On Distant Shores

Season Four

[After an emergency Teleport The Book&Blade escape to a burning Waterdeep that is being invaded]


The Scorching of Waterdeep

On a street choked with the smoke and acrid stench of a great city burning the Book and Blade appeared. Brought there as they were by the untested magics of a Tymoran priests first attempt at teleportation it is understandable that what they first noticed was not the deep cloak of smoke turned bright orange by the nearby flames or the cinders falling all around them. A hard road teaches those who travel it to pick up on certain important sounds. These sounds you eventually learn to hear to the exclusion of others when faced with the unknown. The sounds of screaming people, desperate and horrified, cut through the mind haze of the teleportation spell faster than anything else.

Through the destruction of several burning buildings they see the figure of a man standing in the inferno. As the figure raises a hand the fire roars furiously around him as though fueled by some massive bellows. The bright orange spots of his eyes pierce the group briefly as they sweep over the destruction with evident satisfaction. That gaze left burn marks on their skin and they feel the sting of damaged flesh.

The wisest predators are those who know when there is danger beyond their capacity to resolve through cunning or violence; the figure sharing the street with this one caused well honed and experienced instincts to command. Dimble knew the others would flow with him by the urging of lesser but adequate reactions. He was halfway to the grand doors of a huge sturdy structure the dwarf or man would have called Guild House before he realized his chosen exit was too small for the larger ones to use. A large stone pillar was resting across the entry way at a narrow angle. Small dots of light highlighted the edges of the pillar and Dimble saw a huge and complex set of symbols scroll on the right side of his vision. The pillar filled the remainder of his vision as the left was given over to a quickly revolving sheathed sword. Danger profile high…. Weight assessment coupled with strength profile of host suggest insufficient force to move impediment. Accessing non volatile memory… assessment of free agent “Harune” suggests supplementary force sufficient. Forcing communication of necessary actions to free agent, high chance of compliance with authorized tonal adjustment. The gnome found himself shouting to the dwarf, together they lifted the pillar enough for the group to slide under. Looking around the room for threats he found four men. One was lined yellow, a moderate but non immediate threat. Two were lined in faint blue indicating no threats, weak. One was not lined at all, weakest.

Lucious assessed the room in one swift glance. (Clear… three down… a staff?) He cataloged the room before his eyes could close for the next blink. As he paid careful attention to his companions (Why is a black cloak here?) he moved silently through the room looking down at the faces of pained or unconscious men wondering what they would find. (Nothing should Harune and Pierce intervene [I know they will]) He found himself standing over a motionless man wearing the many pocketed robe of a Wizard. (The untrained, lazy or incompetent ones.) His staff lay across his chest. (The soldier who had positioned it so must have thought this Mage appreciated the inane martial tenets he himself followed.) He noted the cut strings of a coin purse. (Yet the valuables remain.) He casually lifted the hefty leather bound spell book from the dead man. A brief moment of regret showed on his features. What might this human have done should he have had the chance to live. (He is at least fifty. So… nothing.)

Pierce stood still for a moment and took a deep breath. Priorities must be assessed: civilians, soldiers, combat modifiers, engagement… in that order barring negative developments. Obviously there was a large battle being waged outside. Waterdeep was not defenseless, great forces worked here. Not to mention the impressive military and law enforcement the city state maintained. They would need every soldier; and this room held two well equipped swordsmen and a robed man that, by evidence of Lucius’s attention, was most likely a caster of some sort. These men needed to get back into the fight. Making his way to both swordsmen he appealed to Tymora to adjust the battle a little in his favor. As he had come to expect She granted his request. Pierce smiled to himself as the soldiers breathing regulated and their wounds knitted, she was good like that. He stood up satisfied they would be battle ready in a few minuets and made his way to the mage. He caught the eye of Lucius who merely nodded his head once in the negative. Pierce nodded and turned around, he knew Lucius would not have taken the mans tome without first checking for signs of life. Perhaps another sword could be restored later.

Harune moved with strong efficient strides to the side of the only standing man in the room. A reflexive check suggested this man was no friend of darkness. The man stood at attention, the dwarf noticed the barely restrained reflex to salute. The paladin noted to himself that the man was on edge, seeing the four of them had caused more surprise than was warranted given the situation. Caution was foremost in the dwarfs mind when he addressed the man. “Sergeant, it is good to see some men still stand to fight the good fight.” He noticed some steel return to the mans posture. He spoke hoping Pierce would listen to their conversation and pick up on the details. “I need a fighting mans assessment of the situation.”

