Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Shoe Thief
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Shoe Thief The Real Shoe Thief

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Kathryn Pyke
Human, Battle Master, Level 03
HP: 25 / 31 Armor Class: 19 Conditions: N/A
Location: Alley behind the silver smith --> Public House
Action: N/A
Bonus Action: N/A
Reaction: N/A

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Kathryn booked it out of Mallard's Silver Smith. Though she was a bit of an oaf at times, she was able to place her steps well and keep things hushed. And as far as she could tell, the rest of the party was doing okay as well. The body she was carrying didn't help. Awake he was a problem, comatose, he was a liability. Kathryn had attempted to do the right thing and it was biting them in the ass. Though they would make good time getting back, she was finding it harder and harder to know just what the right thing was. Baronfjørd brought up a rather valid concern about keeping him covered. "We'll ditch and gag him for now. We can't risk taking him back with us, and he is too much of a problem on his own." If they wanted the best chances of winning this fight, she's take her sword and lob his head off. Then he couldn't rejoin the fight, he couldn't harm anyone else, and couldn't spill the beans on anything they were doing. Sure, it felt wrong to execute a prisoner, and sure if someone in town figured out what they had done it would be harder to explain their situation later. But it would make the mission as a whole a lot easier. That's not something she could bring herself to do. So she got to struggle with him instead.

But Baronfjørd was right, something needed to be done. As they ran Kathryn saw a few places they could try and stash the guard. She may not have had it in her to kill him, but she wanted him out of the way and not in a position to hurt anyone else. She spotted a few places she could try and hide him. Some more appealing than others, but the more she thought the more she wanted to make sure that no one would accidentally find him. She saw an abandoned cart, though worried that he may stumble out of it once he came too, and worried the owners may return to find him. She saw an ever so tempting refuse bin. It would be quick, easy, and out of sight. She may be able to hide him in such a way where no one would find him until after all was said and done. Then he could stand trial and face proper punishments for his crimes. "I'll be right back Blackberry. I wont be long." Kathryn spoke softly so more vengeful party members wouldn't hear or have their attention drawn to what she was doing. Kathryn broke off the tail end of the group, and made her way to the bin. Once she got close, she saw something that may serve a bit better for her needs. An empty barrel. He wouldn't be a perfect fit, but he would fit. Kathryn started by undoing his binds, and bringing his knees to his chest, and his feet above his head. Then using his arms to wrap around his legs, and then tied his hands behind his head. To make extra sure, she used what was left of her rope to tie up him up tightly and firmly. There would be no wiggling his way out of these binds. But, he could still wake up.

Kathryn looked down at her man-rat filled barrel after setting him in, and decided this wasn't enough. He had proven his mouth was almost as much of a problem as his spear. Which ironically would be some kids first weapon. Good for them. It's important the young know how to defend themselves and others by the time they grow up. As for this one? Kathryn took off both his boots, and wedged them in such a way where moving about wasn't an option. But what she was really after? His socks. She took both off, balled off one, and wrapped the other tightly around it cramming it into his mouth to wrap things up. She chuckled at the image. "Heh..., Put a sock in it." she jested before putting the lid tightly back on the barrel, and pushing it behind a few other items nearby. Attempting her best to make sure that no one would find it again. It did mean if she didn't come back for him there was no telling how long it would take for him to be found. But he proved himself to be too risky to keep.

Kathryn booked it and returned with the rest of the party at a soft sprint. Still working to not draw too much attention. And good thing, they were closing in on the public house. Looking at Robert and Lea, there was tension in the air. The patrons not seeming to notice the tension. But seeing the relief in Robert's face helped assure that they were doing the right thing. Kathryn gave a subtle nod to Robert's question as she walked up. She didn't personally have the box, but Marita did. She watched as Robert rushed the others out of the public house and he asked his question. "Lots, short version though. We got it, Cavendish was there as well, and things turned into a physical altercation where he fled. He's down a man as well." Kathryn spoke matter of factly. She knew they couldn't share everything with Robert. He was still under the effect of the Geas. But his life was on the line too, and she figured he deserved to know something. And it was all information that Cavendish already knew shy of why the party was there. She made no effort to hide the hammer resting on her belt. At least now it wouldn't be used as a tool for his bullying and petty abuses of power.

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Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Dragoknighte
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Dragoknighte

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Marita Bärbel
Human, Cleric, Level 3
HP: 18/18 Armor Class: 18 Conditions: N/A
Location: Public House
Action: N/A
Bonus Action: N/A
Reaction: N/A
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Truly, Marita could have done without everything that had occurred in between the time the Constable barged into the shop up until the time they had managed to set foot back into the Public House. All of it was a mess, and were it not for all these problems compounding on each other simultaneously, she would have stepped in to fix all, or at least most of those problems. For instance she would have placed the crates back where they were, and she most certainly would have confiscated the spear rather than leave it where idiots could get themselves hurt. But she didn't have the time to deal with these things. At this point the stress from all the encroaching dangers and all the little things going wrong in such stupid ways that it made her want to cry, but she just had to put up with it for the time being.

"We got it." Marita set the package on the counter before stepping back to allow Robert free access to it. "Mallard also filled Victoria and I in on what he knew. At least what he could given the limited amount of time we had there. After we drove off Cavendish and his men, we had a flock of busybodies start pestering us and had to leave before they brought even more problems with them. Speaking of which, should any troublemakers try to snoop around here would it be best we leave, or will it be fine if we manage to stick around for a bit? A few of us took some nasty blows and we haven't had a chance to recuperate."
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Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Sigil
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Sigil Literary Hatchetman

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Victoria Belmont
Half-Elf, Bard, Level 3
HP: 23 / 23 Armor Class: 15 Conditions: N/A
Location: Rear Exterior, Silversmith's Shop -> Neil & Bob's Public House
Action: N/A
Bonus Action: Morty
Reaction: N/A

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Victoria's optimistic demeanor continued unabated during their short trek back to the Public House. It was a little disproportionate to the serious nature of their of their tasks, if one looked purely at her overt actions. She buddied up to Kosara after openly and slightly sarcastically disagreeing with her proposed actions just a couple of minutes before, smiled on as Kathryn stuffed the guard into a barrel, and even gave a supportive look in Marita's direction during her times of irritation. She looked downright cheerful, as if anticipating a public performance or personal rendezvous of note. But below the surface, was it really positive anticipation, or the light veneer of mild social deception necessary to further the events unfolding with as little friction as possible? People who truly knew the Bard - people who were not present in Avonshire - might lean to the latter explanation.

The open nature of her attitude belied a certain specificity of action. Each footfall was placed to cause as little noise or notice as possible, her cadence in this way occurring with the same frequency of another around her. It was subtle, and one had to look for it. Further, despite her garish dress, she was covered by a charcoal colored cloak (though her hat was marginally distinct, being fair) and kept toward the center of the group when possible. Her party did thing that would surely bring attention to themselves if casual eyes observed. This said, she strove to be the least worthy of remark amongst them.

Then she remembered that there was a walking feast centerpiece wrapped in burlap following her which probably didn't help matters any. Scoffing lightly at herself, Victoria quickened pace and contented herself with the outcome of merely getting to where they needed to go without incident, if at all possible. It was best to leave being sneaky for an occasion when her company was capable of, and had desire to, act with subtlety. The irony of this situation as not lost on her, being the flashy, performing type and under more standard circumstances would try to draw attention to herself.

There was a quiet sigh of relief when she finally entered Bob's place, doubly so when he gave his few patrons the boot and closed up behind them. After the simple, two word inquiry from the proprietor himself and Marita's summary to answer, Victoria spoke up in support of her overall concerns. "Oh quite, yes!" she began, removing her hat and knocking off the vanguard of precipitation from its treated felt brim. It was an excellent hat in very good condition, kept that way by regular care and several applications of Prestidigitation. Continuing, "Blood was spilled in the main thoroughfare and an enemy solidified, of this there is no doubt. Cavendish is more than a mere Constable, we have discovered painfully. Did you know, he used magic to slip away at the end, there?"

This reminded her of something she could not address before due to circumstance, and so she took the opportunity to turn her attention temporarily to Baronfjord, before she forgot to bring it up again, "That ...thing... with your arms? I admit fascinating curiosity. Is this a spell? A trait common to your people, perchance? I should be joyed to speak with you about it later."

She flashed a smile and returned to the more pressing topic at hand. "I agree with Marita. Some of us are rent about the edges and I have a venomous suspicion that we will want badly for any spellwork which would otherwise be dedicated to knitting flesh. A safe place of rest, if for a short time, would be delightful." Her cloak was already removed and shaken out, hanging over the back of a nearby chair. It seemed that she was hoping the answer was already decided, and to the positive.

