the Way of the Wicked

Bring down Balentyne! part 3

Itinerary of Death

 

Day 10

There is some discussion as to whether to rob the wizard while he's at the play. However the party decide he's probably got his fireball wand with him so they'll sneak in closer to B-Day to kill him

There follows some kibbitzing about Fitch's diplomatic skills. He claims it is not his fault he has problems interacting with these hicks and yokels.

 

They enter the tower from the tunnel, disguised as guards, and make their way through an empty tower to the Rookery, with the muffled sounds of the play occasionally heard from the direction of the Great Hall. Sam pretends to have a message to be sent. Martin opens the door. There is grumbling. Then a surprise attack!

Martin is killed in short order, and Sam attaches a suicide note to him and chucks him off the tower. There is considerable bird murdering. The trained ravens will take months to replace, and, while they don't know it, the denizens of Balentyne and the nearby town have less than three weeks. No reinforcements will be available when the Bugbears attack, and any news will have to reach other garrisons on foot or horseback via whatever terrified refugees escape the slaughter. Response will be slow and muddled.

On the way out the villains ransack the captains' quarters.

They check Barhold's room and find nothing of value. Varning's too, and Motts. In Eddarly's room they find explicit love letters between him and Kaitlyn Mott!

Day 11

Sam disguises herself as an urchin and delivers the love notes to Mott. He pales, puts a hand on a table to steady himself, turns on his heel and marches off with steely purpose.

“Robin” and “Robert” and “Susan” introduce themselves to Mama Guiseppe and make firm friends. She cooks them a lovely dinner. Aww.

Day 12

Mott killed Eddarly in a duel! The rumours are all over town. Mott's been clapped in irons!

The villains blackmail Bellam Barhold into writing a note to his brother – and then surprise murder him, and stuff his body in a tunnel!

Sam successfully disguises herself and “Bellam Barhold” is seen walking out of town looking troubled “just going for some fresh air”

The party (sans Fitch) have a dry run with the stew, and it goes very well. Creel's attempt to raise a round of applause fails horribly with one guard clapping briefly then looking horribly embarrassed. However Sam raises a cheer for her and the old lady blushes but is secretly pleased. “Robin” agrees to help her with the shopping for next week, and Mama Guiseppe will be very happy to have her new friends accompany her.

Fitch tries to deliver the note but forgets Barhold's name then says it's for the commander, no wait the captain. -Which captain? “Errrrr eeeegghmmmmmmmmrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr”

The guard chases him away with a club.

Later Adelea apologises for her idiot brother (“we thought we could at least trust him with a note but clearly we were wrong”) and successfully hands the note to a guard to deliver to Captain Barhold.

Day 13

Barhold shows up to speak to his “brother” who draws a sword! Iron Sam Barhold reacts quickly and sunders Adelea's sword with a mighty swing of his greatsword. Adelea started the fight with 300 gold pieces worth of masterwork longsword, and is now holding about 5 silver's worth of hilt.

Creel firebolts Barhold and Fitch stabs him, but he's called Iron Sam for a reason, and he's nowhere close to going down. However Barhold is suddenly too bored to throw a tanglefoot bag at Fitch, or indeed do owt else. Zach Creel hits him with a mace, channeling the power of his god.

With her sword broken, Adelea draws her dagger and does a spectacularly effective strike through a chink in his armour and into one of his kidneys, as he twists to take Creel's hit.

Fitch hits effectively with both daggers, and then Creel finishes the captain with a savage blow of Gada Topang. The black lightning of his god's evil power crawls over the captain's slightly smoking body, as the blood seems to sink into the stone heads of the mace. At the edge of perception Creel seems to hear a very large, very distant, very satisfied chuckle.

All 4 captains are now dealt with. Mad Martin is dead. Eisenbauch and his dwarfs are sent home in disgrace. There are still 94 soldiers, Father Donnagin, the wizard, the Lord Commander, and who knows what else to deal with.

Day 15

Father Donnagin has been investigating the disappearance of the Barhold Brothers, and his investigations have reached the villains. Accompanied by three guards, he questions them about recent events. He is initially unconvinced by Adelea's protestations that she had not read the note, and she sheepishly admits that she had in fact peeked at it. Sam smoothly steps in, and manages to succesfully bluff the suspicious and perceptive priest.

Sorry, we don't have any idea why the innkeep disappeared. We last saw him heading towards the woods (previous testimony from other witnesseses backs this up). No, we have no idea why he was headed for the woods the day before he asked his brother to meet him there. We'd be happy to come and help you search the area around this clearing – more hands and more eyes to search should be helpful don't you think?

