26 November 2015 @ 05:50 pm

The game begins with the transcriber apparently recording over old pornography.

Thalynmar: Who the hell trills during sex?

The DM quickly sums up the last adventure: the hostel had been bought ought or threatened by the party of five that transformed into an assemblage of evil creatures. Maldrake menaces the DM with Silly String which may or may not have been pointed directly at his own face. Initiative immediately results, causing everyone to sigh.

Raven: With my initiative roll, I’m gonna go take a nap and eventually it’ll be my turn.

The DM mocks the spelling of Thalynmar; Eben points out ‘Aibghalien’, to which he has no response.

Lualyrr: I blew my first natural 20 on rolling initiative.
DM: But not your last.
Krixix: I don’t want to know about you blowing anything!
Maldrake: I wish we had a greenscreen, if we were to tape this. It would be different locales.
Krixix: We’re in Vegas one day…
Maldrake: Exotic sites, no. Be like, we’re in Cloud City just before the Rebels get there. At the end of the session, some guy named Luke Skywalker is trying to get in. “Shit, time to go!”
Eben: We’re at the table, and then Vader walks in. “Clear the room, I need it.”

The group merrily inserts themselves into the Ewok village or the Gungan city; it ends with the two halves of Darth Maul falling onto their table. Lualyrr, up first, attempts to go to the bathroom.

Krixix: This looks like a time for me to drop my thousand ball bearings!
DM: The dragon slips!
Thalynmar: Drop your mom’s spaghetti.
Lualyrr: I’m gonna drop a Shatter right there.

A brief debate erupts over placement, because the dragon is only Medium-sized despite the mini representing it being Large. The players give the DM shit for this.

DM: Look, I can either use the awesome dragon mini that is slightly too large or THIS is your hatchling. (dropping down a dinosaur toy)
Eben: (delighted) An ankylosaur!
DM: So bandit captain number 2, the guy with the stupid mustache, is not affected. Krixix, a Constitution saving throw, DC 14!
Lualyrr: You said he wasn’t in range!
DM: I did, yes.
Lualyrr: So he’s lying….
DM: You will take half damage from the Shatter.
Lualyrr: That better not fucking be MY Shatter.
DM: That IS your Shatter.
Lualyrr: HOW THE – you said he was out of range!
DM: I did! When you finish your rolling I will describe what happened!
Eben: It’s a beholder-like thing, it probably just said ‘Nope!’
Thalynmar: Or reflects it.
DM: You’ve stumbled on the periphery of wisdom.

A lot of passing occurs, leading Lualyrr to rant even more. The spectator reveals itself to have a spell-deflection ability in its large eye, which is why Krixix took damage. The DM explains this, though Thalynmar is otherwise occupied.

Thalynmar: A grassy gnoll!

Raven explains that he cooked his own dinner for some reason. A bandit captain slashes at Krixix, missing with his scimitar but striking with his dagger!

DM: For massive dagger damage, I assure you. 5 points of damage as it scores a line across your side.
Eben: This is a fourth-level encounter?
Thalynmar: He’s only taken 13 damage.
Eben: I only mean – the captain guy, he’s the one we’re supposed to worry about the least!
DM: This guy darts to the side, and then decides to eliminate the caster, throwing a pair of daggers at Lualyrr. One of the daggers flies wide and smashes into a bottle behind the bar, the scent of alcohol fills the air as booze pours out of it.
Thalynmar: Will save… fail, I go into a rage.
DM: However, you take 7 points of damage as the dagger buries itself right here.
Lualyrr: My booby!
DM: No no… maybe a little.
Vivianne: Not the boobies!
DM: The innkeeper dives behind the bar, screams like a little girl, and begins crawling to the side. He doesn’t get too far.

Eben and Krixix discuss the likelihood of the bartender getting killed as a general fictional trope, while Thalynmar inexplicably bursts into song. Vivianne casts Spiritual Weapon, which fails to strike the dragon. The spectator fires off some eye beams, which accomplish nothing. Someone attempts to pull up blaster noises to accompany this eye-lasering, but the group only succeeds in uncovering the Daily Double. Krixix rolls!

DM: Don’t you have advantage on this?
Maldrake: He does. Roll again.
Krixix: (rolls)
Thalynmar: Thank God he had advantage on that.
DM: What’d he roll?
Thalynmar: One.
DM: He’s a halfling, he rerolls that.
Krixix: But I got a 17!
Thalynmar: Well roll again!
Thalynmar and Eben: You might crit!
Eben: We are the echo chamber.

The dragon takes 11 damage from the rapier, and Krixix Disengages the hell out of the melee. Maldrake fires off his acid breath; the guy who doesn’t have the stupid mustache and the manticore save and take 4, while the dragon takes 8. The dragon rages! (Not as a game turn!)

