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The Saga of Learning Imoen's Story (SoA)

Discussion in 'Creativity Surge' started by Kailynne Johanne, Sep 30, 2001.

  1. Kailynne Johanne Gems: 10/31
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    [​IMG] SKALD
    A wrinkle emerged in the sky
    at the end of winter, a sign that slowly
    spread, unwilling to be
    encircled, uttered or interpreted.

    Perhaps it was a threat engraved
    above us, driving us towards a
    primordial motion with no delay,
    or placing us along dry lanes.

    We waited for you to doze off, to start
    an exploit in a hilly desert, to end
    the hunt, to take a break.

    Your fingers shine, busy
    in the clouds, while the world perilously
    inclines towards a lasting absence.
    -----Translated by Dragi Mihajlovski and David Bowen

    From the far northern reaches Toril, north even of Waterdeep, near the edges of the known world, came a party of five dwarves - 2 skalds, a bard, a jester, and a cleric/thief. The group had travelled slowly, gathering lore and legend like flycatchers and windsocks as they moved southward from their mountain home down the Sword Coast, specifically towards Baldur's Gate. Before even reaching that infamous seaport, they heard rumors and story fragments of a new heroine, a female child of Bhaal who had led five hearties against yet another Bhaalspawn and defeated him in a battle not yet rendered into epic poetry or lyrics. This was the goal of the group, to find that Bhaalspawn and learn firsthand of the trials and travails of the heroine. Hopefully, this bardic group would be able to bask in her reflected glory long enough to flesh out the events behind the story fragments they had already collected as well as catch enough of her essence to create an appropriate tune against which the lyric should be recited. Each bard dreamt of becoming known as the author of a great epic poem, something to be sung hundreds of years hence throughout the Forgotten Realms.

    (The cleric was coming along under a geas placed upon her as penance for disparaging the dwarven God of mining upon hearing that his father had had to have his legs amputated after a cave-in. Along the way, Kwiryn, the cleric, had picked up significant skills in finding and disarming traps by applying the abstract concepts behind the pickpocketing and card tricks his companions had taught him.)

    Thus, Kylene, Kwyrin, Grindlmaus, Thuorgyrd and Lothgwir sought Imoen, killer of Sarevok, former ward of the legendary Gorion. Unfortunately, by the time they had reached Baldur's Gate, Imoen had long since left. Following a rumor here, a firsthand report there, they had tracked her southward through mountain passes into the Amn region, but had lost her trail somewhere south of Blind Eagle Pass. Even crossing paths with Volo, the most legendary chronicler of the Sword Coast, had failed to disclose her whereabouts.

    One night, after an extra long planning conference around a campfire conference, the group slept heavily in inebriated stupors. They never found out exactly what happened but awoke in dungeon cages, painfully sore as if someone had beaten them physically as well as ruthlessly probing them psychically. Kylene, the unofficial group leader, noticed a slip of a girl approaching his cage and wondered what the heck she was doing here - she didn't appear capable of the evil necessary to have caged his group.

    So begins the Saga of Learning Imoen's Story.

    ----notes below---
    Okay, I know that I have changed the rules as dwarves are not allowed to be bards or cleric/thiefs in BG2. However, through the use of that "horrible util", that was easily remedied. And why not? Dwarven lore is legendary in myth and fantasy, with tales of horrendous and fantastic battles against other races and other dwarven clans. The legend of Durlag, if you remember, played a major part in the BG1 expansion. Additionally, all communities have developed a knowledge of healing, some concept of supernatural beings and formulated religious practices incorporating these two knowledges. So, to some extent I feel "justified" in this deliberate manipulation merely for purposes of creating a unique game.

    As I consider writing another "Duharrel-type" story, that is the neceesary background and full set of admissions for you readers. While I do not expect to write in nearly the detail that the tale of Duharrel was chronicled, if there is any interest, I may attempt the brevity that Nobleman acheived in his epic of Retsnimle. In a way, it is up to you guys... I enjoyed the storytelling as much as the roleplaying, occasionally more.

    What do you all think?

    [This message has been edited by Kailynne Johanne (edited September 30, 2001).]
     