 

Father Donnagin is perceptive. Father Donnagin is suspicious. Father Donnagin comes achingly close to seeing through the bluff. Father Donnagin invites the villains to join him and help search the clearing, and turns his back on them to peer around for clues.

This was not a good decision on his part.

Creel smashes the priest with the power of his god (also a mace). It is super effective.

Donnagin casts heat metal on Adelea's sword but she holds on as her hands sizzle. Donnagin goes down under a hail of blows, with Adelea's final blow cutting one of his arms clean off. One of the guards turns to flee for help, but for some reason gets bored with the whole idea before he gets very far.

The Deadly Clearing of Death™ has claimed another important victim. Without Donnagin's steadying influence, and relying only on his five acolytes for healing magic, the tower's defences will be noticeably weaker.

Creel's eyes roll up into his head and he drops in a dead faint. The villains see a black aura form around Gada Topang, clutched in Creel's white knuckled grasp, as the blood of the priest of Mitra once again seems to sink into the stone.

Creel comes to on a vast plateau, made of strangely ridged red stone. He looks about him a little wildly and sees a pair of vast glowing yellow eyes looking down at him, and has the sudden dizzying realisation that he is standing on an enormous hand. He is in the presence of his God, Asmodeus!

An enormous voice, almost too loud to bear, echoes out over the 'plateau'. “You have done well, little priest. You have used my power to strike down a powerful servant of that simpering milktoast, Mitra. When you wake, you will find your mace has been… improved”.

A massive, rumbling chuckle rolls over and through Creel, who passes out again.

Comments

(by the way, you wake knowing you’ll need at some point, before buying more magic gear, to sacrifice the difference in value between a +1 mace and a +1 unholy mace. This can be in gold, item value at full price, or a combination)

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

That all went rather well! The priest was a bonus – but he did fall into our laps somewhat. Would have been rude not to!

So lets go in on Day 17 and take out the mage. Then Day 19 is stew day! yum yum!

The difference in value between a +1 mace and a +1 unholy mace is 6k! We probably dont have that much between us.

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

We have 2x +1 heavy shields we can sacrifice – that is 2k

Its a way also to start dumping all those branded weapons!

We have a set of full plate, which is 1.5k

Probably not so far off the 6k as you may think!

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

Also – whilst we are on the same game day as killing the priest, can I get some healing from Chris before he regains his next day of spells?

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

I’ll tally up what we have

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

Have levelled up Zach (and also Martin has updated the mace)

3 HPs
No change to BAB or saves
Channel Energy now does 3d6
Skill points into Heal and Sense Motive
Feat – took improved Channel (+2 DC to save)
Spells – Took Fireball as the domain spell (Nondetection was the trickery one, which is a bit meh). Also took Prayer which is a good AoE buff/debuff – but you can swap this out whenever.

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

You don’t have to do it all at once. Effectively Creel has an upgraded mace on very easy hire purchase terms. The rest of you can still buy magic gear (assuming you find a place to do so), but Creel needs to pay off the mace before doing so.
He’s been granted a temporary channeled ability to sacrifice equipment: a couple of minutes chanting and it’s all blackened and warped, and the temper is ruined. Only works with something that is cleanly in your possession though; can’t just sneak into someone’s room and sacrifice their things, you’d need to successfully steal and get away with them to make them “yours” enough.

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

After the battle for the keep, we can claim the content of the armory as ours, and sacrifice that?

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

It’ll be the bugbears’, innit

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

Varning:
masterwork lance (310gp)
dagger (2gp)
+1 steel shield (1020gp)

Barhold:
mwk greatsword (Adelea)
sap (1gp)
dagger (2gp)
mwk full plate (1650gp)
2 tanglefoot bags (Sam)

Loot from rooms:
+1 halberd (2010gp)
longsword (15gp)
composite longbow +4 str (500gp)
+1 compostite longbow (str +2) (2300gp)
+1 chain shirt (1100gp)
longsword (15gp)
finery (500gp)
medal (75gp)

Father Donnagin:
+1 breastplate (Zach)
breastplate (Zach’s old one) (200gp)
heavy steel shield (20gp)
mwk heavy mace (312gp)
silver holy symbol (Value?)

Donnagin’s mooks:
longsword x3 (45gp)
dagger x3 (6gp)
heavy xbow x3 (150gp)
30 bolts (Sam)
heavy steel shield x3 (60gp)
signal horn x3 (3gp)

Total value of sellables: 10296 gp

Lets give Zach the heavy, hard-to-offload stuff for his sacrifice. He can then wander off the the Clearing of Death and perform whatever foul ritual he needs to.

mwk full plate: 1650
+1 halberd: 2010
+1 composite longbow: 2300
3 x longswords: 45

= 6005gp

Seem reasonable?