Eben: The inn’s burning down. That’s why there’s a great big map, we’ll have to flee the burning inn.
DM: Its ego wars with its common sense, before finally… it hops up onto this table and unleashes a mighty gout of flame. It’s hitting Raven, Thalynmar, and whoever that’s in the robes.
Eben: There’s three robed figures.
DM: The one with the staff.
Eben: Two of them have a staff!
DM: The green guy.
Eben: Two of them are GREEN!
DM: Shut up and – you know who I’m talking about!
Eben: No!
Eben: The one with its back turned—
DM: NO! This guy! The only one its 15’ range can hit! WHO IS THAT?! SOMEONE TELL ME WHO THAT IS!

Raven takes 20! The others take half. Thalynmar strikes the dragon, rolling well and dealing 14. The manticore flips tail spines at Eben.

Eben: Just roll damage when something attacks me.
DM: It could miss!
Eben: It could roll a 1. Anything else, it’s going to hit.
DM: That’s not ENTIRELY untrue…

Eben takes a total of 24 from three spines! Raven burns Second Wind to heal, then whiffs his Goading Attack . The DM paints a delightful picture in which Maldrake hits himself in both eyes with Silly String. Lualyrr heals Raven for 13 – then realizes that he’d already healed himself and quickly redirects that energy to Eben.

DM: He’s been taking the brunt of the damage.
Eben: (sighing)

A captain slashes at Krixix for 9, while the other vigorously fails to do any more than 4 to Maldrake – who fumes that the NPCs have three attacks. Vivianne’s Spiritual Hammer crits the dragon, which she seems woefully despondant over. The players are surprisingly focused on this combat, which is probably a testament to its perceived lethality.

Krixix: Don’t worry about me!
Thalynmar: We can rez Krixix later.
Maldrake: How did you make a cleric with a Wisdom modifier of +1?
Vivianne: Because I wanted to even out my whole character.
Thalynmar: You’re too balanced! You need some bad numbers.
Krixix: Like my Intelligence and Wisdom are -1! It’s the reason I get in the middle of every combat.

The spectator eye-beams Krixix and Thalynmar, despite the former’s angry protests that it should have Stormtrooper aim. Krixix is afraid! …then remembers he has advantage on saving throws against that, and rolls a second die which just barely saves his butt. Thalynmar also saves. Krixix Disengages the melee again, then scrambles over to backstab the dragon!

Krixix: That’s a… 12.
DM: (happily) Nope! You leap up! “Ha, die bitch!” Slam your dagger home, and the tip… just twitches a little. Maldrake, the bandit continues to make gestures at you with his scimitar, daring you to try to get away and slay his master. It will strike your ass! I remind you this one does not have a stupid mustache. The spectator Creates Food and Water, that’s one of its powers.
Thalynmar: ‘Listen, we got off on the wrong foot here…’
DM: Sadly it’s only enough food and water to sustain itself for 24 hours… although it doesn’t seem to have a cooldown.
Eben: Why not just create the food in its stomach, and then it doesn’t have to eat.

Krixix realizes he forgot to crit the dragon as part of his assassin powers a long time ago, and feels dumb. The captain takes a wound from Maldrake, and the dragon’s breath weapon fails to recharge.

Maldrake: Watch out, he’s going for mom’s spaghetti!
DM: What an odd thing to say.

The dragon Disengages and ducks behind the spectator, furious that it had to do this. Thalynmar is up!

Krixix: Please engage that captain before he rolls up to me and kills me!
DM: I will charge you with an Athletics check.
Thalynmar: Will that [obstacle] impede my movement?
DM: That’s a table, dude.
Thalynmar: I know.
DM: If you’re going straight over it or under it.
Thalynmar: What would be my target number to roll?
DM: Tell me what you rolled.
Thalynmar: I rolled well… 19?
DM: That’s fine.
Krixix: He doesn’t really go over the table, he pretty much goes through it.
DM: “Out of the way, table!” Smashing it to the side to charge down that bandit captain.
Krixix: My god, what a great visual.
DM: Like a freight train with a cowcatcher that’s all beard, Thalynmar charges forward. The guy with the stupid mustache takes a wound across his side.
Eben: Wasn’t Lualyrr viciously mocking the dragon?
DM: Not the spell, she was just… impugning its dragonly honor.
Eben: Impugning?! (rolling his damage)
DM: Oh no. I’m sorry, Eben… I’m sorry.

Vivianne takes 2 manticore spikes for 14. Raven vampongs fiercely, which reduces Eben to giggling incoherence. He rolls a 3. The audio… briefly goes very wrong indeed, for some reason.

Krixix: I need to mail him new dice.
Eben: And a headset.
Thalynmar: And a My Little Pony notebook.
Eben: A pony headset.
Raven: A pony headset! That’d get me to wear it!