  2. Tiamat Gems: 17/31
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    I would definitely be interesting in reading a story where the protagonist is not a Bhaalspawn, no matter what Irenicus sais (;)) and Imoen is the main character, sort of. Are you planning to have her in your party, as well?
     
  3. LordNocturne Gems: 7/31
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    Good start
     
  4. Nobleman Gems: 27/31
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    I think it would be a great challenge to write a shorter story. Then more people might read it. And the way your tell a story it would be a shame to miss it.

    I also think it is valid to play bardic dwarves. This story might evolve to a more fun tale with the aspect of your PC interaction in your imagination rather than the gameinteraction. good luck! and happy tales :)
     
  5. Kailynne Johanne Gems: 10/31
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    Meeting the legend

    Kylene looked up at Imoen, recognition not possible because they had never met. His hesitation forced an introduction from her lips and stupefied him. "Hey ya," she greeted him, prodding and urging him out of the cage. A quick introduction of himself and his compatriots came with an explanation of why the bards had sought her. Embarrassed, she pointed them towards another room as she went off to scout for an exit... And so it began...

    Together, they needed to leave this place together - though they often peppered Imoen with questions about her earlier adventures. In frustration, she took to walking forward with deliberate purpose, leading the group. Kwiryn walked immediately behind the girl, watching and immitating her as they went, learning to see what had previously been inivisible - a trap where only mold appeared, another covered with slime, a third tripped by a shadow passing over it. Imoen barely paid attention to the group as they entered a humming room. As she flew headlong at a mephit, she screeched that Kwiryn should find the switch to "stop the humming" (which would also stop the respawning of the winged aggravations biting and spitting at the group). Amazingly to the bards, Kwiryn actually did find a switch, but not before Imoen's chest dripped with blood. As she tended Imoen's wounds, Kwiryn vowed to proved her worth to this heroine, not merely tag along with this group of songwriters.

    So, forward the group went, Imoen leading, directing, cajoling, shaming them all into a cohesive group where before each had been independently already writing his stanzas and imagining free meals and ales in exchange for performances. Behind her command, the bards learned the benefit of coordinated attack, taking out golbins in hallways by ensaring groups from a distance and then picking them off with bows and arrows. "Bows and arrows," sneered Luothgyrd, "Give me a good dwarven crossbow anyday." Yet, Imoen taught that one must make do with what was available rather than merely wishing and hoping for something else.

    She taught them about ambush, to draw a single or pair or enemies away from their groups in order to overwhelm them with numbers, to scoop up scrolls that glowed with auras of magic before simple books that were only well written, and to husband their limited spell casting in order to keep moving rather than having to rest after each skirmish. Additionally, she showed them the effectiveness of a simple close door to isolate one enemy from another - in effect trapping one enemy in an exitless hall or between two groups of bards attacking simultaneously.

    She also showed them that, being good and helping with minor requests (like assisting a trapped soul to end its limitless life) was generally beneficial, but that sometimes discretion was the better part of valor (like avoiding a cambion). Finally, the group stood before a portal, weighing the pros and cons of trying to pass through it... Imoen just shrugged, said "follow or don't" and stepped through it. One by one, the bards followed.

    --------more to come ---depending on reader interest----------


    [This message has been edited by Kailynne Johanne (edited September 30, 2001).]
     
  6. Tiamat Gems: 17/31
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    So in your game Imoen is going to sort of be the protagonist? How are you going to justify all that dialogue that sais the main character is a Bhaalspawn?
     
  7. Kailynne Johanne Gems: 10/31
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    Tiamat - well, the dialogue options give the opportunity to "play dumb" - without much knowledge of what went on during BG1...

    Also, if you as a player *know* that Imoen is your character's sister, it still allows the PC to be ignorant of his own status...or at least confused by it.

    So, while the bardic group's claimed goal is to learn the saga of Imoen, what if they find out that one of them is also a Bhaalspwan - this will involve not only selective ignorance on my part, but also maintain the "surprise, surprise" element at the end of the game... It justifies all of the long-winded explanations that Jon, Bodhi, Ellesime, etc. wind up providing throughout the game.

    [This message has been edited by Kailynne Johanne (edited October 01, 2001).]
     
  8. drm Gems: 3/31
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    KJ... if you wind up killing off this thread before beating the game---well, my 82d level armed-wtih-Killsword bastard child of the God of Programmers will hunt you down and confiscate your computer.
     