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Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Arty Fox
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Arty Fox

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Baronfjørd "Blackberry" Chedgusah
Dragon Born, Monk (Astral self), Level 03
HP: 22 / 24 Armor Class: 15 Conditions: N/A
Location: Public house
Action: N/A
Bonus Action: N/A
Reaction: N/A
Ki: 1/3


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“Glad to hear you all are still in high spirits.” He couldn’t keep the sarcastic edge from his voice.

BlackBerry could still feel his heart threatening, still not quite recovered from the falling boxes moments before had had him jumping out of his scales. Even the follow up bellows from Mr. Mallard had done little to reassure him. He followed after the party as they all scurried hastily through the cold, spartan streets of Avonshire with its squat buildings looming over them all and boxing them in through tight corners and streets.

The distinct feeling of playing Cat and Mouse came to him often and it made him through suspicious glances over his shoulders and down the streets they passed but there wasn’t enough time to stop and investigate, or leap, at every shadow.

He impatiently waited, bouncing his foot frantically, for Lady Kathryn to deal with the Guard as she felt fit. He was somewhat surprised that she had actually taken his suggestion, a raise of the eye brows when she had dashed off with a hushed tone, as he had made it half in jest. Only half in jest though.

It wasn’t until he had stepped back into the Tavern and the door had shut soundly behind the last customer that he let out a sigh.

“By the Gods, what a day.” Another exaggerate sigh and a slouch. “I would seriously consider whether this place may have a rodent infestation."

He moved past the group and returned back to the fire once again, happy to see that it hadn’t diminished in either brightness or the warmth it gave off. It gave him a chance to (yet again) dry off somewhat from the downpour outside as Lady Kathryn gave Roberts a quick explanation. He watched the dancing flames flickering past his outstretched hand with a quick flex to try and encourage some warmth back into it. At this rate he was going to catch a cold, he was certain of it. The moment though did give him some time to mull over what he knew…

… There were were-rats running amock in Avonshire and at the same time the Harvest Moon festival. The ring leader, most likely suspect Cavendish had an enchanted hammer that had a secondary, unknown enchantment on it. Was the timing important? If so, why?

He scratched his brow in thought, there was some important detail there but he couldn’t quite see them all or the common thread between them. Maybe he was still missing some pieces ot the puzzle? The Hammer could be a key piece though but for what?

“At the very least we sent them packing.” He piped up, turning to the others. “Granted, not quite with their tails between their legs, unfortunately. But never the less they’ll think twice before ambushing us again.”

He had more questions he wanted to ask of the others, but refrained for now. He wanted to ask Victoria and Marita about what had happened whilst they were in the Silversmiths; they had been in there for a while before the battle and perhaps had managed to get some information from Mr. Mallard. His eyes darted between the two of them wondering what they knew but rest assured that they were looking to spread their knowledge.

“My arms?” He raised his stump in Victorias direction with a puzzled frown at her question for a moment, before realisation dawned. “Oh yes, my arms, of course. Yes, I would be delighted to. I must admit I am curious about your own magic, if I may?”
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Hidden 1 yr ago Post by rivaan
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rivaan

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Kosara
Tiefling, Warlock (Celestial), Level 03
HP: 21/ 21 Armor Class: 12(15 Mage Armor) Conditions: N/A
Location: Silversmith's, Outside-> Neil & Bob's Public House
Action: N/a
Bonus Action: N/A
Reaction: N/A

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Merry Kosara, with a shining goal set for her, was a Kosara that was not getting into too much troubles. As evident by the fact that once V had gotten her on the path of getting back to the Public House and keeping up with her on the front of the group, she more or less completely forgot to pay attention to where Kathryn was depositing their capture along the way. Mind you, that might have been a bad thing in the long run since Kosara was still most certainly up to silencing him and ending any mortal, circumstantial, lesser or even imaginary dangers that he represented to her friends and the townfolk. As it stood however was that she missed where Kathryn put him and only when they arrived at their destination did she realize she had been had! Trickery! Treachery! Betrayal! She gave Kathryn a very angry kitten glare.

On the topic of what had transpired she pouted in the side. Kathryn was getting a nagging of the era later. They were going to have words one sidedly and she was going to hear exactly why letting that creature live was a bad idea and why she should have just finished him off once he proved for certain he was dangerous, evil and evilly dangerous... also dangerously evil.” They take can take a beating... grandpa's magic works well though.” Kosara helpfully chimed in from the side and took off her bag, putting it on an empty table nearby, before taking off her coat again and shacking her head energetically to get some water off her.” Should have tried to hit Cloverfish with a Celestial Blast, but I was busy fighting some others... and getting shot by crossbows...” She halted and turned to show her righteous(kitten) fury at Kathryn.

“I will be good to go with a rather quick rest, nothing too long really.” She added and made her way to the closest place of warmth nearby.” But for what's it worth with the rats, it seems they really don't like magic. Like... REALLY don't like magic. When we showed magic, they got loud and really energetic in attacking us... so... magic hurts them good I think.”

“Hey, Mr. Robert, is there any CHEESE and BACON I can buy? I'm a bit peckish and I want to make a sandwich.” She asked, accenting the words and looking in challenge at Kathryn.
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Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Sigil
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*******


In contrast to the lively action and near lack of standing room from the night before, Neil & Bob's Public House stood open and bereft of patronage. The proprietor and the barmaid, seemingly ever-present in the establishment, remained the only persons aside from the party in sight. The openness itself allowed for the hint of an echo in some places.

Lea took to her job with industry, clearing off and wiping down the last of the tables for detail. She might have put the chairs top the freshly cleaned tables, and indeed moved to start doing this until Robert waved her away from the task. So far as the Pub's owner was concerned, there were more important things at hand than making sure the furniture was arranged in a manner convenient for later floor care.

With this thought, he stepped over to the box which Marita placed upon the counter and nodded his thanks, giving no other attention to the words spoken to him from the others nearby. He gingerly opened the container, breathing a small sigh of relief when he looked upon what lay within. With a sense of urgency, Robert lifted its contents and gave them a more thorough inspection. Just as what went into the box at the silversmith's, what came out was a set of chained shackles, the interior of each manacle inlaid with freshly solidified silver. There wasn't a lot of art to this project, nor did there need to be. "Good... good."

A quick check out of a window later, and a marginally less stressed Bob reevaluated his guests. Addressing things mentioned now, he replied, "Cavendish is a dangerous man. That isn't a slight that he'll forget. You all are targets now." His eyes hovered over Kathryn's new hammer. "You... You lot must have really angered him with that one." Robert looked like he wanted to smiled a little, but in the end could not. Instead he looked back to Marita and spoke, "Folk in this town are good people. A little more cowardly than they let on; decent enough. Most of them."

As before, Robert was picking his words carefully. "The ones you got to worry about already know you. I suspect you will know who they are in a couple hours, too." A quick subject change, "Stay as long as you need. If you have another place to go or friends in town, don't tell me about it. I can't help you anyway, but nothing says Lea or Daisy can't." These last words were evasive, out of apparent necessity. "Bedding in the other room's been changed if you want to lay down for a time. Rest in there or pull a couple out here - makes no difference to me."

The mention of Cavendish using magic brought a sudden hesitance to Robert's movements and speech. When he finally could say something, it was again very careful. "The Constable and I have some things in common. I was a fighting man in my younger days. Army term of service, nothing grand. I don't know a thing about magic. No one in my family, neither. Might surprise a lot of folks if I levitate a fork at suppertime. Not that I can, 'cause I can't. But if I were to, it ain't because I took to study, and it's not because some god let me, neither. A man like me would have to agree to something. Sign on the dotted, you know? No, I'm content with my tavern. Magic is overrated, far as I'm concerned."

To Baronfjord, who made a simple comment about a rat problem, the response given was likewise simple. "Yeah. Little guys can get vicious sometimes. Take care and avoid if you can."

Kosara's observations mostly went by without response. He seemed to be waging an internal argument to keep to a neutral path of neither confirming nor denying any statements on this ilk, resigning himself to merely saying nothing. When she did bring up something he could comment on, he took to it with his usual ambiguity, "Menu's above the bar. If'n you're hungry, talk to Daisy or Lea. I can't help you directly out of the kindness of my heart. Matter of fact, I need to get back home soon. I have a project to finish before nightfall." He raised the shackles briefly and set them back in the box. "I can't do a thing for anybody tonight. Do not come looking for me." He made it a point to look at each of the party members in turn, hoping that his words sunk in. "If we got any more business, now is the time. Otherwise, I'm leaving you in Lea's care."

