MATT: Hello everyone, and welcome to tonight's episode of Critical Role, where a bunch of us nerdy-ass voice actors sit around and play Dungeons & Dragons.
TRAVIS: Yeah, we play Dungeons & Dragons! Sorry. I'm excited.
MATT: Laura will be joining us shortly. She's finishing baby stuff in the other room. But in the meantime, we're here to get through our announcements for the evening. First and foremost, we have our fantastic friends and glorious sponsor through campaign two thus far, D&D Beyond.
ALL: D&D Beyond!
SAM: Yesterday, guys, was D&D Beyond's first one-- first one year anniversary. Take two. Hey guys, yesterday was D&D Beyond's one year anniversary. Wish them a happy birthday on their Facebook and Twitter pages.
MARISHA and TALIESIN: Happy birthday.
SAM: Or right there. Also, as a reminder, D&D Beyond streams their weekly show called & Beyond every Wednesday on twitch.tv/dndbeyond. It's not-- take two. I was going to say it's *not* great conversations, but no. Pick up. It's *got* great conversations with special guests like Matt Mercer and Mike Mearls, and other guests with M.M. names. That's the whole announcement, but I recently went to Virginia, so I got inspired to write a country song for D&D Beyond.
TRAVIS: Is that what that hat is?
MARISHA: That hat has puka shells on it.
SAM: I was going to learn this on the guitar, but then I realized I don't really play guitar. All right, here's my country song for D&D Beyond. (singing) My baby left me on the fourth of July, I cri-- Take two.
LAURA: Okay, I'm ready.
SAM: Settle. (singing) My baby left me on the fourth of July. I cried red, white, and blue. Got in my Chevy, popped open a Coors, and moseyed on over to you. Opened the trailer, played some Johnny Cash, kicked off my cowboy boots, and sat. Got my character sheet and my daddy's dice, because Exandria's where it's at. D&D Beyond, be my girl tonight. Roll me close, crit me tight. I got a pickup, a 12-gauge, an American flag, but it's you that makes me feel all right. D&D Beyond--
MARISHA: (singing) D&D Beyond.
SAM: (singing) Be my girl tonight. There's another verse! I’ve trucked across the heartland, from Dallas to Memphis and back. But Emon's the place I miss the most, where I want to hang my hat. So, darling, call the Piggly Wiggly, and tell them you're gonna be late. Turn off your phone because your cowboy's home. Get ready for an all-night date. D&D Beyond, be my girl tonight. Roll me close, crit me tight. I got some illegal fireworks, a smokehouse, a new tractor, a hunting dog, my mama's Bible, some Frito pie, NASCAR tickets, a deer license, some new tires, a handle of Southern Comfort, but it's you that makes me feel all right. D&D Beyond, be my girl tonight.
MATT: Aw, thank you, Sam.
SAM: Those are all official southern things.
TRAVIS: I'm not sure if we'll animate that one, but--
SAM: Give it time!
MATT: If we've taken anything from that, we now have the mental image of a country Sam enjoying an all-night date with his D&D Beyond.
LAURA: You and your computer, all night.
MATT: Thank you, D&D Beyond, for your sponsorship and allowing such magical moments like this to happen.
LIAM: "What are you doing in there, Sam?" "I'm just looking at my spells!"
MATT: We also have, for those who haven't seen it yet or haven't had the opportunity, Marisha's Honey Heist 2: Electric Beargaloo VOD is available on YouTube at youtube.com/criticalrole, so you can go check it out there for free any time you want! It's there, it's ready to go.
TRAVIS: You were a bunch of crackheads. Crackheads.
MATT: It was nuts. It was so much fun.
MARISHA: We were pretty loopy.
MATT: On that same regard, for the time being, our limited-run Electric Beargaloo tee is available right now in the store, for a limited time. Fantastic, beary awesome portrait art by Joana Carvalho, who did a great job with it. You can check it out at shop.critrole.com.
LAURA: Who was touching my dice? Why were they out already when I got here? Samuel, what did you do?
SAM: I may have helped set up for you, being a caring parent. Don't worry, though, I only touched the ones that you wouldn't have used anyway.
MATT: Speaking of which, Laura, how's that merch coming?
LAURA: Hey, we got those Electric Beargaloo shirts! You guys, did you know we have a bunch of new items in our shop?
MARISHA and TALIESIN: What?
LAURA: There's a retro tee. There's a Mighty Nein Tee. That one has been altered by Marisha Ray, but you can alter your own at home.
MARISHA: Sleeves are bullshit!
LAURA: That's right. We've got-- we don't have that one in store right now. But we have our other shirts. The Nott Detective Agency, case closed.
SAM: You've got one job.
LAURA: We have hats that are sold out that'll be back some time. Pins.
MARISHA: Everyone loved the dad hats.
LAURA: The dad hats are awesome!
SAM: Why are they dad hats?
LAURA: Well, they're called dad hat.
SAM: Oh, okay.
LAURA: But I wore my dad hat and it looks great on a girl, too.
MARISHA: I was wearing it today when I was working.
LAURA: It's metallic thread. That’ll be back. I like how we're advertising our hat that's not in stock right now, but there's other things. Go check it out at our shop: shop.critrole.com. I know that address by heart!
MATT: Thank you, Laura. Welcome back to the table.
TRAVIS: Polished, professional.
MARISHA: It's like riding a bike.
LAURA: Someday I'll get to Sam Riegel levels.
SAM: (singing) D&D Beyond--
MATT: On that note, guys, we'll have our Wyrmwood giveaway at the break. I'll have all that information for you and a reminder at the time. But for right now, I think it's time to jump into tonight's episode of Critical Role.
[groovy Critical Role theme]
MATT: Welcome back. Well done, Laura. Welcome back. Last we left off, our band of adventurers, The Mighty Nein, having trekked away from Zadash northward on two different jobs for The Gentleman, had accomplished both of these contracted jobs for him. Losing a friend, gaining a friend, made their way back south. Oh my god! Motherfucker!
TALIESIN: Wow, that's been awhile.
LAURA: Whoa. Marisha, look! It's your husband.
TRAVIS: Everything you do, have done, or will do.
MARISHA: Oh, so good.
TRAVIS: Oh god. Doogie Howser, eat your fucking heart out.
MATT: You know that part in the game where you don't understand why you got so many points into renegade as opposed to paragon?
LIAM: Now available in the merch store!
MATT: I'm not going to be able to run the game tonight. I can't focus. Take two.
TRAVIS: Neither can the fans, steamy Dr. Mercer.
MATT: Oh, I will never live that down. It's great when you’re a new actor in LA and everyone says, “Yeah, you got to get some head shots, and I know all about it. You got to get those costume and character shots in.”
TRAVIS: Is that what it was? Yes! Oh, I love it!
LIAM: When you show up, right off the truck, you don't know what you're doing.
MATT: Yeah, you need some archetypes. Come with a doctor outfit, come with a regular business suit.
MARISHA: To be fair, I got a few gigs that way, by doing a few character shots.
MATT: I've done a lot of doctors. No, all that photo has done is this. That is literally the most it's ever done.
LIAM: You're like 17 and a half here, right?
MATT: That would have been about ten years ago.
SAM: So early 30s?
MATT: Yes. We'll go with that one. Anyway, back to the story at hand! Upon completing your journey, checking in with The Gentleman, you were paid the ripe sum that you had discussed. After taking your newfound friend from Shadycreek Run, Ophelia, back to The Evening Nip, you exited with your new gold and platinum in hand. After a celebratory drink to the memory of Molly, you grabbed Caduceus and led him into the city of Zadash-- the largest city you've ever seen by leaps and bounds-- to see what kind of ways you can corrupt this new, fresh mind, free out of the Savalirwood.
LAURA: It's so exciting!
MATT: That is where we left off. In this case, guys, we have roughly two weeks of downtime. I'm going to go around and ask what you would like to accomplish, and if moments require rolls, moments require roleplay, anything like that, we'll jump into it. I would like to say, who wants to go first?
TRAVIS: Oh god. One two three, not it!
TALIESIN, MARISHA, and LAURA: Not it.
SAM: I didn't say not it. Would you like to go, Liam?
LIAM: Not it.
TRAVIS: Yeah! Come on, Piggly Wiggly!
SAM: Sure. Not much. Okay, the things I wrote down were: I would like to use my money.
LAURA: Your money!
SAM: To buy a bunch of baubles and trinkets and buttons and ribbons and string and beads and one crescent ornament.
MATT: Okay, I will say you could purchase all of those things-- and you're buying these yourself?
SAM: In Disguise Self mode.
MATT: Okay, yeah. I'd say you could buy all of those things with, let’s say, a single gold, because your charisma isn't that high. A single gold piece for all of that. That's priced up a bit.
SAM and LAURA: That's pretty good.
SAM: I will put all of that stuff into a package and mail it away with a note that I sent you earlier, Matt.
MATT: Yep, I have that.
SAM: Okay, step two! I’m going to take my gun.
TRAVIS: Your what?
SAM: Oh, I stole a gun. You weren't there for that?
MATT: No, that was on the way out of Hupperdook. They weren't there for that.
SAM: I stole a gun!
TRAVIS: You got a gat?
SAM: I stole a gun from a guard. I've got one bullet.
TRAVIS: Yeah, like one round, single shot?
SAM: Yeah! Don't fuck with me, man! I will blow you away, motherfucker!
TRAVIS: Oh shit! Okay!
SAM: Unless I miss, and then it's nothing. No, I would like to take apart the gun. I’d like to take apart the gun and figure out how the hammer works, how the gunpowder ignites. Is it a pack of powder like a bullet, or is it loose powder with a ball?
MATT: Well, first off, do you have or own tinkerer’s tools?
SAM: No, but do any of you guys?
MARISHA: Have what?
SAM: Tinkerer's tools. I'll go and buy them!
MATT: This next expense will be 50 gold pieces for the set of tinkerer’s tools.
SAM: No problem.
MATT: I would need you to make a tinkering check to see if you can successfully disassemble the gun.
SAM: Does anyone want to help me?
MATT: Without ruining elements of it.
LAURA: I don't think any of us have enough experience to help you.
LIAM: Caleb would help.
SAM: Do you have tinkering experience?
LIAM: No, but I'm pretty smart.
MATT: You're not proficient in tinkerer's tools, so it's basically a straight intelligence check. Add your intelligence modifier to see if you can figure out the safest way to do so.
SAM: I rolled a 14 and I have an intelligence of plus three.
MATT: It takes you a little bit of time, but you manage to very carefully disassemble the entirety of the pistol without any issues.
SAM: I'm specifically curious about how the impact of the hammer creates an explosion.
MATT: Through the words of the man responsible for inventing these things not but 20-plus years beforehand, if you would like to explain?
LAURA: Oh my goodness!
TALIESIN: There is a flash pan where there’s a preload powder, basically a powder capsule attaches to a flash pan. The hammer contains a sparking mechanism that hits a plate, causes a spark to hit the powder and the flash pan, goes into the gunpowder that's within that's actually packed inside of the barrel and sends the shot out.
SAM: Is it a specific kind of metal that makes a spark?
TALIESIN: It actually is a specific kind. It's a flint.
SAM: It's a flint metal.
TALIESIN: Although, people have probably gotten creative with that at that time, but the Percy tech was just a flint. He was trying to do other stuff and always failed.
SAM: With that knowledge, I will purchase any other materials I will need to do this. I’m going to take out the 20 arrows I grabbed from the Iron Shepherds’ house. I’m going to try to modify them, using multiple arrowheads if needed, to make an explosive arrowhead that's packed with some gunpowder.
TALIESIN: It would be a bag at the front with a flint that would spark on pressure. So as long as you fired it hard, it would cause the spark when it hit and detonate.
MATT: Make a tinker check.
SAM: Another tinkerer’s check! I'm not a good tinkerer.
LAURA: Ooh, look at your dice!
SAM: 11 plus three.
LAURA: Where did you get those?
SAM: I got them for free from somebody.
LAURA: Those are so pretty!
MARISHA: They're from Norse Foundry.
SAM: From Norse Foundry. Just a 14.
MATT: I’d say it'll cost you an additional 20 gold in materials, because you fail multiple times going through, and end up wasting a lot of materials until, eventually, you get it right and you're certain that this would be the one that would function properly. So you have one explosive arrow. You’re not entirely certain what it does.
SAM: One explosive arrow.
TALIESIN: Welcome to tinkering, man.
SAM: I'll take the parts of the gun-- it's apart now, right?
MATT: Yeah, they're separate individual pieces.
SAM: I can't put it back together?
MATT: You can certainly try.
SAM: All right, I'll try. That's a 15.
MATT: You reassemble it. It looks to be functional.
SAM: Okay, and I will look at it and say: Whoever invented this was a very smart person. She must have been a very, very smart person indeed.
TALIESIN: Oh, she was.
SAM: Okay. Then I have one explosive arrow, maybe. Great. I’d also like to purchase a pair of gloves or have them made.
MATT: For show or comfort?
SAM: For comfort and show, human skin color, with little fingernails embroidered at the end.
MATT: (laughs) All right, so you have this commissioned.
MATT: Because it is a commission and it is specific, it’d probably be at the similar store where Beau got her reversible cloak made earlier in the campaign. It would only take maybe two days to get the materials together to match the color you wanted, and then the embroidery, and finishing the gloves for your size specifically. Since you’d be a smaller frame. All in all, I’d say five gold pieces. Which is pricey for a set of custom gloves, but not based on the money you had made.
SAM: Oh, also, with that package I sent earlier, I also included 100 gold pieces in it.
MATT: Okay, so mark that off.
SAM: And then one last thing. I’d like to approach Jester, and ask her: Jester!
SAM: I need your help.
LAURA: What do you need help with?
SAM: You are a talented *artiste.*
LAURA: Yes, I am very talented.
SAM: But also, you've mentioned in the past that you are an expert forger.
LAURA: Yes, I am! Have you seen my work? Remember?
SAM: I've seen you draw dicks on things.
LAURA: Well, also I've written a lot of letters.
SAM: You don't really show us those too much.
LAURA: They're really good.
SAM: All right. And also while you were captured, I flipped through your book. It's excellent work. If there were an art school or something, you should send it in.
LAURA: Well, thank you. I did have really good tutors when I was growing up.
SAM: I bet. I’d like you to help me forge a letter. I'd like it to sound like it's from some sort of legal entity or law firm or court or something like that.
LAURA: Ooh. I'll use something like Esquire or something in there, that sounds very--
SAM: Yes, yes, yes. And I'd like to-- oh, could you not tell Caleb about this?
SAM: It's a secret.
LAURA: I'm really good at keeping secrets. Okay.
SAM: I'd like it to read something like-- Oh! I'm going to be sending it to the Solstryce Academy.
LAURA: (gasps) I know about that! That's where Fjord wants to go. Are we writing this for Fjord?
SAM: It's in Rexxentrum.
LAURA: Solstryce, yes, I know where it is.
LAURA: Soltryce Academy.
SAM: The Soul Train Academy.
MATT: That's a good way to remember it.
SAM: Something like: "Greetings. Hello. To whom it may concern."
LAURA: To whom it may concern.
SAM: “I am trying to reach a young lady named Astrid, no last name given, who was a--”
LAURA: Wait. Do I say that? No last name given?
SAM: Yes. “Who was a student about 11 years ago at your academy. She has inherited a bit of money from a distant relative: her uncle, Leonard Highfin. He's from--”
LAURA: Leonard Hyphen? Hyphen what?
SAM: I don't-- Leonard Hyphen Leonard.
LAURA: Leonard Hyphen Leonard. Got it.
SAM: “From the town of Nigeria.”
LAURA: Got it.
SAM: “And his estate has employed me to find her in order to deliver the funds.”