  9. Nobleman Gems: 27/31
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    It is working fine using BG2 as a backbone to the tale not as the front story. It is cute to imagine the 5 dwarves rummaging behind Imoen. Who said snowwhite :)

    [This message has been edited by Nobleman (edited October 01, 2001).]
     
  10. Kailynne Johanne Gems: 10/31
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    Into the light...Where's Imoen?

    Like puppies following their dam, the bards followed Imoen through the portal. They were met by a scruffy looking, smooth-talking shiftless man who immediately tried to put the moves on Imoen. She was having none of it, let me tell you. And when it looked like she might actully be interested in the guy, well, Thuogyrd stepped forward and threatened the bugger. He just laughed, backed away and mentioned some things to consider about the next room. Then he seemed to turn sideways and disappeared into a wall - where no hole existed!

    Imoen grabbed Thuogyrd by the shoulders and slapped him across the face twice while assuring all of the bards that she could easily take care of herself thank you very much. Then, she waved her hands and they all seemed to move faster. Imoen told Kwiryn to bless them all and through the door they went....Man did Imoen hate these flyin' critters! She mirror-imaged and went invisible just in time to avoid being stunned by one of the winged horrors. Concentrate on the caged ones, she yelled at the bards before calling forth goblins to assist them all.

    This was the toughest fight so far...Steam scalded four, ice nearly froze three and two were stunned. The damage began to accumulate before Imoen managed to kill two of the caged creatures on her own. That turned the tide and though it was with difficulty, the group took out the remaining flying troublemakers by ganging up on them. Grindlmaus managed to grab the wing of one creature and stood on it while the other bards banged on it with their axes. The goblins kept the remaining creature occupied until the dwarves had time to change targets. Then, having learned that the creature was susceptible to the dogpile tactic, Lothgwir and Kylene each grabbed for the creature and then threw it on the ground, stunning it long enough for Kwyrin to stomp on its neck. He barely managed to pull his foot away in time before Grindlmaus brought his axe down on the same spot!

    Pretty pleasd with themselves, the dwarves almost didn't notice Imoen's tears...Khalid, she murmured.Where's your beautiful Jaheria? Back the way they had come she walked......the group followed silently wondering what the heck was up, but fearing to interrupt her as she cried and stumbled her way back through the portal and then down the passageways back to the room of cages. On the far end of the room, in a cage by herself was a woman. Startled by the sounds of the approaching group, she stood and called out...Imoen responded, ran to the cage and hugged the woman, though the old biddy didn't hug back. Rather she scolded the girl for her sentimentality as well as for not having a way to open the cage...In the next cage, a large man playing with a mouse roared at the sight of Imoen...The bards were stopped cold in their approach as the large man actually broke out of the cage by bending the bars. He tried but failed to bend the bars of the old biddy's cage but couldn't. Imoen reappeared with a key...She mumbled something and the large man moved away from the door, which she then opened. After a few words...

    Imoen turned to the bards and told them that she needed to lead these two out, the bards should make their way out on their own. If they still wanted to learn her story, they should periodically check the Coppoer Coronet or the Five Flagons Inn in Athkala, which is where she routinely stayed in that town. She also named other taverns where she might be found before shaking each of their hands and then departing.

    Alone. The bards were back where they started and alone now! With no idea where they were, they retraced their steps back to the portal, went through it, and reentered the room where Khalid's body had been - it was gone! With nothing else to do, they exited the room and found their way to a large hall with two dwarves fighting a man yeling something about "Shadow Thieves." While at first thinking this was one of their dwarven brethren, Kwyrin quickly realized these were not - they were dwarven abominations - duegar - and read a scroll of fireball that they had found on a library bookshelf. One of the duegar fell, but the other began rapidly firing a crossbow faster than any remembered seeing done. Imoen's lessons came in handy - five against one works wonders and down went the duegar.

    Down another hallway, fighting through more theives and the group found their way out...only to see Imoen in a heated magic battle after which six mages teleported her away.

    I don't think we'll find her at the Cooper Coronet tomorrow, moaned Kylene.

    --------more to come ---depending on reader interest----------
     
  11. drm Gems: 3/31
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    This would be cool if told in a bardic style.. Are you up to it?
     
