A World Too Small for Giants

Summaries: Tales of

Immediately after leaving the battle, while healing and deciding whether to return to the basement arena for round two with Boarlad, Ladliss was approached by three elves asking him to come alone with them on business concerning his boss, Councilwoman Saima. They were recalcitrant, suspicious, and full of shit and quickly attacked him when he refused to walk down a dark deserted alleyway with them. They were still close enough to Semaj and Yasu that they were able to help fight the (wizardly) elves off.

The party had gotten a round two, just not the one they wanted and they were sorely hurt and confused. Ladliss wanted to check that Saima was okay, and then go talk to Archibald about why dastardly wizards would attack him.

Continuing their stream of good luck; Saima had been killed, Archibald attacked Ladliss when he wouldn’t agree to join his elvish superiority conspiracy, and Yasu was attacked by Gui in an alleyway and left for dead. Semaj cleverly avoided any peril by not having any discernible roleplaying, attachment to the plot, or story action.

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The Crusty, the Dusty, and the Musty
Our first night in the temple.

We slept in the temple that night. The Crowley thug seems to be claustrophobic, superstitious, or both. Despite the obvious superiority of my plan to set up camp within the walls of His holy temple, Crowley insisted that we sleep out in the open where we could be easily attacked by assassins, mountain lions, or worse. He continued his stubborn refusal of my plan to the point that I was forced to tell our guide about the men that had attacked us at the outset of this endeavor. Salam grew angry with me and demanded that I pay the increased wages the old man was now asking of us. Though I agreed to give him the gold to avoid a confrontation (for I was relying on Salam for healing magic) the slight on Harik’s greatest warrior will not go unremembered.

I slept fitfully that night among the moldering remains of objects that had been forgotten in the temple for decades. Salam’s snores and the cuts the goblins had made took it in turns rousing me from my sleep. I stared at the cobwebs lit by our flickering fire and wondered when Harik intended to restore me to my rightful place as the first among his servants. Surely there was a purpose in him bringing me this far that I may walk this temple that few of his followers have even heard described. There may have been danger for us in the days ahead, but I knew that Harik had more in mind for me than an obscure death.

Once I had sufficiently recovered, we began to explore the temple. It was disgraceful to see a place devoted to Him in such a state of disrepair. Collapsed stonework and rubble littered the hallways. We had to stop to clear rocks from our path on two occasions. In the basement we found something that made me question Harik’s presence in this place altogether.

We came across the ancient sleeping chambers that had once housed the inhabitants of the place. Disintegrating linens covered skeletons reposing on rotted bed frames. The air was stale and suffocating. We made to move through the room without disturbing the rest of the dead, but an evil chill passed through the room. As one, they rose and attacked us.

We dispatched of the vile undead within moments, and although I single-handedly destroyed five of them, I was happy for the sword and bow of my companions. The skeletons made no sound as they clawed at us and lashed out with their rusting blades. The silence was broken in a cacophony of steel on bone, but as the last bones clattered to the floor, the oppressive quiet of the tomb was restored in an instant. The fight had not even lasted long enough for us to begin to breathe heavily. Though we suffered a few small wounds, it was the dread that they put in our hearts would take longest to fade. We hastily moved from the room.

Most of the rest of our explorations yielded only more dust and abandoned hallways. We were just beginning to wonder about the other inhabitants of place when we encountered three more of them. Some sort of spiked beast and two goblins ambushed us as we pressed on deeper into the ruined fane. They assaulted not only our bodies, but our minds as well. Thankfully, I shook the fog from my mind before it could truly set in and struck down our foes. It was then that we discovered that the goblins were diseased and somehow enthralled to the monster.

It boded ill.

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New Beginings with new "Friends"

Man was I bored before this morning. I have been abondoned in thes lowly town with no actiaon or adventture. I am muddling through on the “genorosity” of my fellow man, but there are only so many people to rob is this gods forsaken place. Luckily, Harrel knew of my bordom and threw some action my way.

He asked for my help, on behalf of a friend, rounding up adventures for a big case. Natually my curiosity got the better of me, and I was willing to join the cause. Like I said, there is not much call for adventuing in this boring place, but there are always some capable people either here on vaction, or travaling through to larger destinations. I was promised good pay for my efforts, and getting my foot in the door on a large adventure seemd like a good Idea to me.