To her credit, the barmaid was doing a competent job holding back the nervousness that she felt right then. Competent, but not excellent. It showed around the edges. "I'll see what I can't do about that bacon and cheese, Miss!" she declared, motioning with a hand that trembled just a little.


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Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Shoe Thief
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Shoe Thief The Real Shoe Thief

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Kathryn Pyke
Human, Battle Master, Level 03
HP: 25 / 31 Armor Class: 19 Conditions: N/A
Location: Public House
Action: N/A
Bonus Action: N/A
Reaction: N/A

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The others did a good job covering what Kathryn skipped over, and likely covered details that were important, but had skipped Kathryn's mind a bit. Marita brought up a good point though, if shit hits the mill again was this where they wanted to hold their stand? Did they have anywhere better? The barn could likely do decent should the party have more people with skirmishing capabilities. The second story combined with the relatively open floor plan, and plenty of space to fight without getting cornered? It wasn't the worst of options by far. Kosara had some useful abilities in those regards, but without knowing what Blackberry could do, and with Kathryn's own limited ability at ranged, it wasn't the grand advantage they needed if things went poorly. The public house was as good as any while they collected themselves. A chance to recover would be useful for them all. This fight was another example of Kathryn not on her best. She wasn't out of position this time, but she was knocked on her ass before things even kicked off, and got the shit then beaten out of her repetitively. No it was far from her best. She was improving, but held Cavendish at bay. Took his instrument of torment. And downed one of his men. Overall, a win. But it could have been done better.

Blackberry was right though, they had given out enough of a beating that Cavendish couldn't just stride up and expect them to be pushed aside. The concern was now he wouldn't. He would choose his battles, and choose them carefully. And if he attacked again, he would be a lot more prepared. Kathryn supposed they could find a way to ambush him? Or avoid him all together. But the lines had been drawn, and Cavendish had come out of the battle with a much bigger beating than the party. Kathryn did feel a tinge of guilt when Kosara mentioned getting hit. Though she felt with some confidence that she made the right choice to confront Cavendish, she had left Kosara and Blackberry exposed to the rest of the guard. She could have held back, played more defensively, kept the two of them shielded at least a bit. But Cavendish would have gotten away in that case, and still armed with the hammer. He would have had far greater free reign to do as he pleased had someone not held him in place. She supposed Marita in her position could have done so pretty well. Kathryn wasn't made aware of the crossbowmen until after she engaged Cavendish though. She still held some visible guilt to Kosara. Twice now she was out of position, and twice her team had been battered by bolts and arrows. Kathryn's dimenor relaxed a bit when Kosara asked about food. Her bloody sandwichless sandwich she was so fixated on. "Bacon and Cheese is all it is Kosara. Without bread it's not a sandwich, just two independently good foods." Kathryn spoke lightheartedly. She was glad to see Kosara seemed in somewhat decent spirits.

Kathryn listened as Robert spoke, trying to catch up on his words as he spoke. He was struggling though. It reminded Kathryn of a man who knew he was about to die, and had to remember all the affairs he needed to get in order, and was almost certainly forgetting something but couldn't be sure what. She pitied him. His intentions seemed good and pure, though he was cursed to be an adversary, even if not directly. Despite that, he still did what he could to help. He all but confirmed, Cavendish would be their main problem here. He either had to be dealt with directly, or avoided until this whole thing was resolved. And wrapped up with in post. Kathryn had an idea what Robert's plans were for the night. "Robert, when this is over... Do you want us to come for you then?" Kathryn noticed how tense Lea was. After Robert left, Kathryn would want to check up with her and make sure she was all okay. Then she could lick her own wounds.
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Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Dragoknighte
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Marita Bärbel
Human, Cleric, Level 3
HP: 18/18 Armor Class: 18 Conditions: N/A
Location: Public House
Action: N/A
Bonus Action: N/A
Reaction: N/A
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"We've been targets since the moment we set foot in this town," Marita replied in response to Robert's assessment. "The only difference between now and this morning is that he no longer needs to look for a reason to justify attacking us. But it's been clear from the moment we ran into him at the front gate is that he didn't want us in Avonshire at all and only barely tolerated our presence here." The cleric paused for a moment, looking at each individual party member before continuing. "I tried to give him the benefit of the doubt, most of us do look like trouble and in the short time we've been here there have been several incidents, not necessarily related to the investigation at that. At this point, Cavendish's actions have placed him well outside the realm of upholding the law and I can't ignore it anymore." The final sentence was uttered more as a threat than a resigned realization.

Whereas Kathryn thought about other places to hole up in during the night, Marita's mind turned to friends, particularly the L'Roses. Mallard seemed like he could handle himself for the night. Or at least he would refuse to budge from where he was at the moment. It was probably too late to try to evacuate anyone outside of the township, but they could try to at least keep everyone where they could see them. Even if they were staying with a friend of theirs, the situation was far too sticky to trust them in an unverified situation like that. After everyone took a short break she would see about having the party split into two teams to try getting all the rest of their business taken care of before nightfall. Although she didn't have wounds to tend to, resting her voice would allow her access to her Order's Command once again. She wasn't sure how effective it would be against the upcoming threat.

"I don't believe any of us have anything more we need of you, Robert." Of course any of the others would speak up if they wanted to like Kathryn, but as far as she could tell, they were done for the night. He had helped as much as he could and given them valuable information. Speaking of which, the cleric felt she was getting the hang of reading between the lines of the pub owner's Geas-speech. Cavendish was a warlock, likely to some sort of devil. That last bit was purely speculation on her part, it seemed like the most likely scenario. As far as the ones they need to worry about, Cavendish and his men were obvious, but there was a feeling Marita had. There wasn't enough concrete detail to say this for sure, but what seemed to be the case for the infestation was whoever was the instigator for this plague started by infecting the major figures in town. Then, once they were in on the plan or geased into silence they could start picking off people one by one, usually those that would be most likely to be overlooked. Ones like the orphan boy from earlier weren't likely to be who Robert was referring to, so it was likely the other big players in Avonshire: whoever was at the Municipal building and Madam Marcie. If there was anyone else, the party likely hadn't met them yet, but probably would before the night was through. As stressful as the notion was, at least finally having the situation laid out bare would make things a lot less complicated.

Marita noticed both the look on Kathryn's face and Lea's trembling but didn't have the slightest clue on what to say to them. Being an emotional support was never part of her training, nor did it come naturally to her as it seemed to for others. Not to mention she wasn't doing the best job of keeping things together herself. How envious she was of Kosara at the moment, nothing seemed to get at her for very long.
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Baronfjørd "Blackberry" Chedgusah
Dragon Born, Monk (Astral self), Level 03
HP: 22 / 24 Armor Class: 15 Conditions: N/A
Location: Public house
Action: N/A
Bonus Action: N/A
Reaction: N/A
Ki: 1/3


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Now knowing Robert was under some sort of enchantment the signs of it were now obvious; the stilted movements and short, sharp, sentences he spoke. The poor man was likely fighting every part of the spell laced throughout his mind to give them all at least a few morsels of information, and BlackBerry catalogued them as best he could.

The obvious being the first sentence hinting that maybe Robert was a were-rat as well which could explain the shackles if he were trying to protect, or maybe he could use magic also? But no…he said he couldn’t do magic so then why was he saying as if he did? Unless he wasn’t talking about himself and he was referring to someone else instead; perhaps Cavendish? BlackBerry’s eyebrows hopped and jumped as he tried to follow Roberts lines of speech, trying to examine every word and sentence for a hidden meaning. He had never been very good at riddles

“You could wrap the bacon around the cheese?.” His eyes roved toward Lady Kathryn and Kosara as he latched onto their conversation. “I suppose that might count as a sandwich.” He then frowned at himself for getting easily distracted at such a time.

BlackBerry then, after declining the offer of food from Lea with a polite shake of his head, waited until the barmaid had left the party to tend to their requests. Despite how calm and patient a face he put on, the constant shifting from side to side betrayed his anxious impatience.

“Well I suggest that in the meantime you may as well share some information, Marita.” Despite motioning to the table nearby, he remained standing. “You and Victoria were in there with Mr. Mallard for a little while, and you did mention he had shared some information with you.”

His face turned somewhat grim and he tried to figure out the best way to word his next sentence. It took him a few seconds with his fingers tap, tap, tapping against his thumb before he spoke.