LAURA: (gasps) Vast sums of money. Right. The funds, okay.
SAM: “Please reach out to her-- reach out to me--”
LAURA: Oh shit. Now I've got to write it again because you said it wrong. Hold on.
SAM: Sorry. I didn't know you were writing it as I was saying. “Please reach out to me with her last known contact information or address. You can write me in care of The Pillow Trove Hotel, Zadash. Attention--” I don't know. Attention what? Mrs. Jester? Mrs. Dr. Jester?
LAURA: No. Mrs. Lavorre, Esquire.
SAM: Mrs. Lavorre, Esquire. “My legal practice thanks you in advance. Thank you.”
LAURA: The legal practice of Nott?
SAM: Nott and Brave.
LAURA: Nott and Brave Law Firm.
LAURA: Okay, Nott and Brave Law Firm. Okay. And then what now? Do you have a seal or something? Because it would be sealed really fancy.
SAM: I don't know. On official letters, do you kiss them with lipstick? Do you put a little perfume on it? What do you do?
LAURA: You know what? I have my mom's lavender oil. Hold on.
SAM: That'll make it even more official.
LAURA: Things that are from really fancy places, they always have--
LAURA: So I'm going to get it on my fingers and handle the paper. So the paper smells like it was handled by someone rich.
SAM: I noticed sometimes in letters that I've stolen from the post, fancy ones anyway, sometimes you pull out the letter and then there's this other piece of tissue paper in there for no reason.
LAURA: Yes. We'll do something like that. I use another piece of paper because I don't have any kind of tissue paper.
SAM: Just a blank one. All right, and then we mail it to the Soltryce Academy.
LAURA: Okay, wait! We need a really fancy seal. We need wax.
SAM: Do we have any wax?
LAURA: I bet Caleb has wax.
SAM: We can't tell him about this.
LAURA: Okay. Do you know where any candles are?
SAM: There's candles everywhere.
LAURA: Let's take a candle from around the room. And then we'll stamp it with a ring! One of my rings.
SAM: Oh, perfect!
LAURA: Okay, which one is the flattest? This one. It's got a rose on it.
MATT: Okay. Two things. One, I would like you to roll for your forgery.
SAM: It's a bunch of candle wax. White wax.
MARISHA: Plain beeswax.
MATT: Are you proficient with your forgery kit?
LAURA: Well, I have a forgery kit. How do I know if I'm proficient? Hold on. I think I am because of my background. Yes. No. Yes. I don't know.
MATT: I think you should, depending on your --
LAURA: Hold on. I'm opening my-- yeah! Proficiencies and languages. Forgery kit.
MATT: Yeah. Go ahead and a d20. Add your intelligence modifier and your proficiency bonus.
LAURA: Why intelligence? Can it be the wisdom?
MATT: Actually, no. Let's make it dexterity.
LAURA: Okay. Plus what? My proficiency?
MATT: Proficiency bonus and your intelligence modifier. Dex, I'm sorry.
LAURA: That's 12 plus three, is 15.
MATT: You manage to forge the letter in what you believe to be a fairly decent forgery.
LAURA: A really good forgery.
SAM: It looks like it!
MATT: You're not matching someone's handwriting, per se. It's more about getting an officious look to it, with little flourishes of calligraphy at the beginning of sentences.
SAM: Like a big first letter?
MATT: Exactly. I would like you to roll a general dexterity check for me.
LAURA: Did you see that? It was really trying. Dexterity check? Ten.
MATT: Okay. There's a difference between sealing wax and candle wax. How do I know this? Because I've made that mistake before, sealing letters for previous D&D campaigns. You manage to press your ring into the wax and pull back, and now there's mush on the end of your ring, and there's a circular piece of mushed soft wax where the seal should be.
LAURA: This is pretty shitty.
SAM: We need sealing wax.
LAURA: We need actual sealing wax. I peel it up.
SAM: Can you go get some from the stiggity store?
LAURA: Yeah. I'll go to the store and buy some sealing wax.
MATT: Sealing wax, it's not too expensive. We'll say two silver to get you a chunk.
LAURA: Two silver for this wax! You better be really grateful!
SAM: I'll pay for postage.
LAURA: Okay. Now I can send letters to my mom with a really cool seal!
SAM: Oh! So you did need it.
MATT: There you go. You finish the letter. You seal it best to your ability. You hope it seems official enough, and you send it off towards its destination in Rexxentrum.
SAM: Thank you.
LAURA: You're welcome.
SAM: Please don't tell Caleb; he might get upset. I think that this is someone from his past who might be able to, you know, make him think of happier times.
LAURA: Who? Astrid?
LAURA: (gasps) That's the name he said to me when we were dancing. Did you know?
LAURA: Yes, we were dancing. We were waltzing. It was really lovely. He was very drunk.
SAM: Yes, I remember that night.
LAURA: And then he said something about Astrid.
SAM: He misses her.
LAURA: Was it his girlfriend?
SAM: I think so. You know, I don't know which way he swings, but he could really get any girl he wanted to.
LAURA: He's very handsome, especially when he shaves. You can see the little butt chin he has. It's really nice.
SAM: That's nice. Well, I hope it works.
LAURA: Me too.
SAM: End scene.
MATT: End scene, all right. Is that the extent of the things you want to accomplish, Nott?
SAM: I mean, I don't want to take too much time. I'm good.
MATT: Okay. All righty, who wants to step up next?
LIAM: I was the second-to-last to say--
MATT: That's true, so Caleb.
LIAM: *Ja*, I have some things that I want to accomplish on my own and then I also need to have a conversation with Beauregard, but before that I need to go shopping. I have a list of things I want to do, actually.
TRAVIS: Wait, let me come along.
LIAM: Do you want to go shopping? Travis, are you sure?
MARISHA: Are you going to Pumat's?
TALIESIN: Let me come along if you're going shopping.
LIAM: *Ja*. Oh, what are you in the market for?
TALIESIN: Well, I figure if we're going to be traveling together, we should probably have some supplies. I'm looking for some diamonds for some things I know how to do.
LIAM: Oh, well we have some fellows you could meet.
MARISHA: Guys, let's all go shopping!
TALIESIN: That's great.
MARISHA: We just got money!
LIAM: I have a lot of money.
MARISHA: I'm coming.
LIAM: Let's go shopping.
MATT: So the four of you, Jester, Caduceus, Caleb, and Beauregard, are going shopping.
MATT: Okay, all right. Well, what are you guys looking for?
TRAVIS: Catch y'all on the flip.
LIAM: Go see that beautiful baby, Travis.
TRAVIS: Yeah. Going on a trip.
MARISHA: I want to go to Pumat.
MATT: Okay. Midday you make your way to the Pentamarket to the very vibrant center area of the marketplace there. There's a number of intersecting pathways that help divide between all the various carts and tents that open up. At this point, I'd say it's maybe late morning or so. A lot of the curled up curtains in the front are being affixed to the top or have been for a while. The smells of fresh baked goods, cooking stews, and various other treats and snacks that are being presented as part of the shopping experience catch your nostrils as you move through. You hear music playing in the distance. For all the chaos that life has thrown you in the past 30 days, it feels nice to step into a place that's so filled with life and lack of understanding of how dark the world is at the fringes of this empire, both with the war going on and some of the things you've encountered. It's nice to step into this space and you catch yourself instinctually smiling and finding it infectious to brighten your mood. You turn to see the darkened green wood with gold accoutrements that marks the exterior of The Invulnerable Vagrant. The front door is closed, but appears to be not locked for any particular reason.
MARISHA: I have such a clear picture in my head, now that we've built it.
MATT: Now that we've physically built it, yeah. It's a little larger in-world than the one that we did.
MARISHA: But the aesthetic.
MATT: But the aesthetic is there, yeah. As you step forward, the door opens up and leads you inside, and there the same warmly lit interior with the glowing chandelier above greets you. Across the way, sitting behind the desk, face down in a book, one of the various Pumats, who looks up and, “Oh, why hello there! Yeah, oh, it's been a while. Sorry, took me a second there to recognize you. You're very silhouetted by the bright sunshine outside you right now and it's a bit dark interior, so come on up!”
MARISHA: We do always seem to come around 4:00pm, right when the sun is coming in the window.
LAURA: I run in.
MATT: Another Pumat comes around the corner and goes, "Oh, do we have folks in here?" "Yeah, don't worry, Pumat, I got them taken care of. Oh, there's even more coming in."
TALIESIN: Oh, yeah. Cool, twins. Right. That's cool. I like this place. This is nice.
MARISHA: Pumat III, this is Caduceus.
MATT: "Caduceus! Why, it's a pleasure to meet you as well."
TALIESIN: It's a pleasure to meet you.
MATT: "Don't see many of our kind wandering around these large establishments."
TALIESIN: You're the first one I've seen in the city so far, and that's pretty crazy. This is nice. Is this yours?
MATT: "Well, it's ours. Well, it's his. Hey, Prime! You might want to step out of the workshop for a second." You hear some rustling and grumbling in the background, and the curtain opens and you see a third one of them step out, goggles affixed to the head, a little bit of smudges of dirt on the edges of the chin. "What are you talking about? Oh my goodness."
TALIESIN: You're all brothers, then? There's three of you now. Triplets. That's great. That's great! Don't see that very often.
MATT: "Where are you from? To be perfectly honest, we haven't really run into any other firbolgs really since we came here."
TALIESIN: Oh, me neither. I'm actually from up north. I'm traveling with these kids, working on something. It's nice.
TALIESIN: How long have you been down here? This place is great. This is great.
MATT: "Well, thank you." At this point, the fourth one comes down from a ladder off on the right side chamber. "Oh, is the order getting-- Oh, it's a whole party over here! Is that another firbolg?" Comes down and the other's like, "Yeah, there's one over here." The other Pumat's like, "I'm impressed. I like the color tones. It's a great arrangement, visual perspective."
TALIESIN: Impressed by what your mother went through, at this point. This is intense. There's a lot of you.
MATT: The one with the goggles in the back goes, "Sorry about that. I should clarify. These three are arcane-based copies of myself. We are all collectively Pumat, but I am the original."
TALIESIN: Well, that's the best thing I've ever seen. That's crazy. That's just great. I'd love to learn how to do that.
LAURA: You shouldn't call them "arcane copies." They have their own personalities and their own self. You should appreciate them.
MATT: One of the other ones speaks up and goes, "We absolutely take no offense, because it's true."
LAURA: Well, all right, but I think each and every one of you is unique in your own way and you should really appreciate it!
MATT: The three simulacrum all go, "Aww" at the same time.
LAURA: I go back to rearranging the shelf.
TALIESIN: It's nice to see another firbolg out in the world doing something, and you seem like you're really building something great here. This is spectacular.
MATT: "Well, I greatly appreciate that. We put a lot of hard work into it and it's hard to come across folks like us that would appreciate something on this scale."
TALIESIN: You might know. Is there anything I absolutely should see while I'm in town? This is the farthest I've been from home. I'm curious if there's anything in this city that a firbolg out taking a look around should--
MATT: "Well, unless I am mistaken, from my previous memory of times outside of Zadash, when's the last time you had a good bath?"
TALIESIN: Well, I had a hot spring, which was nice. I mean, it had some sulfur content and there was some minerals in there that were probably a bit iffy.
LIAM: The baths here are quite lovely.
MATT: "This one knows what he's talking about. Listen to him. Follow that around."
MARISHA: What are we talking about?
MATT: "Oh, sorry. Did you come here to do business?"
MATT: Prime goes, "All right, then. Nice to meet you--?"
TALIESIN: Caduceus Clay. Pleasure.
MATT: "Caduceus Clay. Pumat Sol. Pleasure."
TALIESIN: Look forward to doing business with yous.
MATT: "Of course, you got gold, we've got things to purchase. Anyway, other Pumats, take care of these folks. I've got to get back to work. Good to see you all again."
LAURA: Bye, Prime.
MATT: He exits to the back room. The two other Pumats step back and watch, and they're both looking at you with this kind of--
TALIESIN: He seems like a decent boss. That seems nice.
MATT: "Not too bad. People say you want to be your own boss, well--”
TALIESIN: That's really good.
LIAM: It feels weird to interrupt whatever this is.
MARISHA: I'm hungry, so.
MATT: "Unfortunately, we don't really sell much in the realm of food items."
LIAM: I am in the market for some things of arcane nature. Oh, I see you're reading a book. What are you reading?
MARISHA: Ugh, god, no more small talk! You still have those bracers?
MATT: "We do, actually. To be perfectly honest, you mostly cleaned us out last time you were in here, but we've got a few more items in here."
MARISHA: Yeah, what's up with those bracers?
MATT: "We got the bracers here, if that's what you're looking for."
MARISHA: Have they come down in price?
MARISHA: It's been sitting on a shelf for six weeks.
MARISHA: So, you know.
MATT: "And six weeks later, you're coming in and asking about them still."
LAURA: He does have a point there.
MARISHA: You know what, Jester?
MATT: "But yeah, price is still 1200 gold pieces.”
MARISHA: All right. What do they do again? Can you explain one more time?
MATT: "These bracers, enchanted by our fantastic boss, Pumat Sol, allow the bearer, as long as they're not wearing any physical armor to impede the enchantment and/or a shield on their body, helps protect them by deflecting incoming blows and giving them a better sense of avoiding physical atrocity onto their person."
LAURA: It's like they were specially made for you, Beau. You have to buy them. I think you should charge her more.
MARISHA: What? Whose side are you on, here?
LAURA: I feel like you're a very specialized sort of buyer, is all.
MARISHA: Right, so if anything, he should give me a bargain.
LAURA: Oh, you should give her a deal!
MATT: "How about we meet in the middle and we stick with the price provided?"
TALIESIN: Seems fair.
MARISHA: You threw him off, Jester.
LAURA: I'm sorry. I got confused.
LIAM: Terrible wingwoman.
MARISHA: Look, we might be purchasing a few things, so why don't we wait and see what all ends up on the counter and then we'll come back.
MATT: "All right, we'll put this here waiting for you right there.”
MARISHA: Can I look at it? Can I touch it?
MATT: "Yeah." You can look at it, but you don't own it.
LIAM: *Herr* Pumat, I am considering spending about a thousand gold here and I'd be more likely to do so if maybe you could give us a better price for these things here.
MATT: "That can be considered, depending on how much of a purchase you're looking to make. What are you looking for?"
LIAM: Well, I need--
MATT: Don't think I've forgotten that silly string.
LIAM: I need quite a bit of your finest paper and ink. I have a dearth of scroll-- a dearth. A mighty dearth.
LIAM: That's a different conversation, *danke.* I need about roughly 500 or 600 gold's worth of your finest paper and ink.
LAURA: Caleb, save 300 gold because we need diamonds.
TALIESIN: Oh, I'm going to be buying some diamonds. I wouldn't worry about that.
MATT: "If that's the case, if you don't mind waiting, Pumat III, could you go to our storage facility and get some more of that wizard paper and ink? It looks like he's buying out our stock here at the moment." "Yeah, not a worry. I'll be back here in the better part of 30 or 40 minutes, if you don't mind being patient." That one Pumat takes a little cloak and throws it over his shoulders. "See you guys in a little bit!" And exits outside.
LIAM: There's still one left?
MATT: There's three in the room left behind. One of them had drifted off to the side for a bit, but seems to be still listening in. So you still have the one that's dealing with you.
LIAM: I also need incense. Fine incense. About 60 gold worth, if you have that much on hand.
MATT: "We don't have a whole lot of incense here. I can probably provide about 20 gold worth of incense. But there are incense makers within Zadash that I'm sure can probably help you out with the rest of it."
LIAM: So just not here.
LAURA: I remember you asking him for incense before from him, I think.
