive to yet another monastery that seems to have suffered the same fate as Mavrikos’ childhood home back north. As we approach, we see three corpses (very old by my reckoning) hanging upside-down, nailed to big-ass “X”s.
And that’s when both Mavrikos and Hasdrubal freeze in place. Not surprised by Hasdrubal practicing his poses for his master’s little soirées, but I’m kinda little pissed that he chose to invite Mav instead of his good friend. Who cares if I can ruin Hasdy’s reputation if “I so much as show [my] face uninvited to those events” as he puts it. Bah! The things you promise for friendship…


Turns out they had a vision like I did in Whadi. It was about this war between two schools of bigotry of the same god, one implying the god’s brother is evil, and the other thinking they are friends and must be shown to be evil because of something inconsequential I didn’t bother to learn (the scribes do talk… A LOT!). The vision was about yet another inquisitor dispensing self-righteous justice against the three young heretics with some kinds of angels as bodyguards.


Oh great, Orfée and Mavrikos are going at it, wagging their tongues about who’s who in this vision. Are the executed younglings the heretics or are the angels-inquisitor gang?
Why. The. Hell. Would. It. MATTER? We still have to go get that thing, right? They’ll still try to kill us anyway!
I think the next time orcs or goblins attack us, I’ll ask the scribes which clan the enemy is hailing from, because reasons…


Well, the matter is solved! I think the gods got bored of their conversation, too, because I soon found an engraving, picturing the two gods embracing each other. Problem solved!


Nope. It’s not solved, damn it! Now they’re worried about Mavrikos’ loyalty should we go against his side of the bigot wars? Against the friends of Mav, who just tried to kill him?
We have gremlins in our damned brains ready to make us faint and shit ourselves at the mere mention of that… thing we’re doing.
I’ll just cloak a beggar in an invisibility spell, make it hang around us and just ask Mavrikos his thoughts about the thing and BOOM! He’ll be unconscious, ready to be tied to a tree while we “acquire” the doodad. Sometimes my scribes just think too much on irrelevant things…


Ok, so we’ve walked three days now. Can’t wait to arrive wherever we’re going.


So we got attacked by two Leucrottas last night. Killed one of them and we were able to subdue the other one. Why I have no idea.


You’ve got to be shitting me! Orfée and Rhea are trying to make friends with that foul monster… that Nasah is feeding with meat from the beast’s own brother we’ve just killed! This is… How… What…


Our group, along with our new “friend”, finally arrive at the coast where we see an abandoned ship lying nearby. Time to explore!


Hasdrubal is scouting the ship from above with a flying spell while I activate my ring to go underwater in order to find a hole where we could enter (and possible treasure lying underwater of course). If I find one we sure would get the upper hand on whatever monster is lying in wait. From my vast experience with women, entering by the backdoor unannounced is a sure way to create momentary panic, that’s for sure! Wink-wink.


Of course… There’s nothing lying on the seabed. No treasure whatsoever. Just Huge sea urchins, hungry for a taste of good ol’ Samir. And I’m alone…


I survived! How? No idea, but I’m alive! I managed, after a few foiled attempts, to drag my ass inside the boat and FINALLY sent an arcane message to Hasdy as to my whereabouts. He seemed pissed that I didn’t tell him earlier though. Well, that’s me, forgetting to help myself not dying by letting my friends help me… oops!


Found a captain’s log. Yuck. I’ve also found his journal detailing the ship’s journey and where they were ailing from. So we’ve got a City to go next! Time to study shenanigan spells!

Oh yeah, the journal also speaks of the Stone of Serenity, which I guess is that thing we’re looking for for that…


I’ll need new pants…

Hostess against her will

My last adventure was somewhat special. I never thought I would be incarnated into another living being in such a symbiosis and then share her experience and knowledge, fear and love, vision and nightmares. She was so like me that it was hard for me to make the difference between us. She was one of faith and strong belief, I am as well. She cares genuinely for other as I do. She wanted as much as I a way to solve issues that does not mean killing people if it can be avoided.

I was sent there by Master Broju with the other of the group to get our friends out of this alternate place called earth. A world with almost no magic and technology that I do not fully understands. There we searched and found our friend Mavrikios and then start searching for Rhialla. We fought charmed semi-demon in a desecrated church and then found our friend, or should I say ex-friend as she did not want to return to our world. She gave us the device needed and we went to look for Anasthesia, the young princess of this place that Master Broju wanted us to get back.

I Anastasia palace prison we did find her, relatively quickly and had to dispose of a guard. We took refuge in the secret library where one of the local allies showed us. He started to perform the ritual to get Mavrikios and Anastasia back but we were force to protect it against soldier of the palace. We fought bravely and as long as we could but in the end our host where defeated and we came back.

I am still mourning your sacrifice, you devotion and courage to put yourself at such a risk, and pay such a prince for a master, magic and a world you barely knew. Your faith and devotion to our cause made you special in my mind. We shared something that cannot be shared among others, it was one of those blooming flower that faded just as quickly.