“Despite us only having relatively few injuries from the skirmish earlier.” His hand drifted to wear the arrow had been earlier, and a quick glance over to Kosara. “I worry that next time we may not be so lucky. As it was I fear we were at a disadvantage. Anything we can learn about the enemy will help us at least even then odds.”

If they were to be resting here for a little while he might as well get his questions answered now.
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Victoria Belmont
Half-Elf, Bard, Level 3
HP: 23 / 23 Armor Class: 15 Conditions: N/A
Location: Neil & Bob's Public House
Action: N/A
Bonus Action: Morty
Reaction: N/A

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Robert's words were taken in and mentally digested as best as possible. The implications and ramifications therein spent a few thoughtful seconds colliding with each other in the confines of Victoria's mind, and coupled with what she had figured out on this investigation, came to some pretty horrible conclusions. The Bard herself liked to stay out of situations which did not concern her directly nor which piqued her academic interests, but this was something that she was stuck right in the middle of. The possibility of taking what little daylight they had left and booking it definitely came to mind; before she agreed to accept this job he was headed west to the sea anyway and had no problems continuing with those plans. Something struck her about what all was going on, though. It didn't seem right, even among the obvious horrors going on in this region. She kept her conjecture to herself, quietly waiting for the initial push of their immediate situation to calm some before addressing anyone else.

When Victoria did speak back up, it was to Marita. "I cannot speak for the rest of you," she began, an attempt at humor lifting her voice, "But I look nothing like trouble. I am an absolute delight to be around." She gave a warm smile, whether or not her charming personality took hold of the overall mood of the room (which she suspected that it wouldn't), and then completely changed the script. "And what if Cavendish is upholding the law, Pholtan Barbel?" Her tone was inquisitive, maybe even a little challenging, but not judgemental nor accusatory. "What if he is upholding an ethic or a code, but not the one he swore to when becoming a Constable? I find it hard to believe that a man suddenly granted magical ability does not have the yoke of another's doctrine upon them. But I agree, he cannot be ignored."

What she said next surprised her a little. "This place was beautiful and fun; full of life and music. I danced around the square's fountain yesterday and ate one of the nicest blush pears I have ever tasted. I met a sweet but sad little girl with ...potential I'm not sure she realizes... and her very generous aunt. I sang in a cemetery with new friends and made memories that I shall commit to paper, that others might share a shade of my contentment. No one in Avonshire has come at me with torches, no Cleric of Light sought to remove me with force and holy water. This man, Cavendish, and whomever or whatever pulls his strings has tainted this place in the middle of a time of community and joy. Some things must eventually be answered for." A sense of resolve followed her words. No, she would not be running for the coast like she had planned. Even if it went against a tried and true survival strategy. In that moment, she remembered a similar mistake from a couple of years ago which brought her to an interesting predicament which still haunted her.

The words settled for another few moments, during which Victoria shuffled her cloak about to more evenly dry, applying a bit of care to the fine garment. She sighed. A little drama never hurt anyone, most of the time. But she meant it. A short chuckle later she looked to Baronfjord, to whom she has asked a question and likewise had been asked one. To bring the overall feel of the room back to one of general rest and/or guarded relaxation, she opted to answer first. Sweetly, but with direct words, she ripped the cover off of one of her personal truths, "Why, I am a True Bard. I recognize the music inherent to the world around me and apply it to magic, creating effects that others versed in the Art might require a notable bloodline, or years of arcane study to accomplish. The philosophy of my chosen College flavors the effects which I can accomplish, which in my case is the College of the Grey Requiem. It channels certain emotions and powers associated with... well, with the celebrations and sorrows of one's life, death, and what lay between these states of existence. We see to the fallen and respect their beliefs, occasionally borrowing the wisdom of those who came before or utilizing that which is left behind. Some of the more powerful can perform other acts, as powerful as it is questionable by those who consider themselves righteous." Okay, maybe she was getting a little flowery. To summarize, "Much of what we do is a form of Necromancy, with many aspects common to Bards of Lore."

She might get an answer back, but for now Victoria bent a little attention to a slightly overwhelmed Lea. "Let us keep talking in a few moments, Master Dragonborn Excuse me, please?" The others were discussing the more intricate protocols of sandwich making and/or what constitutes one in the first place, not to mention firing off specific orders which didn't quite fit the menu. She looked to the barmaid, blushed just a little, and said, "We'll work something out, Miss. Of course we will! If your friend Daisy is still back in the kitchen, I'm sure she can handle it. If she is not, I'm sure I can help put a few things on a plate or bowl up some of that yummy stew from the last time. You still have that, don't you? It was delicious." Her tone was soft and reassuring, her words kind, her body language subdued and non-threatening. "Maybe we can all sit down and have a sip of something fine and calming in a bit, yes? I think you've earned it."

As usual, Morty just stood there. He was out of the way and seemed very content to do so.
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Kosara
Tiefling, Warlock (Celestial), Level 03
HP: 21/ 21 Armor Class: 12(15 Mage Armor) Conditions: N/A
Location: Neil & Bob's Public House
Action: N/a
Bonus Action: N/A
Reaction: N/A

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“Thank you, Miss Lea!” Kosara replied energetically to the nervous wreck of a young woman that at this moment looked like a person of auspicious blessing that would bring food to their tables! She gave Lea a most sincere wide smile. Kosara was a person that wore her emotions on her sleeves most of the time… possible problem was that her mood swings were common and all over the place. As clearly expressed when Kathryn, the cause of her current general pouting mood, pipped into the food narrative with a heretical thought! Her gaze slowly turned towards her favorite, but currently angry-able buffed warrior woman.” Maybe… we should replace the bread with apple slices… yes applies, bacon and cheese! It will probably go great with the bacon and cheese.” She gave a stare at Kathryn, like a kid that wanted to see if her current efforts were annoying somebody.

While Marita was having what would only be likened to ‘adults talk’, the type of talk that was how most adults did in serious situations, Kosara’s pouting and irked kitten state was surprisingly interfered with when Bluebarry pie monk walked over to join in the sandwich discussion! Much better topic than talking about Grumpy Cavefish, the constable. His interruption brought a huge grin to Kosara’s face.” See, Berry gets it!” She stuck her tongue at Kathryn in victory.

Then just as V was getting into the serious talk she brought up a fine point about their Grumpy Coverstable.” Ohh, you mean he’s got somebody like Grandpa to teach him and allow him to use magic?” She blinked at V in a bit of a surprise.” Well it cannot be Grandpa… Grandpa’s good and wouldn’t help people like him, but he did say that the world was vast and there are others that aren’t as good and that they help people do bad things for favors or something.” The tiefling dancer supposed, thinking of what she had seen so far. She had no idea who would help constable Grumpyratface to play with the other rats and do evil things. Unless it was the king of the rats! A brief flash of a big fat rat with a crown on it’s head showed up briefly in her head before it got scattered when V moved the topic to having a good tasty warm drink.” Mmm… yes!, great idea!” She quipped and hanged her back on the chair she decided to sit on. She also took off her coat.

“Hey, Marita, would holy water help with the ratmen?” She looked over to the cleric and asked.” Grandpa’s magic was effective on them, would thrown holy water on them help? Or maybe fire? Grandpa says that fire helps with everything if used properly. I think he meant monsters, but I’m not too sure on that one.”
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*******


Robert gave a long, hard look at the people gathered in his place of business. These were people he didn't know more than two days ago, with the exception of Lea, and now he was leaving his livelihood in their hands. The decision was made rather quickly and it showed on his face. His very visage seemed to bear the phrase "no other choice" like a huge, white surrender flag. But of the options at his disposal, this was the best. Assuming that they were as well-meaning as they seemed, he place might not even be burned to the ground if he was alive to get back to it. A hard sigh found Bob responding to Kathryn first, using stern words. "NO. Do not come for me. Do not try to help me. Stay away from me until dawn breaks." He held the tall woman's gaze for a moment afterward to hammer his point home.

When dealing with Marita's contributions to the conversation, Bob remained mostly quiet. One might be able to tell that he wanted to say something on a couple of occasions but restrained himself. He had likely already said too much as it was, and in truth dreaded some manner of repercussion in the near future. Between the Cleric's assessment on the situation and Victoria's little additions, the tavernkeeper turned his head away from the conversation, teeth firmly set together. A final look of blessed relief crossed his face when Marita finally said that they had no further need of him. Robert could not help but think that this was a very different position to be in than when he met their group initially.