  12. Kailynne Johanne Gems: 10/31
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    drm - good idea, so I will try.... Here goes:

    Leader of the Bards
    (Spoken loudly as if calling across a busy tavern --- My friends, my friends. Quiet please, settle down back there. Yes, you, the great lout with four pitchers in those fat, hairy paws. Please seat yourself so that others may hear.)

    Now then...Allow me to regale you with the short but interesting tale of the alliance of five dwarves and a tiefling. You see, it happened this way...

    Upon escaping from the dungeon, the bards headed towards the source of solace for all bards - the nearest tavern. Slaking their thirsts and jotting down quick remembrances for future reference. Leaving the Inn of Seven Vales, they headed to the Temple District so that Kwyrin could offer homage and donate appropriately. En route, they were nearly assaulted by a messenger from the Shadow Thieves. Now, rogues and bards are sometimes thick as thieves, oh yes they are. Our group here, well, they had always been more lovers than fighters despite recent events.

    After exchanging a few quick pleasantries, the messenger explained that information on Imoen's whereabouts could be obtained - for a substantial fee, of course. Well, let me tell you, the boys nearly fell over themselves upon hearing the sum, especially as their total coinage was what, barely 3500 gp.? So, faced with the need to raise some coin and yet, with few prospects, the bards did what bards do... They went on as they had been going - to the Temple District.(softly - where would you find 50,000 gp.?)
    Upon their arrival, Kwyrin was brought up short - spotting a fellow cleric to whom a fair sum was owed. Noting a sewer grate, she ducked into it and was followed like a raindrop by the four bards. Luothgwir, the jester, made light of the expression on on Kwyrin's face to the amusement of the others... What were they to do? So, they went exploring...eventually stumbling upon a hidden door...

    Up some stairs the group found a library infested by mephits! Missiles flew, both real and magical. Blood splattered on books, walls and floors. Quickly, quickly, the five backed against a wall and presented a small front against the winged devils and thusly managed to slay the buzzards one by one by one. (under his breath...and damn lucky they were, let I tell you).

    A curved hallway attracted the attention of Grindlmaus ever the curious one. He flattened himself along a wall and crept down it, silently, slowly, ever so slowly until..until...until he heard a voice whispering to itself. Grindlmaus stopped and prepared himself, then quaffed a potion, disappeared from normal sight and moved forward again...slowly, slowly. Revealed was an old man at a stove, what appeared to be a green-skinned arm protruding from the pot he was tending. Yet, the air around the man shimmered...This is not right, thought Kwyrin and he retreated. His voice out of nowhere startled the others when he quietly told them what he had found, concentrating on the green arm and minimizing the age of the old man to convince the bards to take actions. (sighing - what a stench it must have been...worse than burnt roast pig I am sure).

    Back down the curved hallway they crept. On a nearly silent tap of one foot, three fireballs were cast at the stove. Yet, unbelievably, the old man still stood! Alive but charred he turned, his eyebrows singed nearly off. He roared with the pain and began to cast a spell at the group. Grindlmaus's crossbow was carefully aimed and the golden bolt flew straight, piercing the heart of the old man. All were surprised at how cold the corpse's body was within seconds of its hitting the floor.... No explanation could be found...but loot was!

    Retreating down the hallway, the group was startled by a young man singing - the man had not been there before. He was rejoicing at his having been freed from enslavement by the death of the old man and offered to join the crew. Of course, they could not reject the company of so fine a voice (and perhaps steal some of his riffs for their own lyres.). Thus, Haer Daelis' joined the group though he admitted that he was a better singer than composer. So, they finished exploring and looting the rooms, ultimately deciding to appropriate it as a safe haven rather than pay for rooms while in Athkala!

    Behind an abandoned altar, Kwyrin found a gem unlike any she had ever seen before - but she didn't tell anyone yet....(conspiratorially - I mean, would you have told everyone else if you had found the most priceless of gems? I'm not sure that I could honestly say that I would. So, who among us could blame Kwyrin?)

    --------more to come -------------

    [This message has been edited by Kailynne Johanne (edited October 01, 2001).]
     
  13. drm Gems: 3/31
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    Doesn't seem like much of a story telling shift.... Try again dude... interesting tale though.
     