By your friend Orfé, know that you will be honored and remembered Tatiana Samarin.

Samir's Adventure Log - The Lost Monastery of Phos, Part 1

By all the gods it’s boring in here! They let me loose into the world and expect me to come back to the mundane tasks of an Academy apprentice without dying of boredom? Those are cruel, CRUEL masters we have.
But at least I got to practice my skills at lifting things at range, which will help me disarm traps and erm… “find” interesting objects that lies around people’s belts, desks, drawers, etc.

How rude! Not a single one of my partners in crime (looting is a crime supposedly. Go figure) agreed to help me exploit a loophole in the price limit of magic objects to buy (I can only buy items that are worth 2000gp, unlike others who can buy 4000gp)! I’d buy their cheap stuff and they’d buy my above 2000gp stuff and we’d switch it all once outside the Academy. It was fool proof! But nooooooo, no one was interested at all!
Mavrikos, upon seeing me, simply told me he wasn’t interested in ANYTHING related to me. I didn’t even said “hello” to him!
And Hasdrubal even gave me a speech about some guy named Fred who wouldn’t allow this exploit. Who the hell is “Fred” anyway? That the quartermaster or something?
Fine then! I’ll buy my own magic stuff, with blackjack and hookers!
Well, since no one has an ounce of daring in them, might as well start learning on the Watchumacallits in Rusk that I owe Kohlm for that favor he gave me.

Ok, so I’ve just learned that the Mewling Quims was a name thrown at us as a joke, meaning our group is given the permission to choose a proper name with the Academy’s blessing.
I need to come up with something quick before one of the others ruins my fun.
The Brotherhood of the Hand? That would piss the ladies off to no end. Or the opposite, like the Sisterhood of the Travelling Robes? I like the word “hand” though. After all, we do get the JOB done, ey EY!?? Bah!
How about the White Heroes Of Redemptive Elves, of W.H.O.R.E.s for short?
It’s a work in progress.

Ok, so we were called into a meeting with the Big Cahoonas and we were treated with a seat at the table. We’re advancing in life I tell you whhhat!

That was weird. We had out skulls opened and they put some sort of shadow creatures inside our heads in order to guard our thoughts about a conspiracy we’re about to hear from. Why would they need to do that? Aren’t we trustworthy?

Mind. BLOWN! This is conspiracy that will ch…

Ok, so I can’t even write about tis without getting confused and passing out? That sucks goat balls.

Hmmm, wonder if there’s a way to do it…

Ok, I gave up my attempts after I supposedly started singing a nursery song while standing on a table at the dinner hall and then fainting… while soiling myself. I hate quitting…

After much discussing, we decided to go to the monastery where Mavrikos barely escaped with his life in order to acquire one of…

Damn it! Those were my finest clothes!

Ok, to a monastery we go, just for the hell of it. Happy now?!

We end up near a village and go to the tavern to ask questions regarding the monk house ruins. Turns out the old Abbot survived and lives in a city nearby. As the scribe discuss and plan and tactic-kalize and whatnot, Hasdrubal nudges me and discreetly points me towards a farmer who seems to take a keen interest in our conversation. As we prepare to leave, the fellow leaves the tavern, running towards the field. I quickly change my appearance to look like the tavern maid (in case I get caught I could just say that I like him, giggle like an idiot and run away and none would be the wiser) and follow him. What the hell, I’m good at sneaking now?!! He never saw me!
Turns out him and a bunch of goat tenders want to ambush us to steal our gold and be rich. This will be fun!

Ok, so I casted an illusion of yours truly a hundred feet in front of us, acting like a badass scout, stopping at any suspicious spot and acting all suspicious-y, trying to draw their hand and ruin their surprise.
It worked! My illusion soon received a crossbow bolt to the imaginary face.
A flaming sphere was all it took for the amateur highwaymen to see the error of their ways and the final nail in their thievery careers’ lives was pushed by our dear Orfée with one of her speeches about doing good and being good boys and whatnot.

We arrived at the city and immediately went to the Cathedral, where Mavrikos acted all paladiny in order to get info about the old Abbott. Turns out he lives a quiet life and made a vow of silence. Guess Mavrikos will do the talking for the both of them, like usual. ZING!

As we’re about to leave, I see an acolyte looking at us, and bolting in the opposite direction, probably going to warn someone of our coming, so, using my quick wits, I spin a grand tail about my need to pee and bolt in the direction of the acolyte, but I’m met with failure: the acolyte is nowhere to be found. And so I come back to the waiting acolyte and tell him I relieved myself in the street. Hehehe puuure genius!

We arrive at the priests’ retirement home and Mavrikos goes inside while we wait in the street. The acolyte was eager to leave, so as soon as he turns the corner I assume his appearance in order to prevent a dagger in the back, should one be coming. Orfée is fooled until I tell her of my full bladder, which she gets, and goes to sit back on the bench in a huff.