Lualyrr fires Dissonant Whispers into the manticore, I believe. The bandit captain on Maldrake misses all his attacks.

DM: The one on Thalynmar is apparently luckier!
Thalynmar: His stupid mustache gives him power!
DM: It apparently does, for he manages to land one of his blows, dealing 9 points of damage to you. The innkeeper makes good his escape!

The party suddenly realizes their party formation is TERRIBLE! Vivianne whacks with her Spiritual Weapon, then rolls terribly to heal herself. The spectator fires eye rays in a flurry of sound effects; as usual, Lualyrr saves, but takes 10 points of necrotic damage, while Eben is frightened. Krixix sneak-attacks the stupid mustache guy for 10, while Maldrake whacks his captain. The dragon fails to recharge his breath weapon again, and then the audio finally gives out. It picks up with very little delay, however – someone managed to kill the dragon, and Eben is blasting the manticore.

Lualyrr: I’m dead.
DM: Down. Not dead.
Vivianne: I got you.

Raven whacks a guy, rolling a 22 to hit – and for some reason takes a while to consider if he actually managed to connect the blow or not.

Raven: And for giggles, I’m going to use Goading.
Maldrake: Just use the ability that kills him faster.
Eben: You’re reading Miranda TO A CORPSE!
Raven: It does extra damage in addition to the taunt.
Maldrake: Okay, you can taunt his corpse.
Raven: Looks like it did 19 damage total.
DM: You plunge your sword into his upper back, severing his spine, and he collapses like so much jelly. You are convinced he would attack you on your next turn were he not quadriplegic.
Eben: He’s doing Shao Khans over his spineless body…
DM: Let’s see here. The captain spins, seeing the end of his meal ticket in front of him, and furiously attempts to kill the dwarf who killed his master! Ooh, that’s some good killing he did there, I gotta say. The scimitar strikes you for – aw. 5 points of damage.
Thalynmar: Aw.
Krixix: Uh! Uh!
DM: His dagger buries itself in your gut for 12 points of damage. You can feel your beer-drinking days shorten just a bit.
Vivianne: First, I’m going to—
Krixix: Heal Lualyrr.
Maldrake: Heal Lualyrr.
DM: Spiritual Weapon.
Maldrake: Spiritual Weapon, yes.
Vivianne: Spiritual Weapon.

Vivianne whacks the spectator and cures Lualyrr, then the spectator eye-beams Maldrake and Thalynmar. Both of them save, provoking hysterics from the DM since no one has failed yet.

Eben: You want us all to die!
Krixix: I’m bleeding out!

Okay, apparently Krixix went down during the audio skip! Maldrake steps forward to smite the spectator.

Maldrake: “ALWAYS TIP YOUR WAITER!” I channel my divinity, using a second level spell slot. My sword blazes up!
Krixix: Wait, don’t you have that crazy sword?
Brunt: The crazy flail.
Krixix: The sword of rebirth of sunlight, something?
Thalynmar: I haven’t been using it. Should I be using it…?
Maldrake: 24 points of damage.
Eben: You just killed it!
DM: Nope. The spectator still burns.
Maldrake: Did I just get a couple eyestalks? Pretend eyestalks?
DM: You cut a mighty gash and a hiss of some noxious gas is erupting from its body into your face.
Thalynmar: Uuuueeegh.
DM: Thalynmar! Kill Krixix!
Thalynmar: --What?!
Maldrake: Stomping on his neck.
Thalynmar: Modified 20 to hit the captain.
DM: You hit! Killing Krixix!
Thalynmar: (weary sigh)

Thalynmar Action Surges but fails to strike on his second attack. Eben, who at some point had been Frightened by the spectator, Eben blasts the captain, while the manticore flips more spines… and botches.

Maldrake: “Fist Meets Face”. The attack hits you and is a critical attack.
Eben: The damage that fuckers been doing to us?! Cross it off! It’s outta here!
DM: He spun around too fast. His tail flipped out. Three spines shoot out at the warlock, narrowly missing as the rest of the tail -- (miming it striking his face) Down goes the manticor, because… eeehhh… no, it killed him. I’m not using the ‘max damage plus another roll’ for monster criticals.
Maldrake: …thank you! You have no idea how many times I’ve accidentally killed you guys with a monster. ‘Oh yeah, that’s not going to do a lot of damage! Oh. All of them are 8s.’

Raven promptly crits the spectator off the face of the map, killing Maldrake! (Or possibly not.) Lualyrr is up!

DM: Lualyrr, you’re alive!
Lualyrr: I’m alive!
DM: Like Number Five.

A pause. Maldrake finally fails to not laugh.

