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Pre-Show[]

MATT: Hello everybody, and welcome to tonight's episode of Critical Role, where a bunch of us nerdy-ass voice actors sit around and play Dungeons & Dragons.

ALL: (hollering) We play Dungeons & Dragons!

MATT: Before we get started for tonight's session, we do have some announcements to get through, beginning with the first of our two sponsors tonight, Sam with Old Spice.

SAM: Old Spice?

MATT: What? Sure.

SAM: Yep, that's happening.

MARISHA: That's so weird.

SAM: It's not on the prompter, so I'm stealing your script. Here we go. Tonight's sponsor is the master of scents. There it is. Old Spice and their brand new Witcher scents! The world of the Witcher was full of bad smells because Old Spice didn't exist yet and damn, did those people need it! Now, to celebrate the release of the second season of The Witcher on Netflix, Old Spice has created six scents. Scents with a 'T'. Three amazingly good and three very, very bad. So you can smell just like you belong in the 1200s. (laughter) Tonight, we're lucky to have a sneak peek at these wondrous scents from Old Spice. So thought it would be fun to let each of you take a whiff and see if you can guess what these scents are. You have a scent before you. Take a sniff, one at a time, tell me what you think what it smells like, bad or good. Taliesin, you're up first, go.

TALIESIN: All right. Oh god, here we go. Okay, it's base notes of leather.

SAM: Mm-hmm?

TALIESIN: With high notes of sweat. Some animal's pheromones. I'm going to guess this is the smell of your bedroom, Sam.

SAM: (rolls tongue) Correct.

TALIESIN: Yeah?

SAM: No, actually, this one's called "Roach," named after Geralt's horse. I said his name right.

MATT: You said it right, thank you.

SAM: Big Witcher fan. Liam, you're up next.

LIAM: Oh, hold on. Let me break the seal. Okay, this is if you buy a chili cheese dog, but you're late for an audition.

SAM: Uh-huh?

LIAM: So you save it in your car for later. Then you nail the audition, and you get so excited you forget to eat, and the chili cheese dog, it rolls under your seat, because that's where they go and it stays there for two months, and the heat from your car, you know, cooks it over and over until one day you find it and you go (gags), but you get the role, and that's all that matters.

SAM: That's very descriptive and it sounds delicious. That st-- That stench! That smell is called "The Smell of Surprise." It's actually quite lovely.

LIAM: This one actually smells good and the script makes no sense. (laughter)

SAM: A little side note, I wrote the script before they gave me the scents to smell. All right, next up is Laura. Take it away.

LAURA: Oh no.

MARISHA: Smell it, actually smell it. Do it. Open it.

TRAVIS: Come on, go.

LAURA: Oh god!

TRAVIS: Why are you getting it so close?

LAURA: I wanted to really smell it. That smells like if Jar Jar Binks was a smell. (laughter) You know, it's like something I would never, ever, ever want to experience again. (laughter)

SAM: Correct. "Meesa smell good." That one's called "Kikimore Corpse." Okay. Ashley, yousa up next. (laughter)

ASHLEY: Okay!

MARISHA: Oh, you're taking off the plastic-y thing.

SAM: Break the seal.

ASHLEY: I don't wear deodorant, so I don't know how to use these things.

SAM: You don't!?

LAURA: Yes, she does.

ASHLEY: We'll never know!

MARISHA: She's all about it now. (laughter)

ASHLEY: Okay. Fresh anteater pit-- oh. Fresh anteater piss? South American variety, no question. Final answer.

SAM: Correct. (laughter)

SAM: That one's called, "Blaviken Before The Butchering." You did a very good job there, very descriptive.

LAURA: That one smells good.

ASHLEY: This one smells good.

SAM: Okay, Travis, you're up.

TRAVIS: Oh yeah.

TALIESIN: Oh god.

TRAVIS: Oh. Yeah, nice try. This is just Laura's perfume. (chuckles) I love you, babe.

LAURA: I love you, babe.

SAM: Aw, that is so sweet, but incorrect. That's called "Yennefer's Underarm" and it is delicious. All right, last up, Robbie. I saved the best for you, sir.

ROBBIE: Of course. (laughter)

ROBBIE: (wheezes)

TRAVIS: Jesus! A full hit? (laughter)

MARISHA: (groans) Put it back, put it back.

LAURA: Close it, close it!

SAM: No, hold on, I want his--

ROBBIE: But it's pungent. Tangy, I would say, and sophisticated, yet beautiful. This is bathwater. Unmistakable.

SAM: Absolutely right, it's called, "Geralt's Bathwater."

LAURA: Robbie, close that!

MARISHA: Put it back! Put it away!

LIAM: I got a strange scent--

TRAVIS: Put the cap on!

LIAM: -- out of nowhere and I don't know who it came from or what stick. (laughter)

ROBBIE: That is real people in there, for sure.

MATT: Yeah.

MARISHA: I need a palette--

SAM: Because Marisha didn't get to go, we only got six scents today, I'm going to give you a bonus round. This time, you're going to smell me and I think what I'd like to-- Oh, oh, you're just going to go in? Okay, I--

MARISHA: (sniffs) (groans)

SAM: She's in for two.

MARISHA: Yeah, that's real bad. Yeah, it smells like Omar's broccoli farts, a little methane, roadkill.

SAM: She's in it.

MARISHA: Kid Rock. I imagine this is what Kid Rock smells like. (laughter)

TRAVIS: What's the yellow over there?

SAM: That's interesting because I was going to say, I haven't put on the scent yet. That's just me. That's just my natural smell. I was going to put one on.

MARISHA: Oh.

SAM: But you jumped the gun.

MARISHA: Oh.

SAM: But thanks!

MARISHA: Sorry.

SAM: That's great. I guess I need some of that "Yennefer's Underarm."

LAURA: Oh, here, try this one.

SAM: Thank you. Oh, it's very--

ASHLEY: I've always just wanted to see how far they go. (laughter)

ASHLEY: You get a lot of product.

SAM: Listen, no matter which one of these awesome Old Spice scents you slather on to hide your 800 year-old body funk, you're in for a delectable sensory treat. Three are great, three are terrible. In the meantime, go check out all the fantastic Old Spice scents from "The Witcher" world for yourself now at OldSpice.com/Witcher and enter their giveaway for a chance to win the good scents and the scented trading cards. What?

LAURA: What?

SAM: Matt, back to you.

MARISHA: Oh, wait, they're doing trading cards, just like in the game? You guys! (laughter)

TALIESIN: Well, that broke her.

MARISHA: What?

MATT: If you--

MARISHA: Do they also have sexy ladies on them? I don't know.

TRAVIS: If it gets 'em--

MATT: You have to patch it to get the actual uncensored versions. Thank you so much, Old Spice, for whatever the hell our room smells like now. (laughter)

MARISHA: It's unique, you guys.

LIAM: That was so much.

MATT: It is special.

SAM: It really smells.

TALIESIN: It smells of season two, at the moment.

MATT: It smells like an episode of Hoarders right now. (laughter) Our second and much better smelling, in comparison to this mixture right now, our sponsor, Ghostfire Games.

TRAVIS: Ghostfire Games.

MATT: Our friends at Ghostfire Games have the new episodic subscription service, Fables. Each fable consists of six episodes released monthly, and in each of the episodes are four chapters. Now, each episode is about 80 pages, and also comes with digital maps and digital tokens, making the perfect all-in-one adventure. First up is a Grim Hollow Adventure: Citadel of the Unseen Sun, an adventure set within a world where the sun has vanished from the sky and vampires rule the land with an iron fist. Check it all out now at GhostfireGaming.com/ Fables-CriticalRole If you sign up for the Fables membership before December 31st Eastern Time, you will get your subscription for $9.99 per month for the first 12 months. I think that's it for our sponsors. Marisha, you had something to talk about.

MARISHA: Yes. This is our last episode of Campaign 3 for the year, you guys.

TRAVIS: Oh shit!

ASHLEY: Oh!

TRAVIS: 2021, we out!

MATT: And we're out.

MARISHA: Just for the-- yeah.

LAURA: Yeah.

MARISHA: 12 episodes, we're out. We're taking off the last two weeks of December for our cast and crew to have a relaxing holiday break, and we will return to Campaign 3 with episode nine on Thursday, January 6th, 2022.

SAM: So three-nine, one-six, two-two.

LAURA: Wait, what?

TALIESIN: What?

MARISHA: Three-nine?

SAM: Campaign 3.

MARISHA: Oh, it's three.

SAM: Episode nine.

TRAVIS: Oh boy.

SAM: First month, sixth day. (laughter)

MARISHA: Can't even say it.

SAM: Year 22.

TRAVIS: He's making it worse.

SAM: We got it. (laughter)

MARISHA: Mark your calendars! (laughs) That's it. That's my announcement.

MATT: Thank you, Marisha.

MARISHA: Matt doing more announcements.

TRAVIS: Because that's ruined us.

MATT: Thank you, Marisha, and thank you, Sam.

MARISHA: I know.

MATT: We do have news also from Darrington Press. The Tal'Dorei Campaign Setting Reborn is coming January 18th. (cheering) Ha-ha! The creative team includes my fellow designers, Hannah Rose and James Haeck, and a slew of talented artists. We've packed this book with lore, subclasses, monsters, magic and even a gorgeous poster map with cartography by the amazing Andy Law. We cannot wait for you to discover how Tal'Dorei and Vox Machina have changed in the two decades since their campaign and so, so much more. Now, visit DarringtonPress.com to learn more about this. With that, I believe it is time for us to jump into tonight's episode of Critical Role!

♪ Critical ♪
♪ Critical ♪
♪ It's Thursday ♪
♪ It's Thursday night! ♪

ASHLEY: ♪ One-by-one, we climb until we reach the top. ♪
♪ Two-by-two, we fall. ♪

LAURA: ♪ Will we meet our end or meet our destiny? ♪
♪ Hold your breath and roll! ♪

MATT: How do you want to do this?

ALL: ♪ It's Thursday night ♪
♪ All ye Critters, come join us ♪
♪ It's time to continue our plight ♪
♪ There is magic and mystery ♪
♪ Who knows what will happen? ♪
♪ He might! ♪
♪ But one thing's for sure, ♪
♪ We never give up on the fight! ♪

LIAM: ♪ From the healer ♪
♪ To the renegade ♪

MATT: ♪ We all share the same goal ♪

MATT and TALIESIN: ♪ Adding more allies ♪
♪ Taking more chances ♪

SAM: ♪ Hold your breath and roll ♪

MARISHA: You can certainly try.

ALL: ♪ It's Thursday night ♪
♪ All ye Critters, come join us ♪
♪ It's time to continue our plight ♪
♪ It's Thursday night. ♪
♪ There is magic and mystery ♪
♪ From darkness, our friendship will rise ♪
♪ But one thing's for sure: ♪
♪ We never give up on the fight ♪
♪ Oh, get ready, ♪
♪ Get ready, ♪
♪ It's Thursday night! ♪(flames whooshing)

Part I[]

MATT: And welcome back. So last we left off, this group of heroes, upon forging themselves a space here in the city of Jrusar, you encountered some dangerous denizens. You made some allies and you began to discuss about the possibility of this becoming a thing. Upon searching some of the various rumors that are swirling about, you had heard that there were mysterious vanishings, people who have gone missing around the Dreamscape Theater. You went and got tickets for the show, enjoyed the performances and began to ask around for information about these recent disappearances. As you began to travel about, you pieced together some interesting details, met some curious characters, and eventually, found yourself ambushed in the back alley where these disappearances you discovered had been occurring, as a part of the wall seemed to attack you. You managed to defeat this strange, amorphous, nightmarish wall creature, and as it lay slain on the ground, the Wardens, the Wilders, came to inspect. The brief interrogation to yourselves and being supported by the denizens of the Dreamscape Theater as well, you were given a pass. As they continued to inspect the body of this corpse, and hopefully close their investigation into these disappearances, of which they did not do the hard work, you began to walk away where in the alleyway, there was someone awaiting you, an older gnomish gentleman that seemed to have been keeping an eye and an ear open to your penchant for seeking out missing persons. Upon introducing themself, you met Chetney. (laughter)

SAM: Chetney.

MATT: At which point, you went ahead and said, "Walk and talk. We're going to head to the Spire By Fire, and we can figure out what the hell is going on." And that is where we pick up. As you all now exit the alley on the side of The Dreamscape Theater to make your way back towards the Spire By Fire, this strange new character is in tow with just the briefest of introductions.

ASHLEY: I like your shoes. They're so pointy.

TRAVIS: Oh, thank you, yes. (laughter) I've had them for years.

SAM: How many years?

TRAVIS: Actually, I can't actually remember. It's been decades. Let's say 75.

SAM: Wow.

TRAVIS: 85. 9-- it's been a while.

ROBBIE: Decades or years?

TRAVIS: What?

ROBBIE: Never mind.

SAM: Do you mind us asking your age? We just went around a little bit with an older gentleman, and we just want to make sure that we take good care of you.

TRAVIS: You're awfully nice. I mean, I could be fucking armed to the teeth. You don't know me.

MARISHA: Are you armed to the teeth?

TRAVIS: Yes. (laughter)

TALIESIN: Now we know!

TRAVIS: What the fuck is going on with you? Holy shit.

MARISHA: My name's Laudna and--

TRAVIS: Don't touch me! I'll cut you! (laughter) Oh my god.

MARISHA: That tracks. That tracks.

TRAVIS: She's with you?

ASHLEY and LAURA: Yes.

TALIESIN: Yeah.

TRAVIS: Part of the deal? Okay.

TALIESIN: Part of the deal.

MARISHA: Hey.

TRAVIS: Cool.

LAURA: You said you needed our help?

TRAVIS: Well, it seems like you guys are good at finding people. Huh?

LAURA: Oh.

SAM: Did you say fighting or finding?

TRAVIS: (loudly) Finding!

LAURA: Well, I don't actually know how good we are at finding.

ROBBIE: What would make you think that?

TRAVIS: What, the guy paid you for finding people who went missing, no?

ASHLEY: Oh, well, yeah. (noises of assent)

TRAVIS: Did I miss something in that exchange? I thought--

SAM: They were dead, though.

MARISHA: Yes.

ASHLEY: Yeah.

MARISHA: In fact, we keep finding dead people.

TRAVIS: Oh.

MARISHA: More dead than alive.

TRAVIS: Just dead folks?

LIAM: Well--

TALIESIN: I think we're trying to branch out.

TRAVIS: Oh well, maybe--

ASHLEY: We'd love to find live ones, but so far, just dead ones.

TRAVIS: Maybe give me a call when you get your shit together and find the live ones. I'll see you around.

ROBBIE: No, no, no!

ASHLEY: Wait, wait.

LIAM: Hey, old timer.

SAM: We should just let him go. It's all right!

LIAM: Do you need to be escorted back to, like, a house or something? It's late.

ROBBIE: Are you lost?

TRAVIS: No. What?!

ROBBIE: I'm sorry.

TRAVIS: You're so, like, all up in my shit. Take a step back, in fact, blue boy.

ROBBIE: All right. Blue boy?

MARISHA: He's a keeper?

ROBBIE: That's vaguely offensive.

TRAVIS: You're all rushing up on me like you know me. You don't.

ROBBIE: I'm sorry.

TRAVIS: I could be a criminal!

ALL: Are you?

TRAVIS: Maybe. (laughter)

ASHLEY: Wow.

SAM: What else what might we not know about you?

TRAVIS: I don't know. Buy me a drink, we'll see what comes out.

ROBBIE: I think that's a good idea.

ASHLEY: That's a great idea. That's a great idea!

SAM: What do you like to drink? Well, what was your name?

TRAVIS: Chetney.

SAM: Chetney, that's right. What do you like to drink, Chetney?

TRAVIS: Anything that burns.

LAURA: Oh.

TRAVIS: Makes me feel young.

LAURA: [Inaudible] Ashton.

TALIESIN: I think we can arrange that.

LAURA: Yeah.

TALIESIN: Also, we're all just fucked up right now. We should probably sit down somewhere for a little while.

MARISHA: I'm still near dead.

TALIESIN: Yeah.

SAM: I thought you were already dead?

MARISHA: Oh well, you know--

TALIESIN: More than normal.

MARISHA: Yeah, it's debatable.

TALIESIN: So follow along.

LAURA: Have you been to the Spire By Fire?

TRAVIS: I don't think so.

LAURA: Have you been in town for a while?

LIAM: Yeah, are you from here? Live here, passing through?

TRAVIS: A couple weeks. No, I came to find someone here and I've been spending some decent time with him and then he just fucking dist-appeared.

LIAM: Him, who dist-appeared?

TRAVIS: His name's Gurge.

MARISHA: Gurge?

SAM: It's a great name.

ROBBIE: Gurge.

LAURA: Serge.

TRAVIS: Gurge! I didn't fucking name him! Why are you telling me it's great? (laughter)

LAURA: Gurge.

ROBBIE: With a 'E' or a 'U', Gurge?

TRAVIS: I didn't ask him how his name was spelled. What is your deal?!

ROBBIE: I'm sorry! I'm just curious.

TRAVIS: Shit, you--

ROBBIE: I just--

TRAVIS: Look at all your stuff is clean and nicely-- I don't see a wrinkle on you.

ROBBIE: I don't have a wrinkle on me. I'm going to wander more into the group. (laughter)

TRAVIS: I'm going to keep an eye on you.

LAURA: So were you spending time with Gurge here in the city, or--?

TRAVIS: Yes.

MARISHA: And he ditched you?

TRAVIS: Well, no. I was supposed to meet him this morning. No, yesterday morning, and he just wasn't there, but there was like a ruckus where he was. Shit was kind of-- He was a messy individual. Don't get me wrong, but then--

LIAM: Okay, first off, who is Gurge? He's your brother, your friend, a colleague?

TRAVIS: No, someone I was just sort of introduced to. He was helping me out.

LAURA: Okay.

MARISHA: Helping you out with?

LIAM: A new acquaintance.

MARISHA: What do you need assistance with?

TRAVIS: I just need to find him, that's all.

LAURA: So everything was destroyed where he was supposed to be?

TRAVIS: It looked a little tossed about, but again, he's a messy motherfucker. I tell you what.

SAM: Do you know if-- Did you happen to see any of the furniture that was in disarray? Was it moving on its own?

TALIESIN: Thank you!

ASHLEY: I was, yes, good job.

TRAVIS: The furniture?

SAM: The furniture. Did it look like someone had scuffled it up or did it scuffle itself?

TALIESIN: Did it have a personality?

TRAVIS: It was on its side, like in the room.

MARISHA: Oh, so it didn't attack you?

TRAVIS: No, but it was very well-made! I mean, this was really, really nice craftsmanship. You could tell that-- Because you can tell the handmade stuff from the shit they just, put through the machines.

MARISHA: Oh, absolutely.

TALIESIN: Very true.

TRAVIS: Yeah, it was really nice. He had a couple really accent pieces that I was really--

MARISHA: Interesting!

TRAVIS: -- taken with.

ROBBIE: It sounds like you have a real appreciation for woodwork.

TRAVIS: So?! (laughter)

ROBBIE: I am simply trying to make conversation on this overly long walk.

LAURA: You know--

LIAM: Are we almost there?

LAURA: Laudna has a lot of appreciation for fine furniture as well.

MARISHA: It's true.

TRAVIS: Who's Laudna?

MARISHA: I tried to introduce-

TRAVIS: Fuck!

MARISHA: Hi, hello.

TRAVIS: Maybe just raise your hand before you talk.

SAM: Oh, I don't know if you want her to raise her hand.

TALIESIN: You don't want that to happen.

TRAVIS: Why? What happens when she raises her hand?

MARISHA: (cracking)

TRAVIS: Oh, you're all sorts of fucking crazy, ain't ya? Okay.

MATT: About this time, the fire light from the interior of the Spire By Fire becomes visible, cresting around the corner as you turn. The warm, inviting hearth of the interior calling desperately for you to enter.

TALIESIN: Oh, thank god.

MARISHA: I'm so confused. (laughter)

LAURA: Table upstairs?

TALIESIN: Table upstairs.

MARISHA and ASHLEY: Yes.

MATT: All right.

ASHLEY: What would you like to drink?

TRAVIS: I just pulled my hood up. Go upstairs. (quick footsteps) (laughter) (high-pitched quick footsteps)

LAURA: He's spry.

LIAM: The little guy's fast.

LAURA: He's as spry as you are.

TALIESIN: A bottle of something painful.

MATT: (as Ishir) "Yeah, okay, no worries. I got you covered."

ROBBIE: Is he out of earshot at this point?

MATT: He is upstairs. Yeah, he is out of earshot and upstairs.

ROBBIE: What is this?

MARISHA: I don't know!

ROBBIE: What is happening right now?

MARISHA: I'm so confused.

TALIESIN: I have no idea.

SAM: We keep coming here with old people who end up dead.

MATT: "How many glasses you need?"

TALIESIN: (uncertain noise)

LIAM: Eight?

TALIESIN: Eight? Eight.

MATT: "All righty, I got you. Here's a bottle."

TALIESIN: Thank you.

MARISHA: Maybe we should start an old home.

LAURA: Don't sit next to him.

ROBBIE: I'm not going to sit--

LAURA: He doesn't seem to like you very much.

ROBBIE: He does not like me very much, no. How does he know so much about us?

SAM: Did he know about us?

ROBBIE: Yes, he said that he knew we found people. He was waiting for us after the--

LAURA: Was he following us?

SAM: I think he was just watching on this job that we were on, maybe.

ASHLEY: He just happened by?

ROBBIE: You don't find that strange?

LAURA: That's true. How did he even find out about us?

SAM: All right, I think what we need to decide is if we're going in rough with this old timer, or if we're going in nice.

MARISHA: Should we just go up and beat his ass?

LAURA: No.

TALIESIN: I want to see your version of rough really badly.

SAM: Well, it wouldn't be me, but you know-- You know how they say, "Play good Wilder- bad Wilder?"

LAURA: Mm-hmm?

SAM: You know--

TALIESIN: I want to see your bad Wilder, though. I bet it would be really fun.

LAURA: See, to me--

SAM: All right, I'll try.

LAURA: Okay.

MARISHA: So, wait, who's the good Wilder?

SAM: Maybe you.

TALIESIN: I think you're the good Wilder.

MARISHA: Oh! Oh, okay! This is fun.

TALIESIN: What's life if you're not stretching, really?

MARISHA: Agreed.

TALIESIN: Yeah.

MARISHA: All right.

SAM: Let's walk up and--

MARISHA: Okay.

SAM: -- try to get him.

LIAM: We'll be upstairs when those drinks are ready.

SAM: Okay, me and Laudna are going to go upstairs, I guess.

MARISHA: All right!