LIAM: Yeah, I used it. It's all gone. Just like my cat.
MATT: "We can definitely look to ordering more incense if you foresee this being a consistent thing. We normally don't get that much of a request for it."
LIAM: Obviously this is a bit of a regular thing. If, you know, the exchange rate is good. I don't need more than the 20 gold's worth of incense today, if you can order more. We're going to stay put for a little while, *ja*?
MARISHA: What's the turnaround-- what?
LIAM: I'll ask you later. Also-- oh dear. I need that, and I need that. Oh, yes, I was hoping to look through your selection of spells you have yourself. Nothing too majestic, but I have a short list.
MATT: "Feel free to ask and I'll go ahead--" and he grabs this small wood front, wood back, with leather edging binding ledger or catalog that he pulls out and opens it up, "Yeah, let me know what you're looking for. I'll tell you if we got one in stock."
LIAM: If you could flip to the transmutation.
MATT: Takes a little set of glasses and puts them on the edge of his nose. "All right."
LIAM: I'm looking for one that can help if your friends are falling and you don't want them to fall so hard.
MATT: "Feather Fall. We got that, sure."
LIAM: Okay. I get hurt very easily and I need something to help me get out of Dodge a little bit quicker.
MATT: "All right, there's a few options there. For lower level enchantments, we got an Expeditious Retreat spell. That'll help get you out of the thick of things."
LIAM: That's a winner.
MATT: "All right, that's putting that down as well as a possibility. Those braces here, because they're both relatively simple spells, so I'll put them at about 100 gold apiece. That's 200 gold total for those two spells."
LIAM: And do you have something that can, say, catapult things around the room?
LAURA: I can do that for you.
MARISHA: Yeah, me too.
LIAM: But I also want to be able to do it.
MATT: "Yeah, well, here. Let's see. In the realm of what you're looking to accomplish here--"
LAURA: I pick up something and throw it across the room.
LIAM: I'm not paying for that.
TRAVIS: That’s some Odyssey of the Mind stuff, right there.
MARISHA: I agree with Jester here.
MATT: "So you're going directly, not messing around, just a straight Catapult."
MARISHA: That’s so 1994 of you!
TRAVIS: Straight up catapult?
LIAM: *Ja.* Straight Up Catapult, is that what it's called? I'll take that as well.
TALIESIN: Are you going to sell him a tiny catapult that he has to assemble himself?
MATT: It's a straight up catapult. "Catapult, yeah, we do have that as well. That is 300 gold for the batch of three. Any more spells you're inquiring about?"
LIAM: No. There are so many, but I am of a limited budget. I'll think about it if you can help my friend Beauregard with a good price on those.
LAURA: I also might want to buy weapons, if you have a weapon that is also really cool and stuff.
MATT: "Here, I'll show you what we've been able to accomplish since your absence. Weapon-wise, this wasn't enchanted more than it was something that came into our purview from somebody that was looking hard for some cash and we offered them a bit of an exchange, as it was promising and intriguing." He pulls out this longsword, but beyond the hilt the blade is snapped and gone. It's a broken longsword. It's got a silver hilt and a silver pommel wrapped in red leathers around the handle, and there is a very fine filigree across the hilt and around the base, this silver loop on the bottom of the pommel. But it's a broken sword.
LAURA: Are we going to get it fixed? Or can I still stab people with the broken part?
MATT: "You've got about an inch of blade there and it looks like it's still sharp in places. If you get real close you can probably make someone have a really bad day.
LAURA: What does it do?
MATT: "Well, looking it over, it looks like there was some sort of enchantment embedded in it, but since the blade has been broken, there’s not-- it looks to be very old. Looks like it probably was a relic from pre--" He goes and looks at his notes real fast. "Yeah, this would be pre-Divergence, from the Age of Arcanum. The reason we took it is the historical significance. We could probably fetch a pretty penny should we take it to the various lyceums. The Academy would probably be real interested. But if you want to take it off for sentimental value or go get it repaired some time, it's 300 gold."
LAURA: Well, I mean, I'll look at it. I don't know. It's pretty broken looking.
MATT: "Prime finished up some of this dust here," and he pulls up a small sack that looks to be a red-brown dust. He says, "He's proud of this one, I'm going to be real honest with you. If it's sprinkled over any edible substance, it greatly improves the flavor. To the point where it's downright distracting. It's the Dust of Deliciousness.”
LAURA: Oh my goodness!
TALIESIN: That's so exciting.
LAURA: That's a very exciting thing. Oh, that's expensive. Seems like something you could hold.
TALIESIN: I'll take that.
MATT: "Last thing we've got here, and then we're pretty much out at the moment. You guys have become our number one customers, which is really appreciated. Just finished this cloak last week here." He steps around the edge and you can see, while as well decorated as the place is, it's pretty bare now. You guys have come through and grabbed the necessary bits and what else was in there has been picked up as well. You guys aren't the only people who shop here, but you've been the most recent, intense customers. He pulls this fine bluish, purple-tint cloak material, that as it flows, as he lifts it up from behind the small locked box, it ever so faintly gives off this shimmer. "This is designed to obfuscate the movements of the person who wears it, to where it makes him a little more difficult to pay attention. The enchantments here," and he looks back, and you can see it, right along the hood of it, there's these faint little runes. He goes, "This is some-- these are Sylvan. I don't know if any of you read more the classics."
TALIESIN: I read Sylvan, and there you are.
MATT: "Well, there you go. This is specifically a cloak with an elven enchantment, designed to help make things difficult to see. So there's that one as well."
TALIESIN: Yep, let's take a look at that.
MATT: "That's all we got."
LAURA and TALIESIN: Ooh.
LAURA: That's pretty cool.
LIAM: How much is that running for?
MATT: "Yeah, an answer."
LAURA: Is there anywhere else around town I could get an enchanted weapon of some sort?
MATT: "Unfortunately, enchanted weaponry is a very specialized--"
LAURA: But everybody else has really cool weapons, and I just have an axe.
MATT: "Oh. I'm sorry about that. If you want to commission an axe, we can start working on enchanting one for you."
LAURA: How much would that cost?
MATT: "Well, it depends on what sort of enchantment you're looking for. If you just--"
LAURA: Something that makes me really cool.
LAURA: That would make me hit really hard and probably open wounds that don't close ever, and maybe poison people, and also turn them into candy.
MATT: The other Pumat is now looking over from the other room and going like-- He's like, "We'll have to talk to Prime about that. Prime?" Comes out. "Yeah." He's like, "She wants to see if you could enchant an axe that that hits really hard and is really cool and wounds don't close and--"
LAURA: Yeah, you know, really bad wounds, also it really hurts a lot, and it makes people turn pink, and also it makes people, like start dancing and stuff.
MATT: You watch as Pumat Prime is actually, in his head, doing math. "I could probably manage something like that. I got about an eight-month window for completion, and it would probably run you about, between ten to twelve thousand gold.
LIAM: (continually coughs)
TRAVIS: You haven't come this far.
LAURA: Seems like a really reasonable price for all those things.
MATT: "Oh, I can guarantee it. Won't find anything better than that, for a specified number of enchantments, this side of Rexxentrum."
LAURA: What about just one of those enchantments? What about it just makes people start dancing?
TALIESIN: Axe dance!
MATT: "So you want a weapon that, when it hits somebody, they start dancing?"
LAURA: They go. Yeah, and they can't stop. It's like, it would be really hard for them to stop.
MATT: "All right. So the only enchantment you're requiring is the possible ability of making something dance uncontrollably."
LAURA: Oh my god, that would be so cool!
MATT: "All right."
MARISHA: I really liked the candy thing, by the way.
LAURA: I feel like that would be harder.
MARISHA: Maybe they can just decorate it to look like candy.
LAURA: Maybe I could decorate it to look like candy.
MARISHA: Oh, craft night!
LIAM: Sad you're not here?
TRAVIS: Yep, so much.
SAM: Shopping and crafts, Travis!
TRAVIS: Oh, god.
MATT: Welcome back, man.
TRAVIS: Take both my eyes.
TALIESIN: Do you have your jewelry kit? Are you proficient?
TRAVIS: What’s on TV, babe? HG-- nope, I’m out.
MARISHA: Michael's had a stationery sale!
MATT: "There we go. That's going to be-- It's doable. It's pricey. That one will put you about 8,000 gold."
LAURA: I don't have that much either. Wait, do I?
LAURA: No, I don't.
TRAVIS: How about layaway?
MATT: "Sorry. If you want just something that's pretty sharp and helps you hit a little better, I could do that for much cheaper."
LAURA: How much?
MATT: "Let's see. That one will put you back about, I'd say, maybe 400 gold?"
LAURA: Ooh! That sounds way better!
MATT: "Could finish that in about four or five days, yeah."
LAURA: Whoa! Okay, I'll do that!
MATT: "All righty, just provide the weapon, and we'll get that taken care of for you."
LAURA: Here, take this one.
MATT: "Okay." What kind of axe is it?
LAURA: It's an axe.
LAURA: It's a handaxe.
MATT: Handaxe. Okay, so it can be thrown as well.
LAURA: Ooh! Yes, it can.
TRAVIS: Did you just now realize that?
MATT: "All right. We'll go ahead and we'll get right on that for you, not a worry."
MATT: "So that'd be 400 gold for that."
MATT: "Put that in the pot right there, since you're looking for possibly other purchases. That's 400 gold pieces. What else you looking to buy?"
TALIESIN: I'm thinking I'm--
LAURA: I mean, we should get that, right?
TALIESIN: Oh yeah, no, I think I want--
LAURA: Longswords aren't simple weapons, so I can't?
TALIESIN: But I don't know. I like broken things.
SAM: (cooing) What about the cloak?
TALIESIN: Oh, no, we're getting the cloak.
MATT: "All right, so that's--"
TALIESIN: Caleb, do you want to split that cloak with me, maybe?
LIAM: Oh, I'm allocating my funds to other things, my friend, I'm sorry.
TALIESIN: Oh well, I'll get the cloak then.
LAURA: I'll help you get the cloak.
MARISHA: Well, here's the deal, Pumat. What was that you said five or so minutes ago about us being your number one customers?
LAURA: Ooh, yeah, and you would give us a deal if we bought a whole bunch of stuff?
TALIESIN: Is this where we go for the diamonds, too?
LIAM: I am dropping a total, if we're all amenable, 960 gold on various things, and I think that is a pretty good pile. Maybe you could knock a couple hundred off of the price of those bracers.
MATT: Make a persuasion check, with advantage since everybody's helping you.
MARISHA: Come on! Get it! That's good!
LIAM: Yeah, that is a 21.
MATT: You see the Pumats talking to you kind of, "Let me go ahead and have a conversation with the boss man. Hold on just a second." Turns around the corner. You hear some hushed voices. "Yeah, fine, sure." He comes back out, "All right, we got ourselves an approval for a discount there. We'll be happy to knock about a hundred gold off that total price for you, if that's amenable to you."
TALIESIN: That's pretty amenable.
LAURA: Sure. All of us save 20 gold, still pretty good.
MARISHA: Yeah, that's about it.
MATT: "All right, so who's buying what?"
LAURA: 25 gold!
TALIESIN: I'm getting the sword and the cloak.
MATT: "Sword and the cloak."
LAURA: I'm going halvsies on the cloak with him.
TALIESIN: Oh, well, thank you.
MATT: "All righty. Well, here."
MARISHA: I'll take those bracers.
MATT: "Well here, I'll do a total price here, and then you guys can--"
LIAM: 872, 873, 874.
LAURA and SAM: Oh, no.
MATT: "It's 400 for getting your handaxe enchanted."
LAURA: Yes, and then another two because I'm going in halvsies on the cloak.
MATT: "Well, I'm doing a total amount here first, don't-- You guys can decide how to divvy it up for you."
LIAM: 951, 952.
SAM: Do you take cards?
MATT: "So that's 450 for the cloak. That's 1,200 for the bracers. That's 300 for the handle. No dust?"
TALIESIN: No, we'll pass on the dust for now. It's interesting.
MATT: "And then you got a-- and then 300 for the spells."
LIAM: Yeah, and 600 gold with of paper and ink, and then 20 for all the incense you have right now, and I'm going to leave 40 in advance for more incense coming.
MATT: "Hold on a second there. So it's 300 worth of spells, and you said 600 worth of paper and ink, right?" At this time you guys been discussing, the other Pumat comes back with his cloak with a big old crate in his hand and goes, "Got the rest of the paper and ink. Hold on." Sets it down.
LIAM: Oh, jeez.
MATT: "Then that is 20 gold for your incense?"
LIAM: I would like to give you 60 gold now for that much incense. I understand you only have about 20 now, but I know you're good for the rest, so I'll just pay in advance.
MATT: "All right. Are you guys all marking off your amounts?"
MARISHA: Yeah. Costs?
TALIESIN: Well, we're waiting for the total, but yeah.
MARISHA: I'm taking just 25 gold off of my bracers.
MATT: "Based on how many pieces you've thrown at me, it's probably better to have you all just deduct what you've spent individually. I was going to try that, but then..."
MATT: "That got a little chaotic there."
MARISHA: Give me them bracers!
MATT: "All righty, so there's your sword, there's your bracers, there's your cloak."
LAURA: With the dust of deliciousness, is that one use, or multiple uses?
MATT: "Six servings of dust in this."
TALIESIN: That's why I was like hmm.
LAURA: That's still pretty good.
TALIESIN: It's still good, but--
LAURA: (whispers) Okay, I want some of that, too.
MATT: "All right. Well, there you go. Go ahead and mark off that amount there as well. When all is said and done, when you've marked off your amounts, here's a hundred gold back. You may redistribute it as you see fit."
TRAVIS: Oh, shit, you got a hundred dollar rebate!
MARISHA: We got a rebate, 100 gold!
MATT: Well, that was what you haggled them down.
TRAVIS and LAURA: Oh.
MARISHA: Oh, so we're-- Okay, we're good.
MATT: It just makes it easier than adding.
LAURA: Will you take five gold off of the dust because you like me?
MATT: Make a persuasion check.
TALIESIN: We all take 25-- We each saved 25 gold.
MARISHA: 25 gold.
LAURA: That means he likes me! 20!
MATT: "Well, only because you asked so nice, but don't tell the boss."
LAURA: (whispers) I won't.
MATT: "All right?"
MARISHA: Feels so good! Feels like real shopping; I get a shopping high! Cathartic!
MATT: "So I'll see you back here in about five days or so there, Jester, and we should have a fresh, new, enchanted handaxe there for you."
MATT: "All righty. Well, it's been a pleasure."
LIAM: Thank you for your business. What was that book that you were reading?
MATT: "Oh, it’s--" He pulls it up again. "It's that Taryon fellow, or whatever. But I'm most of the way through it. Kind of a slow reader."
LIAM: Are you the last Pumat of the Pumats to read it?
MATT: "Yeah, we've been kind of passing it around as we each finish it."
LIAM: Hmm. You should form a book club.
MATT: "I'll ask him. Really appreciate the suggestion."
LIAM: Well, thank you for your business, I have a lot to do. And I am going to attempt to lift the crate of paper.
TALIESIN: I can help with that.
LIAM: Oh, thank you.
TALIESIN: Yep. (grunts) Yeah, that’s-- Oh, that's heavy.
LIAM: With the legs.
MATT: Most of the weight is the materials that contain the paper. The paper isn't very heavy, but because it is specifically designed and made for the uses of scribing and enchantment and other things, it is contained in very, very careful, protective wooden boxes. They're all stacked repeatedly within this crate.
LIAM: And I guess as we're leaving, walking along, Beauregard, who's sort of googling at her new bracers, do you have any plans--
MARISHA: Do they look cool?