Maldrake: Really?
Krixix: Finish it. Before I bleed out. I really don’t want to make a new character, I like this one.
Lualyrr: Hand crossbow at the spectator.
DM: You shoot its corpse.
Lualyrr: Well who’s alive then?!
DM: The guy who has the stupid mustache.
Maldrake: The last mustache is in captivity. The galaxy is at peace.

Lualyrr casts Dissonant Whispers, but the captain saves. He duels Thalynmar, dealing 4 damage with his dagger and nothing with his sword. Vivianne can’t reach Krixix and heal, so she scrambles over with a Dash to get closer.

DM: They sure put an awful lot of work into saving you for someone who doesn’t give them an awful lot of reason to save you…

The bandit captain continues to survive all attacks, leading Maldrake to speculate that there are rules specifying that mustaches are an extra 2 Hit Dice. Krixix fails another death roll, leaving him one from actual death.

Maldrake: According to my dragon handbook, if I breathe my acid the right way it’ll heal you!
Krixix: It’s online.
Raven: I learned it by clicking an ad on Facebook, it has to be true. It said doctors won’t believe this handy trick!

Maldrake drops his sword, draws his bow, and fires! The arrow bounces harmlessly off Thalynmar’s helm.

Maldrake: “First time I used it!”
Thalynmar: I’m thinking a 22 hits him. 15 damage.
DM: He lives! …for another few seconds, before bleeding out.

The DM encourages Vivianne to leave Krixix to die; she doesn’t. The battle is theirs, except for the Magic card the DM attempts to put into play. They find the bartender and drag him back to his mostly-unharmed inn!

Maldrake: “Don’t worry, friend. I know it looks bad, but our gracious friends here have left all the money – has left some money to repair it all.”
DM: You see him look over at the dragon’s corpse. Two and two visibly connect in his head. (miming dollar signs popping up in his eyes) Cha-ching!

The bartender runs quickly off to round up his wenches, and the DM awards them the loot from the encounter’s belongings. It explodes into John Cena.

DM: 1800 copper!
Thalynmar: You made that sound a lot better than it was.
Maldrake: Loot in this game is so disappointing.
DM: 900 silver!
Maldrake: Let me guess…
Eben: 150 gold.
Maldrake: 90 gold.
DM: 30 gold.
Eben: No wonder they were being cheap, they couldn’t even afford a night at the inn!
DM: 8 dragon scales, each worth 25 gold.
Maldrake: What kind of naked dragon are we finding?!
DM: A young one that was gradually molting scales.
Krixix: By the way, how much gold do we get if we peel the scales off that dragon.
DM: Not so much, because those came off naturally. You find a glaive, made of dragon parts!
Eben: Ewww.
DM: You find a mysterious ring that appears to be a shallow-toothed gear!
Eben: A dwemer cog.
Krixix: It weighs 25 pounds.
DM: And of course the wand that Krixix took. Soon enough the entire caravan is inside, toasting your good health and regretting that they couldn’t have showed up to get in on the fight. Next time, they vow, they’re not sending you on ahead.
Maldrake; Was that an endgame scenario for us, like them bursting through the door at turn 10?
DM: If the fight had taken long enough, yeah, they’d have shown up and been like, “Holy shit!”
Maldrake: “…Help… us…!”
Eben: If it had been the 8th-level assassins instead, the fight wouldn’t have lasted that long.

The discussion goes off onto Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest of all things. (The group considers it a sleeper gem, for all its flaws.) The DM encourages them to toss their magic items in the pooper, but instead they identify them as a Ring of Warmth, a wand of Web, and a glaive+1 with a completely untranscribable name, as is the DM’s wont. (It means ‘Worthless Mother’ in Draconic.) The group is irritated that they still haven’t managed to get a magic one-handed weapon. The game dithers around for a while as the group comes down off that adrenaline high.

DM: Anyway, you all are the heroes of the caravan for like the fifth time now, although this time it was pure coincidence.
Eben: Haven’t we failed to impress most people in the caravan?
DM: No, by now they’re pretty impressed. Slaying a dragon, a weird beholder creature…
Eben: Even the dwarf who was like, “Ach! You guys aren’t bad, I guess, but you could use a bit more technique…”
DM: She’s been determinedly silent, which you can probably presume means she has nothing bad to say about what you’ve done.

The group debates shaking down their employers for more money, except for Maldrake who is looking for skimitars. (And insistent that the ‘c’ in ‘scimitars’ be pronounced.) On they go!

DM: You’re well on your way at this point. Baldur’s Gate is not that far ahead. (pausing) Waterdeep. Is not that far ahead. YOU’VE TURNED AROUND! And you find yourself, a couple of days later, approaching the own of Daggerford.

With a day’s rest, the PCs have the opportunity to go around the town. One of the cultists approaches Vivianne with a human she hasn’t seen before.