  14. Nobleman Gems: 27/31
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    You really flourish when you have multiple personalities to toy with. I like the easy going writing style. I really appreciate that you bother writing. Especially your comments inbetween is a grood idea. I look forward to the story interaction with Haer'Dalis :)
     
  15. Kailynne Johanne Gems: 10/31
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    drm - I'll try harder... but you get what you get.

    Nobleman - thanks for the encouragement.
    ------------------
    From Derth to Wealth

    (Sound of clearing throat....Ahem.... Quiet if you please. Wench, an mug of house draft ale over here if you please, so as to quench my throat as I continue my tale of dwarven rogues.)

    Our stylists of dwarven lyrics and lore found themselves pointlessly wandering the city of Athkala - as rascals often do...looking for opportunities to trade a few tales or songs for some mead, roast bock and mayhap a coin or two. Having been quickly thrown out of all the best taverns in town and not wishing to play the Copper Coronet yet again, they found themselves in the Docks District headed towards the Sea's Bounty when a voice hissed at them from the shadows.

    After a quick exchange of whispered information between Haer Daelis and the shadowed man, the group slipped inside a large building on the western side of hte district. It seems that somehow the guild leader had heard of their recent escape and wished to hire them for a minor job, Apparently, some guild member of questionable loyalty had started up a competing inn just a couple doors down from the Sea's Bounty and our rogues could spy for the guild master under the cover of "barddom." Cool, they all agreed - and off to the job they went. (astonishingly --- hey, an opportunity for some of that coin needed to bribe that Bayle fellow for his information about Imoen's whereabouts.)

    At their new place of employment, the inn's manager took them down to the (disloyal?) thieves guild member in question. Wonder of wonders, THIS oaf wanted to hire them also, for a series of small jobs - though not bardic in nature.(Hmmmm....!?!?!) So, from the depths of despair the bards were suddenly blessed with an abundance of opportunities to capture some coins from the roulette wheel of life!

    The first task, a minor theft of jewelry in the Temple District suddenly became very interesting when Grindlmaus inadvertently cast armor on himself and attracted the attention of some Cowled Wizards. The bards quickly ducked into various temples in order to shake the ticked off mages - but found that these guys had the patience of Job and were waiting to arrest Grindlmaus each time they snuck a peek outside. Finally, Haer Daelis’ had all of the guys gulp down some drafts of a noxious liquid that resulted in making their feet all a-flutter. He also handed out another draft of purple liquid and each of the dwarves disappeared one by one ... The group whispered 1-2-3 and out the doors they went...running barefooted in six different directions down the alleyways of the district. It was a close call when Kwyrin tripped and fell in front of one red hooded mage...landing on her chest with enough force to cause a loud exhalation. (Narrator gestures forcefully outward with the left hand with simultaneously smacking own chest with right hand/palm open....whooooomp!)

    Still, she escaped by reversing direction and walking behind a Temple guard, forced to stand there for nearly an hour before the red wizard walked far enough away to alow even an attempt at sneaking away again. Reaching carefully into her backpack, she gathered up a purple potion in one hand and a wand of some sort in the other. Quickly, she fired the wand at an open area and immediately downed the potion with the other. As she quickly hoofed it out of the district, the commoners and red wizards were trying to figure out exactly where the hobgoblins had come from.... (softly - Let me tell you, it was a very tight call...dwarves are not easily raised from the dead and each of our heroes knew they barely had enough to spring for supper, much less bribe a temple priest to pray over a dead dwarf's body. Know what I mean?)

    --------more to come -------------
     
  16. Tina2 Gems: 3/31
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    [​IMG] Please, go on ! You really have a talent as a narrator !
     