I know my way around, and how to find the people I need, so by the meeting time, I have rounded up some good canidates. No one seems to like me at first, and there are always other offeres, so there was only one who showed any interest in taking on a journey without much information. I had been infored that 2 others would probably be needed for the log road ahead, so I figured I’d throw my hat it the ring as well.

The meeting the next day went as expected. These two seem like they will get on my nerves fast, but this abandonded temple interestes me. Maybe there is something there I can liberate to make the journey worth my while and the pay is good to boot, much more than I will make around here.

We left the next morning to journey our way towards the temple. On our way out, we were attacked by some gutless thugs, and I see my companions stregnthas we quickly bested them. Salam wanted to show our surviving asilent mercy, but Fakhr ment for him to never cross us again, and quickly dispatched of our attackers arm. With the arrows already in his stomach, he quickly died. I agreed with this decison, but I don’t want to reveal myself, as I do not know where my loyalty will eventually lie. I will have to be careful if I try to cross them, cause there is no doubt in my mind that they can and will kill me if they have a mind to. Also, these thugs were hired through the shadow network, of which I have some experience. I don’t like being attacked, under any circumstances and I intend to find the person responsible for this attack and make sure they don’t make that mistake again.

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On the Waterfront
The inevitale betrayal.

With visions of erstwhile unemployment running through their heads and heavy sighs running through their mouths our heroes accompanied their employer back to his apartment for the money. Farther demonstrating the preparation he put into something so obviously important to himself, Bartholomew spent an hour searching through his apartment for loose change. Once it had been rheumatoidally located, our heroes set back to the dockside den of darkness and debasement.

Again led down stairs by the heavily armed dwarf maiden, our heroes were greeted by the cheery site of three hideous, scaled bat winged avian monsters the size of large dogs milling around in the fighting pit. “They’re Cockatrice”, Ladliss helpfully added. Standing on the other side of the teeming pit was their trading partner.

“What’s up with the circus?”, said Semaj.
“Just letting them out for some air(???)” said the ugly sonuvabitch non-suspiciously.
“Well… that checks out sir! Golly, give us a second to come over there with your 2000 gp sir!” said Semaj while skipping merrily in unison with Yasu over to the other side of the arena. Ladliss stayed with Bartholomew near the door.

After dropping off the money, their business partner immediately turned into a boar monster and attempted to ram Yasu into the pit, who severely disagreed with this turn of events. Luckily, he was only pushed to the edge of the pit. Unluckily, the wereboar spent several minutes checking and rechecking his bonuses to make sure he hadn’t missed any modifiers; somehow he had and Yasu fell into the pit.

The tense, contentious underground capitalism of the negotiations flowed rather naturally into a tooth and claw battle for life and death. Non-figurative were the fangs here, as the proprietor was revealed to be a wereboar, Semaj transformed into a Leopard, and the Cockatrice menaced Yasu.

Our heroes cunningly divided their firepower among their foes, cleverly giving the extremely powerful wereboar ample time to savage them. After dispatching the dwarf and the cockatrices, our heroes turned to face the wereboar and after a bracing round of combat decided a tactical retreat was in short order. Showing competence in at least one part of battle, our heroes quickly delayed the boar with a web spell, grabbed the book and Bartholomew and beat a successful retreat.

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A Comedy of Errors

The Duchess played hardball; but in the end, Arlago’s greatest diplomatic team played an even harder ball, and was able to convince Talia to stay for roundtable discussions. Upon a small celebration after exiting Talia’s quarters, Yasu had to return to get his “wallet”; unbeknownst to his companions, Yasu had brutally murdered the Duke the night before- at the behest of none other than the Duchess!

Yasu, hoping to remain in the good graces of Lisette, had convinced Ladliss and Semaj to join him in hearing the details of her business proposal. Despite the seemingly absurd amount of money offered for the simple purchase of a book, and the manner in which Lisette dodged their questions, the party accepted the offer, and agreed to meet Bartholomew that night at the university. Yasu was hoping to use his negotiating skills, coupled with Semaj’s similar prowess, to increase their pay for the operation. They employed their new two-pronged approach to negotiating, playing hard balls, but Bartholomew seemed immune to their tactics. After essentially agreeing to give the party 1500 gp and access to his personal library, the motley crew set off towards the docks.