DM: “This fine fellow has hired on as a traveler. We’ll be giving him lodgings for the rest of the trip to Baldur’s Gate. (pausing) Waterdeep.” I’ve got them backwards again. Damn you, Baldur’s Gate video game. Also I want you to give me a Perception check.
Vivianne: I’m scared. 15. Wait, do I have Perception? No, I don’t have it. 14.
DM: He’s wearing a pretty ugly wool cap that has flaps that cover most of his head. But glancing at him, you take another look and notice there are tattoos peeking out beneath the edges of it. The cultist introduces him as a man named Azbara. The first and only traveler the cultist wagon has taken on this entire adventure.
Vivianne: Well, I’m polite, I shake his hand and welcome him aboard.
DM: He sniffs and nods, already seeming eager to take his place in the wagon. The cultist lingers behind, looking down at you. “That fellow Krixix. You’ve been fighting at his side. Do you know him?”
Vivianne: “Mmm>.”
Maldrake: Now you’re gonna use your Persuasion here—
Vivianne: I don’t have Persuasion—
Maldrake: YES YOU DO.
Vivianne: Oh, I do! Aaaah!
Maldrake: So now you can roll Persuasion and persuade him that you don’t know him that well.
DM: Except that’s Deception.
Thanlynmar: Well, shit.
Vivianne: I roll Perception, and I’m—
DM, Maldrake, and Thanlynmar: DECEPTION.
Vivianne: Kinda like shrugging.
DM: “Have you worked with him before now?”
Maldrake: She didn’t even have to lie about that.
DM: You’re the one who wanted her to immediately roll.
Eben: Is this the cultist, or is this Azbara?
DM: This is a cultist! A half-elven cultist.
Eben: A half-elven…. But she doesn’t know…
Krixix: Oh, tell me they want me to join the cult!
Eben: No! This is…
Vivianne: “I joined the party and it’s taken me here.”
DM: “Are you… particularly attached to him?”
Krixix: They’re gonna assassinate me!
Vivianne: “I… consider him one of the guards here, along with us. A little loud, a little upset over his crossbow.”
DM: “Do you… LIKE him?”
Eben: Would you… be willing to kill him for me?
Maldrake: You’re not that way.
Vivianne: “He seems… nice?”
DM: He reaches into his robe and fans out several gold pieces. “Is he THIS nice?”
Eben: It’s a good thing your positions aren’t reversed, because [Krixix] would probably –
DM: Yeah, you’ve had sold her out by now.

The cultist bribes Vivianne to have Krixix standing by a certain wagon at a certain time, promising him an ‘adventure’. Vivianne accepts or at least pretends to, and gets both money and instructions. She hurries into town to find Krixix!

Vivianne: I want to find him and pull him aside. You know, like an alley, so no one sees it.
DM: Oh, you’re gonna get a proactive bonus! Take him out early and see if they reward you.
Vivianne: Not so much… that’s what I want to do. Pull him aside.
DM: Okay. Go ahead. It’s called roleplaying…
Vivianne: So I pull you aside from shopping for apples or something.
DM: Krixix mugs you in the alley.
Krixix: Sorry.
DM: I can just adjudicate this…
Vivianne: Or I look like I’m going to do that to him.
DM: Wow, okay, Vivianne seizes you and throws you up against the alley wall. Puts a knife to your neck, apparently.
Vivianne: No!
Krixix: Oh-h-h-h-h, Vivianne. (panting with lust)
Vivianne: I didn’t know you cared.
Maldrake: I have a new name for you, my friend. Iglar 3.0. More improved than ever before. This’ll be the best Iglar ever, because there’s no possibility of a child! BOOM! TOUCHDOWN!
Eben: Don’t say no possibility.
Thalynmar: They could adopt.
Maldrake: We could stop that ahead of time.
Eben: We could have stopped Iglar.
Maldrake: What are you talking about? [Iglar’s wife] avoided us like the plague, we never had a chance to coat hangar…

Vivianne and Krixix actually roleplay underneath this discussion. Alerted, Krixix informs the others but elects to spring the trap and count on his forewarning to save him. He also shakes down Vivianne for a share of the money she got. Vivianne and Krixix get really confused over whether or not they were sleeping together, and it turns out Vivianne was thinking about an entirely different campaign the entire time, which no one else even knows what she’s talking about anyway. So Iglar 3.0. The group argues that selling Krixix out had given Vivianne much more money than Judas… (The group serves pie, thus explaining a lack of actual game progression. As opposed to all the completely unjustified lack of game progression.) Lualyrr and Maldrake find out from their argumentative employer that he’d given room to a traveler.

DM: A gnome who’s been leaning up against the side of the wagon gives you a wave and a smug little smile. “Name’s Janna. Janna Gleamsilver. Encouraging to meet the people who are going to be guarding me.”
Maldrake: “Name’s Maldrake. Your safety is my top concern.”
Eben: Sound of boot spurs clinking as they introduce themselves… and who’s the THIRD assassin?