Sure enough, a priest and some thugs comes close and orders me back to the cathedral, which I feign to do until I throw a spell at his back. Pow! Right in the kisser!

Fighting time! And I got a super cool spell wand that lets me move at twice the range I did in the past. Try and hit me when I’m THAT far away, suckers!

The damn priest flew away when we were kicking his ass! And the thugs, too. All but one that we captured. He refused to turn in his friends. I tried to take the priest’s appearance and make it seem like I was captured, too, so that I could tell the thug that the gig was up, that we should just tell them who we were, but the group didn’t understand the intricacies of my plan and looked at me like I was an idiot. Finesse of the brain is not their forte, sadly…

Ok, we’re back at the cathedral and Mavrikos is PISSED! He’s arguing with the Bishop to the point where the Bishop clearly threatens Mav with religious sanctions or something. I take the priest’s appearance and we ask if he knows who that is, but he tells us no. We do not believe him though.
He’s an untrustworthy fellow, that one. Hey! Maybe he’s from that cult of Phos that was a heresy and was wiped out centuries ago! Maybe they’ve infiltrated the Church and are all evil and shit… Bah! I’ll let the smart ones figure that one out.
The bishop suggests an inn in the city for us to use, but we’re not THAT stupid, so we go to the second higher pricy inn instead. That’ll show him!

So we’re at the inn now and we’ve rented a private table where we can discuss our next steps. Mavrikos detected a scrying spell in our room though and tries to tell Orfée that we are being watched, to disastrous results: Orfée spills the beans and it looks like she did this on purpose, too! Why would she want the spy to know that we know? Wouldn’t the spy knowing that we know make him or her more knowing that we know, you know? I don’t understand that girl sometimes.

Well, since the gig is up, might as well force the scryer’s hands by taunting him! Nothing like a bruised ego to eliminate all the careful weaving of traps and intrigue, replaced by reckless charging in a fit of rage at us! Eh? EH?!
So I change appearance and take the shape of a naked Bishop, ready to run around the inn and outside, blessing the populace as I go. That’ll do it!

Nope. Apparently it didn’t work, as Orfée is pleading with the Inn’s owner to not kick us out, saying something about me being “special” or something…
Oh, and I get to have a lecture from Orfée, who didn’t want to piss off someone who tried to kill us, but wants him to know that we know they know? And the group balks at my suggestion that we use the port key to go back to the Academy in order to teleport back near the ruins, thus making them lose our trails and giving us a WHOLE day advantage over them (I mean, even if they DID spot us 2 minutes after our teleportation, it would still mean they’d have to make the day trip to our new location, no?). I just don’t get it. Ah well, such is life.

Mavrikos tells us that the Abbott kept insisting about praying while facing south, so the group believes that there might be an underground entrance at the southernmost point in the monastery ruins, which makes sense. So off to the village we go!

We’re back at the village and we gather another clue: the forces that destroyed the monastery came… from the SOUTH! We’ll get that damn rel…

Good thing I brought another set of clothes… We’ll go explore the south of the ruins to find random treasure, then!

We’re at the ruins and its pouring rain outside (of course it’s outside!). Visibility is atrocious. We barely see the shape of a man approaching us on the road in time to react. Turns out it’s the wannabe thief from the day prior, warning us that thugs are looking for us and are coming this way. Well, what do you know? Orfée’s speech actually WORKED! Maybe I should try her approaches… that is, if I don’t die of boredom while attempting it.

So we prepare ourselves for the upcoming fight and I’m to be the lookout person on this little encounter. I go ahead on the road and find a hiding place. Soon enough, I hear horses coming up the road, so send an arcane message to Orfée, warning them of their approach. They’ll fall into a trap and it won’t be us this time! I can’t wait!

No traps!?? Just Mavrikos talking to this inquisitor fellow!??? What the hell is that? We had them in a TRAP!!! These scribes will be the death of me, I swear!

So Mavrikos ended up telling the killers off, so the fight begins!

Poor Hasdrubal… He really should stop attending Althea’s little soirées, because his posturing in front of the enemy made one of them study his moves and get his number. As soon as the fight was on Hasdy suffered a crippling stab to the gut and he was out of commission before he could say “could you oil my back?”

The fight was a tough one, and we nearly lost Mavrikos, who was assailed on all sides from three assassins. I got to make the killing blow to the Inquisitor though. And guess what!??? I didn’t get a scratch YET again! Yay Me! One was able to run away to tell the Bishop about the inquisitor’s death though… At least we know it was the bishop who sent him and the coward ran away when Mavrikos was down for the count, which might convince his Whoriness that we have no more reason to stay and investigate.

So, not bad for a days’ work! We got rid of the Bishop’s lackey and we have the way clear to go get the…

Gods damnit! Next time I bring my brown pants…


I'm sorry, but we no longer support this web browser. Please upgrade your browser or install Chrome or Firefox to enjoy the full functionality of this site.