TALIESIN: We'll follow in a minute.

SAM: Okay.

TRAVIS: Oh, did everybody else leave?

SAM: They're coming when they're ready.

TRAVIS: Oh shit. What happened from down there to up here?

MARISHA: Look, Chetney. You know, I think if you're just honest with us, you could find friends. You know, we're your friends.

SAM: I'm going to just start spinning my saw blade a little bit.

ASHLEY: Whoa!

TRAVIS: You use that on living things, or for manufacturing purposes?

SAM: They're not living for long. (laughter)

TRAVIS: All right. (laughter)

SAM: I don't know-- This is my only move.

TRAVIS: Did you hurt your hand while you were spinning? You look like you checked for a cut?

SAM: I just-- yeah. It's kind of sharp.

TRAVIS: Do you bleed?

SAM: No, I don't, actually.

MARISHA: Don't-- You're supposed to--

SAM: None of your business, old timer!

TRAVIS: Right, sorry for asking, shit.

MARISHA: I know.

TRAVIS: Fresh Cut Grass don't play.

MARISHA: He can get very testy.

TRAVIS: Okay.

SAM: Wait, you know my name?

TRAVIS: Yeah, you told me. You told me on the way over here.

SAM: Oh, okay, sorry. (laughter)

SAM: I mean, keep it to yourself! Don't-- (laughter)

MARISHA: So-- (laughter)

MARISHA: This is going great.

SAM: Yeah.

MARISHA: Who told you about us? You know, how did you learn that we find people?

TRAVIS: Well, all the commotion after you guys were fighting the wall. It drew a few people, but most people ran.

MARISHA: Yes.

TRAVIS: But afterwards, the guy that paid you all the money, he was just saying that you guys were very useful, and I might've been in the theater when y'all were.

MARISHA: Oh, what did you think about that show? It was a little short, right?

TRAVIS: I didn't like it.

MARISHA: Oh.

TRAVIS: Yeah.

MARISHA: All right.

TRAVIS: You know amateur shit when you see it. (laughter)

SAM: What were you doing in the theater? Snooping on us?

TRAVIS: I was looking for Gurge.

MARISHA: Is-- (laughter)

MARISHA: Oh, did you want to go now?

SAM: Yeah, yeah. Let me just try one more thing, then I'll turn it over to you. Listen, we don't got a lot of patience for folk like you. Oh man. This feels really awkward.

MARISHA: Don't mind my partner.

TRAVIS: You should put your blade, like slam it into the table.

SAM: Well, it rolls. Well, I'll try it. (thuds)

TRAVIS: Oh!

MATT: (blade spinning)

TRAVIS: Oh!

SAM: I out--- I'm four inches taller than you, friend.

TRAVIS: Oh shit.

MARISHA: That's pretty good.

SAM: I'll try to tower over him. (laughter) Right now, it's just--

TRAVIS: Did you have a question? (laughter)

SAM: Ashton!

TALIESIN: All right, it's time for us to go up. All right, everybody up.

MATT: The glasses have been distributed before you walk up.

LAURA: What do we see when we come upstairs?

SAM: I'm stuck! (laughter)

TRAVIS: They were trying to be real mean and then he/they put it in the table.

TALIESIN: Yeah.

MARISHA: We found nothing out.

SAM: We found out that Chetney was with us in the theater.

LAURA: Oh!

MARISHA: He didn't like the show.

ASHLEY: Oh.

LAURA: Yeah.

SAM: That he overheard people talking about how great we are, and we really should be proud of what we achieved down there.

TRAVIS: I have money. This isn't supposed to be like any kind of charity. I could throw some gold your way.

LIAM: Well, why don't you just tell us a little bit more? We just had kind of a rough night. In fact, we're probably going to have to find a place to lick our wounds, but--

TRAVIS: You'll do what?

LAURA: Not literally.

LIAM: Lick our wounds?

TALIESIN: No, it's a metaphor.

LIAM: Why would anyone think that would be literal?

LAURA: I don't know, but his face when you said it--

ASHLEY: It actually does help.

MARISHA: It does work.

TALIESIN: I feel like he's done it before, man.

TRAVIS: I, honestly, when-- Look, she got in my head really fast and so I thought it would be a one-on-one thing, and then y'all are like a group deal, so it's just, you know. I come up to your kneecaps except for my man here and it's just a little much. I just need a little time.

LAURA: You can sit down.

TRAVIS: I am sitting down. (laughter)

LAURA: Well, we will as well.

TRAVIS: You saying I look s--

LAURA: No, we will sit down and that way we'll all be on the same playing field, that's all.

LIAM: Yeah, why don't you tell us your story, Grandfather?

TRAVIS: Why did you call me Grandfather?

LIAM: You're old.

MARISHA: Do you have children or grandchildren?

TRAVIS: No, I don't, no.

SAM: Did you ever want children?

TRAVIS: I've been a man of romance for many years.

MARISHA: Oh!

TRAVIS: Mm-hmm. Lots of relationships, but I never settled down. I like to roam the wilds free.

MARISHA: Was there ever, you know, a certain special someone that you just can't get out of your brain?

TRAVIS: Nope.

MARISHA: Oh, all right. (laughter)

SAM: No one at all just comes to mind whenever you think about anybody? (laughter) (laughter)

TRAVIS: Not really. I mean, you know they come and go. So many ports and so many towns and stuff.

ROBBIE: Perhaps we should introduce ourselves.

TRAVIS: (babbling and shushing)

ROBBIE: Why are you so-- Why is you so mean to me? We are new friends.

SAM: "Why is you so mean to me?" (laughter) (laughter) (laughter)

ROBBIE: Can we just tell Chetney our names, please?

LAURA: Yes, yeah.

ROBBIE: This is getting so strange, we know all about his love life, but he doesn't know our names.

LAURA: We should tell him.

ASHLEY: That's sometimes how it goes, though.

ROBBIE: My name is Dorian.

TRAVIS: Oh, we're going to start with you?

ROBBIE: Yeah.

TRAVIS: You go first, huh?

ROBBIE: I was the one who was talking. I'm sorry. I'm sorry, Chetney. I'm so sorry.

TRAVIS: Apology accepted.

ROBBIE: Thank you.

TRAVIS: Let's start with the ladies, maybe. I don't know, is chivalry dead?

ROBBIE: Nope, you are correct, Chetney.

TRAVIS: Laudna, what's your story?

MARISHA: You remembered my name!

TRAVIS: Well, I've only heard two so far! (laughter)

LAURA: Well. Nothing. (laughter) Well, you know, we'll get to my story. Let's just complete the--

TRAVIS: Oh, I get it. I spill my guts and nothing from you. All give and no take.

ROBBIE: Just give him the book jacket version.

MARISHA: Oh, all right. I was alive, but then I was dead, and now I'm alive again. I'm originally from Whitestone and this is Pâté, my pet rat. "Hello, Chetney!"

TRAVIS: Hello.

MARISHA: "It's good to meet you, Chetney!"

TRAVIS: Hello, Pâté.

MARISHA: See? They made friends.

TRAVIS: Oh shit.

MARISHA: Do you like him? Do you like him, Pâté? "I do! I truly do." He likes you.

TRAVIS: The feeling's mutual.

MARISHA: See? That's my story.

TRAVIS: Alive then dead, that explains a lot.

MARISHA: Yeah.

SAM: Oh, me again? Oh well, smiley day to you. My name's Fresh Cut Grass. Sorry about before. We were trying to, you know, get information out of you and I might have come on a little bit too strong, but I don't want you to get the wrong impression about me. I'm here to help.

TRAVIS: It was pretty impressive, I have to say. I believed you for a few moments.

SAM: Well, thank you.

TRAVIS: Yeah, no problem. Can you sit back a little bit? Thanks. (laughter)

SAM: I think you'll find that these folks that you're with are a wonderful group of individuals, and they all have something to offer, and you know, maybe you being here will be a catalyst for some of them to start figuring out what they need to change as well.

TRAVIS: You're my favorite so far. How about you?

ASHLEY: Hello, my name is Fearne. This is Mister.

MATT: (monkey chittering)

TRAVIS: Is that a monkey?

ASHLEY: Yeah!

TRAVIS: Okay.

ASHLEY: He's just my pal, and you know, I like flowers. I like long walks. That's about it.

TRAVIS: Oh, you're the nice one of the group.

ASHLEY: Yes.

TRAVIS: They should lead with you. This is great.

ASHLEY: Well, I-- That's a good idea. We'll try that next time.

TRAVIS: I like Fearne, too.

SAM: Everyone likes Fearne. She's great.

ASHLEY: Thanks.

SAM: Yeah.

TRAVIS: Mind reader?

LAURA: You just hear in your head: My name's Imogen.

TRAVIS: (gasps) Is that all the time, or just whenever you want to?

LAURA: Whenever I want to.

TRAVIS: You hear in your head: Balls!

LAURA: Okay.

TRAVIS: Okay. (laughter)

LAURA: Chetney, I think you might be making our-- You're hearing this all in your head.

TRAVIS: Oh.

LAURA: You might be making our friend, Dorian, a little nervous, so it might be good if you were a little kinder to him.

TRAVIS: Who's Dorian? Oh, sorry. (murmurs) Who's Dorian? (laughter)

ROBBIE: Me. I was first.

TRAVIS: You look like a Dorian. (laughter)

ROBBIE: Joke's on you. (laughter) (laughter)

TRAVIS: All right, let's have it.

ROBBIE: What? It? Oh, introductions! Have what?

TRAVIS: It was your turn. We can come back, it's okay.

LAURA: He already introduced himself.

LIAM: He started.

ROBBIE: I said I'd start. I was the first, remember? I said, "Dorian," and then you said, "Why are you first?"

TRAVIS: I tuned it out, sorry. (laughter)

LIAM: I look two inches down at this old man. It's simple, I'm Orym. I'm Dorian's friend.

TRAVIS: Oh.

LIAM: That okay?

TRAVIS: Yeah, yeah. It's fine.

MARISHA: What did you do to him?

ROBBIE: Nothing, I'm just--

MARISHA: Why does he not like us?

ROBBIE: I don't know.

MARISHA: I feel like we were so nice.

ROBBIE: Well, I--

MARISHA: But he really doesn't like you.

ROBBIE: That is correct.

MARISHA: All right.

TRAVIS: And you?

TALIESIN: I'm Ashton. I don't know, I hit things for money and specifically, for most of these people at the moment.

TRAVIS: I don't mean to stare. I know I asked you about it before, but that, it's okay, right?

TALIESIN: Oh yeah, it's fine.

TRAVIS: It's not like a clock that's ticking or anything? It's just?

TALIESIN: I mean, aren't we all?

TRAVIS: That's so deep. (laughter)

TALIESIN: Some more than others.

TRAVIS: Well, um.

LIAM: I want to know more about you.

TALIESIN: Speaking of clocks that are ticking.

TRAVIS: Yeah! Well, what could I share? I'm-- I'm Chetney Pock O'Pea.

MARISHA: Mm.

TRAVIS: I love working with wood.

MARISHA: (laughs)

TRAVIS: Who laughed? Why?

TALIESIN: Me, too.

MARISHA: I also love working with wood--

TRAVIS: You do?

MARISHA: Yes!

TRAVIS: Oh, that's wonderful. I pull the cloak back and I've got all these wooden mallet, chisel, all sorts of woodworking tools.

MARISHA: This is my rock hammer.

TRAVIS: That's incredible.

MARISHA: I got a hair in there.

TRAVIS: Like part of your scalp came off? (laughter)

MARISHA: Oops!

TRAVIS: (yells) (laughter)

TRAVIS: Well, we'll have to trade up.

MARISHA: Okay!

TRAVIS: I haven't been able to work on any new pieces in a while, but--

LIAM: What's your specialty? Furniture?

TRAVIS: Well yes, actually I started with furniture and there wasn't much of a market for that where I was. I wanted to make something that people loved, so I switched to toys. I'm particularly good at making rocking horses.

ASHLEY: Oh, rocking horses!

TRAVIS: Yes. Well, you know, people, they don't quite appreciate all the time that goes into a chair or a table. They just fucking sit at it and drink and then they spill all over it. No thought to who made it.

LIAM: You rarely drink on a rocking horse.

LAURA: It's true.

TALIESIN: Huh.

ASHLEY: Where are you from?

TRAVIS: Well, I'm kind of all over. I spend most of my time in Uthodurn.

MARISHA: Mm.

ASHLEY: Uthodurn.

LAURA: I haven't heard of that.

TRAVIS: It's over in Wildemount, north of the Savalirwood.

MARISHA: Oh, far.

TRAVIS: Yeah.

ASHLEY: Did you say Pock O'Pea or Pock O'Bee?

TRAVIS: Pock O'Pea! Pock O'Pea, two Ps.

ASHLEY: Two Ps, okay, okay. I just wanted to make sure.

TRAVIS: You can just say whatever, though. I just go by Chetney.

MARISHA: How long have you been here from Uthodurn?

TRAVIS: In Marquet? Maybe about a month, a little longer. Like, I haven't really been keeping track.

ASHLEY: Is Uthodurn north?

TRAVIS: Yeah, from Marquet, it's northwest if you were looking at a map.

MATT: Northeast.

TRAVIS: Northeast!

ASHLEY: Northeast, okay.

TRAVIS: Because I'm holding it up to ya!

ASHLEY: Oh, I see.

LAURA: Oh, you have a map?

TRAVIS: Nope. (laughter)

LIAM: What brings you here?

TALIESIN: This is going to be rough, man.

LAURA: You were specifically looking for Gurge?

TRAVIS: Yeah.

LAURA: In town?

MARISHA: And you--

SAM: So did you-- You can-- sorry, sorry.

MARISHA: No, go ahead.

SAM: You came here to find Gurge? You found--

TRAVIS: Wait, are you nice, or the other version this time?

SAM: Oh, I'm always pretty nice.

TRAVIS: Oh, okay.

SAM: Unless you want me to be mean.

TRAVIS: Sometimes. I might just ask for it on the fly.

SAM: All right.

TRAVIS: Okay.

SAM: But you came to Marquet to find Gurge?

TRAVIS: Yeah.

SAM: And you found Gurge.

TRAVIS: I did.

SAM: And then you lost Gurge?

TRAVIS: Yep!

LAURA: How long ago did Gurge go missing?

TRAVIS: Uh, yesterday morning.

LAURA: Okay.

TRAVIS: I knew he liked the theater, so I came to look, but he didn't-- he wasn't there.

SAM: Is this a relative of yours, kin of some sort?

TRAVIS: Nope. No, no.

MARISHA: Do you want to murder him?

TRAVIS: No.

MARISHA: Oh.

TRAVIS: Not yet.

ASHLEY: Where did you lose him?

TRAVIS: I was just supposed to meet him yesterday morning.

LAURA: Where?

TRAVIS: Oh, he was-- what part of Marquet was he in?

LAURA: No, he was in-- (laughter)

LIAM: Why are you talking to the wall?

TRAVIS: Don't you?

TALIESIN: Not that fourth one. That'll fuck you up. (laughter)

ROBBIE: Yes!

TRAVIS: He was helping me out with some stuff. Look, I just want to find the man. He could be waylaid, or-- Oh, maybe he was arrested. Do you guys have any connections with the local authorities?

LAURA: The Wilders?

TRAVIS: The what?

LAURA: That's what they're called, the local authorities, right?

TRAVIS: The Wilders?

TALIESIN and LAURA: The Wilders.

TRAVIS: Oh, that's good to know.

MARISHA: We've almost gotten captured by them, though.

TRAVIS: Oh, that's not good.

LAURA: So, was he in this spire? Or was he in another one?

TRAVIS: I'm sorry, I burped and it burned my nose. This spire?

LAURA: This spire. You know how there are several spires in this city?

TRAVIS: Oh, the pointy things!

LAURA: Yeah.

TRAVIS: Yeah!

LAURA: Was he in this one, or was he in a different one?

TRAVIS: This spire?

LAURA: Yeah?

TRAVIS: Yeah.

LAURA: Okay.

LIAM: What does this gentleman look like?

LAURA: That's a good question.

SAM: Or do. Or intend?

TRAVIS: Yeah, he's got dark brown, like oily, scraggly hair that comes down to shoulder length. Got a real sort of broken-ish nose.

LIAM: Our height or taller?

TRAVIS: Uh...

LIAM: Our height.

TRAVIS: No, taller, taller. Yeah, like Ashton's height.

TALIESIN: Perfect, well done. About six. All right.

TRAVIS: He doesn't really stand out. He's kind of raggish and stuff. But I think he likes to keep a low profile. That's why I thought it might help to have someone help me look for him.

LAURA: Was he-- Oh, I'm sorry.

ASHLEY: No, no, no, go, go, go.

LAURA: Was he a criminal of sorts, or was he just--?

TALIESIN: It's not a problem.

LAURA: Yeah.

TALIESIN: Either way.

TRAVIS: I don't actually know. I don't think so. I don't think so. He didn't seem like a dangerous person at all. He was very helpful.

TALIESIN: Helpful with what?

TRAVIS: He's just trying to help me out to understand a couple things and to introduce me to some folks that were going to maybe give me some gainful employment.

ASHLEY: What was the nature of the work you were doing together?

TRAVIS: Oh, I actually just sought him out. He didn't really know me at all.

LIAM: So you found this guy, you established contact briefly. He was going to help you get a job, and now he has bamfed out on you.

TRAVIS: Yeah. But it feels suspicious. He's usually pretty of his word, punctunal, punctual.

SAM: Punctual.

TRAVIS: Thank you.

LAURA: How many times did you hang out with him before he disappeared?

TRAVIS: A handful, a half dozen.

MARISHA: Oh.

LAURA: Okay.

SAM: It would help us a whole lot if you were a little bit more forthcoming on some of these details, like what were you trying to do with him? Or what kind of job was he helping you attain? Or where did these events occur?

MARISHA: It just might help us find him, is all.

TRAVIS: Well, um. He was supposed to help me meet up with someone that might be outside of Marquet. So he was the way point on the way to something else, but--

SAM: Who?

TRAVIS: It's just a group.

SAM: Called?

LIAM: Are we dancing around sensitive territory here?

TRAVIS: I mean, slightly. Look, my wood working skills are a bit of a rarity, but you know, master craftsmen or MCs.

SAM: Are you an MC?

TRAVIS: Some would say yes.

LAURA and ASHLEY: Wow.

SAM: MC Chetney.

ASHLEY: Okay, where was the last time that you saw him?

LAURA: Where?

ASHLEY: We could start there.

LAURA: Specifically.

TRAVIS: At his place.

TALIESIN: Perfect.

ASHLEY: His place?

TRAVIS: Hey, Wall! (laughter)

TALIESIN: Well, here we go.

TRAVIS: I forget.

LAURA: In Jrusar.

MATT: Within Jrusar.

TRAVIS: Yes.

MATT: He was staying at a hovel, technically on the outskirts of the Smolder Spire.

TALIESIN: It's technically, which is not.

LAURA: So was he on the ground level, or was he in the spire?

MATT: He was in the spire, but at like the very, very base portion of it, which is like the more rough and tumble.

MARISHA: You said you went to his place and it was all tossed, there was furniture everywhere.

TRAVIS: Yes, I'd only been in once or twice. Normally, we'd go out and walk and talk and just kept it loosey-goosey. But the door was slightly open when I got there. It just seemed a little more disheveled than usual. No note, no nothing.

LIAM: Did you know him enough or spend enough time with him to know, did he have any enemies? Anyone had it out for him? Sucker MCs?

TRAVIS: I don't think so. But again, he wanted to keep a low profile. He was always pretty guarded. I know I'm not giving you much to go on, but it's only because I don't know that much.

ROBBIE: Chetney. I'm going to take his empty glass and pour him a drink. May I ask you a question? Is that all right with you?

TRAVIS: Yes.

ROBBIE: Thank you. You said, perhaps you thought he might be arrested. Did you check the jail or the prison in the Smolder Spire, by any chance?

TRAVIS: God, it's almost like I just said, maybe he was arrested or something. (slurping)

ROBBIE: I know.

TRAVIS: No, you're trying. You're trying to meet me halfway, I appreciate it.

ROBBIE: I am, I am. I'm trying to show you some kindness, so I have one question and I just want to ask it. Did you go to the jail yourself and look to see if he was in jail?

TRAVIS: Oh! No! I didn't.

ROBBIE: Huh. That's just a possibility, that's all. That's just a possibility. Enjoy your drink, I hope you enjoy it.

TRAVIS: Dorian! That's a great place to start.

ROBBIE: Uh, thank you.

MARISHA: Good job, Dorian.

ROBBIE: Thank you.

MARISHA: Good job, Dorian.

ROBBIE: No, no, no.

MARISHA: Good job!

ROBBIE: (uncomfortably) Mm. Mm. Mm.

TRAVIS: Thanks for the extra.

ROBBIE: You're welcome.

TRAVIS: You know, the smaller we are, the more it hits.

ROBBIE: Yeah, cheers, right?

TRAVIS: Cheers!

ROBBIE: Yes!

LAURA: Have you been back to his hovel since? Hovel. Hovel? Hovel?

TRAVIS: Hivel, hovel. Have a hovel.

LAURA: I genuinely don't know. Is it hovel or havel?

ROBBIE: Hovel.

LAURA: Hovel.

TRAVIS: I went in the morning, he wasn't there, and then I went back later in the day. Still wasn't there.

LAURA: Okay.

TRAVIS: Then this morning, I went back, he wasn't there. So then I went to the theater.

LAURA: He wasn't there?

TRAVIS: No, he wasn't there!

ASHLEY: Were you supposed to meet him at the theater, or you just wanted to see a show?

LIAM: He said that he just likes the theater. He talks a lot about the theater.

TRAVIS: Yeah, I guess he likes the theater.

ASHLEY: So you were like, screw it, I can't find him. I'm just going to go watch a show.

TRAVIS: Yeah, I went by one place that we had a drink before. I don't remember the name of it! I'm just, like, a landmark person. Then I went to the theater.

TALIESIN: 10 gold says it was the Sit and Swill.

TRAVIS: Okay.

TALIESIN: If you're down in the Smolder Spire.

LAURA: So maybe in the morning. We're the first person you told that Gurge is missing?

TRAVIS: Well yeah, Gurge is the only other person I've really talked to.

LAURA: So in the morning, you know-- Is pretty late now, or is it mid-afternoon?

MATT: Oh, it's late night.

LAURA: It's very late. We are covered in blood.

TALIESIN: Just fucked.

LAURA: How about in the morning, we make a trek out to the huvel and we see-- Hovel, fuck. And we see.

ASHLEY: Hoovel!

LAURA: Hovel.

TRAVIS: Hoh-vel.

TALIESIN: Whoville.