LIAM: I don't know how to answer that.
MATT: "Hey, Caduceus! Pleasure to meet you."
TALIESIN: Oh, it’s a pleasure to meet you, as well. I'm sure we'll see each other again real soon.
MATT: "We’ll hope so. Brightened up the room."
TALIESIN: Oh, thank you. And what a room to brighten.
MATT: "Aww, you're too kind."
TALIESIN: You're the best.
MARISHA: Do they, like, go with the outfit, though?
LIAM: You look angry.
MARISHA: Yeah? Dope.
LIAM: Do you have any, er, plans to-- well, I would like to, I don't know if you want to. But may I go to the library again with you?
LIAM: Oh, thank you.
MARISHA: I'm going back probably tomorrow, next day, something like that.
LIAM: Oh, for a day or two?
MARISHA: I was thinking like an extended weekend. Like a Friday-to-Monday, four-days-three-nights type of thing, if you're down.
LIAM: Er, yes. If you wouldn't mind, I would be very--
MARISHA: You don't have to stay the whole time, but it's fine if you do. You can do whatever the fuck you want.
LIAM: If they give me-- Would I be allowed to peruse this--
MARISHA: I'm not your fucking babysitter.
LIAM: I did not say you were my babysitter! I just wanted to look at the books!
MARISHA: Just getting that out there.
LIAM: I don't know why you had that in your mind! I just want to look-- Thank you. And I walk off with my paper.
TALIESIN: We're going to be looking for a gem shop. And also, if there's an herb shop. I've been meaning to learn how to make healing potions. I've gotten a little bit of a basic understanding.
LIAM: (whispers) I do have a couple things left on my to-do list though, okay?
TALIESIN: And some general shopping that's just some stuff that doesn't really have--
MATT: Yeah, there's Grace of the Wilds, which is in the Pentamarket district. You find it. You in particular, you find it very quickly because you're attuned to the smell of some of the herbs and various mosses that they're been cultivating and drying out there. You're like, (sniffs). That's familiar. (sniffs) Yeah. And so, much like Toucan Sam, you follow your nose--
TALIESIN: It always knows!
MATT: --to Grace of the Wilds, and there you see a female woman, 50s, with kind of wild, big, black, curly hair, who's just sitting there. Nobody else is paying mind to the front, little tent that she has set up that is attached to the what appears to be the rest of her shop, which is mostly closed-off and dark. As you approach, she glances over and goes, “Hah! Hi! Can I help you? What do you need, what do you need? What can I do?"
LAURA: Hi! Are you Grace?
MATT: "No, I'm Jesna Bree. But this is Grace of the Wilds, this is my shop. But welcome! Welcome. Welcome, welcome."
TALIESIN: I'm still playing catch-up, one second. Hi! I was curious-- I was looking to maybe start learning how to make some healing potions of some kind--
MATT: "For training? You want to train?"
TALIESIN: Well, yeah. I mean, if that's possible. And also, I’m-- just some stuff for cooking. And otherwise I'm just looking for a nice general set of a few things. I've got a list here, just some food flavors as well.
MATT: "Of course, of course! Just give me your list, I’d like to see."
TALIESIN: Oh, sure. This is actually my general--
MATT: I know. I figured. "Oh. Ah. Okay, yeah!" And as she's talking to you, you watch as her other hand takes a piece of chalk and is writing on the wall behind her. "I'd be more than happy to help, and I can help! A lot of things I can help you with too, and I’m happy to!" And then, in kind of crappy handwriting underneath all the various prices of the herbs and things that are provided you now see 'training.' She's added it to her list of things that she does, as talking to you.
TALIESIN: You're probably the person to ask if there's a good tea shop in town. I feel like you'd probably know where to get a nice caffeinated beverage.
MATT: "Oh! Oh, yes. Oh yes. Oh yes, I can help with the tea, I won't fail. The tea? I can help with. So, training! What do you want to train in? Please, tell me."
TALIESIN: I've been hoping to learn how to make healing potions, actually, in general. Just start to kind of break in that, uh--
MATT: “Okay, okay. Okay, that can be done. It may take some time. Little bit of time. Give me your time, we’ll make it work.”
TRAVIS: (laughing) Oh my god, she's got a caffeine fucking IV under the desk. Holy shit.
MATT: The herbalism kit for this is-- It’s five-- you already have one.
TALIESIN: I have an herbalism kit, I just want to-- do I need a special proficiency or get the ingredients to help make one. I do have the herbalism kit.
MATT: Yeah, you would be purchasing proficiencies, the training is what you would be doing. This would be the bulk of your downtime, because it will take a while for you to really get--
TALIESIN: I only had a couple other light things I was going to do anyway.
MATT: But the full training for this will come to about, I’ll say, 200 gold.
TALIESIN: I can do that.
MATT: And you are now proficient in the herbalism kit.
TALIESIN: Actually, I was already proficient in the herbalism kit, I was just specifically looking for the stuff to make the potions.
MATT: Oh, I misunderstood! Oh!
TALIESIN: No, I got that already. I’ve never-- Back when I did this they didn't have all this craziness.
MATT: I’ve got you. Well, if that's the case, buying the materials-- You're essentially buying them at half-price. You can make healing potions, but you get to make them at 25 gold apiece, as opposed to 50.
TALIESIN: Sure! I’ll get-- Let's get 150 gold worth of that, and then probably some cooking spices, too.
MATT: Okay, yeah. Cooking spices will run you a gold for the full set.
TALIESIN: Oh, so it's 151. Anything else of interest or otherwise? Maybe some good beverages or otherwise there?
MATT: You can find a whole bevy of beverages all throughout the Pentamarket.
TALIESIN: Yeah, I'll find other stuff otherwise. Other than that I've got diamonds and some-- I'm looking for some general store kind of stuff.
MATT: Okay. So at 150 gold, (counting) that's six healing potions that you have the materials to make. But you can spend your downtime during this week to make a few, if you'd like.
MATT: That'll put you at about one potion per day of creation. So you can easily take this time to make all six.
TALIESIN: Oh, easily.
MATT: They're baseline healing potions, level one, but you should be able to do so. Cool. And you made a friend with Jasna Bree!
TALIESIN: Wow, that's a lot.
MATT: She's a little sad that she doesn't get a chance to teach you or train you, but she's like, "That's okay, next time! Next time. Whenever you feel like it, you come on by. I'll teach you. No worries."
TALIESIN: Oh, that's excellent.
LAURA: We need to buy some diamonds.
TALIESIN: We need diamonds. I also need a new tea kettle. But yeah, we need diamonds.
MATT: A tea kettle you can get.
TALIESIN: I need a-- I want a tea kettle, I want some new cookware, I want some kitchen supplies, I want a straw hat. I would like a hat. It's hot out. There's the sun, and I can feel the sun, it's as if I've been in the sun all day.
TALIESIN: Not quite this hat, but it's in the right direction.
TRAVIS: Wider brim?
TALIESIN: Wider brim. Wider brim.
MATT: I'd say you managed to acquire the cooking supplies, the kettle, some fine teas that you can acquire, and altogether I'd say--
TALIESIN: I have stuff to cook.
MATT: I’d say that would put you back about-- with the hat? Four gold.
TALIESIN: Oh, man. All right, 155.
MATT: You weren't asking for anything too crazy.
TALIESIN: Nope, that's cool. I'm easy. Now we just need to find the diamonds.
LAURA: Now we need to find some diamonds.
MATT: All right. So for that? Let's see here.
MARISHA: I typed in the bracers and they showed up with an image.
SAM: How? what?
MARISHA: That's in D&D Beyond. (singing) D&D Beyond.
SAM: (singing) Be my girl tonight, D&D Beyond.
LIAM: They even had my hand-me-down Periapt of Wound Closure.
MATT: Make an investigation check.
LAURA: Both of us, or just me?
MATT: Well, if you're both looking for it, you can aid or help. So, advantage on that.
SAM: This is for diamonds? Ooh.
LAURA: (singing) Investigation. 11. Sorry.
MATT: 11. Asking around, most folks-- Well, diamonds as a rough, raw material is hard to find. Usually, they're already embedded in jewelry and most jewelers are out there. Eventually, somebody points you to a place, like, (dismissively) "If anyone will have it, it's probably over at Suvo's Secrets."
LAURA and SAM: Suvo's Secrets?
MATT: Suvo's secrets. And they point you over to this large, gray shop tent that has an ominous feel when you look at it. As bright a day as it is, it's like the Addams Family house in the Pentamarket. It looks… it looks unwelcome.
TRAVIS: On Halloween, all the kids are outside?
MATT: Yeah, it's a very drab, very coarse material that the tent is made out of. Outside, it looks like the ropes that are affixing it down are rotted a bit, and you can see that some of the ropes are starting to pull and tear on the edges. It looks closed. Except for there’s-- where the flaps come together in the middle. It doesn't look like anything that you should buy from.
LAURA: Let's go in there.
TALIESIN: I'm very excited. It looks great!
MATT: All right. As you enter Suvo's Secrets-- (laughing) You're hitting the tent front? You're not walking in?
LAURA: No, we're seeing if it's open.
MATT: Yeah, it's open. It's an entrance. You go inside and the interior-- It's maybe 20 feet by 20 feet, it's not a very large interior space. And it looks like there are some tables set up on the far ends, perimeter to the outside of it. And on the back, there is a very, very large custom rocking chair that is just like, (creaking). And sitting in it, you see an older, very intense-looking female dragonborn, bronze-scaled, but in their age they're starting to turn a bit green at the edges, kind of patinaed a little. She sits there in the rocking chair, hands kind of crossed on the chest, just rocking and looking at you as you enter.
TALIESIN: It’s a nice place you got here.
MATT: "Thank you very much. Welcome to Suvo's Secrets."
LAURA: Are you Suvo?
MATT: "Yes. Who are you?"
LAURA: I am Jester.
MATT: "Jester. What are you looking for that I might be helping you with?"
TALIESIN and LAURA: Secrets.
LAURA: And diamonds, probably.
TALIESIN: Oh, and what else? It was diamonds. Diamonds and secrets. Secret diamonds.
MATT: She leans forward and her hands hit the front of her knees. Leaning back, she looks very small, but once she steps into the little bit of light that's coming through the front of the tent, Suvo's a fairly large dragonborn, and, even just leaning forward sitting, is almost as tall as you are, Jester.
MATT: "Diamonds, you say?"
MATT: "How many diamonds are you looking for?"
LAURA: How many do you have?
MATT: "Maybe 12."
TALIESIN: That's a lot of diamonds.
LAURA: That sounds like a lot of diamonds. Are they big diamonds or little diamonds? I don't know.
MATT: She reaches back and there's this large-- It looks just like a sack. Just a general sack and she reaches and grabs the edge and scoots it over without breaking eye contact. It scrapes across the ground and you hear things clattering around inside, like she's carrying a large pouch of various pots and pans. She reaches in, still looking at you. "One."
LAURA: Oh, Caleb should be here right now!
MATT: "Two." And eventually counts out 12 varying-sized diamonds. They all look-- Some are cut, it looks like one of them is a little rough, and just hasn't been cut by a jeweler yet. But, sure enough, they’re--
LAURA: We can tell they're really diamonds?
MATT: Make a perception check.
TRAVIS: Your Laura is showing.
LAURA: Well, just making sure she's not ripping us off.
TALIESIN: I'll join you in this perception check.
LAURA: Okay. Ooh, that's good. Perception. 20.
LAURA: I've seen a lot of diamonds in my day.
MATT: You have. You've seen some fine jewelry, especially from your mother's chests.
TRAVIS: Yeah, her chests. Sorry.
LAURA: There’s lots of diamonds right in here.
MATT: (laughing) It's the tassels.
TALIESIN: So many carats! So many carats!
MATT: (whoosh, whoosh, whoosh) It's sharp and dangerous.
TALIESIN: Ow! Ow! Ow!
LIAM: (singing) Best lay ever.
TALIESIN: Ahh! Ahh! I’m cut, I’m cut!
SAM: Children. We're all children.
MATT: Yeah, we are.
LIAM: That's why we're here.
LIAM: This is serious.
MATT: These are all legitimate diamonds with varying degrees of worth. But looking at the batch, there's probably about 700-- We'll say, rounded off, about-- Roughly 750 gold worth of diamonds of the group, that she set.
TALIESIN: 600. About 600 will do both of us.
LAURA: Yeah, so we'll buy-- all but you know, these two little ones. Because those probably add up to about 150.
MATT: "That is all right. They will still be here when you come back."
MATT: Drops them into the satchel, pushes it away. (creaking, thumping)
LAURA: I'll do 300 and you do 300?
TALIESIN: Yeah that works for me.
MATT: So you each have 300 worth of diamonds on you.
LAURA: Okie dokie. Oh! Is there anything else in here? Because this seems like a really cool shop. Is there anything else that I want?
MATT: "There are many things."
SAM: (whispering) Secrets!
MATT: Grabs and pulls the sack back over.
LAURA: Does she just have the sack? The one bag in the shop?
MATT: Yeah. The tables are all empty.
LAURA: (laughing) That's so cool!
MATT: There is just a sack where she keeps all of the goods.
TALIESIN: All of her secrets! Oh, I get it now! That's great!
MATT: Reaches in and pulls out what looks to be a mummified creature's hand. You can’t-- It's not quite humanoid, it's got fur on it. Sets it down. "This is a treated owlbear matron hand."
TALIESIN: I don't know what that is, but that's really cool.
MATT: "25 gold. It's a good keepsake."
MATT: Reaches in, pulls out a big batch of garlic. Just a big old batch of garlic in a small netted sack. She goes, "Garlic. Good for cooking and also for keeping away… *vampyr*!"
LAURA: You know what we could do? Get the garlic, sprinkle the Dust of Deliciousness on the garlic, and feed it to the *vampyr*!
TALIESIN: Then they'd be in pain and very susceptible to--
MATT: Make a religion check, Jester.
LAURA: Would I know this stuff? A natural one!
MATT: This plan sounds perfectly sound.
TALIESIN: I want to see what else is in the sack before-- We shouldn’t negotiate until we know everything.
LAURA: Yeah, this is true.
MATT: So, for the sake of brevity--
TALIESIN: For the sake of brevity.
MATT: It's a whole slew of strange knickknacks--
LAURA: And we sit there while she pulls out the entire bag.
MATT: Yeah, it takes the better part of 30 or 40 minutes or so. There's an iron mask. Where the mouth should be, it's just these two metal tusks that stick out, almost like a cast-iron orc mask.
MARISHA: (whispering) Russell Crowe!
TRAVIS: Are you not entertained!?
MATT: Oh my god. There are-- There's half of a chess set carved from jade. When I say half, I mean not like one side or the other: half of each side, so it's completely useless. There is a single vial that has a familiar, red, medicinal liquid in it. It looks like there is a healing potion, should you be so inclined to purchase it. And the rest of it is just absolute junk.
TALIESIN: I'll take the garlic.
MATT: "Very well. Two gold." Which is really expensive for fucking garlic.
TALIESIN: I'm thinking, that's-- One gold.
MATT: Make a persuasion check.
SAM: One gold?
SAM: Hardcore negotiations.
TALIESIN: Ah, 20.
MATT: "It is yours."
SAM: (whispering) Secrets!
MARISHA: That's still overpriced for garlic.
MATT: It's so overpriced for garlic.
LAURA: How much is the healing potion?
TALIESIN: It’s *good* garlic. Never can pay too-- Yeah, it's really nice garlic.
LIAM: Heirloom. Artisinal.
MATT: It is actually pretty artisanal garlic.
TALIESIN: Artisanal garlic.
TRAVIS: It came out of the ground.
MATT: All right, so yeah. This would be a greater healing potion.
