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Chapter 3 — A Dying Torch


iantruesilver

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"The first time I seen that purple fire shoot up into the sky, it liked to scare all my damn goats. They started bleating something fierce and then they up and bolted straight through the pen, knocking down half the posts. It took me two days to get'em all together again and back in the pen, and after that the nanny goats wouldn't give milk for a week. And the goats weren't the only ones frightened to hell! I shot up out of bed and darted to the window as the ground rumbled — I got tangled up in my blankets and damn near fell flat on my face! The sky was cloudy that night, and that purple flame lit up the whole thing in an eerie glow. I thought them demons from up north had attacked us for sure."

— Old man Cogsburn, local farmer
 


 

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18 Arodus, Moonday. Another day and a half of travel from Blackpipe, you arrive at the outskirts of the town of Torch just after midday, bringing the clouds with you. Most of the morning had been just partly cloudy, progressing into overcast in the past hour.

 

Approaching on the road from the south along the east bank of the Seven Tears River, the first thing you might notice is the distinct lack of a purple column of fire atop the blasted and charred top of the bald escarpment rising at a steep slope in the middle of town. The violet flame that has burned for a century atop Black Hill, which essentially birthed the town and gave it its name, having been Torch's primary economic driver for the last hundred years, is now conspicuously missing.


[[ Mood Music ]]

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After passing several outlying farms in the valley, the road takes you across base of the hill, over the beginnings of the main stem of the Seven Tears, then up to the plateau where the majority of the town's buildings are constructed with stone walls under roofs of ceramic or stone tiles, with the larger ones reinforced with metal.

 

The closer you get to the town, the more it occurs to you that something is greatly wrong. There's occasionally a few pieces of garbage floating down along the river, a townsperson is clutching their abdomen and hacking up a dry wheezing cough as he passes by, and a distinct smell of garbage and filth as you begin to enter the town itself.

 

Torch, for whomever calls it home, most definitely does not seem well at all.

 

 

[[ Map — Torch ]]

Edited by iantruesilver (see edit history)
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image.jpeg.3f95306a23dfeb7a6f315970d6687d0e.jpeg

 

Statblock

 

[URL=https://test.myth-weavers.com/sheets/?id=2744078][B][SIZE=+1]Vrilundass ‘Vri’ Arund[/SIZE][/B][/URL] Female NG Half-elf Swashbuckler, [B]Level[/B] 1, [B]Init[/B] 3, [B]HP[/B] 11/11, [B]Speed[/B] 30ft [B]AC[/B] 16, [B]Touch[/B] 13, [B]Flat-footed[/B] 13, [B]CMD[/b] 15, [B]Fort[/B] 0, [B]Ref[/B] 5, [B]Will[/B] 3, [B]CMB[/B] +2, [B]Base Attack Bonus[/B] 1 [B]silversheen, MC rapier [/B] +5 (1d6+1, 18-20/x2) [B]cold iron dagger [/B] +4 (1d4+1, 19-20/x2) [B] shortbow (20) [/B] +4 (1d6, x3) [B] Studded Leather[/B] (+3 Armor, +3 Dex) [B]Abilities[/B] Str 12, Dex 17, Con 10, Int 12, Wis 12, Cha 15 [B]Condition[/B] None hero points: 1/1
Vrilundass ‘Vri’ Arund
Female NG Half-elf Swashbuckler, Level 1, Init 3, HP 11/11, Speed 30ft
AC 16, Touch 13, Flat-footed 13, CMD 15, Fort 0, Ref 5, Will 3, CMB +2, Base Attack Bonus 1
silversheen, MC rapier +5 (1d6+1, 18-20/x2)
cold iron dagger +4 (1d4+1, 19-20/x2)
shortbow (20) +4 (1d6, x3)
Studded Leather (+3 Armor, +3 Dex)
Abilities Str 12, Dex 17, Con 10, Int 12, Wis 12, Cha 15
Condition None
hero points: 1/1

"That's not good," Vri said as they moved closer to the town, "what did they do with their garbage before? Burn it? And now they can't and that probably gave rise to rats and following that disease. I think we best proceed with caution."