LAURA: Hovel. I'm just seeing the word "shovel" in my head. You know, huvel. Hovel.

TALIESIN: Hubble.

LAURA: And we see if we can track him down.

TRAVIS: I would like that.

LIAM: Mm-hmm.

LAURA: All right.

MARISHA: Okay.

TRAVIS: How much?

LAURA: Oh. You know, that's a tough one because we haven't named a price for anything yet.

ASHLEY: How much do you have?

TRAVIS: Like, on my person?

ASHLEY: Yes.

TRAVIS: A bit.

LIAM: I suggest that we just swing by in the morning. Maybe we get lucky. If it's more complicated than that, then we talk about money.

LAURA: Maybe he could make you a toy.

TALIESIN: I could be down for that.

ASHLEY: (gasps)

TRAVIS: Did you say something about a toy?

ASHLEY: Yes. She said. That you might make me a toy.

TRAVIS: Are you fucking with me?

ASHLEY: No, I'm not.

TRAVIS: Oh. Do you like toys?

ASHLEY: Who doesn't like toys?

TRAVIS: What... What kind of toys?

ASHLEY: You name it. All kinds. Can you make tiny rocking horses?

TRAVIS: (excited noise)

ASHLEY: Like for a monkey?

TRAVIS: Uh, yeah!

MARISHA: What about tops? Little wooden tops?

TRAVIS: Yeah!

MARISHA and ASHLEY: (excited noise)

ROBBIE: What if you made each of us a toy?

MARISHA: Oh, yeah!

TRAVIS: This is the payment? Little toys instead of coin?

ROBBIE: We have to think about it, I'm sure, but.

LAURA: He's a master craftsmen.

ROBBIE: Yeah, it must be worth something, right?

ASHLEY: I've never had something made by a master craftsmen.

TRAVIS: Oh man, there's nothing like it. I kill it with the details.

MARISHA: Could you make a little girlfriend for Pâté?

TRAVIS: Yes.

MARISHA: (as Pâté) "I'm quite horny, you see!" (laughter)

TRAVIS: Well, I'll be sure to take that into account with the design.

LAURA: Oh, ho, ho!

MARISHA: Did you hear that, Pâté? (laughter)

TRAVIS: We'll make sure it's girlfriend material.

ROBBIE: Anatomically correct.

TRAVIS: Yes. (laughter)

ASHLEY: I've seen a puppet show like that before.

TRAVIS: Wood is my specialty. So slingshots, tops, rocking horses, you know, anything. Airships.

SAM: Like model airships that fit in jars?

TRAVIS: I suppose. I've never gone that small before. But I'm up to the challenge.

TALIESIN: I'm... baffled by all of this.

LAURA: This sounds amazing.

LIAM: Yeah, I was thinking about doing it out of the goodness of our heart, but I think I want the toy.

LAURA: I know.

ASHLEY: I'd like a toy.

SAM: Who doesn't like a toy?

TALIESIN: I cannot believe I'm going to say this, but I want the toy.

ASHLEY: What happens if--

TALIESIN: Shit.

ASHLEY: You know, we find out that Gurge is no longer with us? What will you do then?

LIAM: Yeah, you got someplace to go?

TRAVIS: No.

MARISHA: Well, you said you wanted to be led to these other master craftsmen, right? Maybe we could be your escort?

SAM: We could direct you to the job. We could be your DJs. Direct you to the Job.

MARISHA: Mm-hmm!

TRAVIS: I guess a DJ for an MC would be a pretty good--

SAM: Combination.

TRAVIS: (record scratch) Setup, but I-- I feel like without Gurge, I wouldn't really know where to go. (laughter)

MARISHA: Robbie is just dying inside, I'm not sure.

TRAVIS: I like how his lower lip twitches.

ROBBIE: I'm trying to give you space.

TALIESIN: I can't. (laughs)

TRAVIS: I hope we just find him alive. I wouldn't really know where to go after that.

SAM: Are we whispering?

MATT: Shh, continue.

SAM: Oh, we're un-- This is an unrequested whisper. I don't think this has ever happened before.

MARISHA: I don't know.

SAM: I'm just going to whisper in your ear.

MARISHA: Oh, okay.

ROBBIE: I'm not going to whisper in your ear.

MARISHA: Yay!

TRAVIS: But I can pay. I can make toys and I have services. I don't expect all the risk to be on your part. I'm very good with small tools and I have quick hands.

LAURA: Oh, oh!

SAM: Do you pick locks and things?

TRAVIS: I certainly can.

LAURA: Oh my gosh, we are in dire need of someone who can actually do that.

TALIESIN: Well... yeah.

LAURA: Well.

TALIESIN: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

ASHLEY: You can open doors and things?

TRAVIS: Yes.

ROBBIE: We've had problems with doors.

TRAVIS: These pointy-toed fuckers are quiet as shit.

LAURA: That's great.

ASHLEY: Where did you get those, by the way?

TRAVIS: Oh, it, um. I kind of-- I made them. There was some leftover leather and I just worked. I had some that were smaller, but I liked the frill! So I had to get bigger points. There's a burp that's right here and I just can't get it to pick a side.

ASHLEY: Oh god, that's the worst.

TRAVIS: (belches)

ASHLEY: There you go.

LAURA: I think I need some sleep.

TALIESIN: Yeah, nice.

TRAVIS: Question, you're all covered with blood. What's the black stuff?

MARISHA: Oh, oh, that's--

TRAVIS: Is that the monster?

MARISHA: No, that's just my magical essence. My necromantic abilities.

TRAVIS: Right, alive then dead.

MARISHA: Also, I think a little of the monster. I don't know, is this dried blood?

TALIESIN: No.

MARISHA: I don't know.

LAURA: It all blends together.

MARISHA: Yes.

TALIESIN: That is definitely not dried blood.

TRAVIS: So who are you trying to find?

SAM: We were trying to find someone, but.

LAURA: Several different people.

SAM: Some patrons of the theater.

TRAVIS: They were all dead?

SAM: Unfortunately.

TALIESIN: We did find them.

SAM: Do we need to report back to anyone about this theater, or?

MARISHA: Well, we did.

SAM: Or are we okay?

LAURA: We should probably tell Lord Eshteross about it.

TRAVIS: You all seem busy. I mean, this is just sort of on a your timeline kind of a thing. I (belches) don't really have anywhere to be.

SAM: Well, you seemed urgent about finding Gurge. It seemed like.

TRAVIS: Well, yeah, she crept up into my head. I was just peeping on y'all, all pervy-like, and then got interrupted.

SAM: But I mean, if it's important to find Gurge quickly, then we should. I mean, they say that the most important time is the first 48 hours of when a person goes missing.

TRAVIS: Is that right?

LAURA and ASHLEY: Yeah.

TRAVIS: You are full of very useful information.

SAM: Well, thank you, thank you.

TRAVIS: Fresh Cut Grass and Fearne, fighting it out for top spot in my heart.

SAM: Oh, I forfeit immediately. Fearne is just a delight. Although I will say this, Fearne: you're a delightful person. You're wonderful to be around. You're so sweet and nice, but sometimes I wonder why do you take things?

ASHLEY: Well, I--

SAM: I mean, no judgment, you're welcome to. But you know, is there a reason that you're taking other people's things rather than making them on your own, or?

ASHLEY: Well, I have some things of my own and you know, if somebody asks me for something of mine, I would give it to them. I just, sometimes, when I see things, I like to collect things.

SAM: I see.

ASHLEY: You know, I like to keep little things as a reminder of my travels.

TRAVIS: Here! I have a couple of these mini chisels.

ASHLEY: (gasps)

SAM: Mini chisels?

TRAVIS: They're the size of your thumb, I realize, but.

SAM: You could use it to hold corn.

TRAVIS: It's good for detailing.

ASHLEY: This reminds me of-- I remember, when I was a kid there was something called See's Candy and they would have little-- It was toffee or something and they gave you a little hammer that you would crush it up with. That's what this reminds me of.

TALIESIN: Huh.

SAM: Like Werther's?

ASHLEY: Kind of.

TRAVIS: I steal, too. There's nothing wrong with that.

SAM: No, no, no judgment. I'm just wondering. I was just wondering if it was a compulsion, or if it was to fill some sort of void or lack in your life, that's all.

ASHLEY: It could be both. It remains to be seen.

LIAM: While this whole conversation is going on, Orym will place a hand on Imogen's arm.

LAURA: Yes? (laughter)

TALIESIN: Took a second there, well done.

TRAVIS: What? (laughter)

LIAM: Deliberately make eyes and think: Can you hear me?

LAURA: I can't hear you right now.

TRAVIS: Can you read my mind?

LAURA: Then I'm going to go into your head and say: Okay, now say it again. What were you trying to say? I've got to make a connection before I can hear the things you're saying. But I'm here now.

LIAM: Can you hear me now?

LAURA: Yes, I can.

LIAM: Somebody's followed us from the theater.

LAURA: Not him? Somebody else?

LIAM: Correct.

LAURA: Okay.

LIAM: Someone that Laudna and I followed and lost.

LAURA: Oh, that guy!

LIAM: I think one of the Corsairs is downstairs right now.

LAURA: All right. Do you think he wants to talk?

LIAM: I don't know.

LAURA: What's he look like?

LIAM: He's down in the-- I don't want to look. He's in the far corner of the room. He's got a hood up. I can't really make his face out too well from here, but.

LAURA: Do I see him?

MATT: Make a perception check.

SAM: Got an urge to find Gurge. There's a Corsair on the stairs. (laughter)

LAURA: 13.

SAM: MC Chetney's in the house.

MATT: You can just make out the shape of somebody who's found a table in the far corner and has basically eyeline past the railing to the second floor where your guys' table is.

LAURA: Did he see y'all following him?

LIAM: I don't think that was clear.

MATT: You're not entirely certain. You followed him and then he vanished.

LAURA: Do you think he found us?

LIAM: Laudna-- and we're still thinking all this.

LAURA: Yes, yes.

LIAM: Laudna and I chased out into the street and it was just too crowded and we lost sight completely. But it would have been real easy for them to be looking at us.

LAURA: Well, we don't have a horrible relationship with the Corsairs, right?

LIAM: Nope, just letting you know we have a tail.

LAURA: Should we go approach them?

LIAM: What do you think?

LAURA: I mean. I imagine if he came to find us, he's not doing an incredibly good job of hiding himself right now. I'm going to tell Laudna: The guy you were following is back.

MARISHA: What? Oh!

LAURA: He's down there. Nope, nope, okay.

LIAM: All right, now we got to go talk to him.

LAURA: We're trying to decide if we should go talk to him.

MARISHA: Good Wilder, bad Wilder?

LAURA: I just think it's a Corsair, so I don't want to get on their bad side or else--

MARISHA: You think it's a Corsair?

LAURA: -- they could kill my dad. Well, Orym seemed to think, yeah.

MARISHA: All right.

LAURA: Yeah.

MARISHA: Should we try to get his attention, pull him up here? Make him come on our turf, on our terms?

LAURA: Should I try to make eye contact with him?

MARISHA: Sure. Maybe I could, like, throw something at him, get his attention.

LIAM: Why is she making crazy eyes at you? What is she saying?

LAURA: Oh, she's asking if we should get his attention. She wants to know if she should throw something at him. Or maybe we could just try to make eye contact with him and see if he comes up.

LIAM: Call his bluff, yeah.

SAM: While all that's going on: And that's why the first 48 hours is the most important 48 hours.

TRAVIS: Look, sometimes you got to steal to make ends meet, okay? It's a crazy world out there!

ROBBIE: I didn't make any judgment assertions about it. All I did was give you one look, Chetney! One look!

TRAVIS: I'm just saying, come correct or get corrected. (laughter)

ROBBIE: Are there any visible weapons on Chetney other than his tiny tools?

TRAVIS: Baby, each one of these digits is a weapon.

MATT: From what you can tell, there are a number of various- sized woodworking tools and a mallet, and that's all that you see.

TRAVIS: How do you want it? How do you feel? (laughter)

ROBBIE: What are you singing? That's lovely.

TRAVIS: Well yeah, I get lonely if I don't sing.

ROBBIE: Yeah.

ASHLEY: He's a very wonderful musician and singer.

ROBBIE: Yes.

TRAVIS: Oh shit.

ROBBIE: Oh?

TRAVIS: You're famous.

ROBBIE: You're lovely.

TRAVIS: You're not?

ROBBIE: I am not.

ASHLEY: Very.

ROBBIE: What?

ASHLEY: Yes!

TRAVIS: Oh, are they, like, your security detail?

ROBBIE: No! No, they're my friends. They're just my friends.

TRAVIS: Oh. And Orym?

MARISHA: You did have that fan.

ROBBIE: Orym... Orym is my very good friend. Yes. We're all very good friends.

TRAVIS: Got it.

MARISHA: I am making crazy eyes.

LAURA: Are you-- No, wait, Laudna. You're going to scare him away. Make it look inviting, look inviting.

LIAM: If she's doing that, I'm going to go like-- (laughter)

TRAVIS: Is there another person in your group?

TALIESIN: Are we getting--? Is this--?

LAURA: There's a guy that was following us.

TALIESIN: Oh shit.

MARISHA: Is he looking at us?

MATT: After he looked over, you can see the figure leaned back a little further into the shadows and as soon as you do the hand motion it got up and then begins to leave the establishment.

LAURA: Oh, come on!

TALIESIN: Boo!

ASHLEY: Wait!

TRAVIS: What's going on?

LAURA: Come on!

TALIESIN: You suck!

MARISHA: Can I send him a Message?

MATT: If you want to.

MARISHA: Oh, hello.

ALL: (creepy whispering) Kill.

MARISHA: Where are you going?

ALL: (creepy whispering)

MARISHA: I saw you!

MATT: Grabs both sides of his head and goes like-- And darts outside.

LAURA: No, wait!

MARISHA: Come here.

LAURA: He hears my voice, too. Come on, it's fine. Just get back up here. No one's going to hurt you, we just want to talk.

MARISHA: We're not going to hurt you.

ALL: (creepy whispering)

SAM: I will hurt you. (laughter)

MATT: Yeah, no, he's not going upstairs after that.

MARISHA: Goddamn it! I really thought that would work.

LAURA: What? Should we go after him?

TRAVIS: I can follow.

LIAM: Yeah, come on.

LAURA: All of us?

TRAVIS: Is there somebody you need tailed or followed? I mean, I don't know. I don't have anywhere to stay.

LAURA: Are you good at that?

TRAVIS: Fuck yeah.

LIAM: Come on, shorty, you and me. Let's go before we lose him.

LAURA: Go, go, go!

MATT: Both of you roll stealth checks, please.

MARISHA: Woo! A roll!

TRAVIS: 20.

LIAM: Oh yeah, 14.

MATT: 14, okay. You emerge and as quietly as you can, you step out into the night and you can see the figure is heading down the road a bit. You, unfortunately, as you're following end up stepping on a piece of errant lumber that snaps a bit. The figure turns the head real fast, glances in that direction. You swerve around the other way. Glancing at where you were, they start speeding up a bit. But you can see there's a tiny little sliver of space beneath the adjacent building where they're going where you might be able to cut off, if you head around.

TRAVIS: Juke, spin move, yep. (laughter)

MATT: In an impressive, for such an appearing to be old codger individual.

LIAM: Tracking, tracking it.

MATT: Actually, with your passive perception you are not tracking.

LIAM: Oh, okay.

ALL: Ooh!

MATT: You hear the snap and go, "Oh shit." You look up, you see the figure dart around the corner and you go to follow him.

LIAM: Chetney, we got to--

MATT: Chetney's just gone.

LIAM: Shit.

MATT: So you're darting. What's your movement speed?

TRAVIS: Fuck, 25! (laughter)

ASHLEY: Hmm.

MATT: Tiny legs.

TRAVIS: Marvin the Martian.

MATT: As you head through the small little passage space behind and then turn to the right and it leads off to this rain spillway. Less than an alleyway, than an actual path that the rain, can actually go out into the main streets of stone. As you head around the edge, you can see the figure just beginning to pass in front of you.

TRAVIS: I pull out a stick from my pack and I start whittling on it. Evening.

MATT: "Good evening." Starts walking past.

TRAVIS: Ah! Ugh. (laughter)

MATT: So you've caught up now and you come around the corner. The figure's not running. They're just keeping a brisk pace. Trying to, you recognize the technique of trying not to look hurried so they can blend in, but also definitely walk with intent and purpose.

LIAM: Chetney, Chetney! Oh jeez, you're right there.

TRAVIS: Use a different name. (laughter)

TRAVIS: Split up and converge, go now. (laughter) (laughter)

MATT: I'd like you both to roll stealth checks again now, since you've--

ASHLEY: Let's go!

LIAM: Oh no. I wish I was a rogue still. 10.

TRAVIS: 10.

LIAM: Oh!

LAURA: Oh no.

MATT: 10 and a 10.

SAM: Well, that adds up to 20.

MATT: The figure is maintaining pace, but you can see occasionally the head turns and they acknowledge being tailed. They're a little bit quicker than you both because they are a larger figure. Although your speed is?

LIAM: 30.

MATT: 30, so you're keeping pace.

LIAM: Come on, keep up, keep up.

TRAVIS: I make my way over to where Orym is.

LAURA: ♪ Makin' my way! ♪

TRAVIS: Do we need to stop this guy, or just tail him?

LIAM: Well, he knows we're coming still. Come on, man! (laughter)

LIAM: Seriously?

MATT: Roll a persuasion check. (laughter)

TRAVIS: Oh shit!

ASHLEY: Oh shit, this is good.

LAURA and MARISHA: "Come on, man." 

ROBBIE: "Come on, man."

LAURA: Oh no! (laughter)

ASHLEY: That's hilarious.

TALIESIN: That's rough, buddy.

TRAVIS: Holy fucking shit.

ASHLEY: Come on, man, just--

MATT: That's heroic fantasy right there. (laughter)

MATT: "Come on, man."

LIAM: We did this twice, he's old. Don't make him run around town, come on.

MATT: The figure stops, doesn't turn around to face you. "I'm to talk with your friend, the blue one."

LIAM: Say what now?

MATT: "I am to talk with your friend, the blue one." The figure's still not turning around.

TRAVIS: The blue one!

LIAM: Thanks, Chet. Is this is a friendly conversation?

MATT: "Yes."

LIAM: Where, here?

MATT: "Send him out and I'll talk to him."

LIAM: Wait here.

TRAVIS: You want me to stay with him?

LIAM: Yeah.

TRAVIS: Okay. To the back of your head. (laughter)

MATT: The figure takes a few steps and just leans against the wall, arms crossed, still facing away.

TRAVIS: I go over as Orym walks away and post up in the opposite direction. The blue one, eh? I get a dicey read off of that guy.

MATT: "Really?"

TRAVIS: Yeah, I just met him like an hour ago. What do you know about him?

MATT: "Not terrible much, but we got business."

TRAVIS: Hmm. Would you say he's a trustworthy fella?

MATT: "The best I can read, I'd say probably."

TRAVIS: Oh, shit, that was not the read I got it all. Okay. Well, listen, stay here. (laughter)

LIAM: All right, so I jog back, get inside.

LAURA: Did you catch him?

LIAM: Sort of.

MARISHA: What did he do? What did he say? What does he want?

LIAM: Dorian.

MARISHA: Is this another fan? Oh my god, you're so famous.

ROBBIE: What's going on?

LIAM: He says that he wants to talk to you. I left Pock O'Pea. Pock O'Poo?

LAURA: Pock O'Pea, I think.

LIAM: Pock O'Pea, I got it right.

ASHLEY: Bugaboo.

LIAM: Back there to watch. I think he's expecting just you to go, but I don't fucking care. I think we should all head over there.

ASHLEY: Yeah, yeah, yeah. You're not going out there alone. We're not doing this again.

ROBBIE: I'll speak to him, sure.

LIAM: Do you know what it's about?

ROBBIE: I-- (sighs)

MARISHA: Oh, oh!

ROBBIE: Yeah.

MARISHA: Oh, you're being weird.

ROBBIE: Yeah, I saw a Corsair in the wings of the theater. This person, did you get a look at them?

LIAM: He didn't turn around, right?

MATT: Didn't turn around, but what you saw was a light gray, hooded cloak. You do recognize the attire. Now that you think about it, this was an individual that you saw--

LIAM: In the room?

MATT: -- in the room with the other Corsairs.

LIAM: I didn't get a good look. He's good at keeping turned away. But dressed like one of the cats we saw when we visited the Corsairs.

ROBBIE: If it's the Corsairs, it's about all of us. I'll go.

LAURA: We'll go with you.

ROBBIE: Please.

SAM: Should we keep our distance?

ASHLEY: No.

LIAM: Nah.

ASHLEY: I'ma get right up on it. I'll give you your space, but--

ROBBIE: All right, let's go, let's go. Fuck it, let's go.

LAURA: Are you nervous?

ROBBIE: Yes, I suppose.

LAURA: They're not going to kill you while all of us are there.

ROBBIE: Why would they kill me?

LAURA: I don't know! Why do they want to talk to you? Do you know anyone in this town?

TALIESIN: Does anyone want to kill you?

ROBBIE: Not that I know of, no. You said kill me, I didn't say kill me. Why did you say kill me?

LAURA: I don't know, because he looked shady.

TALIESIN: It felt implied.

LIAM: It's weird that--

ROBBIE: Well, I wasn't that nervous before but now I am a little nervous.

LAURA: I thought maybe it was, you know, calling a fight or something, not kill.

LIAM: It's curious because it's not like this guy is after us. They're after you.

LAURA: So you have to have some sort of history here.

ROBBIE: I don't know, maybe. Let's go. Shall we go?

TALIESIN: Yeah.

ROBBIE: Are you okay?

TRAVIS: I'm out in the street, I'm not here.

ROBBIE: I thought you came back. (laughter)

TRAVIS: I'm in your head!

ROBBIE: (yells) (laughter)

TRAVIS: Rent-free, bitches. (laughter)

LAURA: Did we already pay?

TALIESIN: Rent-free Pock O'Pea.

LIAM: Yeah, I already paid. (silly voice) Pock O'Pea.

ASHLEY: (silly voice) Pock O'Pea.

ROBBIE: Yeah, let's go. I'll walk outside with everyone.

MATT: All right. Are you heading in a particular formation as a group?

MARISHA: We got a bone to pick with you!

TALIESIN: We want to spread out, be stealthy, and make sure that we can watch this from a distance.

LAURA: Flying V behind Dorian?

MARISHA: Yeah, Flying V.

TALIESIN: Flying V.

SAM: Before we leave, I don't want to waste the big bottle that we--

LAURA: ♪ I don't want to waste-- ♪

SAM: We just bought a bottle of booze, didn't we?

MATT: Yes, you did.