While he was present for the entire (and to his mind, cumbersome) conversation about the application of sandwich ingredients in ways that did not traditionally conform to the conventional applications of the word, he did an excellent job of pretending not to hear it. It did not exactly bolster his confidence in their ability to handle a threat of the nature they might face that evening, but a tiny glimmer of hope remained that the three of them engrossed in the odd topic might be doing so because of their self-assuredness to achieve victory, and therefore allowed for the painfully trivial to take the forefront of their conversation. A man might carry hope, anyway. Another quick check was made on the silvered chains and manacles in the box, after which he made for the front door. "Lock up behind me," he ordered his employee, Lea. "Maybe you oughtn't go home tonight. Might be safer here, unless you know a better spot." Robert donned a hat and pushed his way out of the front door. Careful looks followed before he strode out of his Tavern and into the softening light of the day.

The open door revealed changed weather conditions. Rain ceased to come down, though puddles remained. The majority of the water, what was left of it, flowed in the general direction of the main thoroughfares. A moderate sized town along a river had to have good drainage, apparently. Bits of sky were visible, too, and a biting wind carried its way inside. If this was a prelude to the weather to come, then it was going to get cold, and probably quickly.

Lea did not speak to her boss, but with tears forming in her eyes gave him a vigorous nod. Yes, she would lock up. Maybe she would stay, even. And yes, she would get these people food, even if they refused to agree on how it should be constructed. "I'll um... I'll just bring some things out and you can do, um, ...do whatever you wish." She was obviously distracted. To Victoria she merely gave an empty nod of agreement, and motioned for her to follow into the kitchen area where the Half-Elf could help with things.

It was but a few scant minutes that she returned with whatever they had on standby, which yes, included fresh fruit, cheese, and toasted bacon for those who might want to run minor (but not inexhaustible) experiments with edible construction. With it was a tureen of stew, a few loaves of coarse but good bread, and tea. Cold and hot water both were in abundance for the meal. The items were brought out with enough haste to make it known that it was not freshly made, but rather held warm for what might have been an expectation of greater amounts of business. Lea possessed a distant look about her as she ferried items from the kitchen to the common area, the only help being what was offered from within the party. If Daisy was around, she hadn't been spotted.

"Oh, sorry. Some of you wanted to tend to your hurts. I'll just be a moment." said Lea, keeping herself busy as she might in the present circumstances. Simple wound care items found their way out next for those who might have need of them. As soon as everyone was set up with that they wanted, the young barmaid took a loaf of bread for herself and sat quietly nearby, absently tearing off pieces and chewing them thoughtfully. "Pull out some beds if you want, or, um, ... just use the sleeping area. Sheets are fresh." There was no nuance to her words; a mere recitation of information to those who might listen. The pulled out a slip of paper from her apron pocket and inspected it, continuing, "Daisy should be back soon. Help yourself until then, okay?" Her words were deliberate as a free hand motioned toward the bar and kitchen area.

The Short Rest has begun.
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Baronfjørd "Blackberry" Chedgusah
Dragon Born, Monk (Astral self), Level 03
HP: 22 / 24 Armor Class: 15 Conditions: N/A
Location: Public house
Action: N/A
Bonus Action: N/A
Reaction: N/A
Ki: 1/3


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Giving a shrug, BlackBerry supposed he may as well indulge in some of the less urgent discussions taking place whilst they all rested. He had to agree with Victoria’s thoughts on Avonshire, and it sounded like she had really grown attached to the place despite being here only a short time. It really spoke of her character. But a sense of unease did grow as she continued, and explained her own magic with words of ‘death’, ‘the fallen’, ‘necromancy’.

The polite half smile slipped to the floor, along with his stomach. Suddenly he felt very cold despite the fire crackling nearby.

“Ah.” He said. “Oh.” He continued. “I see.”

His eyes snapped over to Morty, wrapped in bandages and standing happily to attention seemingly without a care in the world, or thought in his head. A moment of dawning, horrible realisation struck BlackBerry like a frying pan to the face. His eyes grew wide as they hovered over the mummified pig.

He was glad that Victoria took a moment to talk to Lea, and head into the kitchen to lend a hand as it gave him enough time to pull his thoughts together. He had been several tall tales told of Necromancer from ages past, and none of them good between taking over the world or causing general misery. But Victoria didn’t strike him as either of those things, in fact she seemed overall a nice person and clearly had all her faculties together. BlackBerry pinned a smile back into place.

“Necromancy? Well. Waste not, want not I suppose.” He snapped his mouth shut but failed to catch the words. A small cough and apologetic grimace followed, hurriedly he continued. “I must admit I haven’t ran across any other bards with magical skills like that…but first time for everything.”

Kosara, thankfully provided an avenue of discussion for him to hide behind and let the others other talk over. He didn’t like the idea that the were-rats could only be damaged by magic given that it made him damn-near useless in such a fight. He furrowed his brows hard at the thought. Holy water might be a plausible idea for attacking but again, unless a whole barrel full of the stuff were to suddenly land in his lap he was damn-near useless. BlackBerry’s Ruminations were broken by the arrival of food and the smell of it wafting up from the bowls and trays Victoria and Lea brought out to the party. He thanked them both, stepping momentarily backwards out of the way, before he plucked a particularly tasty looking apple from the pile of fruit.

“My apologies, Victoria, I realise I have yet to answer your question; but no, ummm, it’s not really a common skill; only two of my Brothers know the same skill as I, shared to us by a group of Adventures passing through. They were even kind enough to lend a hand with a ravenous bunch of giant spiders.” A momentary pause for a violent shiver at the memory of them. “However, some others back home have garnered similar skills through their own training.”

He finished with a small sigh and a smile thinking back on his home; the tidy courtyards with pathways winding through lovingly cared for beds of herbs and fruit, the carved stones holding up the vaulted ceilings of the church, and the smell of the shelves upon shelves of books within the cold library.

“I would not describe it as a spell as such. More of a…” He paused, eyes flashing upwards and skittering across the ceiling trying to see if the words were there. A moment to bit into the apple with a satisfying crunch and he nodded with approval, and continued talking around the apple. “…more of another part of myself. Yes, that’s it; ‘another part of myself’. The physical body is simply one aspect of a person and the rest being an energy that, with training and meditation, one can tap into and give form.”

His eyes roved as he spoke before resting on the sight of Lea sitting alone nearby staring intently at a note in her hand. His heart went out to her, supposing it couldn’t be easy right now stuck here with unfamiliar people while such nightmares prowled the streets of her home. He wondered if she had any family or friends she would be thinking about. He thought about going up to her and lending some support but the look from the woman in the town square earlier popped into his mind, and held him back.
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Kathryn Pyke
Human, Battle Master, Level 03
HP: 25 / 31 Armor Class: 19 Conditions: N/A
Location: Public House
Action: N/A
Bonus Action: N/A
Reaction: N/A

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Kathryn listened closely as Marita spoke, though she was also getting a few of her own tasks done. Unclasping belt buckles, taking off the extra armor plating on her armor, and laying down her assortment of weapons on a table near the fire. The only ones of note for her at the moment being her family sword, and the Hammer she took from Cavendish. Though she refused to let Cavendish ever have it again, it was still hard to grasp that in doing so, it made the hammer hers now. Even if she decided it would be better in someone else's hands, they were in her hands now and it was her responsibility to watch over it and prevent it from falling into the wrong hands. This new weapon would also allow Kathryn to finally hang up her family sword. A weapon really only supposed to be used to protect one's homestead. There were some other weapons she had, but none of particular note. She would have more once they returned to Mallard, and weapons that would be far more effective against Cavendish and his goons. "I think we all tried to give him the benefit of the doubt. But he became increasingly more bold with his hostility as the day went on. Though this confrontation does do one thing for us. We know who our enemy is." She didn't say more than that for now, though Robert was an ally, he was dealing with his own conflicts. Conflicts that directly got in the way of the party. He made his point clear though, don't come until dawn. Kathryn gave a simple nod, understanding his concern. The way he talked about the upcoming night concerned Kathryn. How bad would things get? Marita talking about the incidents they have already gotten into, that may have explained some of Cavendish's behavior prompted a humorous response from Victoria before it turned serious. "Tell that to the drunk last night. I don't think he'd agree."

Kathryn Chuckled as she continued to undo some of her buckles and armor. "me on the other hand, there's no way anyone could take anything I do with any malice at all?" Kathryn said with a big smile. She knew her size could be intimidating to people, and it was funny as most people who got to know her may see it. But Kathryn was a little impulsive, and she was massive. And combined with a semi professional posture and always being in heavy armor while out and about she looked like a force of nature who would casually burst through a wall should she find it more convenient than taking a door. But not every situation could be met with jokes. "We'll figure this out. And bring the amazing beauty we saw in this place right back." She hoped. They still had no idea what kind of scale there was to this whole thing.