 

OOC

none

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spacer.pngAs they enter the town. Val directs the other toward a livery stable by road into town, "This is Iven's. We can stable the horses here until we decide what to do with them."

 

Dismounting she calls out to the livery, "Iven, are you here? It's Val Baine"

Edited by Wiz (see edit history)
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spacer.pngVal is met not by the half-elf, but his much younger wife, a Kellid woman named Annika whom Iven Lesky had married six years ago.

 

"Hey gurl!" Annika hollared as she waved from in front of one of the stalls, where she's feeding one of the horses. "Iven's not feelin' quite himself today, I'm having him stay in bed. He's got one of them weird headaches everyone seems to be getting these days."

 

"How you been? You back with Betsy and the other four?" As she turned to look, her brows came together in confusion. And of course, these aren't the same horses you had previously purchased from the Leskys two years back, having been a regular customer of their stabling services since.

Edited by iantruesilver (see edit history)
Name
AR: Va
3
1d20 3
M
6
1d6 6
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spacer.pngVal sighs, "This has been a... hell of a trip. Suffice to say we were waylaid by some crazy cultists, didn't find out what happened to our original mounts and had to purchase these to get home quickly because we learned my dad had disappeared."

 

 

 

Edited by Wiz (see edit history)
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image.jpeg.3f95306a23dfeb7a6f315970d6687d0e.jpeg

 

Statblock

 

[URL=https://test.myth-weavers.com/sheets/?id=2744078][B][SIZE=+1]Vrilundass ‘Vri’ Arund[/SIZE][/B][/URL] Female NG Half-elf Swashbuckler, [B]Level[/B] 1, [B]Init[/B] 3, [B]HP[/B] 11/11, [B]Speed[/B] 30ft [B]AC[/B] 16, [B]Touch[/B] 13, [B]Flat-footed[/B] 13, [B]CMD[/b] 15, [B]Fort[/B] 0, [B]Ref[/B] 5, [B]Will[/B] 3, [B]CMB[/B] +2, [B]Base Attack Bonus[/B] 1 [B]silversheen, MC rapier [/B] +5 (1d6+1, 18-20/x2) [B]cold iron dagger [/B] +4 (1d4+1, 19-20/x2) [B] shortbow (20) [/B] +4 (1d6, x3) [B] Studded Leather[/B] (+3 Armor, +3 Dex) [B]Abilities[/B] Str 12, Dex 17, Con 10, Int 12, Wis 12, Cha 15 [B]Condition[/B] None hero points: 1/1
Vrilundass ‘Vri’ Arund
Female NG Half-elf Swashbuckler, Level 1, Init 3, HP 11/11, Speed 30ft
AC 16, Touch 13, Flat-footed 13, CMD 15, Fort 0, Ref 5, Will 3, CMB +2, Base Attack Bonus 1
silversheen, MC rapier +5 (1d6+1, 18-20/x2)
cold iron dagger +4 (1d4+1, 19-20/x2)
shortbow (20) +4 (1d6, x3)
Studded Leather (+3 Armor, +3 Dex)
Abilities Str 12, Dex 17, Con 10, Int 12, Wis 12, Cha 15
Condition None
hero points: 1/1

"That's a story that requires a nice evening in a tavern with a good glass of wine," Vri said as she dismounted, "but as Val asked, what is going on here? The stopping of the torch shouldn't have such impact, right?"

 

OOC

none

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spacer.png"Oh I know... It's getting some bad honestly." Annika admitted, throwing her hands up in some gesture of manifested defeat, "I mean we're lucky that Celda over at Seven Tears Farms still takes our manure for fertilizer, so I can just imagine what it's like for everyone else. I mean where else are they gonna dump their garbages I wonder, some people's front steps are already full..."

 

"And it just seems like just about everybody in town's been getting them these days really," Her eyes flickered towards the direction of the house for a moment, then returned to Val and her companions, "And I'll bet you anything they're 'cause somebody's been tamperin' with Crowfeather Palace. Listen, I've been drinkin' only rainwater since I first heard of it being a thing, and I've not had a single headache yet!"