Lualyrr and the DM squabble over whipped cream. Maldrake tries to pry a little information out of Janna, who smugly acts like she’s up to things without telling him anyone.

Maldrake: Look, D&D doesn’t believe in genetics apparently, because I really doubt a half-elf would be possible.

Silence, as the group attempts to come to grips with this completely out-of-nowhere declaration.

DM: …no one asked you!

Vivianne tries to talk to the cultist who paid her, but he actively avoids her and tries to discourage here wherever possible. Maldrake is convinced he’s going to be killed. The DM calls for Insight or Deception checks, whichever is higher. A couple of people are aware than Janna Gleamsilver has been keeping a watch on them and asking others about them, while a few more also know that she know that they know. The transcription briefly glitches out, picking up with Vivianne attempting to buy silk until the group points out she CAN’T DO THAT!

Vivianne: Wait, can’t we like, buy things from them?!
DM: They’re carting goods, they don’t want to sell to you!
Maldrake: There’s a food truck, though!
DM: He’s specifically making his money selling beer to the caravan.
Vivianne: I’m gonna go and get the beer!
DM: Krixix, Perception roll please!
Maldrake: Roll that 1, sir! Roll it!
DM: You see [the cultist] speak a muttered word under his breath and make gestures with his hands.
Krixix: I’m gonna throw a dagger at him.
Thalynmar: That’s completely reasonable of you!
Krixix: No, all right. I see him making gestures with his hands and speaking—
Eben: He’s countercursing the guy who’s actually trying to kill you.
Maldrake: This is not Harry Potter!
DM: Next to you the wagon wheel abruptly shudders, and then the wagon tumbles to the side.
DM: Give me a Dexterity check, and I’ll give you advantage because you knew it was coming.

Krixix flings himself to safety, and since the cultists fled, Krixix puts on a show of playing it off as an accident – with his usual plan of slaying the guy in the night. The group cynically predicts the guy has Krixix’s shortbow. They also suspect this was intentional, to which the DM, suppressing infinite weariness, spells out that they know it was intentional without needing to roll. The wagon gets a quick repair and on they go! Insight checks for Vivianne!

Krixix: Child hunger ends here. We give them all Cool Whip.
DM: The good news is from your eavesdropping at the cultists’ wagon, you’ve determined that this particular cultist hasn’t shared his suspicions of Krixix with the others yet. He’s not entirely certain, but more importantly he’s intent on getting rid of Krixix as a way of regaining favor within the organization. On the downside, he noticed you catch him muttering to himself.
Thalynmar: “You’re next.”
DM: He looks up at you as he mutters as he has one more night that he thinks he can get away without telling anyone, but tomorrow, if he fails to kill Krixix he’ll have to make certain that everybody gets the – and then he looks up and spies you there. His eyes meet with yours, and you realize he’s heard everything you said.
Krixix: Play it off. Remember, he paid you to kill me off, so play it off—
Vivianne: (abruptly) Oh. Wait. It’s actually roleplaying? Of course I play it off.
Maldrake: Deception roll!
Vivianne: I don’t have Deception…
Maldrake: It’s untrained. You can lie. A baby can lie.
DM: (shifty-eyed) Waah. Waah. I’m hungry.
Maldrake: …she critically failed at lying.
DM: You reflexively blurt, “Oh shit, I better tell Krixix” and run off. Several steps later, you’re like, “Why did I do that?”
Eben: What a horrible lies to have a curse.

Krixix gets Silly String to the face and hair. Vivianne tells Krixix in the form of a joke, for unclear reasons. Krixix promptly disguises himself, but rolls reasonably poorly.

DM: You have a stupid mustache, now.
Maldrake: Didn’t mustache man have more hit points than the other…?

The players complain about the lack of transcription updates. As the evening passes, the cultist approaches Krixix, hits him with a Charm Person, and then asks for a word in private. Realizing he’s stuck up against a wall, Krixix goes with OOC plans to murder the hell out of the wizard.

DM: “I have something to confide to you about your shortbow. But I don’t want prying ears to hear the story.”
Krixix: “No. I don’t need that bow any more. I’m past it.”
DM: “You’re not interested in seeing justice done?”
Krixix: “Oh, I will see justice done.”
Eben: Here’s Tiamat. Tiamat took his shortbow.
Krixix: “Why don’t we go for a walk? Walk around and talk.”

The two head off together, and the caster puts another spell on Krixix that the latter manages to save against, despite trying to lower Krixix’s resistance with a story about putting an image in his mind.