Kathryn waiting until Robert left to speak up again. "Cavendish has also given us the ability to strike him a lot more openly should we need too." Kathryn said a bit monotone. "We can't be sure that all the town guard are on his side, but we need to assume that none of them are on ours right now. Legitimate or not. The way I see it, the ones we saw on the streets today are fair game to do whatever we need to do so we can resolve this as quickly as possible with as few casualties as possible. As for the other guards, we'll have to take it play by play. But we'll have to assume Cavendish has given orders to them about us. And until we know for sure, we have to be prepared for the fact we may be kill on sight for the town guard. If we're lucky, just arresting. But I would rather not test that the hard way. And this is again assuming that there are some town guards who haven't sided with Cavendish." Kathryn hated being so doom and gloom about the situation speaking tot he party, but things had escalated. And having it out in the open about their present situation was important. Kathryn stood up leaving her assortment of weapons and much of her armor, leaving her chainmail hanging loose almost as if it were a steel made dress as she went off into the lodging room. Kathryn returned with a couple of beds in her arms and set them down for the party to use so they didn't need to split up to rest if they didn't want too.

Lea and Victoria returning with food reminded Kathryn that the sandwich debate was still going on. Though things were serious, it was nice to have something to pull her thoughts into a more relaxed state. Kathryn did let out an audible sigh as she laid down listening to Kosara and blackberry. "If you wrap it in bacon, it becomes a wrap, not a sandwich. There's a clear difference!" Kathryn spoke up in her best smart girl voice. "Apple slices are not bread either. At that point you've just made a really strange sandwich Kosara." Kathryn said teasingly locking eyes with the small tiefling before grabbing an assortment of foods and snacks. Making extra sure to grab some bread to even more emphasis it's importance in a balanced meal. Kathryn did listen on as Blackberry asked about what Marita and Victoria learned, but Kathryn couldn't help but take note of Lea sitting in the corner.

Kathryn wasn't the best when it came to people who were down, but she felt a familiar feeling seeing Lea sitting all by herself. Kathryn grabbed some extra stew and some fruits and cheeses and pulled one of the beds over by Lea before sitting. She didn't speak up, but she left the food close by so if she wanted to speak she could. But she wanted to be close enough that the poor girl didn't feel alone. Kathryn sat quietly on the bed eating her fruits, breads, and stew. If lea looked over towards her she would give the polite woman a reassuring smile, and say a simple thanks to her as she sat quietly.

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Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Sigil
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Victoria Belmont
Half-Elf, Bard, Level 3
HP: 23 / 23 Armor Class: 15 Conditions: N/A
Location: Neil & Bob's Public House
Action: N/A
Bonus Action: Morty
Reaction: N/A

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The mostly constant conversation about appropriate application of the word sandwich, as it related to their more recent escapades with food and personal scores to settle, admittedly did annoy Victoria. Not that she was going to let any piece of that show on her face or in her mannerisms; not voluntarily, at any rate. This was expected, more or less, and was part of a gambit she hoped would move things along to get back to the Public House when she playfully said that she knew a good place in town to catch a bit of lunch. Now the price of this moment of cheerfulness had to be paid for with mild annoyance. Being honest, it could have been much worse.

Worse, in this case, might have been the novice adventuring group she had been with before this one. Victoria's thoughts went back into her career as an adventuring Bard at its outset, and the people with whom she associated at that time. One was far more morally grey than herself, another with a penchant for sociopathy as it came to sentient life, and yet another who enjoyed using magic to set things on fire. The incident which made them part ways seemed as much a blessing as it was a curse in hindsight, purely for the reason that it gave her an excuse to leave. Victoria had been a solo act for a while following this, and now seemed to have fallen in with this group. Temporary or not, whichever case it might be, deep down she preferred for herself to be the most ethically questionable member of the group. As long as she set the lower bar, there could be a greater element of trust and a touch more patience for the party's hi-jinks. The ongoing sandwich debate was, in this context, a fine point over which did not merit quibbling.

As it turned out, Victoria did lend a hand in the kitchen, putting things on trays and bringing them out. When she returned for the final time, she observed that Lea wandered just away from the others in the room, she had a piece of paper that she had picked up in the kitchen that Victoria hadn't gotten a chance to read for herself, and that the others were still talking about what is or is not a sandwich. Still, she kept her spirits to the positive, mentioning to Kosara as the last serving dish hit the table, "See? I told you I knew a good spot." It was delivered with a wink and a mischievous expression. To her inquiry as to whether Cavendish, in so many words, had a magical Patron, she responded with a more pragmatic, "To hear it indirectly described, I should say so. But you are more of the expert than I."

She gave an attentive listen to Baronfjord as he explained in a general way the manifestation of his astral arms. It was just general enough that she didn't fully comprehend the basics of it, until she heard the last part of his explanation concerning energy, training, and meditation. Then it dawned on her that this was one of the abilities which might avail themselves to a Monk, just not of a discipline that she had personally encountered as of yet. She gave a marginally understanding nod to her Dragonborn companion and returned her attention to the table. She recovered a thick piece of buttered bread, a piece of fruit, and a cup of tea for herself. "Maintaining my girlish figure," she explained to no one in particular. Her real reason was to avoid excesses before what might be a hard night, and vanity was an excellent, particularly believable cover for someone like her. Victoria pulled her seat out a little, angled so that she had a good line of sight in Lea's direction if she so chose. But to business: "I would take Kathryn's assertions a step farther, and assume that we will be sought out sooner or later. Have we an idea as to what we wish to do this evening?" There might be merit in holing up and staying defensive. Or going the opposite route and attempting to strike at a target, if they had something solid to name as target-worthy. All the same, Victoria's eyes would occasionally slip toward the paper Lea held and continued to look at. "For now, let us take a moment to breathe, recover our weapons, and see what happens next." She raised her teacup to her lips and took a slow, soothing sip, exhaling a pleased breath upon lowering. "This is actually fairly lovely tea," she appraised, moving to sample from her cup once more.

Morty stood dumbly, giving no outward reaction to the fact that its standing orders were just changed by a simple mental command from its purple-clad master, who was innocuously tasting the local tea and conversing.

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Hidden 1 yr ago Post by rivaan
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rivaan

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Kosara
Tiefling, Warlock (Celestial), Level 03
HP: 21/ 21 Armor Class: 12(15 Mage Armor) Conditions: N/A
Location: Neil & Bob's Public House
Action: N/a
Bonus Action: N/A
Reaction: N/A

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"It's not that big of a difference. Back home we use flat bread to wrap stuff in all the time and it's closer to a sandwich!" Kosara defended the wrapping techniques about making sandwiches. Alright it was NOT a sandwich thing for certain, if there was a certain way to make them, but she was gonna stubbornly stick to her position out of sheer desire to be a contrarian about it with Kathryn right now. They can call her petty and childish, but she would prefer to be referred as willful if anything. Also... she wasn't childish!

Suddenly she grinned from ear to ear at Kathryn's next statement. The tiefling woman looked quite smug right now as she made herself most comfortable on her chair and looked the warrior woman in the eyes." Ahh, but you do agree it's a sandwich then!" She snickered, having gotten the win on their debate. Kathryn had maybe unintentionally had a slip of the tongue or just decided to humor the white haired woman, but the end result was a smug and happy Kosara that had decided that this was her win.

"That you did, V !" The tiefling chirped happily as the platters if food were put on the table and to be honest with her argument won, now if the other party considered that the case or not, was not really relevant to her childish joy and personality, her stubbornness and focus had taken a sudden drop and other things were getting priority... like food to eat and not just talk about.

With the great sandwich debate left behind, Kosara took to the food, but before taking off her shirt, leaving herself in her dancer top she wore underneath. The place was warm enough and she needed to take things off for a bit. Wearing that many layers was not something she was used to. Sadly she could only hope that Kat took some inspiration and takes off some of thst metal, Kosara wasn't forgetting those muscles anytime soon. Now feeling a bit more free and with her mood on the rise, she took food, picking only tasty things unlike Kathryn's balanced diet, though not much in quantity since she was going to eat just a little.

When the topic of what to do for the evening was brought up, she looked around." Well... not many choices I think. We either hole up and try to stand and survive the night or we go out and go for the offensive." Kosara stated as she childishly played with her food." We could try to burn their nest at the municipal building. Pretty sure it's there, since they barred access. Alternatively we could try to go out and bait them to come to us at a chosen location." She finished her simple ideas and returned to her food.
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Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Dragoknighte
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Marita Bärbel
Human, Cleric, Level 3
HP: 18/18 Armor Class: 18 Conditions: N/A
Location: Public House
Action: N/A
Bonus Action: N/A
Reaction: N/A
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"You may 'look like a delight' now," Marita shot back, "but let's not forget that's not the face you wore last night outside this public house." Outside of their bout with Cavendish just now, Victoria's little stunt with the drunks is what brought on more negative attention to their group than maybe anything else. Hells, it certainly seemed to put them on the constable's map of problems to be dealt with, although she hadn't told anyone about the conversation she had overheard what felt like eons ago.