Bartholomew’s nervousness was extremely evident, as the closer they approached the poorer sections of the city, the more he began babbling. A migraine, a stern talking to, and a vision of seppuku later, the party arrived at their destination. They were cheerily welcomed, and quickly escorted into the establishment. They were led by a heavily armed dwarven woman, through an opium den/bar into a warehouse; there was an animal-esque stench in the air, and an arena-like pit that really tied the room together. As Bartholomew already had an appointment, the party sat back and let him take care of his business. Little did they know, however, that Bartholomew wasn’t immune to their negotiating tricks earlier because of some sort of business savvy, but because he was immune to the entire concept of the exchange of goods, especially when it involved money.

Bartholomew blew his load prematurely, and after serious consideration of throwing themselves into the pit and ending their misery, our heroes stepped in. They attempted to haggle the seller down to a price that could be affordable to Bartholomew, even offering to chip in out of their own pay for the mission. Unfortunately, Mr. Douchebag of the Docks was also immune to many concepts of negotiation, particularly how haggling and supply and demand works. As the chances of buying the book became grim, Bartholomew made a mad dash with the book towards the door. He was intercepted by the party, who wanted no part in any unjust conflict. At this point, the frustrated companions were ready to admit defeat, and retreated towards the exit; when all seemed lost, however, Bartholomew made one last effort, ejaculating that he would pay the asked price for the book. Of course, he ignored the fact that he would be virtually unable to pay his bodyguards, but who gives a f*@# about them anyways?

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Breakfast of Champions

Well that did not go as expected. An assassination and Lisette showing up to do whatever she does, it’s astonishing. I knew Seyma would need me for some damage control, but I never suspected that she would send me to appease Talia. I was not prepared, but first it was time to reunite with my old buddies from my adventuring days (Was that really over two and a half years ago? My how time flies!). After a brief breakfast, I manage to convince Semaj and Yasu to join me in my work in saving the world in exchange for my assisting them with some shadier work. It will be nice to relive some of the glory days gallivanting about, getting into trouble.
In our quest to find Talia, Yasu showed surprising ability with people, something I had not seen from him in the past, but it suits him well. Talia is ready to leave and it is up to our merry band of misfits to convince her to stay for the rest of the proceedings.

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Long Nights
Dildo Plateau

The gala wound down, our heroes went their separate ways for the night. Ladliss to rest up for continued diplomatic efforts, Yasu to plunge the diplomatic efforts into disarray, and Semaj to do something, or whatever.

By the goodness of his heart, Yasu had decided to buy a keg of good Hufaran mead for the servants of Hufaran Duke Mumbles. After approximately ascertaining the location of the Duke’s chambers while he “drank” with his servants, Yasu proceeded to sneak out, cut through the Duke’s guards and assassinate the Duke. Yasu ran from the room smiling, thinking of the good deed he had done for the working man of Hufara.

While these touching actions were taking place, Ladliss was excitedly preparing his bed for his female friend. He fell asleep on his couch that night with a smile on his face.

Hmm, I feel like there was someone else… oh well, must not be.

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Reunion Tour
"I'd skullfuck the shit out of that corpse" -Idiom of Arlago teenagers

After more than two years since The Party went their separate ways, fate brought them all together at a gala in Arlago. Put together by Ladliss, Semaj attended the gala as a representative of the church of Elowin, and Yasu came disguised on the arm of Lisette. Ladliss and Semaj had a heartfelt reunion, but despite the time they spent together neither of Yasu’s former companions recognized him because of the paper bag he had over his face.

Ladliss spent a majority of the evening making sure the event ran smoothly; when he got the chance, however, he rubbed elbows with some of the more prominent figures in the Varenel Empire. He also attempted to persuade some of the delegates from the rebelling states to stay a few extra days in order to sit down and discuss a less violent course of action with the Queen’s representatives in Arlago. After an interesting discussion with the matriarch of the House of Bergmann, Ladliss had an opportunity to ingratiate himself with the head of the House of Nobles by taking home a much too inebriated representative of Hufara in the Varenelian Parliament.

While this took place, Yasu exposed himself to Semaj, and then proceeded to reveal to him his identity. Semaj invited Yasu to a breakfast reunion that Ladliss and he had planned for the next morning, and then the two proceeded to converse with various guests at the party. Semaj had a philosophical discussion with Sven Bergmann, while Yasu was bored to tears by the archmages that Lisette seemed all too familiar with. Out of the boredom, however, Yasu discovered that one of the archmages was willing to pay top dollar for an ancient artifact that was rumored to be on sale at the docks; unfortunately, the archmage didn’t seem to have faith in Yasu’s abilities, so Lisette suggested that Yasu get the band back together in order to get a quick payday.