The black cloak responded quickly. “The market district is fucked sir. Time to abandon it. Seems to me we should take everyone either forward to clear out the slums with the locals or back to the docks and meet up with the rest of the Cloaks. I heard a messenger say Preacher and that old bat teamed up with the Blackstaff to drive off that thing wrecking the ships but that they are still dealing with the lizard men. Personally I say the slums, the shit going on there needs to stop. But Korvain says hold so we hold.

Herrun sensed the darkness gathering about the small group assembled here. He knew holding this building would result in the deaths of this man and any others with him. “Perhaps it would be best if you came with us fighting man. We can be more effective moving together in force. I fear holding here would only result in an early meeting with your gods. And now, more than ever, they demand strength.”

A quiet impatient sigh could be heard in the corner of the room. The others noticeably relaxed as Lucious had finished his examination. “Perhaps it would be best Herrun if the soldier followed his orders. We could use a shield at our backs.”

Pierce spoke before Herrun could respond. “No, we will move together. Sergeant, you and anyone you have left are with us until this is over.” The Black Cloak nodded.

Kicking open a chest and dumping its contents into his pack Dimble added “Yeah, staying here is going to get us killed. Why are we still here? We should move. Why are we not moving?”

Lucius: Learn one spell from every spell level you can cast.

Pierce: Gain three followers at highest levels available. Lose all other followers.

Harune: +2 Diplomacy, +2 Sense Motive

Dimble: + 200 Platinum

Promotion and Reconstruction

Titan of Flesh

Three Deaths and their Subsequent Resurrections

A. Lucious
B. Dimble
C. Herrun

Where hath noble Dimble gone?

Chief Inquisitor of Waterdeep
Inquisitor Simon has sent a formal letter requesting the presence of Chief Inquisitor Lucius at a state diner in Waterdeep on the 17th of Eleint. Governor Tarthus has called on all important figures of his administration as well as his allies in the Senate to attend. Failure to appear at this diner would severely jeopardize Lucien’s tentative hold on his administration.

Requirements of Lucien: Attend the Diner, Organize the Inquisition

Attend the Diner: At the Diner are some local leaders associated with the Lords Alliance including the Lord Ranger of Secomber Trasker Selarn. Secomber has had a recent boom of activity being an important stop on the road to Fields and relations between the two cities has become close.
Lucien is approached by Tarthus after the diner informing him that he will not leave Waterdeep as its Chief Inquisitor unless he leaves it with at least a functioning Inquisition. Inquisitor Simon has already been given the first year’s budget of 4,000 gold and has spent half that doing the best he could maintaining a half-way operational system.

Diplomacy:
Bluff:
Intimidation:
Gather Information:
Knowledge: Nobility & Royalty:
Knowledge Local:

Organize the Inquisition: Inquisitor Simon has kept a relatively functional investigation team that has handled a few cases for very wealthy people who were effectively treated as clients and has worked out of a small office in Waterdeep Castle. It has so-far been unable to handle unprofitable but necessary government investigations.
Lucien can complete the current Inquisitions case-load with four days of spell casting. And then must spend an additional 12 days organizing the inquisition. He must answer several strategy level questions:
Does he want an active or passive Inquisition?
Does he want to closely integrate or involve his organization with the Red Cloaks?
Does he want to closely integrate or involve his organization with the Governor’s Office?
Does he want to closely integrate or involve his organization with the Guild?
Does he want to closely integrate or involve his organization with the Senate?
Does he want to closely integrate or involve his organization with the Nobles?
Does he want to closely integrate or involve his organization with the Commoners?
Where does he want to make his Head Office?
How much budget deficit is he willing to go into?

Diplomacy:
Bluff:
Intimidation:
Gather Information:
Knowledge: Nobility & Royalty:
Knowledge Local:
Intelligence Check:
Search:
Spellcraft:

Lord Warden of the Star Mountains
Governor of Fields and Titled of the Lady, The Merchant has called Peirce to address the building responsibilities of the Wardenship of the Star Mountains. The Senate has called for the completion of the mining operations they requested in the mountains. A report of “significant progress” must be made to the senate by the 10th of Marpenoth.

Requirements of Pierce: Attend the Senate, Organize the Defenses of the Mountains

Attend the Senate: The Senate wants the Star Mountains secured from any intrusion from the Lords Alliance, Forces of Shade Returned or the most likely threat of the erupting Orcs of the Graypeak Mountains. Keeping in mind that he is only realistically expected to protect the mining operation and supply route to Secomber primarily from the above mentioned forces and bandits and that he has been given only a 8,000 gold budget; Pierce must answer some strategy level questions:
Does he want to closely integrate or involve his organization with the Governors Office?
Does he want to closely integrate or involve his organization with the Guild?
Does he want to closely integrate or involve his organization with the Senate?