"It does not matter what personal code or ethics he might hold," Marita responded flatly to Victoria's prodding. "Nor do I care if there are terms and restrictions he must abide by after selling his soul for power. There is a path of things that are good and that are impermissible. How one justifies to himself how he is right when he has strayed from the path does not change the fact that he is no longer on the path." She could go on, but she felt her point was illustrated. Pholtus does not care about all laws, he cares about The Law and that they are maintained and abided. She doubted that Victoria would truly understand, but most people did not. Having a personal connection to Authority itself changed a lot of how you viewed rules and leadership and how things weren't nearly as flexible as some may prefer.

"As far as what we learned from Mallard? He mostly provided confirmation that there is indeed a wererat infestation, although even mundane rodents could be considered untrustworthy now. Also that tonight is the first of three Harvest Moons. There wasn't time to talk about much more than that and the purchase of silvered weapons before the constable barged in. And as far as holy water goes, I'm no expert in lycanthropy, but holy water tends to be most effective against the likes of the undead and demonic. I can't say for certain if it'd have much of an effect here." Marita made a concerted effort to not pay any attention to the renewed debate over what constitutes a sandwich, or even acknowledge it existed. It was irksome at breakfast two days ago, let alone when they needed to be making preparations for the worst night in this town's history. As far as that went, the best she could do now is try to relax enough to recover her Voice. The thought of a meal did tempt her, although the last thing she wanted to do was end up feeling nauseous in the middle of a battle. No, she would fast until sunrise and let hunger sharpen her thoughts.

"After everyone's patched up, we should take care of any business we may have before nightfall. I have to pick up my mace and we should try to locate the L'Roses. Perhaps we should split up into separate groups if there's not enough time before dusk. As for what we do during the night, I think we should focus on survival. We still don't know exactly who and where the true threats really are, and trying to lash out blindly is liable to get us all killed. I'd rather focus on making it through the night and protecting the friends we've made in this town." Marita cast a glance over at Lea, who was looking at the paper. Like Victoria, she was curious about what the paper said, but that was more of a passing feeling compared to the much bigger issue in front of them. The barmaid was an obvious wreck, barely even present in her current circumstance. Although she still hadn't the slightest clue what she could say to help things out, she couldn't bare to sit back and watch any longer as well.

Marita stood up and swallowed, her jaw clenched in anticipation. This was likely the most difficult thing she had to do for this job up to this point. Nervously, she strode over to Lea and stood in front of her for a second before reaching out and giving her a hug. It only lasted for a second before she pulled away.

"We need to stand strong like iron," she said, almost as much for herself as the barmaid. "We're going to make it through tonight. In the morning, it might be best to try to get out of Avonshire, at least for awhile, but we just need to make it through one night. You've helped us so much, now I'll repay you for that tip you gave me last night." In the back of her mind, she dearly prayed that she would be able to deliver on the promise and confidence her voice carried.
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Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Sigil
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Sigil Literary Hatchetman

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*******


Lea numbly rose from where she was sitting, still holding that note. She gave attention to no one with anything more than a passing gesture (including a quiet "thanks" to Kathryn for the food) except for Marita. It seemed like shock when she didn't immediately return the hug, but by the time the Cleric had pulled away her arms had risen with the intent of returning the gesture more fully. Though she was late, her intention was obvious and the connection seemed to bring Lea back to a sense of the present, which she used to stand and deal with a few odds and ends around the taproom. She took a taper to the quietly burning hearth fire and used it to set candles alight, placing them in small brass braziers on the tables nearest to the group. She seemed to give some consideration to the brighter lamps nearby, but decided against them. The windows were shuttered and curtains pulled for a reason, and more light than was necessary would be counterproductive to this.

The fireplace, on the other hand, practically requested more fuel. The rain had gone, but it brought with it a chill that was just beginning to creep into the building. With that, she mumbled something about putting another kettle on and returned to the kitchen. The general demeanor was one of a young woman trying to keep busy. This took only a moment, as water was plentiful and the stovetop was good and hot already. Putting a kettle on was as much a chore as filling up a pot and setting it down.

As the party made their plans and had their discussions, Lea wiped down the bar and did the small tasks ordinarily assigned to her when the place was about to close, with a table of VIPs staying late. It was obviously early to do this as, while the sun was in descent, it was not yet nighttime (let alone closing time). With the absence of customers and the looming threats of the evening as yet unfulfilled, one might be forgiven for getting the professional aspect of their day over and done with. It wasn't long at all before the usually cheerful and optimistic Barmaid of Avonshire found herself standing behind the bar, sighing and looking at the note again. She folded it and set it down on the smooth countertop, her other hand procuring a stout drinking vessel. "I really hope Daisy gets back soon," she said, mostly to herself. Another murmur came, this one a little louder, "I might as well enjoy myself a little, while I settle my nerves." The contents of a cask could be heard emptying into her cup; the semi-astute observer could readily see that she had tapped into the hosghead of Rose River Fortified Zinnoberrot.

The shadows deepened and flickered in the room just a bit more as the light of the day softened outside. If viewed from a bird's eye, the overall feel of the Township might seem serene as foot traffic had all but vanished in this once busy settlement, celebratory banners flapping wearily in the light breeze and ornamental displays of the season left to stand lonely from their places of public prominence. The twinge of seasoned woodsmoke and pork fat remained in the air, within those worked log walls which surrounded Avonshire, demonstrating the relentless passion of some of the locals in their pursuit of the perfect hog broil. And somewhere, somewhere within, the quiet assertion of one man could barely be heard ringing out, "G'morning! Nice day for fishing, ain't it? Huah hah!" Though few outsiders might be able to recognize it, this was the look of Avonshire awaiting distress.
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Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Shoe Thief
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Shoe Thief The Real Shoe Thief

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Kathryn Pyke
Human, Battle Master, Level 03
HP: 25 / 31 Armor Class: 19 Conditions: N/A
Location: Public House
Action: N/A
Bonus Action: N/A
Reaction: N/A

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Kathryn watched lea, but didn't press her to say anything. Though it seemed she had little to say in this moment. Kathryn couldn't blame her for that, she could only imagine what the poor woman was going through having her whole life being ripped apart piece by piece. Then again, how much of it did she have to imagine? She supposed she did. At least in Kathryn's case she felt she could do something to keep her world together. Lea on the other hand, was trapped in a public house with a bunch of stranger she had met recently who had trouble being serious in rough situations, and faced off their problems with jokes. Kathryn imagined that was likely not something easy to handle. Hearing about the situation from Mallard was comforting in knowing more of what was going on, or at least confirming what they already knew. Three nights of the harvest moon. "Does that mean we're having the equivalent of three full moons in a row?" What was probably a beautiful sight, but dealing with anything lycanthropy based, the full moon generally meant bad news. Marita's plan to focus on survival was likely best. Though trying to cut the problem off before it could get worse would be great, they had no idea the scope of the problems they would be facing tonight. It could just be the Constable and his goons from before. Or, it could be a sizeable portion of the whole town. Kathryn didn't like that latter idea. And she had doubts that everyone who was turned in that case was done so willingly. Robert's expression from when Kathryn asked if those afflicted could be helped didn't help.

"if we're not going on the offensive tonight, I want to make the most of it still. So that way once daylight does come we can make the most use of our hours as they come. I want to see if we can find somewhere we can watch the Municipal building tonight. if we can get an idea of what's going on there I think it'll improve our situation greatly. Even if we don't act on it tonight. at the very least, it may lend us some useful information. Like how many foes we could be facing off against once we are ready to act." Kathryn was a little surprised to hear a tactical thought come from Kosara. Not that she thought the tiefling wasn't smart, but she didn't think Kosara held a tactical thought in her head. "Honestly, if we can confirm the municipal building is the nest that may be the thing to do. I'd like to be sure we're avoiding collateral damage, but otherwise I am not against the plan." And if things get desperate, they could burn it down anyways. Buy time for others to come pick up where they left off. At the very least maybe alert the fort that help was needed. "If we could find somewhere to fend them off it may be worth trying to draw them out in a more adventitious situation. Those are pretty good ideas Kosara." She wondered if it was worth trying to get to the fort, letting someone there know what was up. Round up as much help as possible. The trip could be made in a day, or a night if someone was brave enough. Who could they trust of those they met so far? Lea maybe? But that'd be a lot to ask of her, and their trip here proved the roads were not safe.