  17. Nobleman Gems: 27/31
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    That was intense! I smiled when you made the dwarves be so realistic and snug away :)
     
  18. Kailynne Johanne Gems: 10/31
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    Struggling with reality

    [Scraping sound as chair is pulled onto the slightly raised stage.]
    (My friends, my friends. Yes. Up here. Care you to hear more of the tale of five dwarves’ search for a new epic?…You?…You?…Yes, over there? Anyone else?...Very well… I shall oblige for the mere pittance of a mug of draft...Ah, thank you wench. So, we begin…)

    When last you heard of our stalwart crew, they had just escaped from those blasted red wizards in the Temple District. Kwyrin was limping badly as she rejoined the others in the Copper Coronet. Both her prayers and skills as a healer had been unable to correct that (so far). So, she suggested that they lay up for a while, especially as the wizards would probably be looking for them all. Hendak obliged them with a room in the rear of the inn and they hid out there for nearly a week – all the while, Haer Daelis’ was complaining that he hadn’t joined the group to “do nothing” and mumbling something about the gem Kwyrin had found (and he didn’t know about her finding and taking it) at Mekrath’s. He wanted to go back and search there for it. (As an aside - isn’t that the difference between poets and performers? Not seeing the benefit of periodically depriving an audience? Doesn’t it make them want more?)

    In the wee hours of the night, they finally snuck out of the inn and headed towards the Adventurer’s Mart. (As grateful as Hendak had been to them for releasing him from his slave status, he had been unable to offer the best prices as a fence and his stock of “special items” was limited.) As they passed in front of a circus tent set up in the middle of the Promenade, a young boy stood crying. A nearby guard and an animal trainer all confirmed the boy’s whimpered story of mysterious happenings inside the tent and the disappearance of the boy’s mother. Kylene figured that the city might provide a reward for solving this problem as might the circus owner and, possibly, the boy’s mother. It was worth, at least, taking a look.

    Into the tent they went – only to find that inside was no circus tent the likes of which they had ever seen. Now dwarves are not usually the brightest bunch, but even Lothgwir, the slowest of the group, knew that something truly strange was going on here as she saw a bridge but no tent walls! And an officious djinni imperiously quizzed them before disappearing in a “poof” and a blue misty circle. No, they each thought... this was not…could not be…real.

    So, as they went forward, one after the other detected and dispelled illusion after illusion until they faced a small, high-strung gnome taunting and torturing a “jelly” of all things! He objected to their intrusion enough to try and threaten them. Well, let me tell you – gnomes and dwarves have long histories of threatening each other, and not just verbally. So, it came to blows…magical ones actually. The air filled with sparks crisscrossing the room as the dwarves spread out and attacked the gnome from all sides. Soon the air was filled with the smell of singed gnome and after which the air seemed to waver and the inside of the tent reappeared. The gnome, on the ground bleeding to death, confessed to letting his magical illusion get away from himself as he rasped out his final breaths; then he died with a final gasp. (Conspiratorially – okay, I admit, they needed to twist his arm [and a few other things] a bit, but … well.. it WAS necessary to find out who had caused the illusion in the first place.)

    As expected, there were rewards from all corners of the city – but the Cowled Wizards were less pleased than most as the common citizens repeatedly asked why THEY hadn’t solved the problem…Not a particularly good group to have as enemies (resignedly – but what are you going to do with “people” like that?).

    Still, the group was hesitant to continue with the job assigned by MaeVar/Edwin as they had learned that the fellow they were to ‘take revenge on” was also a red wizard. Hmm, another red wizard causing problems for the group? There has to be something that could be done about this group oppressing the magic users and normal people. There just had to be… (Semi-frustratedly – then again, taking on even a single mage can be dangerous without planning, allies, or magic yourself – Kwyrin had the limp to prove that.)

    ----------more to come--------
    Player notes - This crew has an affinity for gettng itself hurt BADLY, very badly. The Cleric/Thief's not being able to wear more than leather if disarm traps ability is to be maintained, is a serious disadvantage, while taking it off and putting it back on is a pain. And five bards - including Haer Daelis - are not front liners at all, even against low level opponents.

    So, this is going to require me to develop tactics I have never used before. I may have to delay further play for a day or two in order to read up on a solo thief or solo bard walkthrough. Maybe even the solo mage walkthrough as all three are high AC, low melee capability classes that someone else figured out how to play much better than I have so far.

    **As you can see, I am a bit frustrated right now.... The crew hasn't died, but it isn't because of anything I have doen for them - it's been due to lucky rolls saving them from poor tactics.


    [This message has been edited by Kailynne Johanne (edited October 05, 2001).]
     
  19. drm Gems: 3/31
    Latest gem: Lynx Eye


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    Come one now... don't give up. You must have played bards before. They aren't that hard.
     
