Campaign of the Month: November 2018

The Red Hand

The best-laid plans of mice and Samir often go awry

One day my thoughts will unscramble long enough to keep me out of trouble. One day…


It started well, too. A little trip to the surrounding watering holes quickly gave me the in to the ceremony. Turns out it was Hasdy’s brother-in-law that was getting married and not his hated father. Oh, and his sister died. Oh, and his niece and nephew were scheduled to be sacrificed the next morning… By the gods! How long was I away from my scribes?!
Bah! No matter. I had juuuust the right trinkets in my bag-o-tricks to pull off a heist that would prevent the sacrifice of two innocent creatures sharing ol’ Grouchy’s blood.
Planning always required a lot of effort, or so my teachers always told me. Maybe it is in my contrarian nature, or maybe I simply lack the patience to account for contingencies and predict possible outcomes. Regardless, planning was never my forte. Or my anything, really. No. I understand the chaotic ebb and flow of the civilized races’ nature. No amount of planning was perfect when a Sentient was in the equation, so why plan at all, I say. You see a light far on your right? Well, you kick your feet in the general direction, with quick changes of trajectory when you’re a little off the mark. Simple as that, really!
My plan? Simple, really! Pass myself off as a Whadian envoy (as I heard Nazzu, Hasdy’s brother-in-law, had dealings with them) and get to the reception. Why do this when you could simply be a Plus One to our mighty hero’s banquet? Well, where’s the fun in that?
Ok, then what, you ask? Well, I’d use one (or both!) of my love potions, make them invisible, and use my Arcane Trickster… trick to make it float over Nazzu or his wife-to-be’s wine glass, wait ‘till they are not around each other and pour those babies down their goblets. Now, with a little chance, I’d be the first one they see (and get introduced to their treasure rooms!), but even if not, the newfound love they would experience towards a guard or a rival noble would make the whole wedding ceremony collapse. You see, when chaos is unleashed, nothing can be predicted aside from any previously established wedding plans going out the window.
Easy peasy!


I’m at the banquet, intermingling with the snobs as I get a feel of the place and its revelers. Oh, And walking the grounds I spot a small building being guarded with more guards than the other ones. Bingo. There they are!

As I social-butterfly throughout the early hours of the banquet, I can spot my friends.
The hero of the banquet, Hasdrubal, is seething in rage in a corner (as usual! And it’s not my fault this time, ha!) barely being restrained and coddled by Mommy Orfée, the little Fox lass nervously watching the exchange nearby, waiting for the calm to approach her friend for something, methinks.
Oh, and there’s Nasah, clearly alive (thank the gods!), yet more withdrawn and traumatized then usual.
Time to make my entrance!


The damned scribes figured me out before I could even open my mouth! Damned smirk will be the death of me… Now let’s hear about their plans.


sigh, no plans it seems. Hasdy’s of the “kill em’ all” mood, Nasah stares at the floor in awed confusion, Kitsune’s wary of my presence and Orfée is adamant no one is to die. Oh, someone approaches.


Well, that fat bastard sure ruined my plan, what with his spell of continuous detection he has on him at all time and figuring out our identities like it was nothing (damned reputation!). This sure throws a wrench in my Samir chariot, that’s for sure! sigh Plan B it is, then.


Orfée keeps objecting to all of our my plans! Sure, half of them are great points that would unmask us easily, but the other half?
(in a whiny scolding mommy voice) “No death of guards! No switching the blame on guards! No death, period!” Damn that goodie two-shoes who-saved-my-life-more-times-than-I-can-remember!


Ok, Now that Orphée is gone and Nasah went to bed, time to enact Plan W! Hasdy agrees to trust my judgement (!!) and will wait for the kids to arrive at the Academy via my portal key while Kit will try a diversion with one of the guards she encountered previously.
My time to shine!
First, a little change of appearance to look like the asshole kids’ father. Then a Vanish spell on me. After that? Dimming into the dark building where the kids sleep.
What else… Oh yeah, an illusion of very dark and opaque smoke around the room. I bring out 2 dead “cats” previously sculpted from fresh corpses I acquired prior to my trip here. Sculpt them back into exact replicas of the snoozing children (by the gods I love that spell! So simple and yet so many possibilities with it!). Put the “kids” at the foot of each beds. Wake up the real ones, convince them to shut up and follow me, shove then through the portal door, spill lantern oil in an “accident pattern”, light the fire, wait a few breaths ‘till I’m sure the corpses are barely recognizable, make an illusion of the little girl’s voice crying in shock with the sound of a broken lantern, kill my illusion and dim the hell out of Dodge back into the surrounding forest to join the festivities and act as shocked as all of them at the “tragedy” unfolding under our very shocked eyes. And Kitsune performed marvellously, keeping the guard’s eyes away from my shenanigans, too! Good on the little lass!

See?!! Easy peasy!


Well, Orphée spilled the beans on us to the Fat wizard. Another enemy for good ol’ Samir. Oh, and the fact witnesses saw the kids at the Hall of Doors didn’t help either… never thought that far, damnit!
That is Samir’s lot in life you see: Clever enough to win the game of cards easily, yet not enough to let spare cards fall down from his sleeves right on the table for all to see while celebrating… sigh
The fat wizard has no more use for me and I an teleported back into the Hall of Doors, soon joined in by Orphée and, later on, Kitsune who’s more skittish than usual. Poor little thing.


We’re back into Master Lyrion Tannister’s private quarters now. Poor innocent Kit is not equipped to deceive, bless her soul, and she spills the beans. She is tasked with finding out what is our master’s secret plans and report to the fat bastard.
I can’t tell you anymore after this because I tried to reassure Kit that our plan was safe by telling her about it… and passing out from the Geas imposed on us by the One of Knows and Drink Things, among others.

Comments

I hear ya. I hope Orphée doesn’t cramp our style like that too often. :P Samir and Hasdy both know that to make omelettes you need to crack a few hired goons.

 

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The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry. No matter how carefully a project is planned, something may still go wrong with it. The saying is adapted from a line in “To a Mouse,” by Robert Burns: “The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men / Gang aft a-gley.”

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