SAM: I'll just chug it all.

LAURA: Oh, thermos it.

SAM: (gulps) For later.

LAURA: Thanks, Letters.

LIAM: First, you had a flask, now you are the flask. (laughter)

MATT: This is the natural progression of Sam Riegel.

TALIESIN: It's one of the many talents of DJ FCG.

MATT: My god.

LIAM: I'm a flask now.

TRAVIS: Before they get there, can I see anyone else that might be keeping eyes on this Corsair individual?

MATT: Make a perception check.

TRAVIS: Yeah, I'll do that.

SAM: Oh my god, what if Travis gets killed in this alley? (laughter)

ROBBIE: Only if his dick's out. Only if his dick's out. Is your dick out?

TRAVIS: Have to look. 19.

MATT: No one in particular is showing any keen interest at the moment. You do see, at this hour, the streets aren't terribly crowded.

TRAVIS: Oh shit, it's dark and late and stuff, right?

MATT: Yeah, it's, at this hour, post-midnight. So it's the early, early hours of the morning. You do see, it looks like, a pair of Wardens or Wilders that are patrolling, but they've already passed this section. They're just heading around the corner. You occasionally can see the hooded figure glancing over, keeping watch in the vicinity. A couple of individuals wander past. They look like they're a bit tipsy and wandering back to wherever their events are for the evening. But no one else catches your radar.

TRAVIS: Fair enough.

MATT: As you all follow up behind the path, not that far from where the entrance of the Spire by Fire is, turning the corner, you see the figure leaning against the wall, arms crossed. As your unstealthy approach catches their attention, the figure turns a little bit and glances over their shoulder. You can just see the profile of the face.

ROBBIE: (clears throat)

SAM: You going to be okay, Dorian?

ROBBIE: Yes.

MARISHA: We've got your back.

ROBBIE: (overly-loud) We are here to speak to you. (stuttering) I'm here, hello.

LAURA: Just pat his back. You've got this, Dorian.

ROBBIE: Hello. How far away is he?

MATT: Oh, about 15 feet from where you are.

ROBBIE: You can see all of us, you can see me. Can we see your face?

MATT: "Making this oddly strange for me, but sure." The figure turns around a bit, and you can see, standing tall at about 6'3", a burly-looking, strong-physiqued man with, from within the hood, you can see this wavy black hair that passes by a blue face to the same shade as Dorian's. You see a gold septum piercing, and that's about the details you can make out in this low evening light. "You keep these people around you all the time. It's hard to catch you alone."

ROBBIE: Yes, yes. (clears throat) Well, what do you want?

MATT: "I just want to catch up."

ROBBIE: I'm going to step away and try to get closer to him.

MATT: Okay.

ROBBIE: Yeah.

ROBBIE: What do you want? What do you want?

MATT: "I just want to see how you're doing."

ROBBIE: I'm-- I'm good. I'm good. What are you doing here? Why now? Why this?

MATT: "I was going to ask you the same question. It's been a wild few months. I figure we could-- We probably shouldn't--"

ROBBIE: No, stay, stay, stay, please. I have missed you.

MATT: "Keeping this company around you. They know anything?"

ROBBIE: No.

MATT: "Can you trust these people?"

ROBBIE: I don't-- I don't know.

MATT: "Then we should talk elsewhere."

ROBBIE: All right. What do I tell them?

MATT: "I-I-I-I don't know!"

ROBBIE: Why are you following us?

MATT: "I'm not following you all, I'm following you."

ROBBIE: Yes, but we're doing a thing. All right, this is getting strange. Where do we go? How do we meet?

MATT: "I guess maybe when they all go to bed, just hang out in the tavern for a bit and we can find a table and catch up."

ROBBIE: They think you're some sort of a group of assassins, criminals.

MATT: "I'm not an assassin."

ROBBIE: He's--

LAURA: Okay.

SAM: Well, that's something a totally innocent person would say, yeah.

TALIESIN: I'm convinced.

ASHLEY: I am!

ROBBIE: This is my-- This is my brother. (gasping)

TRAVIS: Oh shit!

SAM: Well, I mean, they look alike.

MATT: "I thought you said you weren't sure if you could trust them."

ROBBIE: I don't trust them. This is my brother. I didn't know he was here. Say hello, everyone. This is Cyrus, my brother, Cyrus.

SAM: Well, smiley day, Cyrus!

MARISHA and ASHLEY: Cyrus!

MARISHA: Hello!

MATT: "Hi, hi. Hi, everybody." You can see the now toothy grin peak under the square jaw. Handsome, handsome figure from the night, stepping a bit into the light and looking over the rest of you. "Sorry, I didn't mean to make things weird. Just kind of--"

LAURA: Why did you run away?

MATT: "Well, it's been an unexpected reunion. I mean, you know--"

ROBBIE: He's not with the Corsairs.

MATT: "No, I am actually with the Corsairs. That's why I'm trying not to--"

ROBBIE: What?

ASHLEY: Oh, interesting.

LAURA: What are you doing in the middle of the street?

MATT: "Was I not supposed to say that?"

ROBBIE: What the fuck is happening right now?

LAURA: What's wrong with the Corsairs? I like the Corsairs.

ROBBIE: I don't--

LAURA: They're like Robin Hoods.

MARISHA: Yeah.

ROBBIE: Sure, yes, that's just what you were meant to be. Robin Hood.

LIAM: Dorian, do you want to take this off the street?

MATT: "Dorian?"

ROBBIE: Yes, Dorian. My name, Dorian. My name, Dorian.

MATT: "Yeah."

ROBBIE: Yes.

MATT: "Yeah."

ROBBIE: Yes.

SAM: That's how everyone--

LAURA: Says your name.

SAM: -- says it.

MARISHA: Especially a brother, yes, wow.

ASHLEY: Cyrus and Dorian.

MATT: "Yeah, Cyrus and Dorian, heh, brothers."

LAURA: Wow.

TRAVIS: Are you?

SAM: Cyrus Storm?

ROBBIE: This is a lot--

MATT: "Yeah."

ROBBIE: -- right now.

SAM: And Dorian Storm.

LIAM: Yeah, let's take this off the street.

TALIESIN: Oh yeah.

MATT: "I think that's a good idea."

TRAVIS: You are brothers, aren't you?

MATT: "Yeah, yeah, we're brothers."

ROBBIE: We are brothers.

TRAVIS: Uh, I believe that part.

ROBBIE: We're having a drink. Would you care to join us?

MARISHA: Family's always welcome.

MATT: "Yeah."

ROBBIE: Unless there are other Corsairs creeping in the shadows.

MATT: "No, no, I'm pretty sure I wasn't followed."

TRAVIS: He wasn't followed.

MATT: "I'm not a fan of the theater and a lot of the folks there."

ROBBIE: Yes.

MATT: "Sure, let's get a drink." Has an awkward moment, looking down at the ground, twiddling his thumbs for this cloaked, imposing figure just for a moment looking, just for a brief instant, childlike, before it takes a deep breath, and follows.

LAURA: So we'll go back to the tavern we were just at when you ran away from us?

MATT: "Yes. I will, if that's okay, ask, whatever you were doing with my head, to not do that, please."

LAURA: Sure.

TRAVIS: Yeah, yeah, exactly. It's fucking crazy, right?

MATT: "It's very creepy. It made me very uncomfortable."

TRAVIS: You should send a chime first or something to soften up the entry.

SAM: Hey, hey, hey, easy.

TRAVIS: Sorry.

SAM: She can't help it sometimes.

MARISHA: Could we do that, like a little ♪ do-do-do-do. ♪

TRAVIS: That's great.

LAURA: Unless I was singing it, probably not.

MARISHA: Oh, sure.

TRAVIS: You have a lovely voice.

TALIESIN: I was going to say, if you can sing, that's actually, I mean, I don't need it, but you know, if you could.

MATT: "I'm reading a little discomfort in your reply. I apologize if I put you on your back foot. Yes, let's go drink. Let's go drink."

ROBBIE: Please.

TRAVIS: Hey, Dorian. He trusts you.

ROBBIE: Yes.

TRAVIS: I questioned him while Orym was running away. Yeah, he trusts you.

ROBBIE: Very insightful, Chetney. Thank you.

LAURA: Older brother or younger?

ROBBIE: Older. We had a table upstairs, correct?

TALIESIN: Yeah.

ROBBIE: Yeah, let's go finish off that bottle. We still had a bottle, right?

TALIESIN: Well, hold on, we're going to have to do a thing.

SAM: Are you making a funnel?

TALIESIN: Yep. Flip when you're ready.

SAM: Fearne, can you flip me over?

ASHLEY: Sure.

MATT: Fearne, make a strength check.

ASHLEY: Okay.

TRAVIS: What is happening?

MATT: He's a heavy figure.

LAURA: We've got to make a little hole in you that we can stopper up.

SAM: I don't think that's a good idea.

ASHLEY: 12.

TALIESIN: That could go real wrong.

MATT: It takes you a second, but you just manage to--

ASHLEY: Oh, he's just so much heavier with all the liquid in him. There you go.

TALIESIN: It's dead weight.

MATT: As this is happening, Cyrus leans over to you and says, "Interesting company, brother."

ROBBIE: It seems like you're keeping some interesting company, too.

MATT: "Oh, touché."

SAM: Would you two family members like a separate table to have some privacy?

ROBBIE: I don't know what this is all about, so I suppose that's not up to me, is it?

MATT: "I mean, if you're comfortable, I just--"

ASHLEY: Well, you were the one who was being all sneaky.

TALIESIN: That's very fair.

MATT: "Well, the person I wanted to talk to was surrounded by, and I'm going to be perfectly honest here, a very strange group of people."

TALIESIN: Thank you.

ROBBIE: Just because they're different doesn't mean they're strange.

ASHLEY: Thank you.

SAM: Although we are strange.

TALIESIN: Very strange.

ASHLEY: I take out my straw that I got from Zhudanna. Open your mouth, FCG.

SAM: It's like a-- (laughter)

SAM: It's like a reverse baby bird. (laughter)

ROBBIE: Oh man.

TRAVIS and SAM: (gulping, choking sounds)

MATT: It's important in some D&D games to have a wine skin or play as one.

MARISHA: It's like those little character mugs you can get at Disney?

TRAVIS: Oh my god, we like those, right?

SAM: (slurps)

LIAM: Can you just be a healing potion kegger? (laughter)

ROBBIE: Keg stand--

TRAVIS: Just hold onto his mouth. Feet up.

ROBBIE: Chetney up for a kegstand.

MATT: (as Cyrus) "I mean, I guess I'll just-- I'll put it out there. I just wasn't expecting to see you. You disappeared a while back. We had no idea where you went, didn't know if you were okay, so it took me for a shock when you showed up and I just wanted to-- wanted to see how you are."

ROBBIE: Took you for a shock. You for a shock? Interesting, interesting. Well, everyone, this is my brother, as I said.

LAURA: Cyrus.

ROBBIE: Yes. Things you should know about him. Do you mind? I mean, we're getting to know you, right? It's the kind of a thing we all we all do when we're getting to know each other.

MARISHA: Are we playing What the Fuck is Up with That?

TALIESIN: Special edition.

ROBBIE: I'm not sure if I'm in the mood. But sure, if you'd like. The Corsairs, no roles, what the fuck is up with that?

MATT: "Well." He just looks around at the rest of you at the table and just looks back to Dorian. "When you left, at first, I was angry. I was frustrated. But the more I talked with Zunado, the more they explained to me that it is the nature of our people to wander. And in my sense of betrayal at your unexpected exit, the more questions I asked, the more I began to realize maybe I was the only one that wasn't stepping out of my comfort zone."

ROBBIE: Take that back. Betrayal? Sense of betrayal from me? So you're saying you had this great impulse to set off on the world on your own quest and make something of yourself. And yet it was my fault that you decided to leave. I inspired you. That's interesting.

MATT: "Look, I took it as betrayal only because that's what I was told to feel. But I see that's not the case now."

ROBBIE: (scoffs)

MATT: "Look, our mother and father, I didn't even know this, but they had taken their own journeys before they ever settled down."

ROBBIE: What?

MATT: "It's the basis of who we are. It's why we keep moving. But how fair is it for us, who are shackled with responsibilities, to be cloistered and hidden?"

ROBBIE: So it never bothered you before, never once? The ever stalwart first son, slave to his duty. And as soon as I leave to seek my own path, you decide it's your time as well. Isn't that convenient? Years I spend in your shadow and I make my own way and now you try to follow in mine? So fair.

MATT: "Not following your path, following my own. Okay?"

ROBBIE: Please, enlighten us. What is your own?

MATT: "I don't know, I just wanted to get away. The responsibilities, the expectations, it just wasn't fair what they put upon both of us. Look, I may not have been the best brother, and I question my capabilities, now that I've seen the world beyond the Silks and being a leader without having experienced it the way that those before us have. I got the sense that we're being held back just to protect us, and that is unfair. And honestly, when I got past the anger, I realized that, though I was your older brother, you were definitely the more mature of the two of us. So I-- well, I followed suit and took my own path to fly beyond the silken walls, if you will."

ROBBIE: Everything you say is so lovely. Are Mother and Father well?

MATT: "Last I checked. Though I'm sure they're tearing their hair out, now that both of their rising sons are now missing to the winds, which I can't deny, feels kind of good."

ROBBIE: It is a funny image. Father has always been (laughs) proud of his hair. I imagine him tearing it out.

MATT: "I hope he enjoys it while it lasts."

ROBBIE: It comes for us all.

MATT: "Look, I'm sorry, Dorian. I'm sorry for a lot of things. I thought I knew a lot more about the world, but if anything, I am not ready for what's expected of me. I'm in a bit of trouble."

ROBBIE: What kind of trouble?

MATT: "Well, I made my way through the Hellcatch Valley about seven months ago and just wanted to see what was out there. Got in some challenges of might and tried to make friends, assert dominance. Just live it up for a bit, you know? Party, like I see so many folks do from afar. See what life was like without the shackles. And it was fun. But, uh-- when you run out like that, you don't really prepare for how much things cost and how quickly the money can go, so I had to get some work. I'm pretty decently trained with a blade at my side. I started doing some escort work, let's say. As a sword handler."

SAM: Sure, sure, that's what I assumed.

TRAVIS: Handled a sword.

MARISHA: We're not listening.

MATT: "Anyway, I got mixed up with some folks. Got a bad situation placed on me and I'm just trying to work off some debt, so."

ROBBIE: Oh, please, don't say you're asking for money.

MATT: "No, no, no, I'm not at all."

ROBBIE: All right.

MATT: "I'm going to earn this. I'm going to earn this myself. I'm going to get this figured out. It's my prerogative. I just want to ask if you could not tell Mom and Dad about this."

ROBBIE: (laughs) You know, at first I was very mad at you, but now I'm starting to enjoy this just a little bit.

MATT: "No, no, no."

ROBBIE: Just a little bit. What do you want, brother?

MATT: "Well, there's a bounty out on my head. And if-- if-- if I can't do this in time, I just want you to know that you're next in line."

ROBBIE: Whoa, whoa, whoa. Stop, stop, stop. Excuse me? I'm next in line? I am next in line. And next in line for what?

MATT: "No, if I'm gone, and Mom and Dad pass, you're the next in line."

ROBBIE: No, no, no, no. Okay, not next in line to be murdered?

MATT: "No, no."

ROBBIE: All right, all right. Then you do the thing where they're like, "We want collateral," and you're like, "My brother is around here somewhere?" The Corsairs.

MATT: "No, no."

ROBBIE: I'm not your collateral, am I?

MATT: "No, this wasn't with the Corsairs. The Corsairs have been actually pretty great. They're a good group of people. They've got some good heads on their shoulders, I like some of their ideals."

ROBBIE: But that's always been the deal. I'm not going to let anyone murder you, but I know. My middle name is Secondsun.

TRAVIS: Secondsun.

SAM: Fearne had a question.

MATT: "Oh, right, yeah. Sorry, yeah."

ASHLEY: You know, I'm not listening at all but I just, how much is the bounty on your head?

TALIESIN: I was wondering.

MATT: "I think last I heard the whispers it's about 20,000 gold." (exclaiming)

SAM: What did you do?

LAURA: What are you doing sitting at a table in the middle of a bar?

MATT: "I thought you said your friends were trustworthy."

SAM: We're trustworthy.

ROBBIE: They are trustworthy and new, very new friends. Some very, very new friends.

TRAVIS: I don't want to make this awkward, but I have this group on toy retainer. So maybe-- (laughter)

TRAVIS: It'll be sunup soon. Just pick between the two.

MATT: "Look, I didn't know what I was getting mixed in with."

TRAVIS: Fine.

MATT: "I was supposed to make some coin escorting a caravan through the outer trails here. The people that I was hired alongside, apparently, I wasn't aware, that they were going to rob the caravan. They took something that looked really expensive, really important, and very strange, and I got arrested for it and managed to escape and I'm just trying to, if not pay off the bounty, trying to return what was taken so I can go back home."

LAURA: What did it look like?

TALIESIN: Yeah.

MATT: "Well, I-- I only saw a little bit. This group began to stop the caravan and hold it up and get money and there was this one cart that had some-- it looked plain with initials on it and then suddenly, it broke open. This nine, 10-foot stone person, like a golem of some kind, just started thrashing about and scooping up the money. But four of these thieves, then they ran off."

LAURA: It was like a golem with two arms and two legs sort of situation?

MATT: "Yeah, yeah, that kind of a thing."

SAM: Wait, that's the thing that you stole?

MATT: "I didn't steal it!"

SAM: Sure, sure. But it was moving on its own?

MATT: "It seemed to be, but it was moving with these thieves."

ASHLEY: Do you remember what the initials are on the--

MATT: "It was a J.H."

LAURA: J.H.

SAM: J.H.

MATT: "The thieves seemed as surprised as I did when it showed up, but the leader, Nova, just started giving it commands, and it followed suit."

SAM: Nova was the leader of the thieves that you were hired by--

MATT: "I was not hired by the thieves, I was hired by the caravan."

SAM: Oh, to protect it?

MATT: "Yes, but everyone else who's hired, they were all working in together and they used me as the fall guy."

TALIESIN: Oh, that's actually a pretty good plan.

SAM: It's a good scheme.

TRAVIS: Got to see that coming.

ROBBIE: Oh.

SAM: Who hired you? I guess the caravan people? Caravan people. (laughter)

MATT: "Yeah. The bounty out for me right now is by the guild that runs the caravan."

ASHLEY: Well, I mean, I happen to have about six platinum that I could help with the cause of--

MATT: "I mean, it's all appreciated, really."

SAM: The group that runs the caravan was called what again?

MATT: "It's the Gold Guild of Treshi."

LAURA: Treshi, oh.

SAM: Oh, oh, oh!

LAURA: Treshi.

SAM: That's fine information.

TRAVIS: Huh?

LAURA: How weird, it's all connected. How long ago was this that this happened?

MATT: "This is about two months ago, three months."

ROBBIE: How long has the bounty been on you?

LAURA: How long ago did the people start going missing from the--

MATT: It was a couple weeks.

LAURA: Okay, I knew that.

MATT: Three weeks.

LAURA: Three weeks.

ROBBIE: The bounty, how long has the bounty been on your head?

MATT: "As far as I'm aware of it, not long after all this went down."

ROBBIE: Two months?

MATT: "Yeah."

ROBBIE: Two months you've ducked a 20,000 gold bounty?

MATT: "Well, the Corsairs had my back. Once again, maybe I was a bit too trusting at the forefront, but the fact that they're still working with me and helping me out and haven't turned me in--"

LAURA: You should not leave their hide outs.

ROBBIE: Mm-mm.

TALIESIN: No.

LAURA: You should not be here.

MATT: "Should I go? Should I go?"

TRAVIS: Probably, you know. Just be quiet as you go.

MATT: Pulls the hood up a little bit, as he starts looking more and more nervous and anxious looking around.

SAM: Dorian, this is your family. You should tell us how you would like to proceed. Sorry for the awkwardness tonight. We, as Chetney was just saying, we just made a brand new acquaintance and sort of were being propelled along a path to help this old gentlemen out. Now you've come and sort of complicated that a bit.

MATT: "Well, no complications, Like, I'll figure it out."

SAM: Family's important, you know?

LIAM: The Corsairs are giving you a shelter when you're not out squandering it?

MATT: "Yeah, yeah."

TRAVIS: (laughs)

LIAM: Okay.

LAURA: All right.

LIAM: They're pretty well connected. They have no leads, nothing?

MATT: "No."

LIAM: No.

ROBBIE: Two months. You've stayed safe for two months with them?

MATT: "So far, yeah. I've just done a few jobs here and there. The work's fine. I keep mostly to the Lantern Spire and--

TRAVIS: Any close calls? Like, have any seen any bounty hunters? Close calls, anybody get to you?

MATT: "There was one individual that I was told was following me, but they apparently took care of them for me. They're a pretty strong brotherhood, those Corsairs. But once again, criminals. Don't tell Mom and Dad, please."

TRAVIS: When they say "took care of," like, they sent him packing? Or like?

MATT: "I assume so, yeah."

MARISHA: Why not just leave? Why not go home? Bounty gone, never come back.

MATT: "Well, no, you see the thing is, I couldn't bring the shame back home. I'm going to take care of my business, I'm going to get it handled. I'm going to clean the slate, and then return on my own terms, without them knowing any of this transpired."

TRAVIS: Without who knowing?

TALIESIN: Mom and dad.

ROBBIE: Mom and Dad.

TALIESIN: The parents.

TRAVIS: Wow.

TALIESIN: Yeah.

TRAVIS: It's like that with your parents, huh?

MARISHA: It's fascinating. I don't know, this is such an interesting perspective. You're having people die on your name.

MATT: "Nobody's died by my name, they just took care of him."

MARISHA: What do you think that means? (giggles) What do you think that means?

MATT: "Oh no."

TALIESIN: Did you ever have a puppy that had to be taken up continent, anything like that?

SAM: Up continent?

ROBBIE: Oh, brother, they were definitely murdered.

MARISHA: Yes, ever have a pet that has to "go to Vasselheim," you know?

ROBBIE: Did they say who was after you? Did they give you a name?

TALIESIN: Thank you.

MATT: "Not specifically, no. Look-- I hate to admit this, I'm not as good as you are at these things."

ROBBIE: Obviously. You literally fucked it up right out of the gate.

MATT: "I did. I did. I'm genuinely very embarrassed by all of this, but I'm going to take care of it. I'm going to make you proud, and Mom and Dad proud. This is all going to be fine. And if it isn't, then you should probably go home and pick up where I left off."

ROBBIE: Don't say that. We'll make it right.

MATT: "I just thought it was important to tell you."

ASHLEY: Well, where did you leave off? Are you? What are you?