That leaves us 4k and change, plus whatever we loot from the keep during the assault.

I can now start making STR belts – 2k a pop cost. Sell for 4k

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

I think that was a plus one greatsword. It’s a pretty great sword.

Isn’t the halberd still in a captain’s room just now because it was tricky to sneak through the corridor? The lance was left with grumblejack as being tricky to smuggle into town. You can sacrifice in lots of small steps, that’s fine, but you’d need to get the things into your hands to sac them.

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

I think the prices of the magical items are each 300g too low.

For example for the halberd;

Surely it should be 2000g for the +1, 10g for the halberd, and 300g for the masterwork version of the halberd?

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

Updated values:

Varning:
masterwork lance (310gp)
dagger (2gp)
+1 steel shield (1170gp)
+1 steel shield (Adelea’s old one) (1170gp)

Barhold:
+1 greatsword (Adelea)
sap (1gp)
dagger (2gp)
mwk full plate (1650gp)
2 tanglefoot bags (Sam)

Loot from rooms:
+1 halberd (2310gp)
longsword (15gp)
composite longbow +4 str (500gp)
+1 compostite longbow (str +2) (2600gp)
+1 chain shirt (1250gp)
longsword (15gp)
finery (500gp)
medal (75gp)

Father Donnagin:
+1 breastplate (Zach)
breastplate (Zach’s old one) (200gp)
heavy steel shield (20gp)
mwk heavy mace (312gp)
silver holy symbol (Value?)

Donnagin’s mooks:
longsword x3 (45gp)
dagger x3 (6gp)
heavy xbow x3 (150gp)
30 bolts (Sam)
heavy steel shield x3 (60gp)
signal horn x3 (3gp)

Total value of sellables: 12366 gp

So we can give Zach (to offload some crap! – I’ll go hire a wagon for him from my friendly wagon-leaser):

mwk full plate: 1650
2 x +1 shields: 2340
+1 chain shirt: 1250
Zach’s old breastplate: 200
mwk heavy mace: 312
3 x heavy xbow: 150
5 x longsword: 75gp
1 x heavy shield: 20gp
3 x signal horn: 3gp

Total: 6000gp

Leaving 6k and change.

Can I please grab 2k? I can start on a belt straight away, and should be able to get it done before the assault if I’m undisturbed. Don’t think theres anything else on before stew-day? I have days 16-18, and stew is on the evening of D19. Adelea may have to go and do the shopping for Mama G.

I think Fitch should probably get the first one off the assembly line.

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

Sounds good to me!

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

ah actually – we were planning to go in a day early to take out the mage weren’t we? Still – I can get it more than half of the way done.

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

Steve – I have written in my notes (yes I scribble notes down Andrew – that’s how I remember PEOPLE’S NAMES!!!) that the Lord Commander suffered some sort of tragedy. Can’t remember who I heard that from – Big Mike maybe? Its not in the write ups though.

If that is a thing – I’d like to see if I can find out some more details – maybe from soldiers at the inn?

No idea what it might be, but it can’t hurt to find out some dirt. Nothing like mocking a guy’s dead children/parents/wife/pets to get a bonus on your demoralise roll!! Just sayin’…

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

There’s a lot less opportunity for that now. The soldiers are acting nervous and sticking in groups, not coming to the inn nearly as much, and the inn is being badly run as the inn keep’s wife is half mad with worry.

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

och well. Worth a shot.

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

so the remainder of the “schedule of slaughter” (good that its coming to an end – I’m running out of synonyms).

Day 16-17. Keep a low profile. I’ll be staying in my room crafting. Adelea will do some shopping for Mama G. Zach follows Fitch wherever he goes and Silences him if he ever even looks like talking to anyone.

Day 18. Night time. Final foray into the Keep through the tunnel. Clobber the mage. Sabotage the weapons/arrow stocks and siege engines on the roof.
(Would be good to find out where the acolytes hang out, and perhaps deal with them. Not sure if they partake of the stew)

Day 19. Afternoon. Up to the fort with Mama G. Cook the stew. Lace with arsenic and mushrooms. Serve it up. Head upstairs to deal with the Commander as the guards start getting ill. Deal with Havelyn. Fire the rocket. Head back down to the gatehouse. Open the gates, and keep them open.

Sound like a plan?

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

Also. Do we want to go to the fort WITH Mama G?