  20. Kailynne Johanne Gems: 10/31
    Latest gem: Zircon


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    A Diversion and a Surprise

    (Sound of clearing throat... Ahem.. Gaack.. Ahem... I say. Should I continue my dear ladies and fine gentlemen? Shall I continue to tell the tale or are you tiring of this poor bunch of roguish dwarves? Oh, you wish to hear more.. well, then, a swig of me ale and on we go...)

    While sitting around healing in the Copper Coronet, Hendak whispered to Kwyrin that Lady Yuth over at the Adventurer's Mart in the Promenade was a bit "dense" and insensitive, if Kwyrin knew what Hendak meant. Well, one thing led to another in the beer and ale drenched discussions and Thuorgyrd decided to head over there to see if what Hendak had said was true.

    To the back of the Mart, Thuogyrd went. Sure enough, the Lady barely heard him walk up behind her as she read a few old scrolls. They exchanged a few comments about the prices of her scrolls while Thuogryd examined her stash. Hmm, he thought...what have I got to lose? So, he headed back over to the Coronet and told everyone about his idea - have them distract th eLady while he attempted to pilfer her wares. They all agreed that that might be a viable task, even as wounded as they were.

    Sure enough, one after another, helped along by two potions of Master Thievery, Thuogyrd pocketed scroll after scroll from the woman. He repeated had to pass some of the scrolls off to other party members, some even dropping their backpacks on the ground and appearing to rummage around in them in order to hide the stashing away of the newly pilfered parchments. Thuogryd almost gave himself away when he snagged the leather strap of a scroll case on the Lady's robe as he wihdrew it from her pile of stuff, but Kylene saw it happening and covered by stumbling into the woman.

    It took nearly 15 minutes to empty the poor woman out. When Thuogyrd was finished, she had only three Protection scrolls left - in the place of the pilfered parchments, Thuogrd placed forged IOU's from varios Cowled Wizards whose names they had heard being cursed by commoners on the streets of Athkala.

    Upon the completion of this little spree, the group headed back over to the Coronet, bought some ale and arranged for meals to be brought to their room for the next couple of days. Then, they divvied up the scrolls and began to read... and memorize... and read and memorize.....zzzzzzzzzzzz Yep, boring stuff, really boring if you ask me. (Sighing - Okay everybody, take a swig of your drink...don't forget to swallow twice, get rid the backwash. Now, take another swig.)

    They read and slept and read and slept for two whole days after which they all felt quite a bit more experienced, a bit more knowledgeable about how Imoen might have done some of the things they had seen her do, and a bit more knowledgeable concerning just how boring the life of a pure mage really is - read, cast, read cast....blah, blah, blah. At the end of two days, all the scorlls that could be memorized had been, yet there remained a pile of scrolls that could be carried along and used as needed.

    Coming out of their room, Hendak reminded them that they still had not removed the slavers from Athkala and asked if they were reneging on their committment to do so. Slightly, embarrassed, Kylene asked if Hendak knew of any way other than a frontal assault into the slaver's compound. Sure enough, he did, telling them about a path through the sewers below the Coronet.

    To make a long story short, Hendak had sort of tricked them into clearing out those sewers. They were infested with hobgoblins, an otyugh and jellies! But, they also found a really big sword that talked. Haer Daelis' wanted it because he said it was the only good conversation available in the group. (Laughing - Now what a tiefling thought he could really do with a 2-handed talking sword was beyond the dwarves' comprehension, but what the hey?!?!) Then again, he nearly killed himself with the sword the first couple of times he tried swinging it - it was that heavy.

    Heading back up to the Coronet, Kylene decided that Hendak needed to be taught a lesson about truth. So she cast Friends on poor old Hendak, followed by having Kwyrin cast Domination on him and then making the tavern owner try to "dance on the head of a pin" (Chucking - okay, it was the bar top, but they had covered the top with pig grease first.) It was truly comical to watch the former gladiator slipping and sliding around - even a normally sullen evil dwarf near the door wound up laughing at the sight.

    --------more to come -------------

    Player note - maybe this is the way to get these guys to survive - dink aroud with the non-challenging quests to get them some experience/level them up a bit while I figure out appropriate tactics for this "soft" party.
     
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