MATT: Make a persuasion check.

TALIESIN: I want to hear him say it.

MARISHA: I know, I know, I know.

TALIESIN and MARISHA: Just say it.

MARISHA: Come on.

ASHLEY: 24.

TRAVIS: Ooh, get it.

ROBBIE: Jiminy criminey.

MATT: "We're, um. We're the eldest sons of the noble leadership of the Silken Squall."

MARISHA: Silkenswol?

MATT: "Squall."

MARISHA: Squall?

LAURA: The eldest, so there's more siblings?

MATT: "Oh no, we are the--"

LAURA: You are the sons?

ROBBIE: Eldest, yes.

TRAVIS: Insight check.

MATT: Make an insight check.

TRAVIS: 15.

ROBBIE: Just us. It's just us.

SAM: Your parents are the leaders of this place?

ROBBIE: Our people--

LAURA: King and queen?

ROBBIE: Not quite.

LAURA: Prince Cyrus, Prince Dorian.

MATT: "Probably the most apt analogy, yeah."

ROBBIE: We're not really into labels. You've always liked to say that, though.

MATT: "We have some importance." He grins.

ASHLEY: Do you wear a crown?

ROBBIE: Hmm, would you call it a crown?

MATT: "Not necessarily."

ROBBIE: More of a laurel.

MATT: "Yeah. Ceremonial, mostly a circlet."

ROBBIE: It's very cool.

MATT: "I was planning to add onto it."

SAM: People walk down the street, do they say, "All hail the Storm family?"

MATT: "No, no, no. We're--"

ROBBIE: We are--

LAURA: Is it really worth it, keeping the name secret at this point?

MARISHA: We'll still call you Dorian, we just want to know.

ROBBIE: Your full name is?

MATT: "Cyrus... Storm." (laughter)

ROBBIE: I love you so much. The long and short of it is our people have been fractured for a long time. And, occasionally, they come to our family to seek guidance. If someone has a question about how they think something should be handled within our global community, we do our best to give them the advice that they deserve for many generations.

MATT: "Which is why, and I was talking with Zunado, it was important to be a little more worldly. Apparently, we're not the first, in fact, we're late bloomers when it comes to taking this trek, but."

ROBBIE: This is news to me.

MATT: "As it was to me, too."

ROBBIE: So I didn't have to sneak away.

MATT: "Oh, I think you did, I think Mom and Dad wanted to keep us there as long as they could. I get the sense they didn't have the best experience on their trek and they wanted to continue our... containment."

TALIESIN: You ran away from a family of generations of oracles is what you're saying?

ROBBIE: Hmm.

MATT: "Yeah."

TALIESIN: It's amazing that they didn't see it coming. (laughter)

TRAVIS: Yes.

ROBBIE: No one sees the future. We just have generations of family wisdom. Let's call them very respected opinions.

MARISHA: But you're so naive. (giggles)

ROBBIE: We never left our home, ever.

MATT: "No, this is my first time away."

ROBBIE: Mine as well.

MATT: "It's going great, obviously."

ROBBIE: I managed to not get myself almost murdered and rack up an insurmountably unimaginable bounty on my head.

MATT: "You did?"

ROBBIE: I did not, I did not. I did manage to not do that.

MATT: "Oh."

TALIESIN: To be fair, tonight you did almost get murdered.

LAURA: You almost got murdered multiple times in my presence.

MATT: "Ha! See, I'm not the only one."

ROBBIE: Oh, it's starting to get hurtful.

TALIESIN: You weren't alone, but yeah, we almost got murdered tonight.

ROBBIE: Together.

TALIESIN: Together.

ROBBIE: The wall was scary.

TALIESIN: That was a very scary wall.

SAM: I feel like Chetney might still want to kill you.

TRAVIS: I knew you were famous. (laughter) So what's your real name? I mean. (stage whisper) What's your real name?

ROBBIE: First name, will that suffice?

TRAVIS: I mean, whichever order you want to give it in.

ROBBIE: My real name is--

TALIESIN: Make demands before you give it. Always make demands before you give it. You need a straight trade here.

ROBBIE: Yes, yes.

TALIESIN: You need a straight trade. I'm not your friend. Don't look at me.

TRAVIS: I know.

ROBBIE: I want to claim my toy design now.

TRAVIS: Oh shit, hold on. Get a little note pad out. (laughter) Hit me.

ROBBIE: I would like an airship.

TRAVIS: Airship.

ROBBIE: With the biggest wingspan you can imagine.

TRAVIS: Oh god, keep going.

ROBBIE: I'd like the underside to be coated with brumestone.

TRAVIS: Oh, oh.

ROBBIE: So that when I toss it up into the air, it floats on its own. Have you ever done anything like that?

TRAVIS: Oh, we're going to have a problem.

ROBBIE: Okay?

TRAVIS: I only work with wood.

ROBBIE: Oh, well I thought you were a master craftsman?

TRAVIS: I am, an MC, motherfucker, but I don't taint my stuff with outside materials. It's wood only. Now, if you want to use your imagination and make it fly, like most children do--

ROBBIE: All right.

TRAVIS: I'll give you the best wood ship.

ROBBIE: I thought you said you didn't have children?

TRAVIS: No, I make toys for children.

ROBBIE: You don't have children?

TRAVIS: Am I going too fast for you?

ROBBIE: No, you don't think that's creepy, that you don't have children and you make children's toys?

ASHLEY: Who was your employer where you're from?

TRAVIS: Oltgar?

ASHLEY: Old guy?

LAURA: Oldcal?

LIAM: Old guy?

TRAVIS: Oltgar. Why, do know him?

ASHLEY: Oltgar?

TRAVIS: Do you follow up on toy craft?

MARISHA: Are there any toy conventions?

TRAVIS: Oh my god, are there conventions?

LIAM: Not lately.

TRAVIS: Oh. (laughter)

TRAVIS: An airship with a really big wingspan, with some wooden brumestone on the under it. I should put the SS first name?

ROBBIE: Brontë.

MARISHA and SAM: Brontë? (chuckles)

ASHLEY: Did we learn this at one point?

TRAVIS: How do you spell that?

LAURA: We haven't learned that.

SAM: Bronte?

TRAVIS: How do you spell it?

ROBBIE: B-R-O-N-T-Ë, with a little, woo.

TRAVIS: Oh, I like those.

TRAVIS: Brontë Secondsun--

SAM: Brontë what?

ROBBIE: You were listening, you're very perceptive.

TRAVIS: I do that.

ROBBIE: You are sneaky, sneaky, ey?

SAM: What's the last name?

MATT: "Storm."

ROBBIE: Storm.

TRAVIS: Really?

ROBBIE: Yes.

TRAVIS: It really is Storm?

ROBBIE: What'd you say?

TALIESIN: Insight check.

TRAVIS: Thank you.

LAURA: No insight check needed.

TALIESIN: I'm just doing it for fun.

TRAVIS: Get him, Ashton.

ROBBIE: You brought this, you brought this here, you.

MATT: "I was trying to talk to you, one-on-one."

ROBBIE: I know, impossible. Have you noticed, impossible?

MATT: "I know, I was waiting for a moment, but they can't seem to leave your side."

TALIESIN: There is no moment.

LAURA: To be fair, most of us probably won't know the last name, anyway.

ROBBIE: That's true.

MATT: "That's true."

MARISHA: Also, last time we left one of our members alone, he died!

TALIESIN: That's also true.

MARISHA: In an alley! By himself!

MATT: "That's horrible."

LAURA: It wasn't actually very funny, it was pretty sad.

MATT: "Yeah, I know. That sounds awful."

MARISHA: It was so sad!

ROBBIE: Go on, brother. You can tell them.

MATT: "Wyvernwind."

ASHLEY: (gasps)

TRAVIS: Is that it?

MATT: "Cyrus Wyvernwind, and his brother."

SAM: Brontë.

MATT: "Brontë Wyvernwind."

ROBBIE: You son of bitch.

LAURA: Now, have we--

ROBBIE: Sorry, Mom.

LAURA: -- ever heard that name before?

TRAVIS: That's pretty dope.

MATT: Make a history check.

ROBBIE: Oh!

SAM: The name of the wind.

LAURA: Nope, I got nothing.

MATT: Never heard of it.

TRAVIS: I have advantage on history checks, fuck that, natural-- It's a dirty 20.

MATT: You do not have advantage on them. (laughter) (laughter) What was the first roll?

TRAVIS: 12.

MATT: 12? Yeah. You're also not from Marquet. So you would definitely not know this. (laughter)

SAM: I rolled a natural one.

MATT: Yeah, it's like-- He grins. "You know, the Wyvernwind, the whole family of the Silken Squall."

LAURA: Where are the Wyvernwinds located?

ROBBIE: Everywhere.

MATT: "In Silken Squall. Yeah, it's a nomadic group of people."

ROBBIE: It is somewhat famous, right?

MATT: "Yeah, very. Obviously, I haven't been around much. That's all right, though. You learn as you get more worldly."

TALIESIN: I don't know.

ROBBIE: Genasi, you haven't heard at all?

TALIESIN: No.

LIAM: You used the word global, though?

ROBBIE: Yes.

LIAM: World around?

ROBBIE: Uh-huh, for generations. But we've been in Marquet for quite a long time.

MATT: "Yeah. Couple of decades, at least."

TALIESIN: It's a big world.

ROBBIE: We always move. We move, but we never see much. We stay within the walls. It's a tent city, it floats. Silken Squall--

MATT: "It's really beautiful."

LAURA: That sounds beautiful.

ROBBIE: It is.

MATT: "It's also really boring after a while."

ROBBIE: It is.

ASHLEY: How far is that from here right now?

MATT: "As of seven months ago, it was making its way through Aeshanadoor."

TRAVIS: Oh, it moves!

LAURA: So wait.

MARISHA: ♪ Aeshanadoor ♪

LAURA: How will you find it again if it constantly moves?

MATT: "We just ask around, see if folks have seen it. I don't know, I haven't left home before. I didn't think this through."

TRAVIS: You can see it from the ground, like pass by?

MATT: "Yeah."

ROBBIE: It's a giant tent city. We usually stay within the outskirts in the Wilds. But yes.

MATT: "Yeah."

TRAVIS: Wow.

TALIESIN: I guess people would notice if they saw it. Then you would just ask people, have you seen a giant fucking floating city?

MATT: "Right, no. That was--"

TALIESIN: They'd be like, Holy shit, this thing just flew by last month, it took a week.

ROBBIE: But mostly--

TRAVIS: I quit drinking. (laughter)

ROBBIE: They seek us out. Any air genasi is welcome within the "walls," as it were.

TALIESIN: Huh. All right.

MARISHA: Are people who are not air genasis welcome inside the walls?

MATT: "I mean, they're under strict invitation and guard."

ROBBIE: They are allowed.

LAURA: But if the royalty of the city invites people in, then obviously they would welcome us?

MATT: "Oh totally, yeah. This would not be a problem."

ASHLEY: Yeah, if you had your best friends with you, they would let us in, right?

ROBBIE: What's that?

ASHLEY: If, you know, you went and we all were to go visit, they would let us all in?

MARISHA: She said we're your best friends.

ROBBIE: Yes!

MARISHA: Are we your best friends?

ROBBIE: You... are, you all are.

TALIESIN: There's a lot of technicality in that, but I'll take it.

LIAM: You, too, Chetney.

TRAVIS: What?

SAM: Poor Chetney, I feel like he came in pretty hot with a mission for us. Now we've got this other thing.

MARISHA: Well, I agree with Imogen. It feels like it's all connected. You're looking for a master craftsmans' guild. This golem was stolen from a masons' guild. And the masons' guild also repaired the street that the evil wall--

LIAM: Yeah, masons' guild was the wall. Gold Guild, I think you said?

MATT: Yeah, the Gold Guild of Treshi.

LAURA: But the Treshi house was also connected--

ROBBIE: Pardon my ignorance. Now, you know we're a bit cloistered. What is Treshi?

SAM: It's a family.

ROBBIE: It's a family?

TALIESIN: Yeah.

SAM: And they have two guilds?

MARISHA: Or they're a part of, like, an umbrella guild?

LAURA: We don't know.

MARISHA: All right.

LAURA: Would we know how that works?

MATT: Are you proficient in history?

LAURA: No.

MARISHA: On how guilds work?

MATT: Specifically to this area.

LIAM: How is it-- I just slapped him in the arm. How's it work around here? The Treshi house has got multiple guilds?

MATT: There are different noble houses. (laughter)

MATT: That, if they have enough power and influence, can be in control of or partner with other noble houses to run multiple guilds.

MARISHA: Okay. So the Treshis have partnered with another family, and they help run the masons' guild?

MATT: From what you know, apparently this name is attached to two different guilds. That's all you know.

MARISHA: I understand. Okay, okay, okay, okay, okay.

LAURA: Okay.

LAURA: Well--

MARISHA: And also, you know-- Oh sorry, go ahead.

LAURA: You go.

MARISHA: I was going to say, I mean, it just sounds familiar to what you were talking about. Didn't you say that, you know? Your people were attacked and you're looking for, you know, this person who also was attacked?

LIAM: I don't know that it's connected yet.

TALIESIN: If I were to going to go to looking for people, I would start at the Smolder Spire. That's not crazy.

LAURA: Can I talk to-- Ashton, may I speak to you privately?

TALIESIN: Like, into--

LAURA: Uh-huh.

TALIESIN: Oh yeah, any time you like. I think it's fucking great.

LAURA: All right. Now I don't want to say this in front of everyone, but you know when you showed me that letter?

TALIESIN: Yeah?

LAURA: I did happen to see a couple of initials on it. Those initials happened to be the same ones that he said were on that chest.

MARISHA: (whispered) Oh shit. Holy shit! Oh shit.

LAURA: Do you think it might be connected?

TALIESIN: I really hope not.

LAURA: I don't know who it is or anything about it, but it just struck me as quite a coincidence.

TALIESIN: Yeah, that's a story. I'm thinking this.

LAURA: Yeah.

TALIESIN: That's a complicated story.

LAURA: All right, just thought I'd put it out there.

TALIESIN: Yeah, let's give it a day. If nothing-- If nothing turns up, then maybe it'll be time to have that conversation.

LAURA: That's a plan.

TALIESIN: Ah shit.

MATT: "Anyway. I'm sorry to interrupt your evening, didn't mean to spook you if I did. I just wanted to make sure that-- I just wanted to check in, see how you're doing."

LIAM: All's well that ends well, ish.

ROBBIE: I'm glad you're all right.

MATT: "Yeah, you, too."

ROBBIE: Are you going to be all right?

MATT: "Yeah, yeah, I'm fine. I got this."

ROBBIE: Can I at least take you back to where you're staying?

MATT: "Oh yeah, yeah, can do that."

ROBBIE: Yeah. Do you mind if I--

LAURA: No, the two of you will draw far less attention than the group of us.

MATT: "That is very true."

ROBBIE: I'll take you to the Corsairs. To be fair, we've been almost murdered by furniture and walls so far. So perhaps their protection is--

MATT: "There's a lot of that going around here."

ROBBIE: We can talk about it on the way.

MARISHA: I know, I know.

ROBBIE: Let's go back. I'll come back to you this evening.

MARISHA: You're going to be all right?

ROBBIE: We'll be fine. My brother is infinitely capable.

MATT: "I can do a lot."

MARISHA: If you get into trouble, maybe he should take one of the stones?

LIAM: He's got it, yeah. I was about to say, you know where to find us.

ROBBIE: All right.

MARISHA: Just a shout.

TRAVIS: What's that?

LIAM: A lucky rock.

TRAVIS: Oh, that's cute.

MATT: "I used to have a lucky rock. Nice."

ROBBIE: It was a pet rock, and if I recall, you let it die somehow.

MARISHA: Such a himbo.

LAURA: Yeah.

ROBBIE: Let's go.

MATT: "Sorry, I'm just taking a moment. It's been a while since I thought about Rocky." (laughter)

LAURA: Wow.

TRAVIS: Oh god.

MATT: "Anyway, sorry. It's been a pleasure to meet you all. And I hope the pleasure was mutual."

LAURA: See you soon, Your Majesty.

MATT: "Ah!"

ROBBIE: Don't take it-- just please don't do that again.

TRAVIS: Okay, Your Grace.

LAURA: Whatever you say, Your Majesty.

ROBBIE: I'm going to lead him down the stairs.

MATT: "They seem really nice."

ROBBIE: They're all right.

MATT: "That one dark-haired one's extremely upsetting."

ROBBIE: It's true, especially at first, but--

MARISHA: You talking about me?

ROBBIE: She grows on you, she does.

MATT: "I would burn that off." (laughter)

LIAM: It's the only damage that works. (laughter)

MARISHA: Like a tick.

MATT: So you go ahead and head back to the Lantern Spire, to the Elder Post, to the same space where you originally encountered the Corsairs. Along the way, if there's any conversation you want to strike up.

ROBBIE: I'm indebted to these people. They have been good to me, things have been well. And, at first I was very upset to see you, but now my heart's at ease. I'm scared for you, but I'm glad that you're here in front of me now.

MATT: "Hey, you know what? It'll be a great story that you and me and no one else will know about."

ROBBIE: We'll discuss how much we tell Mother and Father later. But, please, stay safe not for me, but for us, our family needs you. Now I know, I know that look in your face. Yes, yes, how everything's fine, I've got this. I can tell when you're scared.

MATT: "I don't know what I'm doing."

ROBBIE: That would be a first.

MATT: "That's been the hardest lesson coming out here in the world, is realizing-- Yeah, yeah, sure, I'd be fine if I stayed home the whole way. But... I mean, what is the life as a leader when you don't understand the world at all? I don't know, there's just something that's always been there that I didn't think about, didn't listen to until you left. Just something that just tells us to go. To fly. And you-- And I mean this with nothing but appreciation and a little fear, you forced me to listen to it for the first time. Yeah, sure there's a bounty on my head, and I am going to try and investigate and figure out where the hell these people are and get back what they took before I get killed in the middle of broad daylight. But I'm thankful for it."

ROBBIE: We have been caged for too long. I have a question for Matt.

MATT: Yes?

ROBBIE: Am I privy to the range on the Sending Stone?

MATT: You know, based on the conversation you had when purchasing it and utilizing it. It does the spell Sending, if I recall correctly, once per day, which is anywhere in the world.

ROBBIE: Okay. Is it-- Who's technically bought it? Whose is it? Because it was given to me, and I can't recall who bought it. Didn't someone buy it?

ASHLEY: Given to us, right?

LAURA: No, no, we bought it.

ROBBIE: We bought it together.

SAM: Together.

MATT: Yeah, group funds.

LAURA: Yeah, we bought it together.

ROBBIE: If you need anything, take this.

MATT: "Your lucky rock?"

ROBBIE: It's more than that. You can reach us any time. Just go to a shop, look it up. You'll probably talk to my friend, Orym. If anything's happened to me, he'll know what to do. If anything happens to you, do not hesitate to call for help.

MATT: "Sorry I killed the last one."

ROBBIE: If you lose this one, I'll kill you. Stay safe.

MATT: "Okay, you too, you too. See you back home in, I don't know, a few years, whatever."

ROBBIE: We'll see.

MATT: "All right." He reaches out and musses your hair a bit.

ROBBIE: I hate when you do that.

MATT: "I know. Night."

ROBBIE: Night.

MATT: Gets back inside.

ROBBIE: I'll start walking by myself back to the--

LIAM: Better stick to the alleys.

ROBBIE: Mm-hmm.

MATT: Are you walking stealthily?

ROBBIE: I feel like I should be, since I just dropped my brother off at the sin den.

MATT: Roll a stealth check for me.

TALIESIN: With the only method of communicating with anybody in case anything went wrong.

LAURA: And you match his description.

MARISHA: Uh-huh.

ROBBIE: Have you checked my intelligence? (laughter)

TRAVIS: Oh no.

ROBBIE: Not great. 10.

MATT: Okay. So you quietly make your way through the Lantern Spire. The late night, nearly empty streets, that bit of jungle fog, beginning to settle into the street's corners and edges. You cross the long bridge to the Core Spire. As you approach, not far within eyesight of the Spire By Fire entranceway, you get there safely. (laughter)

TRAVIS: Who goes out by themselves at night? That's so stupid.

ROBBIE: I love my brother! I love him.

MATT: As you let loose a breath and sigh of relief upon arrival in the warm interior of the inn, we're going to take a break. (cheering)

MATT: Because we're at that time.

TALIESIN: Long rest. Long rest? Long rest.

ROBBIE: Long rest? Can we?

MARISHA: Can we?

MATT: If you guys want to go straight to bed, and continue your conversation in the morning, then by all means.

MARISHA: Yeah, let's sleep.

MATT: Okay.

TRAVIS: I'm not sleeping.

ROBBIE: Are you under my bed? (laughter)

TRAVIS: Time to whittle out the weak ones. (laughter)

TRAVIS: Auditions are over! (laughter)

LIAM: This is like gnome De Niro in "Cape Fear."

MATT: Yeah. (laughter)

MATT: Fantastic, we'll pick up shortly after our break. We'll see you guys in a few minutes, thank you so much.

Break[]

Will nothing save us from this unholy curse?
♪ There is a curse 'pon every man, Across this dark and dangerous land. ♪
♪ No one can run, No one can hide, from the perils of B.O.! ♪
♪ B.O.! B.O.! Nothing we do will make it go. ♪
♪ Old Spice does not yet exist, So everyone smells quite awful. ♪
♪ In the bathhouse, one would think, A witcher could wash away the stink. ♪
♪ But with this soup of dirt and grime, His bed should be a crime. ♪
♪ B.O.! B.O.! And nothing we do will make it go. ♪
♪ Armpits full of "yuck" and lice, oh how we long for Old Spice. ♪
One day in the future, Old Spice will be our savior. 'Til that day comes, our pits will smell, and our noses condemned to a pungent hell!
♪ B.O.! B.O.! Nothing we do will make it go. ♪
♪ But in 700 years, when the gods of smell see fit, ♪
♪ long-lasting Old Spice will save our armpiiiiiiiits! ♪
We'd be dead by then.

(gentle music)

Man: We don't have the strength alone.

Lizard Woman: It's the truth. If we try to storm the gates again, we will be killed.

Girl: By what though?

Man: How long has she been in the ditches?

Lizard Woman: Just a week, she'll learn.

Girl: I could help.

Man: You've never seen the gates of the sun. I have, I know what lurks there.

Girl: But to explore the Astory in Acropolis beyond, it's a scholar's dream.

Man: This is no dream.

Lizard Woman: It's not even a nightmare. Nightmares end, our imprisonment in the ditches is eternal.

Girl: But if we can pass through the gates-

Man: Horrors unimaginable await beyond the gates.