Krixix: “Why don’t you just go ahead and tell me what it is?”
DM: “By now the image should have popped into your mind.”
Krixix: “My mind’s a little too sharp and strong for simple parlor tricks like that, so why don’t you just go ahead and tell me?”
DM: “I’ll try again.”
Krixix: “No, that’s okay, I-“
DM: Wisdom saving throw!

Krixix is paralyzed! The cultist starts dragging him off. Lualyrr attempts to follow him, but doesn’t know where he is. Krixix proves resolutely unable to shake off the paralyze.

Krixix: (rolling) I reroll all 1s, ‘cuz I’m lucky! (rerolling) 2.
Maldrake: You are meant to be taken away and killed!

The other players berate Krixix for not giving them information, as the caster hauls him into a ditch and plunges a knife into his chest!

Maldrake: The rest of the party sleeps easily for some reason!
DM: You take 10 points of damage and get another saving throw to resist it!

Krixix breaks free, but gets stabbed again for another 5. The cultist curses him!

Maldrake: How far away from the place…
DM: With seven failed saving throws on his part, he got dragged a fair distance off.
Krixix: Luckily my trinket is a whistle made of gold-colored wood. So I’m pulling out my whistle, and I’m blowing my rape whistle! And at the same time I am trying to stumble back to camp.

Krixix luckily has a free Disengage action to get out of danger, so he scrambles away while blowing the whistle. The caster promptly casts Sleep on him and drops him again. Vivianne, at least, hears the whistle in the distance and the group surges to wakefulness!

Maldrake: I grab my weapon. I’m out Arthuring it, just my boxers.
DM: One of the halflings whistles at you. Luckily it’s a female.

Krixix takes 10 points of damage and awakens! The halfling is actually starting to get worried now, as evinced by him actually taking the combat seriously at this point. Krixix runs like hell again, realizing he’s lost his whistle.

Thalynmar: You’ll get it back tomorrow when you pass it through.
Krixix: Oh please don’t come out sideways.

The caster hurls another Sleep spell, taking out Krixix again – but not Maldrake, who was closer. The paladin dives for the halfling and pumps his full Lay on Hands into Krixix. The group is unable to see the cultist, but those with Darkvision look round and with an Investigation check, determine one of the bushes they see is oddly two-dimensional.

Eben: Firebolt.
DM: Firebolt?!
Eben: Firebolt. No saving throw. Flammable objects catch on fire!
DM: …let me put it another way, you realize it is an illusion bush. You faintly see the huddling cultist behind it.
Eben: Won’t the firebolt just hit him, then? 11’s not going to hit him…
DM: You fire the bolt into the darkness and it flashes past him. You hear a shriek come up!
Vivianne: All right, so just to check, just to update you on what’s happened, the cultist that tried to smoosh, uh, Kruxshicks…

Eben gets put to sleep, and the cultist runs like hell! The DM reminds them all just how many hit points this guy had when they beat him up in the camp. Thalynmar whips out the Decanter of Endless Water and unloads it at full geyser strength, splitting the air with a roar and sending the cultists ragdolling through the air.

Maldrake: Time to waterboard him. Geyser mode, activate!

The caster quickly applies some makeup to his face, which really baffles everyone (and they ponder blasting the makeup off with the Decanter), but he’s just casting Friends to give advantage to his Intimidate against Thalynmar.

DM: This guy just threatened you with soul-ripping, and you believe he can do it!
Thalynmar: (mimes axing the guy)
DM: “Let me go, and I’ll give you wealth beyond—“ Oooh, that’s a good Persuasion roll!
Krixix: Oh, and you now love gold.
DM: Obsessed with material wealth, thanks to the glaive.
Thalynmar: Um… “Aye, unless you got it on you now, I don’t think we…”
DM: “You just need to let me up!” That was terrible Persuasion – oh, that should be a Deception check. Which he still rolled terribly.
Thalynmar: Oh, then thoonk.

Thalynmar doesn’t actually kill him. The rest of the party catches up, and the spell ends, causing Thalynmar to become furiously hostile as its aftereffect. Krixix angrily attempts to shoot the guy in the leg, before realizing he’s not standing right there and scrambling up to deliver that blow. They argue over the efficacy of this in stopping the guy from running. It gets weird.

Tyr: No, I’m not marrying him.
Thalynmar: “No. He’s gonna get justice done. We’re taking him to the caravan master. Tie him oop.”
Krixix: I’m glaring at you, but out of respect.
Eben: “I don’t recognize him, he’s wearing makeup of some kind.”
DM: I remind you that at the moment he is the only cultist who is suspicious you are working against them. What do you think will happen if he is imprisoned and then his fellow cultists visit him, which will probably be allowed?
Krixix: They will kill him.
DM: What?! That logic was so far out there it might as well have been in a different game!
Vivianne: We should kill him. We should make it look like an animal did it.
Eben: What do gargoyles eat…?
DM: I dunno, I never watched that cartoon.