LAURA: Oh, that's expensive.
TRAVIS: Maybe not from her.
MARISHA: She just charged two gold for garlic.
MATT: No. For this, she's like, "This will run 250 gold pieces. But it will keep you from dying in places where you will probably most likely be dying."
LAURA: Wow. I would take it, but I don't have enough gold.
MATT: Pulls it back and puts it back in the satchel. "Then you will not have it!"
TALIESIN: I'm going to hold out the garlic one more time. Just checking. Seems legit.
MATT: (laughing) She seems to nod like, "Well done."
LAURA: Oh, I did that wrong.
SAM: Yes, you did.
LAURA: It was because I was listening to what he was saying. I was distracted. There we go. Okay.
MATT: "No mask?"
LAURA: How much for the mask?
TALIESIN: You don't know where that's been.
LAURA: I know.
MATT: Five gold.
LAURA: Ah. Ooh. Three gold!
MATT: Make a persuasion check.
LAURA: No! Er, seven!
MATT: Five gold.
MATT: "Be careful. They say the curse lasts for whoever-- I don't remember the rest of it. It's just a mask, there's no enchantment. It's just a very scary mask. But congratulations, it's yours."
TRAVIS: Just bailed.
MARISHA: It's all bullshit.
MATT: It’s all bullshit. Well, most of it's bullshit from this individual.
MATT: "Very well. Is that the end of it?"
LAURA: I think so.
TALIESIN: I feel very satisfied with this entire expedition.
MATT: "Be safe and come back again. I am very interested to sell to you what else might come my way."
LAURA: Thank you, Suvos.
LIAM: (whispering) Shallots! Chives!
MATT: You step out. The bright light of the midday sun-- The clouds of the previous storm have parted a bit and there's actually bright light and your eyes have to adjust. You're like, "Aah, Ah! Ah."
TALIESIN: I'm perfectly satisfied with my shopping experience.
LAURA: I'm done with my shopping. All of my money is gone.
MATT: All right. Who else? We've done a few things with you guys. We've done Nott's stuff. Fjord, anything you want to do?
TRAVIS: Sure. Yeah. The previous events have rocked Fjord a little bit. Are there any bars or taverns in Zadash that may house frequent sailors or people of trade, merchants?
MATT: Sailors, not so much. The Empire is landlocked aside from the very far north, and those waters are in the frigid depths. It's a lot of ice floes and treacherous water up there. So there is very little passage up north. The Menagerie Coast, as you know, is where all of the port towns are, and that's the relationship between the Empire and The Menagerie Coast. That agreement is based on the fact that, essentially, the Menagerie Coast holds all the long-term imports and exports in the palm of their hand.
TRAVIS: I know that I've made that trip. How far is it from Zadash back to the northernmost part of the Menagerie Coast?
MATT: That would be Nicodranas. Nicodranas from Zadash, it's a little over a week to get there, I'd say.
TRAVIS: (sighs) I think Fjord's going to take a steed and start heading south by himself.
MARISHA: Oh shit.
SAM: What? He's going on walkabout?
MARISHA: He's going on a walkabout.
TRAVIS: While he heads south, I'd like to adopt various disguises as I stop in inns, taverns, places of trade, and carefully hear if anyone is mentioning the name “Sabian,” if people are talking about ships, and try to casually make my way further south, knowing that I have an amount of time to get back north. I'd like to try to make my way down and see what I can hear and find out.
MATT: Okay. Make three successive investigation checks for me, please.
TRAVIS: Okay. 12, nine, and a six.
MATT: You make it as far south as Trostenwald before the frustration wells up inside you. It's been a series of dead ends. You've asked around and listened, and anyone who would’ve crossed paths with some of the shipping lanes that you're familiar with and that Sabian was familiar with, none of them are passing this far north. You assume that to continue this, you would have to go to the Menagerie Coast, and that would involve a thorough passage through Nicodranas and the various wharf taverns and seeing what old connections you might be able to dredge up in that time, but that's going to take you a little while.
TRAVIS: Yeah, I think I'll make it to the end of that week and start to make my way back.
MATT: By the end of the week, you'll get not quite to Nicodranas. If you want to, you can traverse the Wuyun Gorge, pass through the Wuyun Gates, and head into the Menagerie Coast. You will be alone, and it isn't a not-dangerous road. So just be aware. There are some possibilities.
TRAVIS: No, I know now that the strength is in the numbers of the group. I'll stop and head back.
MATT: You sure?
MATT: Okay. After this unfortunately not-fruitful travel south in seeking out any possible word of Sabian, you shift your attention back and decide to rally with your allies. Perhaps that’s the direction you want to go in the future. Okay, what else would you like to do?
TRAVIS: That's about it.
MATT: Okay. Very well. Anybody else?
LIAM: Yeah, if that invitation was good and I have about, as she said, the next day, Caleb’s going to pull an all-nighter. I'm going to spend time in a hotel room, an inn, and take the lucky rock and I'm going to fill it with transmutative power and make a Transmuter's Stone out of it, and for now we will have it let me see in the dark. For now. I would also transcribe every spell that was in the book and every scroll that I have found so that I use up all the paper that I have purchased. Have every spell. And Frumpkin is back. As a cat.
MATT: All righty. Cat Frumpkin has returned.
LIAM: There is only one Frumpkin. I stayed up all night doing all of those things because they're very time intensive and would have went to find Beauregard, very tired and ready to go to stay at the library as long as I am able. She said a number of days, and when those days are up, the thing that I would do is spend as much time that is left with the-- I would borrow Jester's haversack, if she would let me, and spend time with the dodecahedron.
MATT: Okay. We'll get to that. First, you guys make your way to the archive and you enter there, and the following morning Caleb is very tired looking, but also hard to tell.
MARISHA: ‘Sup, man! You ready for this monk retreat? Monk retreat!
LIAM: I want to learn all of the martial arts.
MARISHA: Let's go.
MATT: Making your way into the archive, it's fairly bustling in comparison to what you know. It's either dead or there's a handful of people going through it. Today it's a handful of people going through. You're like, "Oh wow, there's four people in here researching right now."
MARISHA: No one ever cares about books this much. It's weird.
MATT: Within a short time-- what are you looking to do, Beauregard?
MARISHA: I ask around and see if Dairon is there.
MATT: One of the monks goes, "Let me go inquire. I'll be right back," and wanders up the stairs. You see them descend the stairs with another figure. Gray robes with blue lining, hood pulled back, and there you see Zeenoth.
MATT: He steps down and goes, "Beauregard. I wasn't aware you had returned."
MATT: "Hi. Dairon, unfortunately, is still out on the front lines."
MATT: "Well, she's been sent to assess political threats beyond the eastern border. Been gone for about 30 days and is said to return in the next 45 before we send anyone after her. But I'm sure she's fine."
MARISHA: She said she'd be back within a month, that she was just checking out the front lines at Bladegarden.
MATT: "Well, things change when they're at that moment of conflict."
MARISHA: You sent her behind enemy lines?
MATT: "No. She progressed behind enemy lines and then wrote to us that she was staying for an extended period. She's impetuous. I think you may know something about that. Anyway, I'm sorry Dairon is not here. What are you inquiring about?"
MARISHA: Just hoping to check in with her and catch up on some coaching.
MATT: "Ah. Well, there is Tubo. Tubo is quite an accomplished monk of the Cobalt Soul and might be able to help you as Dairon could not."
MARISHA: Do I know Tubo?
MATT: You've seen Tubo. You've not directly interacted because Tubo, much like Dairon, works on a higher level. You hadn't quite garnished the attention beyond just being “that brat” for a while. Tubo is this very dark-skinned halfling with very short, widow’s peak-type hair, and this very calm smile about him. Very well respected, but you haven't really seen him move or do anything other than walking through the archive and be present.
MARISHA: Is he an expositor?
MATT: You don't know.
MARISHA: Hmm. Yeah, all right.
MATT: "All right. I shall return. Good seeing you again."
MARISHA: Yeah, you too.
MATT: Zeenoth's patient smile fades as he turns. Within a short time, you see coming from down the same staircase, Tubo, his arms folded in front of him as he descends and turns toward you. "So you are Beauregard, correct?"
MARISHA: That's me.
MATT: "And you're looking for training while your expositor is away, correct?"
MARISHA: Yeah, I mean--
MATT: "Follow me."
MARISHA: Okay. Also, I got this guy with me. Can he get a room and a library pass?
MATT: Zeenoth, who's a little bit behind, goes, "I'll accompany him in his reading, if that's all right?"
MARISHA: Zeenoth, Caleb. Caleb, Zeenoth.
MATT: "We've met, in Trostenwald."
MATT: "Hello. Please, lead the way to where you'd wish to read."
LIAM: Oh, thank you. Thank you.
MATT: All right. Tubo brings you to a chamber you haven't been in in a while, which is the formal training grounds beneath the archive. There is a set of double doors in the far end that blend in mostly with dark wood that a lot of the bookcases are crafted out of. It leads you down a set of stairs into what is essentially a training pit with very heavily packed sand and dirt, and there are a number of wooden poles that emerge from beneath that have all sorts of skewed extensions. This is where a lot of forms are practiced and a lot of defensive maneuvers are utilized. You were brought through in this area for training in waves time and again, but it's been a while since you've been down here, since you've been abroad and there's no other people there training currently. Tubo brings you down. "Very well. Show me what you've got." For the sake of brevity--
SAM: You die.
MATT: Yes. Roll up a new character. Tubo splatters you across the wall. You spar for a bit, showing him the limits of your capabilities and he's deftly, with a smile on his face, dodging, parrying. You get a few good hits in and he backs away. "Very good," and then begins to overwhelm you with his assault, but never enough to inflict pain, just enough to throw you off your guard until a moment he turns around and puts his hands up into a cross once more and goes, "Four days. I need four days with you."
MARISHA: Okay. And then what happens?
MATT: "And then your training for now is complete."
MARISHA: Yeah, all right.
MATT: "Day one begins. Time to read."
MATT: He takes you back upstairs and begins to collect books and throw them into a pile and sits you down.
MARISHA: I look at Caleb across the library.
MATT: You begin reading and it's getting frustrated, but as you're reading, Tubo begins to lean in and say, "As you're reading, think carefully about what you're trying to find. What you're trying to learn."
MARISHA: Okay, what am I trying to learn?
MATT: What are you looking to research?
MARISHA: Is there any type of history on families of Wildemount, or any type of underground trade going on? Family trees? Connections?
MATT: For the portion of this day, Tubo begins to instruct you on how to not just read and research, but in focusing your spiritual energy on the specific things you're searching, you begin to find quick ways to Johnny 5 through tomes to find what you're looking for. With this comes your ability to spend a ki point to gain advantage on an investigation check.
MATT: Day two comes around and he brings you down to the subterranean chamber for more training. This time, he begins to show you how to use that same internal, spiritual energy or ki at the moment of impact to give off this very localized wave of spiritual energy. He begins to tell you how, “This can break through defenses of things that are meant to not be touched with a mortal hand. This is intended as a way to bypass sometimes the mundane protections.” Through this training, he teaches you how use your empowered strikes, where now your physical fists and attacks as a monk are considered magical.
MARISHA: Ghost puncher.
MATT: Yes, you can now punch ghosts.
MATT: Day three, he brings you down to the chamber with a chair, and says, "Sit."
MATT: "Tell me. Tell me a secret."
MARISHA: Is this Truth or Dare?
MATT: "Kind of. Do you want to tell me a secret?"
MARISHA: Is there a dare option?
MARISHA: Then it's not Truth or Dare. You know Truth or Dare, right?
MATT: He looks frustrated, turns around, does a little loop, comes back and as you're about to speak up again, he does a series of quick hits that hurt a little, but that catches you right in the clavicle, the side of throat, and then right under the chin. As you pull back, make a saving throw for me, please. This would be a charisma saving throw, I believe.
MARISHA: 12. Not good.
MATT: He begins to ask you questions about your youth and your family history-- things you don't normally talk about with anybody. Outside of stopping yourself from speaking at all, you're on the verge of constantly giving up the information. He teaches you, "This is a technique that allows you to pull the truth from those that would not be so forthcoming. It is situationally very useful, and I will show this to you." And so he teaches you the Extort Truth ability. The fourth and final day, he leads you down and begins to show you how to use your ki capabilities, your spiritual energy, to blend it with moments of adrenaline bursts to give yourself a moment of reactionary time where previously you would have expended any capability of preparing yourself for an assault. As he puts you through hours of this rigorous training, he goes, "Very well. The time to show what you can do has come." Claps. You watch as two other monks come down. (laughs) But they have bows and arrows, and they have a third one they hand to him. They all nock the arrows and aim them right at you.
SAM: Tubo versus Beau with bows!
MARISHA: That's deeply accurate.
MATT: Yeah. Tubo goes, "Fire." All three arrows come toward you. That's a 19 to hit.
MARISHA: 19 just hits.
MATT: Okay. That's another 19, actually. And that is a 23. So all three hit you.
TRAVIS: Jesus. Fuck your bracers.
TRAVIS: I got new shit! (impacts)
MARISHA: I'm Wonder Woman! I'm not Wonder Woman.
MATT: The first arrow is ten points of damage.
MARISHA: Can I do the thing?
MATT: Yes, you can.
MARISHA: Spend a ki point. How many points of damage?
MARISHA: Ten? No points of damage.
MATT: You catch one arrow.
MARISHA: Wait, I'm level six now, right?
MARISHA: One point of damage. I lied.
MATT: Okay. You take one point of damage. You just barely catch it. It manages to nick the side of your shoulder.
MATT: The two other arrows are coming at you as well.
MARISHA: I can only do this thing once though, right? Or I can keep spending ki points to do that, right? I'll do it one more time.
MATT: Okay, you can do that now, if you have another reaction.
MARISHA: That's right, which I do.
TALIESIN: You have multiple reactions?
MARISHA: I do now.
LAURA: Everybody, be a monk.
MARISHA: If I spend a ki point. One, two.
MATT: You don't have to spend a ki point to reduce the damage. You spend a ki point to throw it back.
MARISHA: So I will spend an extra reaction, then, to catch the other one.
MATT: You spend the same ki point. Roll for damage reduction on the next one. That's 12 points of damage.
MARISHA: I rolled 11, so another one point of damage.
MATT: You catch both arrows. The third one is coming towards you.
MARISHA: And one more.
MATT: Spend another ki point. That's two ki points now. You get to roll to reduce the third one.
MATT: Yeah, that one does no damage. You catch one arrow out of the air. It just barely nicks your shoulder. The other one you catch just as it scrapes past the side of your arm. The third one you catch in the middle of the air with no impact. In the blink of an eye, you've deflected all three arrows shot at the same time.
MARISHA: I turn to Tubo and I go: Did you see that?!
MATT: "I did. And with that, your training is complete."
MARISHA: Oh. I don't get to kill those guys?
MATT: "No!" He hands the shortbow to the other one and they all head back upstairs.
MARISHA: Sorry, I'm sure you're really lovely people.
MATT: "Impressive. Dairon was not wrong about you."
MARISHA: Wait, what has-- Dairon's been talking about me? What has she been saying?
MATT: "That you are an apt pupil. Now, our time is done. I have things to do. And four days with you has been more than enough."
MARISHA: Yeah. I get that a lot.
MATT: He makes his way back up and escorts you out of the training chamber.
SAM: Hasn't the last four days been amazing?
LAURA: Yes, really peaceful, actually.
MARISHA: I go find Caleb and I go: Let's go!
LAURA: Four days later.
MATT: So during this time, Caleb?
LIAM: If I had four days to peruse at will, I would have spent the first day trying to research anything I could find about Xhorhas, the Xhorasian's mentions of beacons, of them living many lives, their religion if possible.