Girl: But you have magic, weapons. Together we could survive the necropolis, make it through to the surface, be free there.

Lizard Woman: Free? The sun itself is forsaken Astoria. There is no freedom in the dark. And what would you be willing to sacrifice to get to the surface? Would you give your blood for it, your friends, your soul?

Man: When you stand in the court of the blood drinkers, haunted by what you've seen, well, you would be a brave hero indeed if you still thought of saving anyone but yourself.

Girl: Well, I have to try. Someone has to.

Lizard Woman: All of us here, you think we have not tried? Those whose bones hold up these very walls, you think they did not try?

Girl: If you've given up, I will wait here for others. There must be more like me. (heart beats) I just hope they get here soon.

(gentle music)

(dark enchanting music)

LAURA: Hey Critters! Laura Bailey here to guide you through what's new in the Critical Role shop. Glorious! Oooh! Look at this! Look at the details! Oooh! Can you put donuts in this? Only one way to find out! These holidays you know, they're just around the corner! You need this? You probably need this. I mean The Traveler always says impulse purchases are a good decision. The cuteness! It's overpowering. It's so cute. I can't handle it. And hey, if you want you can head on over to the Critical Role shop right now.

(whimsical music)

(typewriter clicking)

(whimsical music)

(swelling piano music)

SAM: Hi critters, Sam Riegel here. There are many relaxing properties to a Twitch subscription to Critical Role, so today I'm going to tell you all about them in soothing ASMR, which stands for autonomous subscription meditative reaction or something. With a Twitch subscription you can watch our VODs immediately after the live broadcast before they're uploaded to YouTube, so you can unwind with us at your own pace. Listen, that's the sound of your blood pressure decreasing. You also get access to all of our custom emotes. And you can post links in chat. Doesn't that sound nice? (squeaks) And speaking of chat, Twitch is the only place to join our live and professionally-moderated chat while watching Critical Role. So snuggle up with some cocoa and let the calm flow through those fingers, critters. I'm whispering from really far away. And if you're an Amazon Prime member you get one free Twitch subscription to a channel of your choice through Prime Gaming, so why not use that tranquil little freebie on a Critical Role subscription? Just remember to resubscribe every month. Am I doing this right? Or, oh, sorry. Am I doing this right? You can also gift subscriptions to fellow critters. So what are you waiting for, start spreading that sweet serenity with a Twitch subscription to Critical Role. It's like a warm blanket. Oh, oh hold on, hold on. It's my proctologist, just give me a second, okay. Hello, hello. Oh hey doc, yeah, what's up? What do you mean more teeth? I thought you got rid of them all. Well no, don't tell me to relax. I'm the one with teeth up my-- (calm music) Subscribe.

(calm music)

Part II[]

MATT: And welcome back. So.

SAM: I would be--

MATT: As you have you all taken a night's rest, a long rest which you can take on your character sheet. (exclaiming)

ASHLEY: Wow, I'm so refreshed!

ROBBIE: Please.

TALIESIN: Yeah, that was rough.

MATT: Eventually, you all come to consciousness in the early morning light and gather in the Spire by Fire for your modest breakfast that is included-- continental-- as part of your stay. (laughter)

MARISHA: Bran muffin.

LAURA: Cornflakes--

ASHLEY: Bagels, lox.

LIAM: Eggs.

TALIESIN: I got a banana.

MATT: Based on how late you were up and how exhausted most of you were, we'll say it's a little later in the morning. The sun wouldn't be quite as low in the sky at this point. As it transitions back into more of a midday, late morning feel for your meal, (laughs) that's viable. There are numerous people in the tavern, finishing their dishes, some people are just in the process of enjoying the space and reading books or gambling in separate corners. But the table you are all sitting at is yours to think about what to do with the day and your new interest, and compatriot.

MARISHA: How did you sleep, Chetney?

TRAVIS: Oh, I slept excellent!

MARISHA: Where did you sleep?

TRAVIS: Out here.

MARISHA: Oh, fantastic.

LAURA: Just in the middle of the tavern?

TRAVIS: Well, yeah, I just get used to, you know, most people don't notice me, I just throw the cloak over and I'm out.

LAURA: Wow.

TRAVIS: Yeah. It pays to not be seen.

ASHLEY: Well, you could probably fit in bed with us.

TRAVIS: Oh, yeah?

ASHLEY: Yeah.

TRAVIS: You offering?

ASHLEY: Sure. (laughter)

ASHLEY: You're a little small for me, but I could make it work.

TRAVIS: That's okay. Lot of wisdom with these years, I'll make up for it.

ASHLEY: Same here, baby. (laughter)

TRAVIS: Let's keep it professional.

ASHLEY: Sure, sure, sure.

TRAVIS: Okay.

ASHLEY: I'm professional.

LAURA: Um. (laughter)

LAURA: So, Dorian...

TRAVIS: What?

LAURA: Are we still calling you that?

TRAVIS: No, he gave us his real name!

ROBBIE: Oh, uh...

LIAM: How do you prefer?

LAURA: Yeah, that's a good question.

ROBBIE: Prefer? I prefer what you know me as.

LAURA: Dorian?

ROBBIE: Might be a bit of a fib, but...

ASHLEY: It's your chosen name.

ROBBIE: That's how we met.

TALIESIN: I like it better.

LAURA: It does suit you.

ROBBIE: Thank you.

LAURA: So is it dire to look after your brother right now, or--?

LIAM: It seemed pretty dire.

LAURA: Chetney's somebody's missing, and they've only been missing for a short while and we might lose their trail.

TRAVIS and SAM: The first 48 hours--

SAM: -- is very important!

LAURA: As you have said.

ASHLEY: Yes, yes, 48, first 48.

ROBBIE: As much as I want to be my brother's keeper, he seemed all right for now.

MARISHA: Do you want to be your brother's keeper? Is that true?

ROBBIE: Not particularly, but he was in-- what did you say? Dire circumstances? He feels safe with the Corsairs, so. I don't know. It's not about me.

LAURA: I think he's safe with the Corsairs.

ROBBIE: You do?

LAURA: I do. They're very well-hidden, you know?

LIAM: As long as he stays hidden.

MARISHA: 20,000 gold is a huge bounty.

ROBBIE: It is.

ASHLEY: Do you-- Do you want to be... on the throne? I don't know what to call it. Do you want to be?

ROBBIE: It's more of a big comfy chair.

ASHLEY: Okay.

ROBBIE: Two, actually. But--

MARISHA: Sounds like a throne.

ROBBIE: Not particularly.

ASHLEY: Okay.

ROBBIE: Not now. My parents are older, but they're still very capable. I am concerned about my brother, if that's your question, yes. I'm also concerned about you, Chetney.

TRAVIS: Two chairs, does that mean you're betrothed?

ROBBIE: No, not technically, but husband and wife have equal voice in our village. They weigh in equally on their opinions. There's no king or queen. They rule as one. So I suppose whomever my brother would eventually marry and they would rule together, but both my parents are sound and fine, according to my brother. I am worried about him, but... he is blasé about everything. He seemed all right. I don't know. I don't know!

SAM: Meanwhile, Chetney's friend, was it Grog?

TRAVIS: Gurge!

SAM: Gurge, he's on the-- he's missing? We have absolutely no details about him at all?

TRAVIS: Well, I mean, look--

TALIESIN: Brown hair.

TRAVIS: We could go to where he, you know, where. His domicile, if that's what you want to call it and give it a look. But I'm afraid I don't have much more than that.

TALIESIN: I feel like if nothing turns up at the Smolder Spire that that's a good place to start with your brother, anyway.

LAURA: Plus, the Smolder Spire was connected to the brumestone, potentially?

SAM: I don't remember that, but sure.

LAURA: Dugger was making trips back and forth between the Smolder Spire.

SAM: But we didn't catch where?

LAURA: No.

SAM: Okay.

MARISHA: I'm very curious how all these Mahaan families work with all their guilds and what not. It's a lot to unpack.

SAM: It's a rich world.

TRAVIS: You all are from here, right?

MARISHA: Oh, no!

LAURA: Not this city, no.

TRAVIS: Oh, how do you find people so well? Oh, they were all dead.

SAM: We wait until they die, then we find them.

TALIESIN: Conveniently, they move around a lot less.

LAURA: Yeah.

TRAVIS: Is anyone from Jrusar?

SAM: Originally?

LAURA: Are you? No?

TALIESIN: No.

MARISHA: Ashton's been here the longest.

TALIESIN: A while.

TRAVIS: Oh, okay, that'll help. Maybe?

SAM: I guess then--

LAURA: Let's head to the Smolder Spire and see what we find.

SAM: You know the address or wherever?

TRAVIS: I can lead you there, but also, if I can just make myself useful as well, I don't want to draw too much attention if we need to see your brother to safety, or--?

ROBBIE: It's so hard. I think my brother will reach out. He found us last night, if things get worse or he's in more trouble, I suppose he'll find a way to contact us.

LAURA: How would he find us?

ROBBIE: He's very resourceful. I think he'll find a way to reach out.

LAURA: All right.

ROBBIE: So this is our journey. Let's do what we all feel is right.

LAURA: Let's go, then.

MATT: There is a bit of commotion, to the left of the entrance of the Spire by Fire. You can see there's a couple of tables over there with some individuals in the middle of eating breakfast and there's just some lively conversation, a person who's standing there talking with them. Let's say, Orym, Fearne, Fresh Cut Grass, you all pick up bits of the conversation. It seems to be them, an individual standing at the table, hood back. You can see a human, a little older, sun-weathered skin, conversing with a handful of pre-shift miners or hard-working craftsmen, wearing leather materials and heavy gloves, or have them off to the side on the table while they're finishing their late breakfast. They're having a lively conversation, one of them shouting-- Not shouting, but loudly exclaiming, "I know. It's bullshit. This whole place is just falling apart." Somebody else across the table goes like, "No, I think if we don't do anything soon, we'll just have to find another place." At this point, the person who's standing there with the hood back is nailing something to the rather relatively blank job board. (hammering) "Just take heed," puts the hood up, and then exits.

LAURA: Job board?

TALIESIN: I'm going to run down--

MATT: It's more of a post board.

SAM: I'll go, yeah, I'll go look at it.

TALIESIN: I heard something hit the job board. Run down.

MARISHA: J.H., everywhere!

TALIESIN: (blows raspberry)

LAURA: What does it say?

SAM: Too many words!

LAURA: "The rise in violence, attacks and dangerous lawlessness at the hands of the Hubatt Corsairs," I can read! Hubatt Corsairs grows at a disastrous rate unimpeded. We, the people of Jrusar, will not stand idly by as the Quorum ignores our plights, while the Wardens of the Wild are stretched too thin. Demand skilled hands to protect us. Demand Quorum approval and the authority for the Paragon's Call," What is a Paragon's Call? Demand to end this anarchy once and for all."

MATT: History check for you.

TALIESIN: Mm-hmm.

LAURA: Sounds like an uprising.

TALIESIN: Not great, that's an eight.

MATT: Eight? You would know it just because of where you grew up, but you don't know too much about them. The Paragon's Call is a well-known mercenary, like a well-known mercenary group that works through the Hellcatch Valley that made its name in the conflict 20 years before between Aeshanadoor and the Stratos Throne.

TALIESIN: Not fun mercenaries.

MATT: No, they're effective, for those who have the money, but they're definitely, they're known for doing whatever it takes to get the job done, which is efficient and why a lot of people continue to use them. Though in, without times of conflict, they tend to work whoever has the best amount of coin.

MARISHA: Who puts out-- Your brother, this bounty, I'm assuming that bounty is by the guild, right?

LAURA: Yeah, who put the bounty on his head? Was it the Wilders, or was it--?

MARISHA: That's a question.

ROBBIE: He was set up to take the fall, so whomever hired him to guard the caravan, I would guess.

ASHLEY: Did he say--

LAURA: Did we hear him say it? Did we hear you say it?

MATT: No, you did not specifically say, did not specifically ask.

ASHLEY: Who's Nova?

MATT: Nova was the leader of the crew that have apparently absconded with this expensive looking golem-like thing.

ROBBIE: Was he-- Remind me, I'm sorry. Was he a part of the crew that was supposed to be guarding it?

MATT: Correct.

ROBBIE: Yeah. So it was an inside job.

LAURA: That was the other side, Nova and the --

MATT: Correct, they essentially-- They all-- The entire crew that was hired to protect this caravan, he was the one outlier and the rest of them just left with the goods.

ROBBIE: The fall guy.

MATT: And he was the fall guy.

MARISHA: Ashton, have you ever had a bounty on your head?

TALIESIN: Yes.

MARISHA: How did that work?

TALIESIN: What do you mean, how did that work?

MARISHA: Who put the bounty on your head? How was it resolved?

TALIESIN: No, well, that's complicated.

ROBBIE: Is there still a bounty on your head?

TALIESIN: Probably a couple?

LAURA: Not here, I assume?

TRAVIS: You got warrants?

TALIESIN: Not really, no.

TRAVIS: What county?

TALIESIN: I mean, not really. If you get caught, you either (slicing) or you pay it off. Paying a couple of things off.

ROBBIE: So you can pay the amount of the bounty and cancel it out?

TALIESIN: They want their money. They don't want you. They don't care about you. They want what was stolen or the value of it.

LAURA: Do they hire a specific person to-- and they pay them?

MARISHA: Or is it just whoever gets there first?

TALIESIN: Traditionally, it's whoever gets there first.

ROBBIE: More of an open contract.

TALIESIN: Yeah, think of it as the reverse of a lost dog poster. Reward--

ROBBIE: But you won't kill the dog?

TALIESIN: Except it would be a Wanted: Dead or Alive dog poster. If that makes sense.

SAM: That's a bad dog.

TALIESIN: That makes sense for you. I don't know about everybody else. Traditionally, if you can get the money to them or make an arrangement, then it's not really a problem.

LAURA: Okay.

TALIESIN: Traditionally.

SAM: Ah, tradition.

TALIESIN: But your brother was a fall guy?

ROBBIE: This post doesn't seem like that.

TALIESIN: Well, if your brother did take the blame, they may be more interested in making him disappear and wrapping everything up than they are the money, so that is worth thinking about.

ROBBIE: Or the item.

TALIESIN: Or the item.

ROBBIE: What sort of item would be with 20,000 gold?

MARISHA: Giant golem.

SAM: Wait, was the golem the item, or was there something that the golem stole?

LAURA: I think the golem was the item. They have it under control. Yeah, they got the item. They got him under their control and then he took everything else. So now they have a golem in their army or whatever.

SAM: What a confusing heist.

LAURA: Yeah, why'd they do that?

MARISHA: Right, because-- right. He said that the thieves could puppet the golem. Or it was listening to them? All right.

ASHLEY: So they basically have a very large weapon on their side? Okay.

ROBBIE: But perhaps the golem stole the item of value?

LAURA: Maybe Paragon's Call is trying to take over the city? Maybe they're growing in power and...

SAM: This flyer seems to indicate that they want Paragon's Call to be given authority by the rulers, right?

LAURA: Maybe Paragon's Call put this up.

MARISHA: To go after the Hubatt Corsairs?

ROBBIE: This has a very militia-y feel.

LAURA: The Corsairs are the people in charge.

SAM: No, the Quorum's in charge. The Corsairs are a Robin Hood guild.

LIAM: They're their own people.

LAURA: I understand!

TRAVIS: I don't!

ASHLEY: Should we talk to the guy that put it up on the--

LIAM: If we believe that the Corsairs are generally well-intentioned, then there's a chance that Paragon's Call are a-holes.

LAURA: They're shady, evil people!

MARISHA: Also, if the Hubatt Corsairs are more prone to stealing from the rich, then I imagine that these Paragon's Call mercenaries might be, you know, employed by the rich.

TALIESIN: They certainly don't work for poor people.

LAURA: What did we hear the people saying, exactly, as they were--

TRAVIS: Rhubarb Corsairs?

MATT: They were complaining about--

MARISHA: The Rhubarb Corsairs!

LIAM: Everything's falling apart.

MATT: Yeah, a general lack of safety and control over the city, and lamenting about maybe moving elsewhere.

LAURA: Okay.

ROBBIE: Do you think this Paragon's Call is a overzealous neighborhood watch?

SAM: Yeah, sounds kind of like it?

MARISHA: It sounds like angry rich people who are like, "The neighborhood's gone to shit!"

ROBBIE: Private security.

MARISHA: Yeah.

TALIESIN: They do that really well.

ASHLEY: Look, it even has a hole in it for when it was posted on the job board. Details.

MATT: It's the details. (laughter)

TRAVIS: Pass it down this way, Fearne!

ASHLEY: Oh, yeah, here you go.

LAURA: Shall we discuss further as we walk towards the Smolder Spire?

SAM: Yes, let's walk towards the Smolder Spire to find Grog.

LAURA: Gurge?

TRAVIS: Gurge!

MARISHA: We're walking and talking this whole time.

MATT: Fair enough. Okay.

LAURA: Oh, we have to take-- Oh, we have to take one of the cable cars, don't we?

MATT: You do.

SAM: What's wrong with that?

LAURA: I just hate the cable cars.

TALIESIN: I love the cable cars!

ROBBIE: I'm not too fond either.

SAM: Are you afraid of heights?

LAURA: I just-- I love heights, I love looking at things when you're standing still, but this is shaking around on a tiny little wire that could break at any minute. I can't fly. That's all.

TALIESIN: It's the reverse, I hate heights, but I really like these things.

ASHLEY: I like them, too.

LIAM: How many stories have you heard about one of these things coming down around here? Zero, one?

TALIESIN: Heard about or actually seen?

LIAM: Either or.

TALIESIN: Oh, heard tons of them. Never seen one go down, though.

SAM: Statistically speaking, though, you're much more likely to die in a simurgh crash than in a cable car accident.

TALIESIN: Well done.

ASHLEY: Even walking to the cable car, yeah. (laughter)

TALIESIN: I mean, people talk.

MATT: A short juncture on the opposite side of the Core Spire, you head to one of the viable cables you see attached. There is a small station that hits at the very, very far end of this part of the spiraling street side. There, you can see, there is a small tower and this large jutting piece of rock in which the cables affix to it. You can see metallic structures, almost like the skeletal structure reinforcing the hold as the cable you see bowing and vanishing up to-- Actually, this would be more of a downward arc towards a base portion of the Smolder Spire, which you can now see. You've seen it from a distance here, but even closer up, you can see it has a similar reddish rock as to a lot of the other spires, but across it, there are heavy industrial portions of the city. You see a few lower income residential spaces and a multitude of processing machines almost. Large factories that are emitting these plumes of black smoke. You can see this general haze that sits around the spire in comparison to others, and since it's still early-ish in the day there's this mist that still is rising up from the jungle below that seems to mix with the smoke to create this gray haze on the upper portions of the Spire. It gets harder-- more obscured, harder to see towards the top of it. It's not one of the tall spires, but it's definitely the most unique visually upon the others. As you approach the gondola itself, you see the cable-- the previous car comes and stops, docks, and about six or seven individuals step out before the doors open. The person running it leads you inside. It is one silver piece each.

TALIESIN: Great.

SAM: All right.

TRAVIS: Is it well known what they produce from those smokestacks? Like, in the industry around here?

MATT: You can roll a history check with disadvantage.

TRAVIS: Disadvantage, my--! That's pretty good. Oh, 13.

MATT: 13's not terrible. From the time that you've been around here, a lot of it stems from processing metals and coal and other energy-generating materials.

TRAVIS: Animal. (laughter)

TALIESIN: They do pull gems out of the earth, too. There is a diamond mine. Things like that.

TRAVIS: I have no beef with gems, but metal's fucking--

TALIESIN: It's a lot of mining operations, mostly.

MATT: The door closes in the gondola and actually, at this point, it would be just your crew within. It sways slightly before you see it begins to shift and head down the wire. It bows slightly as soon as it lifts off. You feel it grinding on the stone before it drifts and the full weight hits the gondola it bounces for a second. It begins to take you further down towards the Smolder Spire.

SAM: You guys mind if I smoke? I'm just kidding. (laughter) That'd be funny, though.

TRAVIS: Fearne takes a bong hit out of FCG. (laughter)

SAM: Got to smoke cigarettes.

ROBBIE: Oh, for sure!

SAM: Caricatures.

TRAVIS: Fearne, Fearne! (laughter)

ASHLEY: I'm going to start--

SAM: FCG bong?

MARISHA: FCG bong would be great.

ASHLEY: I'm going to start wiggling. Trying to get the car to--

MATT: It doesn't take much.

SAM: Oh no, oh no.

MATT: After a short time, the gondola begins to sway, like the wind's hitting it from the outside.

ASHLEY: Oh no! (laughter)

ASHLEY: Oh no, I think the cable is fraying!

LAURA: Fearne....

SAM: Why are you like this?

ASHLEY: Like what?

TRAVIS: Are you serious?

ASHLEY: Huh?

TRAVIS: We're going to die?

ASHLEY: It's quite possible. I mean, we're all going to die at some point.

TALIESIN: That's what I find comforting about this, actually, is that there's just no question about it. If something goes wrong, there's nothing you can do and it's just all going to be over real quick.

ASHLEY: Yeah.

LAURA: Not real quick!

TALIESIN: I mean, pretty quick.

ASHLEY: I mean, we'd all go together?

TALIESIN: That's fair.

LAURA: What if you get to the end and you don't die immediately?

TALIESIN: I mean, that's a very long drop.

LAURA: Yeah, but we're in a big protected car. What if you just get injured real bad and then you're just at the bottom of the ravine?

TALIESIN: I assure you, this is--

LAURA: Laying there!

TALIESIN: I promise you this is way too much drop for that.

SAM: I'm going to roll over to Imogen and take her hand, if she'll allow me, look in her eyes, and tell her: Just look at me. Don't look out there. Everything's going to be fine. I'm going to cast Calm Emotions. (awwing)

LAURA: That's lovely.

SAM: Hope it works.

TALIESIN: Three to seven stories--

MATT: It works.

TALIESIN: -- that's really where everything goes really fucking badly.

LAURA: Thank you. How long does this last?

SAM: Let me look.

MARISHA: After 60 seconds: (yells)

SAM: One minute.

MATT: Well, it isn't a very long ride, necessarily.

LAURA: But it's enough.

MATT: It's down on the cable.

TRAVIS: The shortest Valium ever.

MARISHA: Yes!

MATT: Yeah.

TRAVIS: Oh yeah, man. (laughter)

MATT: About the time that the spell would wear off, you do dock into the Smolder Spire. (rumbles) You stop there. As you emerge and step out onto the street, you can see the roads here are a little more haggard. The stonework and exposed clay mingle together to give this-- This is definitely a workman's region of the city. Already, you can see there's a faint layer of soot that rests on the top of any small wall off to the side, or any construction or tower that is within the eyesight. You can see the black layer on top. As soon as you step aside, you can see there is about a seven and a half-foot tall stone-based arcane automaton that has its arms built into the wire winch device. You've seen this before. These are what actually run the gondolas up and down the wire.