The DM takes a massive blast of Silly String to his hair, as the increasing game of Silly String chicken reaches its inevitable and tragic conclusion. Krixix attempts to Intimidate information out of the guy, adding in some torture. Vivianne happily dives in to help. Krixix, at least, is actually roleplaying – asking about the friend Talis that he’s been looking for all this time.

DM: At your question, he begins to shake. Have you released his mouth yet?
Krixix: …yes, I’ve released his mouth.
DM: He begins to laugh. Laugh maniacally, as if something about this is funny beyond belief to him.
Krixix: Oh good, I still have his wrist so I’m gonna twist it even harder… “I enjoy a good joke, so tell me. What’s so funny?”
DM: “Y…. you… your… mother.”
Krixix: Hand over his mouth, applying more pain.
DM: (looking to the other PCs) He’s willing to see just how far this torture session will go with all of you here.
Thalynmar: “I think that’s enough. I do think this man is wicked beyond all ways and needs to be executed.”
Krixix: “No, he will die.”
Thalynmar: “And he will die now.”
Krixix: “Yes, he will. Slowly.”
Maldrake: “Make it quick.”
Krixix: “He doesn’t deserve quick.”
Thalynmar: “No, but that’s what he’s getting’.”

Vivianne points out that Krixix had blows his whistle and the caravan might come to investigate; the DM responds that the NPCs are coming out to investigate the Decanter noise instead! Krixix slits the cultist’s throat immediately, and they discuss their story. Sulesdeg appears!

Eben: (Sulesdeg voice) “What has happened here…?”
DM: He holds a torch high, and does that.
Maldrake: “The wicked has been punished.”
Eben: Why do you – you have a sepulchral tone all of a sudden!
Maldrake: I want my character to have that kind of somber tone.
Eben: So you and Sulesdeg are gonna have a Lurch-off…
Krixix: I’m also the one standing over him holding his wrist at an awkward position with a bloody dagger over his slit throat.
DM: You might want to not do that by the time they get there.
Krixix: Yeah, drop his hand, wipe my dagger off…
DM: “This looks… gruesome. What have you done?”

The group remembers Krixix has been healed, but the DM points out he’s blood-soaked and his stuff is damaged. They tell Sulesdeg about the wagon wheel as well as the cultist’s efforts to kill Krixix.

Krixix: “I had awoken! I had a whistle in my pocket that I used to alert the others—“
Maldrake: ‘But he put me to sleep again.’
Eben: ‘And stabbed me again.’
DM: “This seems very unlikely…”

Sulesdeg complains about 5th Edition, and Krixix rolls well on Persuasion. Sulesdeg apparently activates Detective Mode to reconstruct the crime scene.

Eben: Uh-oh, he’s not going to like what he sees here.
Thalynmar: “My apologies. He’s merely unconscious.”

They do find Krixix’s whistle. Considering all the evidence, the man concludes that Krixix is possibly innocent, or at least he can’t prove he’s lying.

DM: He still thinks you might just be making it up for the attention. Because you seem to really like the attention. Shortbows… doppelganger women… assassins in the night…
Krixix: The doppelganger women, ANYone could have fallen for.
DM: It’s really kind of unlikely at this point that ALL that would just happen to ONE halfling…

The DM sows the seeds that the half-elf could be raised or somehow return! The caravan travels on the next day, with the cultists either innocent or feigning it well.

DM: The next morning—
Thalynmar: You all have horse heads next to you.
DM: The gnome, Janna Gleamsilver, approaches you all as you’re sitting down for breakfast. Casually takes a seat with you all.
Krixix: “Morning, Janna.”
Vivianne: “Good morning, ma’am.”
DM: Looks around, takes out one of her daggers. Into the bowl. Lifts out her dagger – on the end of it there’s an oatmeal-smeared object that resembles a tiny bead. With a meaningful look over at her shoulder to the cultists, who are sitting down to their own breakfast... “It’s a sliver of bone. It’s curled into a circle so you can swallow it in a mouthful of gruel without noticing. Once eaten, it slowly uncurls inside you. The needle points pierce your guts and kill you slowly. Probably in all your breakfasts. Let’s talk this evening.” And walks off.
Thalynmar: “I’m gonna be so hungry tonight. I think we should eat our own food.”
Eben: I don’t eat any more. (miming eating the gruel)
DM: The act of eating KILLS you!

The group wonders if she’s bluffing, and while Thalynmar wants to study the item, Janna took it away. They roll Investigation on their gruel and come up with objects that might be slivers, or just husks, sawdust, or insect eggs. The cultists are watching them without trying to be obvious about it. Krixix deploys his ultimate plan.

DM: You spoon most of the oatmeal into your stupid mustache.

On this ominous(?) note, the game comes to an end. Next time – dead PCs everywhere?