 

"But I guess if somebody doesn't do something about the situation soon, I'm not sure how the rest of the town will go on..."

Edited by iantruesilver (see edit history)
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Barhuce

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Barhuce sighs. "Sounds like that needs to be our second order of business. Right after stopping at Val's house." He looks over at Val. "Sorry, but without clean water we won't survive long enough to find your dad."

Statblock

 

[URL=https://test.myth-weavers.com/sheets/?id=2740751][B][SIZE=+1]Barhuce[/SIZE][/B][/URL] M NG Human (Kellid) Alchemist (CryptBreaker), [B]Level[/B] 1, [B]Init[/B] 4, [B]HP[/B] 3/9, [B]Speed[/B] 30 [B]AC[/B] 15, [B]Touch[/B] 12, [B]Flat-footed[/B] 13, [B]CMD[/b] 13, [B]Fort[/B] 3, [B]Ref[/B] 4, [B]Will[/B] 0, [B]CMB[/B] +1, [B]Base Attack Bonus[/B] 0 [B]1d8 v undead or constructs, DC 14 Alkahest Bomb (5/day) [/B] 3 (1d4+4, x2) [B] light Mace [/B] 1 (1d6+1, x2) [B] Dagger [/B] 1 (1d4+1, 19-20/x2) [B] Lamellar Cuirass[/B] (+2 Armor, +2 Dex, +1 Deflect) [B]Abilities[/B] Str 12, Dex 14, Con 13, Int 18, Wis 10, Cha 10 [B]Condition[/B] None
Barhuce
M NG Human (Kellid) Alchemist (CryptBreaker), Level 1, Init 4, HP 3/9, Speed 30
AC 15, Touch 12, Flat-footed 13, CMD 13, Fort 3, Ref 4, Will 0, CMB +1, Base Attack Bonus 0
1d8 v undead or constructs, DC 14 Alkahest Bomb (5/day) 3 (1d4+4, x2)
light Mace 1 (1d6+1, x2)
Dagger 1 (1d4+1, 19-20/x2)
Lamellar Cuirass (+2 Armor, +2 Dex, +1 Deflect)
Abilities Str 12, Dex 14, Con 13, Int 18, Wis 10, Cha 10
Condition None

Actions Crunch

drink elixir of CLW

 

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spacer.pngVal nods, "We had best make our way to the Foundry Tavern first, see what the state of things there is."

 

Looking at Annika, "I don't know the status of my father's standing account with you, but will you house these for now, and as soon as I can ken our finances, we can make a deal for stabeling these?"

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T'Sarra Khonnor 

spacer.pngT'Sarra Khonnor — Tiefling Oracle 1
AC/T/FF 18/13/15 | HP 11/11 | Init +3 | Speed 30ft | Fort/Ref/Will 3/3/2 | Darkvision
Hero Points ??
Active Conditions: none
Spells:

1st: (2/day) Cure light wounds, Bless, Inflict Light Wounds
Cantrips: (unl) detect magic, mending, guidance, create water

Coming into Torch

"That's... not good." T'Sarra's anxiety had been rising for a while now, as they kept getting closer and not seeing the unmistakable feature of the town. The namesake, the torch. They were close enough now that there was no doubt. It was truly out.

And then the garbage and the sickness, this was all wrong. So very wrong.

"This is a disaster. The economy is going to collapse, why would anyone come here if not for the torch? The garbage problem is easy enough if someone was organized enough to haul it out of town to a dump site. The sickness, who knows what that's all about. But if it came when the torch went out, stands to reason it's related. I'm with the rest of you though, let's stop in at Khonnir and Val's place, maybe there's some hint about what's going on there. Clean water I can do," she gestured and chanted a few words and a nearby empty bucket filled with a couple of gallons of clean water.

"Rain probably can too. We need to find Khonnir. We can start by checking the Foundry for clues, then maybe ask the council if there are other expeditions or hints about what we might face if we go after Khonnir to try to find him."