TRAVIS: Sweet.

MATT: The doors close behind.

SAM: It's just attached to the wires?

MATT: Yeah, the gondola itself, it has a spindle piece on each side that runs through. So I can go ahead and crank it up, which pulls it across the gondola.

SAM: Humanoid-looking thing?

LIAM: Upper-half humanoid going (whirring).

MATT: Yeah.

TRAVIS: Dope.

MARISHA: That's cool.

SAM: Hi!

MATT: No reaction.

TRAVIS: (chuckles)

SAM: Can't hear us?

LAURA: Not quite like you, is he?

SAM: No.

MARISHA: Does that make you lonely?

SAM: No, I've got all of you.

MATT: Gondola closes. (rumbling)

SAM: It's got its purpose.

MATT: (rumbling)

ASHLEY: Should we free him? (laughter)

TALIESIN: Oh, we're going to play that game?

SAM: Oh boy.

ASHLEY: Free him from this fresh hell that he's in. (laughter)

SAM: He probably gets great joy from his role and his task. It's fine.

ASHLEY: Okay, we'll leave him alone.

LIAM: (crashes)

SAM: (screams) (laughter)

TRAVIS: Free me.

LIAM: Two people-- (screams) (laughter)

ASHLEY: Whoops. (laughter)

LIAM: Oh, Fearne.

LAURA: My bad. (laughter)

MATT: Stepping into this district before you, there are small structures. It looks like homesteads that are built in the side of the wall. You can see there is attempts to bring more color to the space in some of these areas. There are wires hanging clothing and other strips of cloth or colored silks and other materials, just bring a little bit of liveliness to this otherwise very industrial portion of the city. But since for the majority, most of you have not spent time in this portion of the Spire and you haven't had too much of a reason to come by in a while, at the very least.

TALIESIN: Yeah, I've got very little going on here.

MATT: Is there a specific place you wanted to go here?

LAURA: We're following him.

MARISHA: Looking for the ho-vel.

TRAVIS: Yeah, follow me.

LAURA: The ho-vel.

ASHLEY: The hovel.

TRAVIS: Keep an eye out.

LAURA: Oval hovel.

ASHLEY: Havel.

LAURA: Hovel.

TRAVIS: I know we're a big group and everything, but just keep your head on a swivel.

LIAM: Well, he's got a great hearth. (laughter)

MATT: Okay. You, leading them further down the grade of the spiral in this portion of the Spire to almost a full 180 to the opposite end of it. There, the neighborhood passes by a large industrial factory of some kind. The smell that emerges from it has a sulfurous smell with elements of a heated iron. It causes your nose to sting a bit as you pass by.

LAURA: Kind of like Jar Jar Binks.

MATT: Sure, yeah.

LAURA: Yeah.

MATT: Yes.

LAURA: Yeah.

MATT: Very much like that.

ASHLEY: Meesa stinky. (laughter)

MATT: Just beyond this large factory. Even while walking by, you can look at your hand and you can see there's already a layer of gentle black material starting to gather.

TRAVIS: L.A.

MATT: Yeah, I mean, yeah.

LIAM: Los Angeles Square.

MATT: Yep.

LAURA: Prestidigitation you. Could tell it's really bothering you.

ROBBIE: (laughs) No, I'm fine, thank you.

LAURA: Well, you're clean now, and you'll be clean until it lands again.

ROBBIE: Thank you.

TALIESIN: And it's landed.

MATT: There we go. Not too far beyond that, you recall where the small building that Gurge was briefly renting for your stay in the city.

TRAVIS: Stay back. Let me make sure that he didn't, you know, come back in the night or something. Set up a perimeter. I just heard, can you do that?

LAURA: Yeah, yeah, yeah, we'll definitely do that.

TRAVIS: Fan out.

LAURA: All right.

TRAVIS: I'm going to approach his place, but keep your eyes open. See if anyone's clocking me.

TALIESIN: I'm going to walk up to the door and see if it's locked.

TRAVIS: Wait! (laughter)

MATT: It is locked.

TALIESIN: Locked.

TRAVIS: I just-- hold-- give me--

TALIESIN: Sorry, I wasn't paying attention.

TRAVIS: I'm just going to knock. Gurge! Gurge Kisgregg!

SAM: What?

TRAVIS: Anything?

LAURA: Kisgregg?

MATT: No.

LAURA: Kisgregg?

SAM: Gurge Kisgregg?

MARISHA: Grisged?

TRAVIS: Kisgregg, it's his last name. (laughter)

MATT: It's closed and locked as you left it last.

MARISHA: Kisgregg.

MATT: But no answer after a few minutes.

TRAVIS: Any other signs around the doorway of intrusion or tampering?

MATT: Make an investigation check.

TRAVIS: Yeah, you bet your ass. 14.

MATT: 14. Looking around, it looks like since your initial investigation after his disappearance and then subsequent locking behind you, there is no other signs of entry, forced or otherwise, from what you can make out.

TRAVIS: I locked the door when I left, but I don't have a key. So just hold on a second. I'll take out some tools and begin to pick the lock.

MATT: Okay, go ahead and roll them.

LAURA: Look up in the sky and see if anybody's watching.

TRAVIS: 19.

MATT: 19.

LAURA: Nice.

TRAVIS: Yeah, we're working with fire now, bitches.

MATT: (creaks) It opens up, slightly within.

ASHLEY: (gasps) That was impressive.

TRAVIS: Thank you.

LAURA: Wow, so much faster than anything we'd done before.

ASHLEY: I know.

SAM: Is it dangerous to go in, you think?

TRAVIS: I don't know. (boom) I kick the door. (laughter)

MATT: (boom, crashing) One of the hinges breaks slightly. What are you wielding?

TRAVIS: I just grabbed a hammer and a wood chisel.

MATT: Okay. (laughs)

TRAVIS: Do I smell anything?

MATT: Roll a perception check.

TRAVIS: Yeah, all the checks. 18. 19!

MATT: Okay. (sniffs) I mean, the interior's a little musty, but nothing different than how you left it.

TRAVIS: It's clear. Show me you can earn your money and do what you do. I'll stand guard out here.

LIAM: Our toys?

SAM: Let's look for--

TRAVIS: I thought we settled on toys. Is it coin again?

ROBBIE: That's our money.

TRAVIS: I can get rid of them.

LAURA: No, you just said money, you said--

ASHLEY: Well, are we still going to get our toys if we don't find him in here?

TRAVIS: Look, it'll be toys or money, whatever you want. I'll just make a bunch of extras.

TALIESIN: Extra money?

TRAVIS: Don't resale them. I'll carve my initials. It's fine, whatever you want. (laughter)

LAURA: Okay.

SAM: All right, we need to look for clues.

LAURA: Walk on in.

SAM: Yeah.

LAURA: Yeah.

SAM: I'll go in there as well and look around.

ASHLEY: Yeah, same.

LAURA: Actually, I'm going to stick outside for just a second. Chetney, have you ever seen furniture come to life?

TRAVIS: Oh yes.

LAURA: Oh, you have?

TRAVIS: Before my very eyes.

LAURA: Really? Did it attack when you did?

TRAVIS: The senses? Nightly. An onslaught of beauty.

LAURA: Oh, I--

TRAVIS: Hour by hour, chip by chip, little nick by little nick. The word blood just working itself into the wood grain. Oh, it attacked, all right. It left its mark here.

LAURA: Has it ever attacked you physically (laughs)?

TRAVIS: I'm sorry?

LAURA: We saw a bunch of furniture come to life. I just didn't know if maybe if somebody--

TRAVIS: Are you speaking in hyperbole, or--?

LAURA: No, you know what, I'm just going to go inside.

TRAVIS: You had real furniture attack you?

LAURA: Yeah, like a table, and a broom, and a kitchen knife, and a rug. I don't remember everything else.

TRAVIS: Nope, nope, can't say that I have.

LAURA: All right.

TRAVIS: Did other people see this happen?

LAURA: Everyone here.

TRAVIS: Mm. Mm-hmm, mm-hmm, mm-hmm.

TALIESIN and LIAM: (laugh wheezily)

LAURA: Mm-hmm.

LIAM: (sighs) How are we supposed to focus on anything, Travis? (laughter)

TALIESIN: I can't think straight.

ASHLEY: I love it so much.

MATT: Meanwhile, the rest of you.

SAM: I've gone in.

TALIESIN: Thank god. We are rolling it.

SAM: It's dark in here?

MATT: There is no light source. It is a very small room. This is a pretty small, ramshackle abode.

SAM: I will cast Light.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: I will activate my light mechanisms that I have--

LAURA: In your eyes.

SAM: Yes, my eyes glow like two shiny torches, flashlights.

ASHLEY: Oh, I can see.

MATT: Lights up the space.

LIAM: Like two magical coins.

LAURA: Yeah. (awwing)

MATT: Looking inside here, the actual room, and it is a single room abode. It's about 10 by 15 feet. There is no window. Most of it is heavily woven thatched roof onto simple stone and mason work for the basis of the structure. Looking around inside, you could see all the furniture has been tossed, at least the majority of it. You could see there was a double wide chair that's knocked over on its side. You can see there's a blanket that's shredded. It looks like there are a number of clay bowls or pots, some pottery accessories for eating that have been broken and shattered on the ground. It looks like there is definitely signs of a struggle of some kind, or at least a person who is angry at the interior maybe, who knows.

TRAVIS: Are they all inside?

MATT: They are.

TRAVIS: I shut the door and I open it. (laughs) I'm just fucking with you. (laughter) Anything?

SAM: Hold on, give us a second.

ASHLEY: We're still looking. We're still looking.

SAM: I'm going to scan the walls for any sorts of holes or divots.

MATT: Perception or investigation check.

SAM: Perception.

ASHLEY: Can I assist?

MATT: If you want to, yeah.

ASHLEY: All right.

SAM: You roll.

LIAM: 19.

SAM: Or you want me to roll twice?

MATT: Yeah.

SAM: Oh boy, both bad. No, wait, what was the first one, eight? 12.

MATT: 12, okay. The base of this structure doesn't contain any specific reinforcement to the bottom of the walls. So the stone is just what's available. Moving aside--

SAM: 13.

MATT: Okay, 13. A small table. No, there are no holes or cracks or anything that falls in line with what you've encountered previously with shade creeper movement.

MARISHA: Any signs of a beast or an attacker? What does the scuffle look like?

MATT: Make an investigation or perception check, if you'd like.

MARISHA: (humming) Just a perception, you said? I missed both investigation--

SAM: Let me guide you. I'll guide you.

MARISHA: Ooh, I'll take that.

SAM: With some Guidance.

MARISHA: I'll take some Guidance. Ooh, 18 total.

MATT: 18 total, very good. Looking at the overturned... It's not even a couch, just a wide chair for two people to sit in and it's knocked over. There are definite gashes in the wood. It looks like something--

SAM: Oh, in the wood.

MARISHA: Not the wood.

MATT: Cut across parts of the furniture. With that high roll, you can see they are definitely consistent striated gashes, like claw marks.

MARISHA: Chetney.

TRAVIS: Yes.

MARISHA: I'm so sorry.

TRAVIS: What'd you find?

MARISHA: The mahogany. It's been so damaged.

TRAVIS: (sobs)

MARISHA: I know, I'm sorry.

LAURA: (laughs)

MARISHA: Horrible.

TRAVIS: Godfather 3? No? Okay. (laughter)

MARISHA: Oh yeah, does silent scream, yeah.

TRAVIS: Like, TV film. (laughter)

LIAM: That could've been a hobby horse. (laughter)

LIAM: Are the claw marks that you're referencing, are they the same width from shade creepers?

MATT: No, they look a bit too large to be a shade creeper, or at least the shade creepers that you've met.

LAURA: What's the ground like leading up to the abode?

MATT: It's the same rough dried clay and stone. It looks like there was once a road here that has since-- There might still be road beneath it, but layers of soot and clay and dust have just built up over it to coat some portions of the stone laid roads that surround it.

LAURA: Can I look outside and dust away some of the soot and see if there's any claw marks outside as well?

MATT: Sure, make an investigation check.

MARISHA: Like if he was drug out. Ooh!

SAM: Good god. (laughter)

LAURA: So aggressive. Investigation, 21!

MATT: 21. Looking around the base of this chamber, around the outside of the front door and inspecting the ground, you can see some light scrapes in a similar clawed fashion. But it's light and you only see two marks on the outside. That's about it.

LAURA: Do they look like they're heading into the house or away from the house?

MATT: It's hard to tell, really. Right about this time, as you're inspecting down to the ground, you hear a voice from behind. It goes, "Sorry, can I help you?"

LAURA: Who's talking?

MATT: You glance up and you see a woman in probably her late 50s or so. By the point of the ears, half-elven descent. This woman has her hair pulled back extremely tight in a bun that seems to emerge into a small braid that goes just to the nape of her neck. You can see somewhat simple looking dark green gown that has seen some years, but it looks like it's kept. It's sentimental in the way that it's maintained. Though you can definitely see some stains available. Her arms crossed and a very stern look on her face. She goes, "Like I said, can I help you?"

LAURA: Oh, well, we were just looking for our friend and couldn't seem to find him and wanted to make sure he was okay.

MATT: "I take it you're friends with Gurge, then?

LAURA: Mm-hmm.

MATT: "Hmm. Well, he came to rent this place from me and then hasn't returned to pay the bill."

LAURA: Yeah.

SAM: How long has that been? Just a couple of days, or--?

MATT: "He's only been here a couple of days, but he was supposed to take care of this within this short period of time."

SAM: Is this how the place always looked when you rented it to him?

MATT: "What do you mean?" She leans in and looks past the door. "What happened in here?"

LAURA: Well, we're trying to figure that out.

ASHLEY: I don't know if he's going to be able to pay that bill, ma'am.

TALIESIN: Did you hear anything strange in the last couple days?

MATT: "Of course, all over the city there's been-- "

TALIESIN: Specifically here.

MATT: "There was a dire wolf attack not but a day ago down the street!"

TALIESIN: Keep it right here!

MATT: "Between that and the burglaries, the explosion at the Core, the hauntings at the Pyre. (groans frustratedly) The wardens in the city are fucking useless."

TALIESIN: That we can agree on.

MARISHA: Explosion, what?

SAM: Explosion at the Core.

LIAM: Hauntings.

LAURA: Burglaries.

MARISHA: Explosion.

SAM: Were we there for that?

TRAVIS: Which core?

MATT: "The Core Spire. I heard word that there was some sort of a magical detonation."

LAURA: (gasps)

SAM: Were we there?

LAURA: That's when we were! That's when the furniture went.

SAM: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

TALIESIN: So you didn't hear anything weird in the last couple of days from Gurge's apartment?

MATT: "Not from the apartment, no, but I mean, I live a few blocks down that way."

TALIESIN: Do you know who lives next door?

MATT: "I do not know the neighbors here specifically."

LAURA: How far away were the dire wolf attacks?

MATT: "That was past the factory. I don't know the specifics. I just know it was down that region. The fact that dire wolves are coming. How do they get up here anyway?"

TALIESIN: No idea.

MARISHA: How many days ago was this? Sorry to...

ROBBIE: No, please.

MATT: "It was about a day and a half ago?"

ROBBIE: You said wolves, p-p-plural.

MATT: "That's what I heard, yes."

SAM: You seem very upset. How can we help you? How can we make you feel a little bit more calm?

MATT: "Pay for this furniture."

SAM: Oh, well, it's not really our responsibility, but we have a woodworker with us who might be able to repair it for you.

TALIESIN: I'll also say we're looking for Gurge and we can make sure that he knows that he's got to take care of this. We'll make it very clear that he's got responsibilities, clearly, that he has to take care of. You seem to know a lot, by the way. It's very impressive.

MATT: "I listen to the various rumors and things that are muttered in the neighborhoods. Yes, and as a landowner of a few homesteads in this space, it's very bad for business."

LIAM: Just to back up a few, did you say the word hauntings as well or did I miss hear that?

MARISHA: Hunting? No.

LAURA: Hunting. Haunting?

LIAM: Haunting.

MATT: "No, I heard that there is rumors of spirits haunting the Pyre in the Lantern."

MARISHA: Hee!

TRAVIS: (laughs)

MATT: "This whole city is going to shit."

LIAM: That's a lot.

SAM: What was your name again? In case we get any news.

MATT: My name, Siroc.

SAM: Tiraq.

TRAVIS: Tiraq?

MATT: Siroc.

SAM and MARISHA: Siroc?

LIAM: Yeah, okay, Siroc.

ASHLEY: Siroc.

TRAVIS: I hate to use it, but I could concoct a wood putty, if it would help to repair some of this furniture.

MARISHA: I can do a little bit of mending.

ROBBIE: Yeah, we'll tidy up.

TALIESIN: We're on a schedule. We'll come back.

SAM: Find Gurge.

TALIESIN: We'll come back.

MARISHA: (muttering)

LAURA: We should go find out where that dire wolf, because this looks like. How big are dire wolves? The claws look like it could've been the same sort?

MATT: Go ahead and roll a nature check for me.

TRAVIS: Dire wolves are big-ass wolves?

MATT, LIAM, and LAURA: Yeah.

TALIESIN: They're like normal wolves, but dire.

ROBBIE: Bigger.

TALIESIN: It's not my joke, but I'm proud of it.

LAURA: No. Nature?

MATT: Yeah.

LAURA: Four.

MATT: Four. You're not sure. You've heard about dire wolves. You've never encountered one, thankfully. But from what you hear, they're pretty big and these claw marks are fairly big.

LAURA: They could be connected.

TALIESIN: I think it's a lead worth looking into.

TRAVIS: Did you find any blood?

LAURA: I didn't look for blood. Is there any blood?

TRAVIS: I'll look for blood! Vigorously!

LAURA: Also, paperwork or anything that looks like he could have had somebody attack him. Like somebody came after him.

ROBBIE: While they're looking, I'm going to start tidying up anyway.

MARISHA: I join him.

ROBBIE: I'm going to set some chairs up or just straighten shit a little bit.

MATT: Okay.

MARISHA: Fix some curtains.

MATT: In straightening the chairs and stuff, you do see there are a few smatterings of blood across the ground.

LAURA: (gasps)

TRAVIS: Oh, shit!

LAURA: Oh no!

TRAVIS: Like puddles or like paintbrush (splats)?

MATT: Like paintbrush (splats).

TRAVIS: (groans)

LIAM: Arterial spray.

TRAVIS: (groans) In an arcing pattern? (laughter)

MARISHA: Ding, ding.

TRAVIS: Get my Dexter hat on.

MARISHA: Yeah. (laughter)

LAURA: Well, if it's not huge puddles, then maybe he's still alive. Maybe he wasn't--

ASHLEY: His body's not here.

LAURA: -- destroyed. Yeah.

TRAVIS: There was no--

MARISHA: They drug him back to the nest.

TRAVIS: They didn't drag. There's no blood trailing out the door, or out the back, or--?

MATT: If you go ahead and look where the drag marks you saw up front the claw-like pattern that came through. Go ahead and make a perception check.

LAURA: Ooh, I'm going to use Prestidigitation to get rid of the soot in the area to see if it clears it up at all.

MATT: Okay.

LIAM: (coughs) (groaning)

ROBBIE: (claps)

LAURA: It's Prestidigitation! It's not a wind gust.

LIAM: It's got to go somewhere.

LAURA: No, it doesn't! You're fine!

LIAM: It doesn't get dumped into a pocket dimension. (laughter)

LAURA: I don't know.

MATT: It's not like wizard poo going into some random dimension.

LAURA: Sheesh, you scared the shit out of me.

MATT: I'd say we're world building if that happens.

LIAM: You scared the shit out of my lungs.

ROBBIE: Listen, he's dedicated.

LAURA: Perception, eight.

SAM: Putting on my vacuum arm. (whirring)

MATT: Well, with Prestidigitation clearing up the soot and stuff, you can see there are--

LAURA: I was like, cover your mouth!

MATT: Well, you did also roll a 21 in the original one, too.

LAURA: A 19-- 21, yes, I did.

LIAM: (whirring)

MATT: So which you've already inspected pretty closely in this area, beyond the soot moving and looking in the grooves, it looks like there are signs of similar dark dried blood that has since been cleaned.

MARISHA: Oh.

SAM: Intentionally cleaned?

MATT: Like, where you're only finding it in certain parts of the grooves in between where certain bits of the stone are there.

LAURA: So somebody came back.

MATT: But on the main surface they're cleared.

LIAM: Mr. Wolf, he thinks fast. He talks fast.

MATT: (chuckles wheezily)

LIAM: He is fast. (laughter)

SAM: Dire wolf.

ASHLEY: Would I know--

TRAVIS: You said the wolf?

ASHLEY: The claw marks from having been a dire wolf at one point?

LAURA: (gasps)

MATT: A bit of wolf nature.

ASHLEY: So would I recognize that that may be what it is?

MATT: It could be. It looks a little small for a full-size dire wolf, but dire wolves also-- Different ages can vary. It depends on how deep it went and which points it hit. It's hard to tell.

MARISHA: Can you smell the pheromones?

SAM: (whispered) Old Spice.

TRAVIS: Oh yeah, can you track?

MARISHA: (whispered) Geralt's bathwater.

TRAVIS: Are there any tracks leading away from the place outside in the dirt or a scent?

ASHLEY: Wait, wait, wait, wait wait, wait, wait, wait, wait.

SAM: Yeah, you've got animal shit.

MARISHA: Can we, can we--

SAM: Use your animal shit.

MARISHA: Yeah, and then we can follow you?

ASHLEY: How did I do that?

LIAM: Come on, beast master.

ASHLEY: Wait, there's something.

MARISHA: Use your sniffer.

ASHLEY: What was I that one time where I came here--

TALIESIN: Does the sun set and then you become a wolf and one of us becomes an eagle, or--? I'm trying to remember how that works.

SAM: Do some animal shit.

ASHLEY: Well, I could, I could-- I don't know if I should save something in case--

SAM: No saving! We have no leads right now.

LAURA: What if we get into a fight?

SAM: We have no leads!

ASHLEY: Let me just-- Can I just sniff? I'm just going to get on the ground and I'm going to sniff and start-- I'm going to--

TRAVIS: Lick it, stick your--

ASHLEY: -- lick.

TRAVIS: Yeah.

MATT: What are you trying to ascertain by doing this?

ASHLEY: I'm trying-- (laughter)

LAURA: She's just licking the ground.

TRAVIS: Nothing, Matthew, Nothing.

SAM: We have no leads.