MATT: Make an investigation check with advantage to find all the right information.
LIAM: Investigation? That is 19.
MATT: So on that specific thing you learn about the Kryn Dynasty, which is the Xhorhasian society that exists in the ruins of Ghor Dranas. You know that most of them were drow, dark elf, from what you've heard and the ones you've interacted with. Now, the drow were brethren alongside all elves in the past history until their minds were corrupted and swayed by the terrible silver tongue of Lolth the Spider Queen, one of the Betrayer Gods. Under her will they became deceptive, cruel, and violent. When the Betrayer Gods were defeated and banished during the Calamity, and the Divergence that separated the mortal realm from the gods that once threatened to destroy it entirely, the drow returned to their subterranean cities to rebuild their power far from the burning light of day. Much of the recent studies into current drow society across Exandria speak of growing paranoia and madness that's seeping in with the believed influence of Tharizdun, the Chained Oblivion. Whether it be by proximity of remnants of his power deep beneath the surface that have grown close to these societies, but there is whispers and research that says that some of these dark elf societies are being driven slowly mad by this influence. Strangely, what studies you've been able to find that talk about penetrating the Kryn Dynasty's intense boundaries-- I fucking looked at you immediately, Laura, because I knew where it was going.
LAURA: You see? You know it, too. That means you looked at me because you knew.
MATT: Of course. As soon as I read the word I was like-- Without fail.
LIAM: Pray to the great god titty.
MATT: We missed you. But for those who were able to move past the boundaries to research more of what little is known of the Kryn Dynasty, there is little in iconography under Lolth or Tharizdun. And what remains of that is ancient and crumbling and largely ignored by the society.
LIAM: Do I find any mention of these beacons, he mentioned beacons, plural, and reincarnation or multiple lives?
MATT: There's nothing about beacons, nothing about reincarnation. However, it does speak of the dynasty worshiping something other, something that is new and dangerous as far as the Cobalt Soul is concerned, with what little research they have. They refer to it as "The Luxon" and seek to bring all under its burning banner. They've rallied to the surface of Ghor Dranas, casting the skies in eternal midnight that spreads with their dominion. They've begun taking the ravenous hordes of beast-men and terrors of the Xhorhasian wastes, and indoctrinate them under this new false god. You also learn that a number of people, mostly children of adolescent age, have been found abducted in the night by the Kryn on occasion, though the number has steeply grown this past generation, years after the first open conflicts with the Kryn began. The last thing you discover is the leader of the dynasty is known as Empress Leylas Kryn. She is called an "umavi" by them, though the word's meaning is unknown by current research. Accounts of the Empress speak of her as a powerful and dangerous warrior on the battlefield. And well over 600 years old or more, as records date back that far since she arrived in local history. That's what you've discovered about the Kryn Dynasty and Xhorhas.
LIAM: I spend a day reading about that. I will spend every remaining day reading about-- I was rushed the first time I came here, so I'm going to spend every day left reading about the weave of time and any mortals' attempts to control it.
MATT: Make an investigation check.
SAM: The weave of time.
TRAVIS: That's some restricted reading bullshit.
MATT: The things you discover, from what's available to you in the archive: time is a constant, the motion moving forward unyielding. Some powerful arcane influences can accelerate or slow the rate at which time passes locally, even stop it. There are some stories from the Age of Arcanum that speak of the greatest of sages experimenting with reversing the forward momentum of time, and supposedly with some success. But the process apparently was so taxing and the energies required so extensive that it nearly killed those who passed through this natural flow. That's as much as you can pick up on the specific research involving that shift of time. They're more footnotes and like a, "We don't mess with that because those who tried have mostly been disintegrated or destroyed in the process."
LIAM: Nearly killed. Does it talk about any of the people who were nearly killed but weren't?
MATT: Yes, but they existed close to 1500 years ago.
LIAM: No record of their names?
MATT: The names that were in there are none that correlate to anything you'd recognize.
LIAM: I would still have spent the entire three days reading about that.
MATT: I'll send you those notes later. You do pick up, because of your very high roll, there are apparently some newer arcane experiments regarding time and reality being fielded within the Soltryce Academy in Rexxentrum. A newer magical energy seems to have been discovered, or rediscovered, that can seemingly adjust such properties with ease. It's being referred to as "Dunamis."
MATT: But other than that, there's very little information because all that seems to be proprietary within the Academy.
LIAM: *Ja*, good, cool. Super cool. *Danke*. Then I'm all done with all my shit.
TRAVIS: I forgot, I should've looked at my list. I had one or two other little things.
MATT: Okay, Fjord, what else would you like to do?
SAM: You didn't want to just walk for six days and walk back for six days?
TRAVIS: I was like, I feel up I came up-- Oh, there's more shit.
MATT: I was like, are you sure that's all you want to do?
TRAVIS: Yeah. We can just say on the way back from those visits, at night when I made camp, I want to summon the falchion and spend more time with it. Examine it, specifically the eye, if it has that sort of-- in the letter, it looked like there was a gash into the sphere itself. Does it represent that, is it smooth? Does it move?
MATT: The eye, where it sits in the hilt-- and it only sits on one side, it's not both sides that contain the eye, because there aren't two pupils. There is a singular eye that is embedded in it, that is looking out what would essentially be towards the left.
TRAVIS: Is it near the crossguard, or is it near the pommel?
MATT: No, it's near the crossguard, in the center of the hilt. When you look at it, it doesn't seem to move or shift or pay any attention. Practicing the next few days and trying some things out, you focus some of your arcane gifts towards an object, casting Witch Bolt towards a nearby rock or low, dried, and forgotten trunk of a tree. At the moment the incantation begins, the eye shifts to look towards the target of the spell. The spell explodes and you look back at the hilt, and it's already reverted back to where it was before.
TRAVIS: Super fast.
MATT: But it did seem to react to when the spell was cast.
TRAVIS: Creepy. What the hell does that mean? Okay. When I get back, could I make my way to The Gentleman for just a quick convo?
MATT: Sure, all right. So you make your way to The Evening Nip. By the time you've returned, it's been the better part of the two week period of time, and you guys are also generally worried the fact that Fjord just vanished during this time period.
LAURA: He left while we were shopping.
MATT: Big surprise.
TALIESIN: Travis is shouting.
TRAVIS: You guys are going to shop, ah!
MATT: (poof sound)
TRAVIS: What was it?
MARISHA and TRAVIS: Spooky exit.
MATT: You make your way to the subterranean basement of The Evening Nip. The Gentleman is not currently present, but upon asking around, you wait for about 20 minutes or so, he does return from the storage room to the side where you had previously been led down and through the Underworks. As he comes in, he sees you and sits on the other side of the table, throwing his leg over one side and sitting at a very comfortable and casual way across from you. "Fjord, I'm being told that you're looking for me."
TRAVIS: Yes, I appreciate you making some time for me this evening. Turns out we might be traveling a little bit pretty soon, we're going to be making our way towards the Wayfarer's Cove. Your knowledge of areas outside of Zadash seems so extensive, what with the errands you sent us on. I was wondering, could you share with me any knowledge you might have about criminal underbellies, any competitors you might have in business that's not of an official nature in cities, particularly around Nicodranas, Port Damali, the Menagerie Coast. Is your reach that far?
MATT: "I have some reaches in places, yes. That's quite a scope you're requesting. I would say it's a good bet that most criminal elements you would encounter there are not at my network, except for a handful. It might be more useful to you to know the ones to trust."
TRAVIS: That's where I was going with that.
MATT: "Okay. Port Damali, you say?"
TRAVIS: Yeah, it's where I'm from.
MATT: "The jewel of the coast. I've been a number of times, though it's been years since I've been able to leave my work here alone. So if you're looking to expand your portfolio beyond Zadash, that is commendable. The one contact I could recommend in Port Damali would be Father Dwandath Pierce."
TRAVIS: Father Dwandath Pierce?
MATT: "Dwarven fellow. Scraggly in the face. Dresses well. He helms the Pearl Shrine, a house of worship to Avandra, the Changebringer. Tell him that you bring many gifts."
TRAVIS: I bring many gifts.
MATT: "Should you not work with Father Pierce and his network, be careful. You could easily find yourself on an opposing side to my business, and I do not take kindly to betrayal."
TRAVIS: Indeed, I wouldn't dare. After all, you do have a little way of keeping track of where we are and what we do.
MATT: "That I do."
TRAVIS: I appreciate your help in this matter. Hopefully we can be of some service to you down there.
MATT: "If something comes to mind, I'll send it your way."
TRAVIS: Please do.
MATT: "And if anything comes to mind that would be of interest to my ears, business or otherwise, please keep me informed."
TRAVIS: You can be assured that I will. Thank you for your time, I'll leave you now.
MATT: "Of course." Then he goes off to get a drink at the bar. As you turn around, right there at the steps is Cree, the dark-furred tabaxi. She approaches and goes, "I'm sorry to bother you, I noticed you descend here. I have heard since your last arrival that there were losses in your journey."
TRAVIS: (stuttering) Hm?
MATT: "I have had a number of uncomfortable dreams in the week, and... I cannot sense Lucien."
TRAVIS: Tell me about these dreams.
MATT: Make a persuasion check.
TRAVIS: Oh god. Oh, that's good. 18.
MATT: "They are cold and sad. I just see him alone, and I've tried to focus. He is not nearby. I have a very hollow feeling about this."
TRAVIS: (whispering) God, why was I gone for six weeks? Okay. (normal volume) Yes, unfortunately your dreams may have some merit. I myself was missing for most of our journey and it seems, unfortunately, that Lucien befell a terrible fate.
MATT: "That was what I was fearing."
TRAVIS: I'm sorry to be the one to let you know. If I was there I could give you more detail, but I found out much in the same way you are.
MATT: "That is all right. Thank you for your honesty. It is hard for him to be gone for so long, then come back, and so swiftly go again. Maybe I had put too much faith."
TRAVIS: You said he left before and then came back. If you don't mind my asking, the last time that he left, do you remember the circumstances of his departure?
MATT: "We of the Task Takers, we were undergoing a ritual that he had orchestrated with an ally of his, a woman of magical renown. He said that this was something that was meant to lead us to this city he promised, a place where we could learn of a great many powers and secrets. We believed him. He was very charismatic in his cruelty at times. But he did not survive."
TRAVIS: And then you saw him here for the first time in quite a while, yes?
MATT: Two years.
TRAVIS: Two years? Two years. Are you-- and forgive me if this is too personal-- are you expecting to see him again?
MATT: I wasn't expecting to see him this last time. I feel like whatever grace brought him back to us, maybe it was your carelessness that took him from us again.
TRAVIS: Indeed, maybe it was. You have my apologies and my condolences.
MATT: It is all right. I have started a new life here, and it has been serving me well.
TRAVIS: I hate to leave you with such sour news, but I must be going.
MATT: Such are these days. Thank you for your candor. She turns around and walks away.
TRAVIS: Fuck. Then I'll head back to The Leaky Tap.
MATT: Okay. You guys have all gathered up at The Leaky Tap?
SAM: Everyone's done their stuff.
TALIESIN: No, I have not done mine.
MATT: All right, what do you want to do?
TALIESIN: Mine's very simple. I'm going to spend a little time every day-- I'm going to find the nicest park in town. I'm going to spend every day and I'm going to meditate and try and get some guidance. I'm trying to have another epiphany about what happens next. I'm going to sit quietly and meditate every day somewhere green, or whatever passes for it in this city.
MATT: Roll a wisdom check for me.
TALIESIN: No. That was a one.
MATT: Okay. You've spent so much of your life in the tranquility of the cold and quiet Savalirwood, and even in the most nature-based portion of the city of Zadash, the general din and chaos of the city is too distracting. You're unable to reach that meditative state where you're able to feel connected with nature and with the Wildmother, so Melora's guidance does not come to you. You have to continue to throw your lot in with these strange folks that dragged you out of your home.
TALIESIN: That's fair. I guess the only-- no, that's right, we're done. I think we got everything.
SAM: Yeah, everyone's done their thing.
LAURA: No! I am not done.
MATT: All right.
LAURA: Well, because I want to make the Traveler like me again, because obviously he doesn't and that's why he didn't come save me. I'm going to use these two weeks to scout out all of the temples to the other gods and really see the guard schedules and the priest schedules and try to sneak in. I'll probably enlist the help of Nott here.
SAM: I'll help you.
LAURA: Because you're good at sneaking.
TALIESIN: Well, we do have something we can--
LAURA: This is true.
TALIESIN: We got you something.
LAURA: Before we do this, this will be extra helpful for you.
SAM: What is it? I don't like this. Is it something-- is it made of dead people?
LAURA: Just check it out.
TALIESIN: Made of paper.
SAM: It's so nicely wrapped. It's so tiny.
LAURA: Well, imagine it's a lot bigger than that.
SAM: It's tiny, it's just a small cube. Oh, look. It says, "To the bravest rouge we've ever met." From your friendly--
LAURA: It does say rouge, doesn't it?
SAM: No, it says rogue, I'm fucking with you. From your friendly neighborhood healers. You guys can heal? It's a cloak! Wow! It looks so cool and fancy!
LAURA: Put it on. I bet it changes size when you put it on, because most magical things do.
SAM: I will put it on and spend some time with it.
MATT: Okay. You're able to attune to it and gain the benefits of a Cloak of Elvenkind.
LAURA: And then we're going to go and try to sneak in and really fuck up--
MATT: Well, you're going to have to decide which ones you're going to do.
LAURA: How much time do we have? What?
SAM: How much do I owe you for this?
LAURA: You owe us nothing!
TRAVIS: It's a gift.
LAURA: You have nothing!
SAM: Got tons of money. Way more than I'll ever spend.
MATT: There is the Raven's Den, which sits near the Ossuary Gates--
LAURA: I already fucked with that one.
MATT: All righty. There is the Hearth of the Allhammer, which you've messed with as well a little bit during the festival. There's the Valley Archive of the Cobalt Soul. While it is both an archive, it is also a temple to the Knowing Mistress. There is the King's Hall, which is the center of law, and of course that's where the law master is you've spoke with a couple of times. That's where you've done your jobs off the Taskboard.
LAURA: Seems like there's a lot of guards there.
MATT: Yeah, there's a lot of guards there. There's the Platinum House, which is a temple to the Platinum Dragon. That also exists in the Interstead Sprawl. Not too far from Steam's Respite, which is the bathhouse.
LAURA: Ooh, yeah, let's do that one because it's close to the bathhouse.
SAM: Which one is that? Which god?
LAURA and MATT: The Platinum Dragon.
SAM: All right, that seems right. What are we going to do to it?
MATT: There's also the in the Signet Wall, which is the military district. There is The Shrine of the Dawn, which is to the Dawnfather. It's up to you.
LAURA: Well, that's just fitting, isn't it? No, I'm going to do the Platinum Dragon because it's next to the bathhouse.
MATT: Okay, Platinum House it is.
SAM: We're trying to destroy this place?
SAM: Paint it?
LAURA: What does it look like?
MATT: As you approach, this beautiful but small white building is draped in deep blue tapestries, while a reflective mirrored sphere sits atop the roof during the day. I think you've passed by and seen it before when you were traversing the city. Are you going at day or nighttime?
LAURA: We're checking out during the day, you know, like we're visitors.
MATT: Okay. The inside is open archways and floor spaces. They're made available for worship, but also used for meditation. There are a few folks in there that are quietly, eyes closed, taking in the atmosphere of the interior. There’s areas for reading and there’s areas for napping and sleeping. Of the Bahamut worshiping that goes on in places you've seen on the Menagerie Coast, this one is a little more New Age-y than you're used to. About noonish when you arrive, there is a sermon beginning, where there is the Herald of the House, which is a silver-scaled dragonborn in his older years. He looks very tired and as withered as a dragonborn can through their silver scales. He's in the process of giving this very deeply empowering speech about, "The majesty of Bahamut bestows upon us the knowledge and the grace in which we can be beacons of truth and justice in a world that wishes to swallow all with chaos."