Towards the end of the night, Ladliss found himself in his bedroom with a beautiful escort*, Semaj was starting to regain his sense of purpose+, and Yasu needed to find a shitload of mead#. None of the party members are aware of the other’s purpose for being at the gala, and the night certainly isn’t over yet.

*Elven for “whore”
+Truth, Justice, and the Ambivalent Way
#Drink of choice for Hufaran natives; why did he bother to asterisk that, you ask? To draw attention to that detail and create an atmosphere of suspense, duh!

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File 12983: Trouble in Holtburg

Log of events transpiring in Holtburg:
I, Clint Donaldson, am filing a report to the RBI of the events transpiring in Holtburg regarrding the Halfling Rain. I was dispatched by order of the queen to investigate the violence transpiring in Holtburg in her name. She wanted to make it clear that she does not condone violence in her name.
Upon my arrival, I checked in with the local law enforcement. I was directed to a Captain Tak as he had already started an investigation into the violence befalling these rebellious citizens. I quickly learned that the refugees from K’cin have been unjustly targeted by the Rain. I was not pleased with the progress Tak was making so I trekked out on my own. He revealed to me that he had been having trouble with a local group of vigilantes that had come with the K’cinians. They were proving themselves in the local festival and also had a reputation amount the K’cinians as being competent fighters. As is my modus operandum, I quickly introduce myself to them.
There was a Natural magic user, a roguish type, and an skilled defender. I quickly assessed that their hearts were i the right place, and knew I would need the help, so I allowed them to join my investigation.
They had come across a lead that there would be something happening in the home of the Megins, whose names had come up in my investigation as well so did not see any harm in moving my investigation of the home to the top of the list. In order to catch them in the act, we decided to rely on the roguish skill of my new companion and sneak into the home. After we were unsuccessful at covert information gathering, it was time for a more overt tack. After revealing ourselves to the son of the house, Finnigan, and clearly stating our intentions, he decided to hinder our progress by calling the guard. While Tak was bumbling around with his reports, we come across a secret tunnel where we found a captured person who i was informed was the former mayor of the displaced K’cinians. We also discovered that one of the leaders of was one of the local Councilman, MacTagert. After a fairly mild resistance from the “most powerful” members of the gang.
My new friends then felt the end of our business was near and wanted to make a hasty exit.
I knew there must be more to discover, so demanded of Tak to know of his most promising leads. After some frightful interrogation of his latest informant, we were led to an suspicious farm. The rogue snuck off on his own, without any permission from me and got himself into trouble. The rest of the party rushed to his rescue, when out of nowhere, we are attacked by many halflings hidden in the barn. I told them to stand down, but they left me with little choice but to forcefully remove them. They did not take to this plan well, and we were forced to defend ourselves. In the course of the struggle, the barn was lit on fire, and we were trapped in the barn, left to burn. Luckily, fire is no match for the might of justice and I was able to escape with my life.
My companions quickly left before I had a chance to check in with Tak, and then I realized that I owed Tak no explanation for my actions and quickly returned to Arlago for my next mission.

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Rassling without Chairs

The last significant event of the harvest games is the wrestling competition. Most of the matches were uneventful. Finnegan is not well suited to wrestling so resorted to his usual cheating ways. Finnegan took his toll on our nameless monk hero in his usual way, but the monk turned out victorious, but haggard, so could not defeat yassu in the finals. Yasu’s only challenge through the finals was Somage. Using his ninja skillz, and his skills at kick boxing to beat him at wrestling, seems legitimate. Yasu beat the nameless monk, and won the final stage of the harvest games.
After the harvest game, the party decided it would be important to consult with Tac. Tac seemed like he was under more stress than usual, was doing his best to deflect the party from doing more damage to the investigation, when Clint inturupted the meeting, taking Tac off guard. He said he wanted to recruit the party to help end the problem with the halfling rain. He said he was from the RBI, which Yasu understood to be the personal investigative of the queen. Using his authority, he has stopped Tac’s interference with the party’s investigation. Luka is happy to be out of Tac’s authority and thinks his Clint guy is pretty swell. Now the maybe this investigation can commence.

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