Gather Information:
Diplomacy:
Bluff:
Intimidation:
Knowledge: Nobility & Royalty:
Knowledge Local:
Wisdom Check:

Organize the Defenses of the Mountains: Organizing for the beginning of construction of the fortress and first patrols of the trade route will take 20 days. Pierce must decide where he will get his labor from and where he will pull his troops from:
Does he want static positions along the route, active patrols or a costly combination of both?
Can he provide and how much can he provide in spell casting services?
Does he want to utilize vast and cheap amounts of labor?
Does he want to closely integrate or involve his organization with the Lady?
Does he want to closely integrate or involve his organization with the The Black Cloaks?
Does he want to closely integrate or involve his organization with the Secomber?
Does he want to closely integrate or involve his organization with the Lords Alliance?
What, if any, preliminary action would he like to take against or about the rumors of Orcs from the Graypeaks?
How much budget deficit is he willing to go into?

Gather Information:
Diplomacy:
Bluff:
Intimidation:
Knowledge: Nobility & Royalty:
Knowledge Local:
Wisdom Check:

A Respected Dwarf
Although the Book and Blade are a well-known, respected and even popular group its members are not viewed equally among the public. People find Lucien to be aloof and threatening, Bimdle chaotic and dangerous and although there is goodwill towards Pierce he is often seen as militant war hawk. The most respected and well thought of member is Herrun the steady and dependable. With the Dar integrated so closely in society a general good will in Fields is extended to all dwarves, but most exceptionally to Herrun.

Requirements of Pierce: Address the Dar, Help Captain Forthill

Address the Dar: The Dar have been given an Office of Representation to the Senate of Fields and want Herrun to organize and lead it. Dar are still far too introverted and unfamiliar with Politics to be able to set up such an office. If Herrun refuses the Dar will go unrepresented for years in the fast and powerful politics of the ACT which could have devastating effects on their self-determination moving forward. Training the Dar to represent themselves to a powerful government and organizing a political office will take 22 days. Herrun must answer these questions.
Should the Dar maintain this office as a voting member of the senate as is their right?
How should the Dar select a head of the Office of Representation?
Should the Dar allow non-Dar to work in this office or represent them to government?
Will Herrun accept an honorary position in this Office?

Diplomacy:
Gather Information:
Diplomacy:
Bluff:
Intimidation:
Knowledge: Nobility & Royalty:
Knowledge Local:
Wisdom Check:

Help Captain Forthill: Captain Forthill needs help maintaining and expanding the Black Cloaks. As the highest ranking militant officer he can make decisions in aspects of war for the Cloaks but he has little legal authority over the specialist administration of the Lady within the cloaks. Pierce is now technically a free holding Baron of a foreign land subservient directly to the Lady and only politically engaged to the Senate of fields it would be inappropriate to grant him additional powers within the administration.
Where should Administration look primarily for its estimated 140 soldier minimum headcount?
Given that at least 40 are needed to govern and another 80 to maintain 40 permanent Black Cloak administered sites around fields and Waterdeep and that another 20 are needed to manage logistics of the administration; what soldier to officer ratio should the administration maintain?
Given that the Preacher is requesting a permanent presence of the administration in Waterdeep; how many representatives should the Administration maintain there?
Does the Administration want to apply military law or a type of civilian law to sites maintained by the Cloaks?

Hunting Dimble
Inquisitor Lewis has for his own reasons been hunting the wayward gnome Dimble and believes he has found where the ranger gnome has gone to ground. He has also been informed that the brother of Dimble has come to Fields searching for him. He reaches out to Bimdle in the hopes of gaining a powerful ally. Lewis sends a message to Bimdle indicating that he knows where Dimble is in hiding and that he may be involved in a plot against Fields. Reliable sources report that the gnome has been seen in Waterdeep docks near where a mysterious cult have risen around the deactivated carcass of the iron work tower in the slums.

Gather Information:
Diplomacy:
Bluff:

The cult is led by a half-drow mage. Called Brand by his followers, he is a charismatic man who believes that the magic behind this machine could be unlocked and studied for the good of everyone. He has seen Dimble about the ruins of the machine at midnight with a group of cloaked figures the last few nights. He has been unwilling to approach them. He suspects that they will return that night.
Dimble does arrive with a large group of cloaked Bodaks. They create a perimeter while Dimble seems to climb about the machine studying it carefully. If Bimdle approaches the Bodaks fight while Dimble watches. If Bimdle somehow defeats the Bodaks Dimble leads him on a chase to the sewers Have to stop there
-

[The Book&Blade are on their way to Waterdeep to attend Governor Marcone’s state dinner as Season Four continues to unfold]

Comments

I like it.

Season Four
AnybodysAdvocate

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