MATT: I respect that.

SAM: Give it everything you got!

ASHLEY: I'm trying to see if I can smell a dire wolf. If I can smell the--

LIAM: Get that piss scent.

ASHLEY: The piss scent.

MATT: Roll a perception check.

ROBBIE: Why is she saying piss so angrily?

MARISHA: Piss scent.

ROBBIE: Piss scent.

LIAM: We'll find this pissant.

ASHLEY: 10.

MATT: 10? If there were any lingering scent, it's been too long for it to be recognizable, unfortunately.

ROBBIE: Are these drag marks out the front entrance, or is there a back entrance? Is it still out?

MATT: There is only one entrance to this tiny house.

ROBBIE: There's one?

MATT: Yeah.

LIAM: The east wing of the hovel.

LAURA: Were there any papers or anything disheveled at all? A suitcase or a trunk, or--?

MATT: Nothing, and you would know, this was a temporary journey. This is not Gurge's abode. This was a temporary rental.

MARISHA: An AirDND.

MATT: (laughs)

ROBBIE: Yes.

MARISHA: Bringing it back! Siroc, was it?

MATT: "That is my name-- Oh, hi."

MARISHA: (giggles) Question.

MATT: She takes a step back.

MARISHA: Where was-- I step forward.

MATT: She takes a step back.

MARISHA: The other dire wolf attack?

MATT: She takes a step back.

MARISHA: You said it happened up the block?

MATT: "That's all I know. I didn't see it."

LAURA: Towards the factory, was it?

MATT: "It's past the factory."

LAURA: Past the factory.

MARISHA: You don't know anybody who saw that?

MATT: "No, it's just word of mouth gets around. When something like that happens in this area, of course people are going to hear about it."

MARISHA: Could go ask around.

LAURA: Yeah, I think that's what we should do.

ROBBIE: Couldn't hurt.

LIAM: Who did you hear about it from?

MATT: "I heard it from my friend, Gina. She said that the Wardens were able to put it down, but--"

LAURA: Oh!

ASHLEY: You put it down?

LAURA: Talk to the Wardens, I guess.

MATT: "What are they supposed to do with a dire wolf that finds its way up into the city?"

ASHLEY: Well, let him go back to where he came from! To his family, probably. Rude.

MATT: "You are rude."

ASHLEY: How am I rude?!

MATT: "You just said I was rude for no reason, so that makes you rude."

ASHLEY: Oh, I wasn't saying you were rude. I was saying they were rude for putting him down.

MATT: "Oh."

ASHLEY: You're fine, Siroc. I wasn't talking about you.

MATT: "My apologies."

ASHLEY: That's okay, I accept your apology.

LAURA: Look at you sorting out your problems just by talking. That was really great.

ASHLEY: Well, I've learned some things from you guys.

MATT: "If you find Gurge, he owes me money. If Gurge is indeed dead, who owes me money?"

TALIESIN: Gurge's son.

LIAM: Greg?

TALIESIN: Greg.

MATT: Make a persuasion check.

SAM: You mean Gregg Kisgregg?

ASHLEY: Gregg Kisgregg? (laughter)

MATT: They go to a school with Grog Stonejaw. No, his father.

TALIESIN: Persuasion. 14. (exclaiming)

MATT: "Do not even know if he has a next of kin. At least it was only a few days. I'll have to clean this up and get it rented again. Well, good luck. Close behind you when you finish cleaning."

MARISHA: I mend the table a little bit.

MATT: All right. She takes off.

MARISHA: Get the gash marks out.

SAM: This keeps happening. We're going to houses that have been ransacked.

MARISHA: Yeah.

TRAVIS: So is this discouraging for people of your talent, or is it pretty par for the course?

SAM: No, no, we don't get discouraged. We keep going.

LIAM: No, we're just getting started.

SAM: We believe in ourselves until we get the job done.

TRAVIS: Yes!

LAURA: You have no other information. What is his actual abode? You know, you were meeting him here, but you know he doesn't live here?

TRAVIS: He was rumored to be sort of a wild man. Like he lives out in the jungles of Marquet outside the city. But I don't know where.

TALIESIN: That just seems like a lot.

TRAVIS: That's why I didn't mention it. I mean, the jungles are the jungles.

TALIESIN: That's fair.

TRAVIS: Yeah and this is just where--

ASHLEY: Wait, he lives in the jungles?

TRAVIS: Or out in the Wilds.

ASHLEY: Wait, what is this place?

TRAVIS: It's where I was told to meet him. I think it's like his office or something.

ASHLEY: I understand.

ROBBIE: How did you connect?

TRAVIS: I was sent here. I pull this little piece of parchment out that just says Gurge Kisgregg.

SAM: That's it? Just his name? It doesn't say what he does or why you came here?

TRAVIS: No, I just couldn't remember his name.

SAM: So, you wrote it down?

TRAVIS: No, they did.

SAM: Who's they?

TRAVIS: The people that sent me here to him!

LAURA: Who are the people!

SAM: Who are the people who sent you here?

TRAVIS: Out of Uthodurn, I stopped in this Savalirwood, and the master craftsman's guild, they sent me down here.

LAURA: Oh, so he's a craftsman and you were going to take some lessons from him--

TRAVIS: I'm trying to find work down here. I got kicked out my old gig.

SAM: Oh.

TRAVIS: Yeah.

SAM: I'm sorry.

TRAVIS: I had to kind of start fresh.

SAM: Was it a long-term gig?

TRAVIS: Yeah, few years.

SAM: I'm so sorry.

TRAVIS: Thanks. Didn't really feel wanted anymore.

SAM: Aww.

ASHLEY: Oh no.

TRAVIS: What?

ROBBIE: Are you telling the truth?

TRAVIS: Yes.

ROBBIE: You didn't want your old job anymore?

TRAVIS: No, I didn't feel very wanted anymore, very much.

ROBBIE: Oh, I'm sorry.

TRAVIS: It was like, I got let go without the actual being let go part.

SAM: Was there like a new craftsman that they got to replace you or something like that?

TRAVIS: It was more like a change of direction by my employer.

SAM: Did they not want to work with wood anymore?

TRAVIS: Are you in my head?

LAURA: I'm not. Did he get it right?

TRAVIS: Something like that.

MARISHA: You said you hated metal--

TRAVIS: Can we get going?

SAM: Sorry, sorry.

LAURA: Toward that factory. Just past the factory.

SAM: Okay.

TALIESIN: Is she gone, by the way?

MARISHA: Siroc?

MATT: Siroc has walked away, yeah.

TALIESIN: Far enough away I can't-- I'm just going to peek out, see if she's gone.

MATT: Make a perception check.

TALIESIN: Nine.

MATT: You don't see her.

TALIESIN: I'm going to take a quick moment on our way out and I'm just going to pogo stick on my hammer and just smash that table and see if I can put a nice, big, thick dent in the floor, just for fun.

TRAVIS: You have a pogo stick on your hammer?

TALIESIN: I just grab it, pound down.

MARISHA: I-- just, what?

MATT: Okay. It divots a bit, yeah, it's a soft ground.

TALIESIN: Damaged the floor a little bit?

MATT: A little bit, yeah.

TALIESIN: All right, I'm also going to make sure that I hit the door on the way out so it breaks a little bit more.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: I didn't like her.

MARISHA: (sighs) I just fixed the table.

TALIESIN: Yeah, it was too nice.

ASHLEY: I'm going to spit on the floor.

LAURA: You did a really good job.

MARISHA: Thank you. (laughter)

ASHLEY: Where the dent is.

TALIESIN: She's in too many people's business. I don't like it.

MARISHA: She did have nosy neighbor vibes.

TRAVIS: See this is why I got out of furniture.

TALIESIN: Guy got fucked up. She's worried about her money. Fuck that.

LAURA: That's true.

TALIESIN: Now she's got to pay for her floor. Anyway.

MARISHA: I use Fearne's spit to just spit polish a little bit right where-- It's looking good.

ASHLEY: Just helping everyone.

MARISHA: It's looking better.

LAURA: Just with your hands, you wiped--

MARISHA: It's a little rag from my skirt.

TALIESIN: Does it get like morph covered in blood?

MARISHA: Yeah, pretty much.

MATT: Yeah, at a certain point, it's not really helping out at this point, yeah. It's a lost cause.

LIAM: Ectoplasm left behind. (laughter)

TALIESIN: All right.

MATT: What's the plan?

TALIESIN: Let's head down--

SAM: Towards the factory?

LAURA: I guess try to track down where the dire wolf came?

TALIESIN: Yeah, is there anything else down by the factory? Is the Take It or Leave It or the Sit and Swill in that direction?

MATT: The Sit and Swill, Take It or Leave It are a little further up the spire.

TALIESIN: The other direction?

MATT: Yeah.

TALIESIN: All right, we'll start at the factory.

MATT: Well, with you turning back towards the factory it is an upward curve.

TALIESIN: It is in that direction.

MATT: So it would continue that direction.

TALIESIN: That at least gives us a destination.

MATT: But you head towards the exterior of the factory and you can see in the front entryway, and it's a single arch. Simple reddish-brown stone entry with pillars on each side. There are heavy chains that are slowly rotating on some sort of unseen device that is affixed within the actual factory, but out front you can see there are two Wardens that are essentially both sitting in chairs, spear to their side. Just keeping an eye out. One of them is in the process of playing a game of solitaire on a small side table. As you approach, they look over.

LIAM: Afternoon.

MATT: "Afternoon."

LIAM: Sorry to bother you. We're looking for a friend in town, and he's not at home, but we've been hearing about-- Rumors about something to do with dire wolves in the neighborhood. Is that true?

MATT: "Yeah, yeah, we had an unexpected dire wolf attack a day and a half ago. Went out, not too far beyond here."

LAURA: Where'd it come from?

MATT: "We don't know, but we took care of it."

LIAM: Just one?

MATT: "It was just one, yeah."

LAURA: Did you see if he had-- Was anyone attacked?

MATT: "Probably a few people were attacked, I imagine. It's a dire wolf."

LAURA: Are they in the hospital or under medical care right now?

MATT: "The dire wolf?"

LAURA: No, the people that were hurt.

LIAM: Were there any survivors?

MATT: "If there are, they're being taken care of."

LAURA: Is there a place that they would be taken care of? Maybe our friend was one of the people that were attacked and we don't know about it.

LIAM: Yeah, we're just concerned.

MATT: He looks over at the other Warden. The other Warden's left his card game and is now leaning over, interested in your conversation. Goes, "Let me ask a question, hold on." Gets up and walks inside the factory. The other Warden goes, "Who's your friend?"

ROBBIE: Gurge.

SAM: I'm going to cast Detect Thoughts.

MATT: Okay.

TRAVIS: Nice.

TALIESIN: Gurge Kisgrug.

MATT: "Gurge Kis--"

LAURA: (laughs) Kisgrup.

TALIESIN: (mumbles) Kisgrup. Got a little caught, but I also got it in my head--

ROBBIE: Kisgregreg.

TALIESIN: Kisgreg.

MATT: Klaatu barada (coughs) nikto.

LIAM: (mumbles)

TALIESIN: Gurge!

MATT: All right, what's the spell DC?

TALIESIN: We just know him as Gurge.

SAM: Just 13 wisdom.

MATT: 13 wisdom, all right. The first thought you get is like, "Who the hell are these people? These are fucking--"

MARISHA: Always the first thought.

MATT: "-- weird-ass crew rolling up here."

LIAM: Will be until the end of the campaign.

LAURA: Yep.

MATT: The next wave of thoughts comes to, "How the fuck do they know this guy? I need to go ahead and-- I need to check in with the boss." Right at that point, he stands up and goes, I'm going to go ahead and ask some questions, too. Be right back."

MARISHA: Where are they going? You said around the factory?

MATT: Inside the factory, yeah.

MARISHA: Oh, inside?

MATT: Into the factory, yeah.

MARISHA: Is it unlocked?

MATT: It's just an open archway.

SAM: Is he gone?

LIAM: That's weird.

MATT: Yeah.

SAM: Okay, okay, okay. Okay! Hi.

LAURA: Hi.

LIAM: Smiley day.

SAM: It's going to be a great day, but these fellas are lying to us.

MARISHA: Fearne, go.

SAM: We should go in there and pursue them.

ASHLEY: I'm going to turn into a rat.

LAURA: But they're Wardens.

MARISHA: Yes.

MATT: You're going to turn into a rat?

ASHLEY: And go inside.

LAURA: We can't pursue the Wardens.

TALIESIN: Absolutely pursue Wardens.

LAURA: You're just a rat, are you going to go follow them?

SAM: They're bad Wardens.

LAURA: Okay, I can hear you, so if you want to say anything to me, just go. See what you can hear.

LIAM: It's just bad Warden, bad Warden. (laughter)

TALIESIN: Put a bad Warden in.

SAM: You going in?

ASHLEY: Yes.

SAM: Okay.

LAURA: Fearne's a rat. She's going in to hear what they're saying.

SAM: I'm just going to--

MARISHA: (as Pâté) Oh, look at that--

SAM: -- give you Guidance.

MARISHA: -- sweet hunk of fresh meat.

LAURA: No! (groaning)

SAM: I can't give you Guidance, never mind.

TALIESIN: Even for me, you somehow made it weird.

LAURA: Pâté, that's so inappropriate.

MARISHA: Look what-- Offending Imogen!

MATT: So you're turning into a rat.

ASHLEY: Yes.

MATT: Are you doing anything, Fresh Cut Grass?

SAM: No, no, I was going to give her Guidance, but that'll break my-- I still got Detect Thoughts up for another 30 seconds.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: In case they come back.

MATT: Come back, okay. So you are now a rat scurrying.

LAURA: Let me know if you hear anything.

MATT: Okay. So scurrying past, you enter and you can see beyond the archway, within there is an actual metal grate doorway that is closed. You can see the guard that had walked in has just finished locking it behind him for the moment, but there's enough spaces in the grate for you to step through as a rat.

ASHLEY: Yeah, I'm going to wiggle my big old butt through.

MATT: So following through, trying to catch up, you can see he turns off to the right and there's a person who is holding a lantern and walking by and goes, "Why are we closing?" He goes, "Huddle up, we're just closing down for just a second. Keep everyone solid. It's Warden business." He continues walking past and the person looks confused and goes back, walking back from the hall where they came from. Following past, I need you to make a stealth check as a rat.

LIAM: (squeaking)

ASHLEY: (sighs)

MATT: Using the rat's dexterity modifier.

TRAVIS: That's a good rat.

LAURA: That's a good rat. Rats are-- come on.

ASHLEY: There's nothing, it's just what I roll.

LAURA: There's no dexterity modifier for a rat?

MATT: Is there any stealth bonus for being a rat?

TRAVIS: Fucking kill me.

MARISHA: (laughs)

LAURA: Fish.

MATT: I'll give you advantage because it is low light in the interior here.

ASHLEY: 15.

MATT: 15, okay. Pushing past you watch the Warden that just finished locking the door behind continues to the right.

ASHLEY: Walking like this. (laughter)

LAURA: As a rat!

ASHLEY: Yeah.

TRAVIS: On your hind legs.

ROBBIE: On your back legs, yeah. (laughter)

ASHLEY: (whispering) Make sure they don't see me. (laughter)

MATT: Now you are much slower than them, being a rat, so you can't keep up with it. But you can follow the path. You can hear the footsteps. So you're not losing them. You go to the right where the Warden was last seen turning. In front of you, the staircase descends. There's a larger open chamber that breaks off into multiple different portions of the interior factory that's built into the spire. The air here is very thick and warm. You probably can imagine that working in this vicinity for many years would be very unhealthy for a person. But you continue following down. He goes up a slight stairway, which, as a rat, I'm going to have to ask you to make an acrobatics check for me.

SAM: Up stairs. (laughter)

ASHLEY: Rats can go up stairs!

SAM: Well...

MATT: Yeah, you can. Show us.

LIAM: (rat squeaks)

ROBBIE: What kind of ups does this rat got?

ASHLEY: Do I do it again? Also advantage?

MATT: You do not have advantage on this, no.

ASHLEY: 13.

SAM: Oh, okay.

MATT: Okay, yeah. Yeah, 13's okay. It wasn't terrible. I mean, it wasn't a terrible difficulty, so you just had to not roll low.

MATT: (thumps) Up on the stairs, you get to the next platform and head down, and you come to an area where there's a door at the right and left. The hallway continues, but to the right you can hear hushed voices talking. There's a slight gap under the door.

ASHLEY: (whispering) Okay, I'm going to wiggle in there.

MATT: Okay, this door space is wide enough for you to push through as a rat. You come through and this is an office. Within the interior, there's a shield on one wall. There is a desk. It's not very well decorated, but it seems to have a little more of an officious nature to it. You can see the two Wardens are currently standing across the desk from another individual that is wearing similar shoulder pauldrons, but does not have a helmet on and it looks like they're in the process of doing some paperwork. As you step in, the voice responds. This one says, "What... How the... Why are they asking about this Gurge fellow?" Well, we don't know. It's a strange troupe," and begins describing each of your companions visually to them. "So there's a strange pinkish-hair girl came in, a very tall fuzzy-eared lady, voluptuous. There was a tiny man with a shield and short hair. A scary man with a big wound in his head. He had an automaton to the side. Had a bright blue fancy looking fellow."

SAM: Oh. Oh no!

MATT: "Tiny, old crotchety gnome creature, and this nightmare of a woman. It's very strange, but nevertheless, they asked about this Gurge fellow. We were told not to engage in any sort of speculation with this thing." The guy across the table goes, "First and foremost, say nothing more. Tell them that Gurge has been arrested and held in the Granite Hold and will be released upon business that is none of theirs. I'll take care of the rest."

MARISHA: I'll take, what, what?

LAURA: I'll take care of the rest.

MARISHA: What?

TRAVIS: They're going to kill him.

MARISHA: They're going to kill him!

SAM: Or he's already dead--

ROBBIE: Greg's going to be crushed.

LAURA: Yeah, they're lying, obviously.

LIAM: Just everything else entirely!

ROBBIE: Just orphaned.

SAM: Could be dead already.

MARISHA: But he said, "Don't say anything--" Are they lying?

LAURA: Yeah, he's lying. Don't say anything other than this and he's lying about this.

LIAM: Yep.

MATT: The other Warden goes, "Well, if anybody else asks--" You don't know anything about it. Stop answering questions, you fucking idiot." (laughter)

LIAM: I feel bad about that guy.

TRAVIS: Yeah. (laughter)

LIAM: (silly voice) Oh well, I've just been on a job for like six months and oh it's all right.

TRAVIS: (silly voice) Finally got some action out front.

MATT: "Dismissed!" They both turn and begin walking towards the door. I need you to make a dexterity saving throw. (gasping)

TRAVIS: Let's go.

LIAM: Come on, Fearnie!

TRAVIS: Let's go, Mighty Mouse.

LIAM: Let's go!

LAURA: What if you get smooshed?

TRAVIS: Ratatouille, Ratatouille.

LIAM: She doesn't poof--

TRAVIS and LAURA: Oh no.

LIAM: She grows.

ASHLEY: Eight.

TRAVIS: Oh no.

MATT: Eight?

ROBBIE: Yikes.

TRAVIS: Oh no.

MATT: You-- Okay. Here's what I'll do.

TRAVIS: Let's go!

MATT: Roll a d6 for me.

MARISHA: It's going to be funny!

MATT: On a one to three, the weight does just enough to get a hit point of damage to you, on a four to six, you manage to shrug it off and not take any damage.

LAURA: Do you have one hit point?

ASHLEY: Two. (gasping)

MARISHA: We're going in!

MATT: How many hit points do you have as a rat?

TRAVIS: It's got to be one.

LIAM: It's got to be a 1d4 situation.

ASHLEY: It's a 1d4.

LAURA: Okay, roll. Oh! You can't have less than one!

MATT: Roll a 1d4.

LAURA: Oh my god, what if you get--? Get a four! Get a four!

TRAVIS: Yeah, if she loses one hit point, she goes (poof)

ROBBIE: Oh no!

MATT: Let me double check here real fast.

LIAM: She doesn't Frumpkin out. She grows six feet.

ASHLEY: It's a two.

LAURA: Yes!

TALIESIN: You have one hit point.

SAM: Maybe?

MATT: Wait, a rat, a tiny beast, has one--

ASHLEY: Wait, did you say roll a d4? Yeah, that's right, okay, sorry.

MATT: So it says under rat, right?

ASHLEY: Yeah.

MATT: What's it say for hit points?

ASHLEY: It says one and then in parentheses it says 1d4 minus one.

MATT: Okay.

TRAVIS: But what if you roll--

LAURA: Oh no!

LAURA and SAM: You minus one.

LAURA: So, one. (laughing)

LIAM: My cat was max four.

MATT: Yeah. So as you're listening in, listening in, both guards about face and begin walking towards you and you scramble away right as you feel the pressure of one of their heavy armored boots step down upon you. As it does... (poof) Suddenly, your vision reverts to eye-level with the two Wardens.

TRAVIS: Six foot!

MATT: They both look at you, eyes wide, and the man behind the counter of the desk goes-- And that's where we're going to go ahead and end tonight. (screaming)

ROBBIE: Impossible.

MARISHA: What?!

ROBBIE: Impossible.

LIAM: Over the holiday?

TRAVIS: Dead in 2022!

ASHLEY: It's okay, I know what to do.

MARISHA: It hasn't been that long.

SAM: You do?

LIAM: Burn them all alive!

ROBBIE: Oh man.

ASHLEY: I have... a plan.

MATT: Good.

SAM: Well, you have a whole holiday to plan.

MATT: Good, because that went south real fast.

ASHLEY: Real fast!

TRAVIS: One on three. One on three.

ROBBIE: Oh man.

MATT: It was the logic in my head of, all right, this is not a small, or-- this is a small entry way, you snuck under the door and they immediately turned to leave. I'm like, let's go ahead and roll. If it had been a 10 or higher, you would have saved and it would have been fine.

ASHLEY: Okay, okay. It's okay.

TRAVIS: You're great.

MATT: It's all good.

ASHLEY: We're fine. We're fine. We're going to figure it out! We're going to figure it out!

MATT: We're going to figure this out next time.

TRAVIS: I don't know you guys.

ASHLEY: Okay, okay, okay, okay, okay, okay, okay.

ROBBIE: Next year, what?

MARISHA: In 2022.

LIAM: Tune in next year.

MATT: All righty, so we'll pick up there with Fearne on her own and three Wardens in the middle of a Smolder Spire factory with some sort of strange conspiracy going on.

LIAM: Cool.

MATT: We'll see you for that. Thank you all so much. Have a wonderful holiday break. We love you very much, and is it Thursday yet? Good night. (screaming)

MATT: (laughs)

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