 

Mechanics

Move:
Standard:
Free:

Trained Skills

Acrobatics* -2
Climb* +4
Diplomacy +7
Handle Animal +4
Knowledge (nature) +4
Linguistics +1
Perception +6
Survival +4
Swim* +4
   
   
* -2 ACP to str and dex skills  

 

 

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spacer.png"Oooh, the colts will appreciate that for sure." Annika nodded to T'Sarra in appreciation, then turned back towards Val. "Yeah gurl, that's no problem, we'll sort it all out after, when you're ready m'kay?"

 

With that, Annika took the reins to the horses and led them into stalls each in their own turn, brushing them and cooing them as she goes to see to their comfort in the matter. "Yes you too darling, you get fresh water too."

 

Watching in curiosity, Violet handed her reins over to the woman in her turn, and stared after the woman as she seemed to so effortlessly coerce the animals to follow her lead.

 


 

Making their way out of Iven's, Violet follows the others down Market Road past the General Store. At this point, everybody that's had some dealings with Khonnir Baine's family pretty much knows where to go, with the exception of course of the android, who's just literally holding onto Val's hand like a little child lost and confused in this part of the world.

 

Across the corner past Tavern Street, Val and company find themselves face to face with what would've otherwise been a jovial place, except that currently it looks uncharacteristically barren. Aptly named, the Foundry Tavern is one of the more popular hangouts in Torch, offering refreshing libations out of one building on the property, and renting out space for smithing and metalworking in the other, where local and visiting artisans can often learn from or share ideas with Khonnir Baine, who makes frequent appearances to demonstrate his new inventions whether they be mechanical or magical.

 

Today however, the Foundry Tavern does not appear to be quite the happening place it normally is, as it seems to be missing the sounds and sights of people celebrating and discussing fresh new ideas. The only sound one can hear as you get closer is the steady tink, tink, tink of someone striking something against one of the anvils inside the foundry.

 

 

[[ Map — The Foundry Tavern ]]

Edited by iantruesilver (see edit history)
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T'Sarra Khonnor 

spacer.pngT'Sarra Khonnor — Tiefling Oracle 1
AC/T/FF 18/13/15 | HP 11/11 | Init +3 | Speed 30ft | Fort/Ref/Will 3/3/2 | Darkvision
Hero Points ??
Active Conditions: none
Spells:

1st: (2/day) Cure light wounds, Bless, Inflict Light Wounds
Cantrips: (unl) detect magic, mending, guidance, create water

At Iven's stables

"Bring the barrel, I'm not with the church of Abadar. Free of charge," T'Sarra smiled at the Kellid woman, enjoying a chance to show off and contribute to help the place out. She summoned water again and again into the barrel until it was full.

"Fresh water for all the darlings. The least we can do."

 

At The Foundry Tavern

T'Sarra heard the ting ting as well as any of them, and she frowned in consternation.

"Somebody's inside? Who has access " She looked from Val to Khonnir's allies, the moved forward towards the door to the foundry. "Is there a back way out? In case whoever is in there wants to run?"

 

Mechanics

Move:
Standard:
Free:

Trained Skills

Acrobatics* -2
Climb* +4
Diplomacy +7
Handle Animal +4
Knowledge (nature) +4
Linguistics +1
Perception +6
Survival +4
Swim* +4
   
   
* -2 ACP to str and dex skills  

 

 

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Barhuce

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Barhuce shrugs. "Not sure about a back way, but there are lots of windows. If someone wants to run, we would be hard pressed to cover them all." He moves over to a window and peers in.