MATT: But yeah, the midday stakeout appears to go well. What do you wish to do?
LAURA: How often does he come back?
MATT: He's there most of the day, and in the evening he appears to go nap somewhere within the Platinum House.
LAURA: And then he gives his sermon during the next day and the next day? We scout it out a couple days in a row to really get the feel for the guards.
MATT: Okay, make an investigation check.
LAURA: With advantage because Nott's helping me?
MATT: Sure, sure.
LAURA: Oh Jesus H. Macy. Nine. Nein!
MATT: There's a couple entrances, some hallways.
SAM: What do you want to do?
LAURA: I'm going to take some of the firecrackers we got from Hupperdook, and I want to set them off during his sermon. And then I want to-- but I'm going to Invoke Duplicity, so it looks like I'm actually still there listening to the sermon. Then while that's happening-- but I'm also Disguise Self, so I also want to look like somebody else while it's happening so nobody can trace it back to me.
SAM: This sounds complicated.
LAURA: This is really good stuff. And then I want to run over to-- is there a big statue of the Platinum Dragon?
MATT: There is in the center, yeah. It's not built on the floor. It's actually held aloft in the central domed archway right beneath where that glowing dome at the top is. At nighttime, as you've seen it, it emits this faint, white glow and is this beacon in the middle of the darkened city, aside from the various bits of torchlight that hit the streets. Beneath this dome, you see the large, carved-- looks like a pure platinum, but it's probably a polished silver-- statue of the dragon, wings outstretched, looking down over the chambers and hovers about 15 feet off the ground, where all the rest of the folks gather for this sermon and/or sit there to meditate and pray and worship.
LAURA: This is a really bad time to do this because there's lots of people around. Can they do it at night? Is there less people at night? Would I have learned at least that much?
MATT: Yeah, at night, there are less people.
LAURA: Okay, I come back a second time after setting up the fireworks. Now the next time--
SAM: We're here again?
LAURA: We have to do it right. This time I'm coming prepared with my paints and a mustache.
TRAVIS: Your Anarchist’s Cookbook.
LAURA: My Anarchist’s Cookbook, a couple brochures for the Traveler, and I steal Cad's straw hat that he bought-- sorry-- and, yeah, we're going to make the Platinum Dragon look like a really cool farmer.
SAM: All right. Okay. So we're going to mess with the statue.
LAURA: Yeah, that's what I do. Is it stupid or something?
SAM: What if someone comes in? We kill everyone in the place?
LAURA: No, if somebody comes in, you need to distract them, okay? Don't let anybody see me, because this might take a while.
SAM: So I'm the distraction and the lookout.
LAURA: You're the distraction. I also Invoke Duplicity to where it looks like I'm still there on the outside and I can also be hanging out with you so you don't look like a random person.
MATT: What do you disguise yourself to be?
LAURA: The old woman that was in the other, yeah.
MATT: You guys approach in the evening, together? Are you disguising yourself as well?
LAURA: Ooh, no. You know what I should disguise myself as? The sermon guy. Yeah.
MATT: Okay. Jester, now taking the elderly form of a silver-scaled, very well-respected, Herald of the House Kumas. You approach the temple a few hours after sundown, to where the interest in worship tends to fade as folks go back to home. It's mostly just a few caretakers that watch it through the night and some lost souls that have found their way there in the evening and they need guidance. LAURA: Get them out.
SAM: They're in there?
LAURA: Yeah, distract them and make them go away.
SAM: All right, I'll do my best.
LAURA: You know what you should say, say that the sermon guy, whoever I am, tell them I need some quiet time in the temple.
SAM: All right. I'll disguise myself using Disguise Self as an elderly gnomish woman, and I'll wander into the temple, I guess. Ahem, pardon me. All patrons, I have a request from the Holy Father himself that we vacate the premises. They have to refresh all the holy water-- that’s good-- every 30 days, and wouldn't you know it? Today's that day! So out of the pool for a few minutes, and then when it's all refreshed, we'll come and you can come right back in. Just a break! Go and take a break.
MATT: Make a deception check with disadvantage, because you didn't even use his name. That I’ve said twice.
MARISHA: Our lord and savior.
LAURA: Natural 20, natural 20.
SAM: Okay, not bad. Even better. This is what?
SAM: Oh no. That's a negative three.
TRAVIS: A negative three to your deception?
LAURA: Oh, you really should've taken that potion beforehand.
SAM: The one that you stole from me?
LAURA: Yeah, that one.
SAM: That's a 13. Disadvantage, minus three. I still got pretty good.
MATT: Okay. Of the six individuals that are here, there are two that actually are of the temple. There are four that are here, meditation. One looks like a young man, looking like he might be on hard times and has tear marks on his face where he may have been looking up to the statue and revelling. The four people that were attending see you and, "Oh," and they get up and start gathering their things. The two that work at the temple are confused, look at each other, and look at you, and begin to walk towards you.
SAM: Are they carrying weapons of any sort, or vestments or jewels?
MATT: No, they're wearing tabards that are mostly a silver-white color with the symbol of Bahamut, the blue with the silver dragon. They're simply dressed. They're the caretakers of the temple, low-level priests of the Platinum Dragon. As they approach, one of them looks to be a mid-30s human male, male-pattern baldness taking a large portion of his shorter, blond hair. The other one appears to be a half-elven man as well. He looks younger, but looks can be deceiving with half-elves. They both approach with a somewhat concerned look and the half-elf speaks up first and goes, "I'm sorry, you said that the Holy Father needs the room cleared?"
LAURA: I come up from behind.
SAM: Is there anything around us, like donation jars, or anything around us? I don't know how churches work, guys.
MATT: Make a perception check.
SAM: Do they have a ticket taker? 14.
MATT: Looking around, there are bowls throughout the room. Most of them appear to be empty, a few of them have a few knick-knacks thrown in there. They may have been things that people left as a gift or an offering. A few copper, one of them could even have a silver. You don't see any other boxes. It looks like they're cleared out fairly frequently.
SAM: If there's one close to me, I would like to cast Mage Hand and grab it.
MATT: Okay. Triple-checking if Mage Hand has--
SAM: I'm sure I will drop my form.
MATT: Well, Disguise Self remains casted. However, Mage Hand, if I recall, may have--
SAM: It's an action to make it appear.
MATT: Correct, but it's verbal and somatic, so as they're approaching, you look back and forth and begin casting a spell. As this is happening, they both go, "Uh--"
LAURA: No! I step up from behind Nott. Thank you, dear. My assistant did as I asked. I really needed some quiet time alone in the temple tonight.
MATT: "I wasn't aware you had an assistant?"
LAURA: I just hired her.
MATT: Make a deception check.
SAM: Oh god.
MATT: One of them goes, "Oh, of course, my apologies, Your Grace," and the human leaves. The half-elf still seems dubious. "Your Grace, you seem to be rather weary. Perhaps I should stay and make sure you need help."
LAURA: I need some quiet time.
MATT: "I'll be quiet."
LAURA: No, no. (coughs) No.
SAM: I think what His Holiness is trying to convey is that he will be going on a spiritual journey, and there's only room on that train for one dude!
LAURA: Scoot on out. Scoot it.
MATT: "Of course, Your Grace." The half-elf leaves, but his eyes don't deviate. He appears to leave the room.
SAM: That was perfect.
LAURA: That went really well! Right? Okay. You stand right here.
SAM: I'm going to watch the door. They all went out the front door?
MATT: There's open archways that lead down long hallways, and they all appear to have left the hallways.
LAURA: Okay. I'm going to Invoke Duplicity. I'm going to make it look like he's kneeling down in the doorway, praying. Then I'm going to run up, and I want to start painting up the Platinum Dragon.
MATT: Okay, so your Invoke Duplicity's there, and you-- the Platinum Dragon's about 15 feet up.
LAURA: Yeah, I climb on up! I start painting.
MATT: Make an athletics check.
TALIESIN: We're going to be busting you out of jail.
TRAVIS and LIAM: Yep.
LAURA: That's a 22.
MATT: Using very minute ledges that are carved out of the various temple pillars that hold up and maintain the weight of the beautiful archways that mark the top part of the temple, you tiny rock climb with the finger strength that only Jester has in this whole group setup, and make your way up carefully-- one, two-- leap and then grab onto the Platinum Dragon. It hangs back and forth a bit, and you can now see-- what you can't see from far down is there are two sets of chains that hold it aloft up in the temple. It is free hanging and now you're rocking back and forth.
LAURA: Ooh, you know what? I could just knock this down. That could be really good, too.
SAM: That would be faster. I'm going to hide in one of the pews.
MATT: Make a stealth check.
LAURA: I start climbing up and I want to paint it rainbow colors. I feel like that would be a really nice addition for the Platinum Dragon.
MATT: Okay. You begin painting rainbow colors and pulling out all your various pigments and the platinum begins to give way to a Technicolor vomit nightmare.
LAURA: With a mustache. And a straw hat.
MATT: As you're getting to the mustache, you hear many, many footfalls approaching and a voice saying, "Yeah, just this way, I--"
LAURA: I drop down and run.
MATT: Okay. As he's in the middle of talking, (thud). Make an acrobatics check, because it's a 15-foot drop.
MATT: Wow, okay. A three-point landing in the middle. You're still--
LAURA: I'm still the dragon.
MATT: But there's also the Invoke Duplicity of him there, so there's one, he goes, "That's the--" (thud), "What? Huh?"
LAURA: (shrieks) And I run.
MATT: They give chase. They go, "After whoever that is!" There are now five crownsguard and two members of the House giving chase down one of the hallways.
LAURA: Was there an exit? Looking for an exit.
MATT: Make a perception check, look around you, as this is happening rather rapidly.
SAM: Oh god. I'm going to follow from behind stealthily.
MATT: As you're rushing down, you look and there's two open doorways. One of them appears to be a dark interior, the other appears to lead to some sort of candlelight. The hall's coming to an end ahead of you. Right or left, which way are you going?
LAURA: Wait. Say that again.
MATT: There's two open doorways. One is dark on the inside, the other seems to have candlelight from the interior.
MATT: All right, you duck into the dark room.
LAURA: This is like a Choose Your Own Adventure.
MATT: Yeah. The footfalls are coming faster and faster behind you, and Nott, you're noticing that they're drawing weapons and one of them appears to be pulling out some sort of a bead out of their pocket. That's all you notice.
SAM: Okay. I'm going to scream as loud as I can from behind them, and scream: Oh my god, he's dead!
MATT: Well, they all immediately stop and look behind at you.
LAURA: How many are there?
MATT: There's five crownsguard and then two members of the church.
LAURA: Okay, I'm hiding in the room.
MATT: Make a stealth check, please.
MARISHA: At least four stars on Grand Theft Auto.
MATT: You think you may be hidden. They turn and look at you. "What?"
SAM: He stopped breathing! He's back there, didn't you see him?
MATT: Make a deception check.
SAM: Oh god. That's a nine.
LAURA: Oh no!
MATT: As they're all looking, the one that had the bead goes-- throws at your direction.
LAURA: Oh no, dodge it!
SAM: I'll try.
MATT: That's an 18 to hit.
SAM: That hits.
MATT: Okay. Let me look this up again. I wasn't expecting it to go this way.
SAM: There's no save, right?
MATT: I'm going to double-check. You make a dexterity saving throw.
SAM: Whew. Thank goodness. I'm wearing my cloak, so I get advantage. That's a natural 20.
MATT: Okay, so you don't take any force damage. However, this sphere of translucent force has completely encapsulated you.
MATT: And you're just slowly rolling back, like (rumbling).
SAM: Ah, Jester!
MATT: Two of the guards come over to flank it, the other three continue their travel with the two members of the church, so there's five. They then duck into the dark room where you are, as one of them lights a torch to light up the chamber. Now you quickly made your way through, this is a storage chamber, and on the inside you can see there's a bunch of candles, there's a bunch of statues and things that are used in various ceremonies. There's a number of wooden hanging rods, that they place a lot of vestments on that are not used. They are used for more formal events and celebrations and holidays. You have made your way into the corner between one of these boxes and some of the raiments in the hope that you won't be seen. They are going to make a very thorough investigation of the room.
LAURA: Okay, and when they come in the room--
MATT: They begin to slowly look through. One of the members of the church, after the first 30 seconds of not finding anyone, darts off. So there's only four in the chamber, he's going to look elsewhere. The crownsguard begin to peek through, lifting up pieces of equipment, lifting up the tops of storage containers.
LAURA: How big is the room?
MATT: The room's about 15 by ten feet, it's not a very large room.
LAURA: Oh bejeebies.
SAM: By the way, I only have advantage on *stealth*, not on saving throws.
MATT: Okay, so roll again.
SAM: So the first roll that I had rolled was a five, which adds up to a 12.
SAM: So I will take damage.
MATT: You do. You take 5d4 points of force damage.
MATT: Five, seven, eight. You take 11 points of force damage.
SAM: Oh. Thank you. Thank you, sir! May I have another?
MATT: So this is equivalent essentially to a Otiluke's Resilient Sphere. You're in a hamster ball, but the two guards that are right there are flanking it and holding it in place so you can't move.
LAURA: I cast Blink on myself.
MATT: Okay. As one of them turns, and just manages to pull the raiments aside, revealing your face. "Uh, I found them!" (whoosh) "Wait. No, she was right-- He was right, I-- Spread out!" And they all begin to scatter out into the hallways now.
MATT: You move--
LAURA: Stealthily. If I-- yeah, because I can move like what, like ten feet with Blink? Or can I--
TRAVIS: You can reappear ten feet away. It's either ten or five.
LAURA: I've never used Blink before!
TRAVIS: But you have to roll for it.
MATT: Correct. So with Blink, at the start of your next turn, you return within ten feet of where you vanished.
TRAVIS: But you’ve got to roll 11 or higher for you to even blink out in the first place.
MATT: So go ahead and roll.
LAURA: Oh, jeebies.
TRAVIS: You got it. 11 or higher. No problem.
TALIESIN: It's fine.
MARISHA: Oh no!
LAURA: Goddamnit. Why did you have to say anything?
MATT: No, thank you. Keep her honest on that one.
LIAM: Is the Traveler happy with you yet?
MATT: So your form flickers for a moments as the spell kicks in. However: you vanish, "Spread out!" You're right back in place. "Wait!" and they go ahead--
LAURA: Charm Person!
MATT: You cast Charm Person? All right, it--
LAURA: At 3rd-level. How many have I used?
SAM: Jesus. You're using every spell you have.
LAURA: Yes, I am.
TALIESIN: This is going to be an expensive problem to solve here.
MATT: Okay, so you can target three creatures at 3rd-level.
LAURA: How many are in the room?
MATT: There are--
LAURA: Three in the room now, right?
MATT: Four in the room total.
TRAVIS: Are there?
MATT: Oh, no. Because there are two guards against him, so there's three after her. Yes, that's crownsguard.
TALIESIN: And then you lost one of them.
MATT: And then one left so there are four in there.
LAURA: There are four in there?
MATT: There's three crownsguard and one member of the house. Who do you attack?
TRAVIS: You can kill him.
LAURA: Yeah, the crownsguard.
MATT: All right, so they have advantage on this save, because you are technically in opposition on this one.
MATT: So the first crownsguard, with advantage. That's going to be a 14. What's the DC?
MATT: 15, he fails. Other one, two sixes in a row: fail! The third one, two and-- No, they all fail! Even with advantage.