That did get her thinking about the goblins again. Maybe they were in place to keep as many people in as possible. Making sure that as many people were trapped in town as possible, and no one could send for help. If that was the case, the roads were clear. But there could be more, and there could be more wererats in the country side. The L'Roses they trusted, but it was the same situation. It wasn't safe. And even if they got there, the Sheriff was gone. The closest they had to a contact was one of his deputies. Worst come to worse, they'd have to at least check things out right? If someone were to leave tonight, it would likely have to be one of them. Kathryn finished up her soup thinking on this. No matter what happened, they wouldn't be able to get help back until daylight. But that could be the difference should things turn into anarchy in the night. But the party was small and was carefully balanced at the moment to handle a large array of tasks. Breaking it up more especially for a trip like this would mean if the party had a chance to act, they would be down a key element of the team. Reducing their options to act should a chance arise. "I think we need to consider the real chance that we should call out for help. The fort must have a garrison no? Even if the Sheriff isn't in there has to be someone who could muster a force. I think it's too late in the day to risk sending someone tonight. But when day breaks, someone outside of this town should know what's happening." Apart of her wanted to book it tonight. Sprint as long as as fast as she could to the fort and call for aid. And rush back before dawn and try and save the day. But the concern came up with weapons. They were immune to non silvered weapons. And the hammer she beat Cavendish with. She had no reason to expect they'd have the weapons for this. But if things went bad maybe those who couldn't protect themselves could be evacuated?

"Marita is right. We need a solid plan before we head out." Kathryn said between bites of the last bit of her food. "Before we leave, we need to decide where we are holding up. If we decide to split up, or get split up by chance and situation, we need to be prepared as we can. We don't have a home field advantage here. If we don't have time to find somewhere to overlook the municipal building, I think we need to hold up either here in the public house, or in our camp. We're familiar enough with both I think we could defend them if it came to it. And both are big enough to shelter those we have met so far." Their options weren't amazing. But they had the means to protect themselves. And Cavendish knew that. He knew if the party was in position too, they could hurt him. She hoped he wouldn't risk an engagement for a long as possible. What gave Kathryn pause though, was when Marita went up to Lea, and embraced her. Kathryn listened as Marita spoke to Lea, and wished she had the ability to give that same reassurance to Marita. Lea seemed ready to return it, but either was too late, or hadn't been able to commit to it.

When the barmaid returned to some busy work, Kathryn approached Marita and offered her a plate of melon bits she had collected. "That was very sweet of you Marita. I'm sure it meant a lot to Lea." Kathryn wanted to say more, offer the same reassurances to Marita. But that was something that Kathryn was never really good with. She'd try her best though, and try not to blunder it too much. "I think we got this. We got some powerful casters here. And a dragon who punches people with magic hands. And after that stunt you pulled on Cavendish earlier, I doubt he'd be so keen to face off against us again. What... What was that by the way? I'm not too versed in the arcane, but it looked impressive, and was really effective." Kathryn tried her best to keep the mood positive without drawing away from how serious it was. Something she wasn't best at. She had a tendency to dissociate when things got rough. And then pound them into submission when they got worse.

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Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Arty Fox
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Arty Fox

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Baronfjørd "Blackberry" Chedgusah
Dragon Born, Monk (Astral self), Level 03
HP: 22 / 24 Armor Class: 15 Conditions: N/A
Location: Public house
Action: N/A
Bonus Action: N/A
Reaction: N/A
Ki: 1/3


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The overall air and conversion was justifiably grim, aside from discussing the particulars of what makes a sandwich. The idea Lady Kathryn brought up of the other guards being on the look out for them all brought a horrid twist to his stomach. He wasn’t used to be on THIS side of the law but given their leader he wasn’t feeling very conflicted about it. Kosara’s suggestion to set the place on fire made him wince at the very thought of the damage it could bring. While most of the buildings he had seen were predominantly made of stone, cobble, and brick, he had no doubt that there was still enough wood and other flammables that would happily take to flame. The last thing Avonshire needed was to be burned to cinders, on top of having a Rodent-thrope infestation.

“Now, now.” BlackBerry held up his hand to Kosara. “I doubt setting something on fire would end well any for us, or the surrounding buildings. Plus it has been raining for much of the day so I imagine anything that could be kindling has become unusable by now. Although admittedly I, myself, would not argue against charging ‘Head on, into the fray! To glory!’” He cried out the phrase as if he were a legendary fighter, complete with a flex and confident grin. “Some unsavoury types understand only one thing; violence. Pure and simple, much as it would be ill-advised to do so.”

The other idea that Kosara brought up hopped into his mind demanding attention. He turned and stepped away from the table for a moment to consider it; drawing the enemy out somewhere for an ambush? Lady Kathryn seemed to be of the same mind as well, and no one else had voiced a particular want to go charging head first into the enemy. As much as BlackBerry enjoyed a good fight he liked it even more when he knew his opponent, and if he could win. Perhaps charging in wasn’t the best idea?

He paused mid-turn back towards the party to note the Barmaid Lea helping herself to a tankard of drink. It made him frown, everyone needed their wits about them and drinking at a time like this was just as likely to make people stupid as it was to calm them down. Lady Kathryn and Marita appeared to be handling the situation and attempting to prop the woman’s spirits up. He silently wished them luck and prayed to Tymora in their endeavour. He took the last few bites of the apple as his thoughts lined up into place.

“Both ideas have merit, and drawbacks.” He put the apple core on the table and picked up one of the bowls laden with slices of apple and cheese. “Firstly, let us imagine that this bowl is the Municipal building. If we were to go charging in we have no idea how many of those brutes may be lying in wait or how well armed they may be, and before we do get ahead of ourselves with considering actually fighting them is there even a way in?” His eyes hopped away from the apples and cheese to Kosara for an answer to this after mentioning the building had been boarded up.

“The idea of luring them out is not without similar dangers either, as we have no idea how many may turn up or when, even. Including your dear friend the Constable.” He put the bowl back down, and plucked several bit of apple and cheese from it only to place them in a heap on the table top. “But it does give us some control over the battle field; we could lure them into an alley way? Or a dead end? Somewhere they wont be able to use the high ground to attack from afar at the very least.” He grabbed an empty bowl to block one end of an alleyway of utensils he made, with the Cheeses at the centre. Trapped. A chuckle escaped him.

“I would wager Cavendish is feeling mighty sore after losing his little toy. A perfect bit of bait if there ever was one.” A piece of Apple took stage between the bowl and the group of Cheese. “Once the brutes are in we then need to make sure they stay there and don’t escape. Kosara, Victoria and yourself may be the best for the case with your magic to catch any trying to make a run for it.” Two pieces of Apple brought up the rear behind the Cheeses as he looked to the two. He ‘hmmed’ quietly in thought down at the little battle of Apple and Cheese. “I suppose someone will need to be with whomever carries the hammer, that will likely be Lady Kathryn at this point. And then that just leaves another to again bring up the rear as well?” A piece of Apple by the bowl and then another to the rear of the Cheeses.

BlackBerry rubbed his chin as he gazed down at the little battle plan he devised. The delicious battle between the Apples and the Cheeses. He left the scene for the others to check over and consider, but in the meantime there were other times for him to consider such as the information Marita and Victoria has been given, and again the Three Harvest Moons. The timing was either a happy coincidence or Cavendish was planning something big.

“On a brighter thought, however, there are still some good folk around the place.” Hopping onto another train of though, he followed the other example placing his backpack on the floor. “Mr, Mallard for one seemed to have all his wits about him. As do our gracious hosts, and your friends L’Roses I’m assuming? If you’re wanting to check in on them I could lend a hand and tag along in case trouble does decide to turn up. Meanwhile, everyone else could take refuge back at your camp where for easy access to any gear or supplies you have and to prepare.”

He pointed to his bag lying beneath the table. “I have all my possession with me already so I would be happy to head off whatever the time suits everyone. After a little while to recover and recenter myself. If that would be acceptable?”

BlackBerry took the moment then to look inwards, his eyes snapping up and somewhere to the left, focusing on the energy flowing around and through him, feeling it pulse in time to the gaps between his heartbeats to fill in the void. He knew he was running low on Ki and felt it as a lethargic tiredness that made his limbs feel heavier, similar to having gone for a very long walk on a winters day where the cold and distance took everything out of you.
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