Statblock

 

[URL=https://test.myth-weavers.com/sheets/?id=2740751][B][SIZE=+1]Barhuce[/SIZE][/B][/URL] M NG Human (Kellid) Alchemist (CryptBreaker), [B]Level[/B] 1, [B]Init[/B] 4, [B]HP[/B] 3/9, [B]Speed[/B] 30 [B]AC[/B] 15, [B]Touch[/B] 12, [B]Flat-footed[/B] 13, [B]CMD[/b] 13, [B]Fort[/B] 3, [B]Ref[/B] 4, [B]Will[/B] 0, [B]CMB[/B] +1, [B]Base Attack Bonus[/B] 0 [B]1d8 v undead or constructs, DC 14 Alkahest Bomb (5/day) [/B] 3 (1d4+4, x2) [B] light Mace [/B] 1 (1d6+1, x2) [B] Dagger [/B] 1 (1d4+1, 19-20/x2) [B] Lamellar Cuirass[/B] (+2 Armor, +2 Dex, +1 Deflect) [B]Abilities[/B] Str 12, Dex 14, Con 13, Int 18, Wis 10, Cha 10 [B]Condition[/B] None
Barhuce
M NG Human (Kellid) Alchemist (CryptBreaker), Level 1, Init 4, HP 3/9, Speed 30
AC 15, Touch 12, Flat-footed 13, CMD 13, Fort 3, Ref 4, Will 0, CMB +1, Base Attack Bonus 0
1d8 v undead or constructs, DC 14 Alkahest Bomb (5/day) 3 (1d4+4, x2)
light Mace 1 (1d6+1, x2)
Dagger 1 (1d4+1, 19-20/x2)
Lamellar Cuirass (+2 Armor, +2 Dex, +1 Deflect)
Abilities Str 12, Dex 14, Con 13, Int 18, Wis 10, Cha 10
Condition None

Actions Crunch

 

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Tink tink (pause) tink tink! (pause)… The rhythmic sounds continue as the group gets closer to investigate.

 

It occurs to some of you as T'Sarra mentioned a back way, that each of the buildings have more than one set of doors — in the case of the foundry, four in total.

 

Barhuce Only

spacer.pngPeering into the window, you see the mug of a half-orc, bald but grey bearded, topless save for the apron covering his chest, hammering away at a what looks like a rod of metal inside the building, at an anvil behind one of the forges.

 

Edited by iantruesilver (see edit history)
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Barhuce

spacer.png

Barhuce calls over his shoulder. "There's an older half-orc smithing something in here."

Statblock

 

[URL=https://test.myth-weavers.com/sheets/?id=2740751][B][SIZE=+1]Barhuce[/SIZE][/B][/URL] M NG Human (Kellid) Alchemist (CryptBreaker), [B]Level[/B] 1, [B]Init[/B] 4, [B]HP[/B] 3/9, [B]Speed[/B] 30 [B]AC[/B] 15, [B]Touch[/B] 12, [B]Flat-footed[/B] 13, [B]CMD[/b] 13, [B]Fort[/B] 3, [B]Ref[/B] 4, [B]Will[/B] 0, [B]CMB[/B] +1, [B]Base Attack Bonus[/B] 0 [B]1d8 v undead or constructs, DC 14 Alkahest Bomb (5/day) [/B] 3 (1d4+4, x2) [B] light Mace [/B] 1 (1d6+1, x2) [B] Dagger [/B] 1 (1d4+1, 19-20/x2) [B] Lamellar Cuirass[/B] (+2 Armor, +2 Dex, +1 Deflect) [B]Abilities[/B] Str 12, Dex 14, Con 13, Int 18, Wis 10, Cha 10 [B]Condition[/B] None
Barhuce
M NG Human (Kellid) Alchemist (CryptBreaker), Level 1, Init 4, HP 3/9, Speed 30
AC 15, Touch 12, Flat-footed 13, CMD 13, Fort 3, Ref 4, Will 0, CMB +1, Base Attack Bonus 0
1d8 v undead or constructs, DC 14 Alkahest Bomb (5/day) 3 (1d4+4, x2)
light Mace 1 (1d6+1, x2)
Dagger 1 (1d4+1, 19-20/x2)
Lamellar Cuirass (+2 Armor, +2 Dex, +1 Deflect)
Abilities Str 12, Dex 14, Con 13, Int 18, Wis 10, Cha 10
Condition None

Actions Crunch

 

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