Or do we want to off her, and one of us PRETEND to be her, and head up to the fort?

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

How long does it take for arsenic poisoning to kick in?

The mushrooms will be a next day thing if I remember right.

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

“Also. Do we want to go to the fort WITH Mama G?

Or do we want to off her, and one of us PRETEND to be her, and head up to the fort?"

Well, we should go with her, so that when things go bad, she will know she has been betrayed! Then we can kill her in the fort.

That, and the stew needs to be good, else it wont get eaten – and we arent as good cooks as she is.

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

I’ll look into the symptoms for both as given the respective alchemy and survival checks you can be expected to know.

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

The game thinks ten minutes for arsenic as per standard ingested poison rules. The internet thinks a bit longer. Internet thinks 5-24 hours for the mushrooms.
I reckon your ideal window is anything from 18 to 30 hours after stew hour. That should get you the max number affected and fewest recovered.

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

Ok so serve the stew, bugger off and come back 24 hrs later through the tunnel. Then deal with commander as above. I imagine there will be a fair few sick, and a number of others attending them

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

So, thoughts on strats for the mage? We’ve not actually fought one yet (I don’t think) – so could be interesting!

I’m thinking:

- Head up the keep disguised as SS… errr… guards.
- Get outside his door
- When the coast is clear, Zach Silences the door (but not his room)
- Fitch then tries the door (in case its open)/tries the keys we got off Donnegan/picks the lock, in that order, in silence.
- Once door is unlocked, we buff up:
Bulls STR on Adelea from me (duration 50 rounds)
Resistance on everyone from me (duration 10 rounds)
As the last Resistance is cast, Prayer from Zach (duration 5 rounds)
By this point Resistance will have 6 rounds left at worst.

Storm in. Adelea, Fitch and Zach adopt the ‘triangle’ around him, preventing him from taking a 5ft step and casting without incurring an AoO

Beat the living shit out of him, as hard and as fast as possible. He’s likely to have bugger all AC and HPs. His Will save will be through the roof though as a wizard, so my charm spells are likely to be 50/50 shots at best. Just go for maximum burst damage!

thoughts?

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

Yeah, have to get him down fast if he is as fond of fire as his reputation suggests, that could hurt!

Silencing the door may not be the best option – if he is in his room and near the door, the silence may alert him.

Cast it on me – I can back up in the corridor, so that only say 1ft of the door is covered in the silence. Has the added advantage that if I am close to him, he will be covered by the silence.

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

We need to buff up – so will need the silence gone by then. Only lasts 5 rounds anyway. But yeah casting it on you and you backing up is a great idea for unlocking the door quietly!

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

Also, can we have a new rule Steve? Only those that contribute to the threads on here get an actual say in the tactics we use during the game??

Would be so nice to get some input from those two, even occasionally!

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

Steve – did Mama G. put mushrooms in her stew when we helped her make it?

Im concerned she may raise a ruckus if we try and do something unusual.

If we can steep the mushrooms in water or wine to make a poisonous liquid, that would be easier to add and conceal that it had been added, than actually adding mushrooms in.

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

These are mushrooms you need to eat. Mama Guiseppe doesn’t generally put mushrooms in. If only you had an incredibly persuasive PC who she already likes and trusts. Ah well, that’s that plan buggered.

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

Have you thought about how you’re going to get the arsenic into the stew? Sounds like a job for Fitch but he wasn’t one of your three friendos

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

I have actually! I have a cunning plan to distract her. The others can put it in when her back is turned

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

I like the plan for the wizard. My only concern is the possibility of a magical trap of alarm on the door to his chambers. Can Sam detect such things? I’m not sure where I stand on spotting magical traps with my Perception skill. If I see a magical trap, a rogue with Disable Device can try to disarm a it.

For the arsenic, I can talk you through what to do with it maybe? Not that tipping it in the stew sounds that hard. Just don’t go licking your fingers after handling it.

Question also. Do we know where the secret tunnel passes under a wall? If it’s not too deep under the wall, would a massive fire in the tunnel have a chance of undermining the wall?

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

If there is an alarm spell – I can spot it with Detect Magic. Good shout – I will do that! I can’t get rid of it though.

If there is a magical trap, its just a normal perception roll – DC25+spell lvl. As you say, disable device to get rid of it.

Not sure about setting a fire in the tunnel though. This is a well-built fort – and besides, I quite like the idea of an escape route, should things go tits up!

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
 

Dwarf work, that tunnel. Vaulted stone. Not like a sap, with wooden props meant to be burnt.

Bring down Balentyne! part 3
Thrudd0001

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