TRAVIS: Get the fuck out.
MARISHA: Oh my god.
MATT: So the three crownsguard come in and are like, "Have you seen where this person went? Apparently someone's masquerading as you."
LAURA: Been looking everywhere for him. Can't find him anywhere. Maybe check that room with the candles on the other side of the hallway.
MATT: "We'll go check."
SAM and MARISHA: That room with the candles!
MATT: The three crownsguard turn around and rush off to find it, while the member of the house, the half-elf from earlier, is like, "Nobody? That’s-- That's him! Ugh." and is going to rush to try and grab you. Go ahead and roll another d20.
SAM: Just use your handaxe! Oh, wait.
LAURA: Oh no. Five.
MATT: Five. No, it's going to go for a full grapple. It's an athletics check.
LAURA: Can I-- That's 2nd-level, I can cast it. I cast Hold Person. On them.
MATT: Okay. That is going to be a 16. I believe that's a success. Yeah, 13 plus three.
LAURA: Grr. (grumbling) You're weak, I'm strong.
MATT: However, it does come in and go to grapple you and hold you in place. So you're currently now being held in this form by the entity. You can try and break free by doing an athletics check.
LAURA: I try to break free.
MATT: Okay, try it.
LAURA: Oh, god!
LIAM: Just everybody think back to the stink eye Laura gave us on the hospital run.
LAURA: Yeah, I know. What do I add to this? What do I add?
MATT: Your athletics check.
LAURA: My athletics.
SAM: I'm going to die trying to help her graffiti a statue in a church.
LAURA: Sure, It's a 12.
MATT: 12, you are grappled.
LAURA: Goddang it!
MATT: However go ahead and roll another d20 because your Blink spell is still active.
LAURA: Oh! 20!
MATT: You vanish out of their grasp. "What the?! How?" Begins to just-- Pushing things over and looking around for wherever you may have gone. Next round, you appear ten feet from where you were. Where do you want to appear?
LAURA: Out the doorway.
MATT: You appear in the doorway. The three guard are in the other chamber, and they are currently-- You can now see into the other room where you didn't run and it looks to be the bedchambers of the actual Kumas.
LAURA: Oh, no.
MATT: You can hear him like, "What's going on? I was trying to sleep." They're like, "Ah, sir, there's a-- Wait."
LAURA: I take off running.
MATT: As you go running down the hallway, at this point--
LAURA: Oh, would I Blink again?
MATT: The two other crownsguard, who are currently guarding Nott-- you see now Nott is encapsulated in this bubble and is like, "Ah!" and one of them is pulling out chains and cuffs on them, and they're preparing to essentially arrest Nott once this bubble goes away. They both turn around in this middle of this scuffle, and see you running towards them.
LAURA: Charm Person, 2nd-level!
LIAM: Jeez Louise!
MATT: With advantage, one of them succeeds: two 17's in a row. The other--
LAURA: I know. When I Blink though--
MATT: The other one fails, a seven and a one. So one of them just looks at you and smiles. The one holding the chains for Nott. The other one pulls a blade.
LAURA: I walk in. Slow down and walk up like: I heard somebody was impersonating me in here. Have you found them yet?
MATT: Make a deception check with disadvantage.
SAM: I’m old!
LAURA: A 16. This was supposed to go much quicker. I'm sorry, guys.
MATT: The blade is pulled out and goes, "We're sorry sir. We were called in here. There was apparently a disturbance and we found this one. We are preparing arrest.”
LAURA: I saw your other guards friends running that direction. I think the impersonator was back there.
MATT: “Well, good. Hopefully they'll go ahead and catch them. We have to wait for this one.”
LAURA: I heard them shouting for help though. They were really shouting. Shouting for a lot of help.
MATT: The one you charmed goes, "Well, I'll go ahead and find out," and then walks over to help them while the one who resisted the charm just sits there and takes the chains from him and is now waiting for Nott to get out. By the way, roll a d20.
LAURA: Oh. Shit.
TRAVIS: Oh, here we go.
LAURA: Ten. No, I'm still there.
TRAVIS: (poof, poof) Don't mind that.
LAURA: Last chance. All alone.
MATT: The other person from the house comes by, the half-elf, and says "You fool! That's the one that's been--" Now the actual Herald of the House comes out. He's got his pajamas on, and he’s like, "What's going-- What's this?"
LAURA: Ah! How do I get out of this? Can I cast Dispel Magic on Nott's bubble?
MATT: Go ahead and roll a d20.
SAM: God, you’ve cast 19 spells.
LAURA: No I haven't! I’ve--
MATT: Add your wisdom modifier.
LAURA: That's good. Oh my god, that's-- what is that, 23!
MATT: Bubble vanishes. Nott, you fall to your feet. The guy with the chains will go ahead and reach out to attempt to grapple you with them. Make an acrobatics check. That was cocked.
MARISHA: Oh my god.
MATT: 17? 15. You slip out of it in time. Roll a d20.
LAURA: Oh, I might Blink again! Jesus!
MARISHA: You guys, get out of this.
MARISHA: Aw, shit.
LAURA: Run! Oh shit!
MATT: Seven; okay. You guys start bolting. At this point you can hear footsteps coming from the other entrance hall as more folks are coming in to join the chaos, what are you doing?
MATT: What are you doing? Just full dash?
LAURA: Full dash. Full dash?
SAM: Full dash, yes. Full dash.
MATT: All right, Laura, roll a d20.
LAURA: Oh god. 12.
MATT: As you are running, Jester disappears.
SAM: I don't know where she went!
LAURA: Just go!
SAM: I'm going to run another 15 feet. Does anyone have eyes on me right now?
MATT: Everyone behind you has eyes on you, and you’re about to come back into the center of the temple where there are two hallways that exit to the front and the back. The right and the left both exit the temple, but you also hear footsteps coming from somewhere. What are you doing?
SAM: Oh my god.
LIAM: Somewhere in another part of the city entirely, Caleb’s going: Oh, that's interesting.
SAM: I will full dash and get out of there, and turn left.
MATT: Okay. Using your bonus action, you scoot past, turn left, and see two crownsguard that are approaching now, hearing this commotion, and you scoot past them. "Hey!" They’re unable to catch up to you, you're too fast, but they're giving chase. Laura, you reappear ten feet from where you were. You are now again in the center of the temple, and there's a wave of people rushing towards you. There's now two crownsguard rushing towards the direction where Nott is, and you see Nott tearing ass away.
MARISHA: You know in Matrix 2, that overhead shot of all the agents filling into the center? That's what I imagine: waves and waves of agents.
TRAVIS: Do you still look like the lord of the--
LAURA: I've got one more 2nd-level spell left. I'm going to cast Mirror Image on myself.
MATT: Okay. Now there are multiple copies of the Herald of the House Kumas. It’s an army of old dudes, old dragonborns.
LAURA: I take off running towards wherever the smallest amount of people coming--
MATT: That would be to the right, the opposite direction that Nott went. You charge that direction. You move the rest of your movement that way 30 feet. Roll another d20.
LAURA: I'm using all my 20s here. 12, shit!
TRAVIS: Two steps!
LIAM: Wait, they all blink out?
LAURA: Do my Mirror Images blink out too?
MATT: Yeah, they all do, because you're not present.
LAURA: Oh god!
MATT: Nott, you've managed to make it out into the street now. You are now out of the temple.
SAM: I'm going to duck behind something and look to see if Jester came out.
MATT: Make a stealth check to see if you managed to lose the folks that are chasing you into the street.
TALIESIN: That, you have advantage on.
MATT: You manage to dodge over a few rain barrels on the side, dart down one alleyway, and circle around once and duck beneath a parked wagon. You're pretty sure they've lost you. They're now starting to scatter and give orders off in different directions. You've caused quite a commotion. Jester, you've returned into place. The first time using Blink and you're like, "Oh god! What's happening?!"
LAURA: Ah! I take off running again.
TALIESIN: Mirror Images going everywhere.
LAURA: Yeah, right. Oh god, but if I do a double dash, I can get farther away, right?
LAURA: Okay, I'm going to try to double dash.
MATT: That's a full 60 feet of movement as you’re rushing down the other hallway. You hear the voices behind you shouting, "There he is! Keep going! How are there so many of them?! What's going on?!" Roll another d20.
LAURA: Oh god, okay. Five. Keep running.
MATT: You keep running and make your way out now into the night air.
LAURA: I drop Blink.
MATT: Okay, you drop Blink, spell's gone.
LAURA: I drop Disguise Self.
MATT: The guards are now rushing up and coming to the edge of the exit and they can see you now.
LAURA: Oh, they can see me? Can I turn a corner and drop Disguise Self?
MATT: You could try, but they still have eyes trained on you.
LAURA: Oh god, I'm not going to drop Disguise Self, then. I'm going to keep going. I want to do it as soon as I'm out of eyeshot for a split second.
MATT: You're going to try and find a way to break eye contact with them, but they’re pretty trained on you right now.
LAURA: Oh! Can I Invoke Duplicity? No, I already did it. I get it twice!
MATT: You do get it twice. You get Channel Divinity twice.
LAURA: Yeah! So I want to Invoke Duplicity again. Oh, wait! I have something more. I can turn invisible!
MATT: That's right!
LAURA: I just got it! I’m going to use it!
MATT: The Cloak of Shadows thing? All right, cool. As they’re chasing, you Channel Divinity. You give a silent little whispered prayer to the Traveler to give you the opportunity to escape.
LAURA: Please don't fuck me!
MATT: You vanish. You are invisible for the next six seconds.
LAURA: I run as fast as I can and turn a corner.
MATT: Okay, and with that, you duck around into a little nook on the outside of an abode or home that's placed here on the outside of the temple. In that moment, make a stealth check with advantage, because you're invisible.
LAURA: Natural 20!
MATT: You hear the voices of the crownsguard going on like, "What--where-- Spread out! Where did you see them go?" "I didn't see. They just vanished!" "This is ridiculous. We are all going to get into serious trouble if we don't find them." They all begin to scatter about, and you begin to weave your way through some of the nearby alleyways into the shadows of the night. Yeah, that invisibility completely cut off their eyeline to keep following you.
LIAM: Got any spell slots left?
LAURA: I do. I'm going to change Disguise Self and make myself look like a little beggar human girl, and I'm going to walk.
MATT: With that, you manage to slowly blend back into the night chaos.
TRAVIS: That is easily the most fucked two characters have ever been, to a full reversal! That is the deepest fuckage we've ever dipped a toe in.
LIAM: Not since Scanbo, I think.
LAURA: Oh my god!
TRAVIS: Keyleth getting arrested, I don't give a shit. You guys were fucked.
LAURA: I probably should have stayed up on the dragon there.
LIAM: That is also the most exciting night Kumas has had in ten years.
MATT: Oh, yeah! I'll say that, within the next couple of days, word has gotten around the city of Zadash, to the point where some of the town criers are talking about, "Terrible vandalism! Platinum Dragon nearly ruined by upstarts and secret cabal of anti-religious hate!"
TRAVIS: (laughing) Secret cabals, because there are so many of them!
MATT: As your evening comes to a close and you go back to The Leaky Tap to go for a rest. You have a moment to yourself to think and have a moment to breathe and gain a little bit of calm. You sense a presence. Sitting on the bed next to you, you see the familiar dark green cloak.
LAURA: Hi. Did you see what I did?
MATT: "I did."
LAURA: Do you like me again?
MATT: "I was never disappointed in the first place, Jester." The hood still obscuring most of the face, just the lower jaw and mouth visible.
LAURA: Why didn't you come?
MATT: "I did."
LAURA: I didn't see you.
MATT: "You don't need to see me to know that I'm with you. And you're free now."
LAURA: Yeah. You promise you won't leave?
MATT: "As long as you continue to be that wonderful little seed of joy and chaos in the world, I'll be walking behind you the entire time."
LAURA: If things had gotten really bad, though, you would have stepped in, right? You wouldn't have let something really bad happen?
MATT: "Not within my power, no."
MATT: "I do appreciate your artwork."
LAURA: I think he looks better now.
MATT: "You're improving. Keep meeting new people. Tell them of what we have accomplished. We want more friends, don't we?"
LAURA: So many.
MATT: "Do you think I could have a look at that strange relic?"
LAURA: Which one? We found a lot of relics.
MATT: "The one that you procured from that Xhorhasian warrior."
LAURA: Oh, the box? Yeah, of course. I dig into the haversack and show it to him.
MATT: He extends his hand and takes it and looks to it.
LAURA: What do you think it is?
MATT: You see the side of the mouth of the Traveler curl into an amused smirk. "Curious. Curious, indeed."
LAURA: He said something about having babies or something with it. I can't remember.
MATT: "I don't think I've ever come across magic like that."
LAURA: What kind of magic is it?
MATT: "I don't know. I've not come across it before. I'm interested, definitely. Be careful with that. Things that are unknown are notably able to draw dangerous and inquiring eyes and minds."
LAURA: So I should keep it hidden?
MATT: "I think you should."
LAURA: I'll keep it in this pink bag. It's very discreet.
MATT: "There are more like you out there."
LAURA: I saw a couple medallions for you.
MATT: "Well, I am worth worshipping, after all."
MATT: "But you are my favorite."
LAURA: I was going to ask if I was!
MATT: "I hope that maybe you could all meet someday."
LAURA: I would love that. I, of course, will be the leader of your worship, obviously.
MATT: "Perhaps sometime next year. For the day of the Zenith in Unndilar. Yes, I think that."
LAURA: I'm writing it in my sketchbook. Will you tell them? And then I'll meet them there?
MATT: "They all speak to me."
LAURA: Okay. Wow. Thanks, thank you. Thank you, Traveler.
MATT: The hand reaches out and touches yours. You can feel the contact, but it's strangely cold. You blink, and the Traveler's gone.
LAURA: (sighs) I draw so many things in my sketchbook. All of it.
MATT: All right.
MARISHA: (whispering) He's organizing Traveler Con.
LAURA: Okay, now I've got to go feed the baby.
MATT: Yeah. Now, let's take a break. I didn't realize the time had gone by quite so far. My apologies, people.
LIAM: It's almost like a game of D&D.
MATT: I know, it's crazy. We can't have quite as long a second half. Probably much at all. But yeah, we'll take a break here. For those that are interested in being a part of the giveaway tonight, we have this fantastic cherry dice tower system with cartography from our fantastic, talented friend, Deven Rue, who did our Wildemount campaign guide. It has this really awesome leather dragon face bind to it. The cartography that's been burned into it that is gorgeous. So this dice tower-- oh, it smells good. You can be a part of this-- apparently this is on Kickstarter now, so you can check that out with our friends at Wyrmwood as part of the giveaway. You have to head over to the Critical Role chatroom on Twitch, that's twitch.tv/criticalrole to enter. The keyword tonight-- which you only enter once, any more than that and you'll get disqualified-- the keyword is “chapter.” Just the word “chapter.” We'll come back from the break with the winner, here, announced, so we'll see you here in a few minutes.
MATT: Welcome back. Before we get back into this, we have our winner of the giveaway: the fantastic Deven Rue-carved cherry wood dice tower system. The winner is Mellydew. Congratulations. We’ll get your info and get this sent out to you ASAP, so thank you for being a part. Laura will be joining us shortly; she's finishing feeding the baby.
TRAVIS: Yeah, feed the baby, give it life.
LIAM: Feed me!
MATT: It works out okay. Having all spent the majority of these two weeks handling your business, wandering through Zadash and beyond, returning, what do you wish to do? You guys have regathered in the Leaky Tap.
TALIESIN: (groaning) I'm going to pretend to be a small, old platinum dragon.
SAM: He's out, get him!
LIAM: (as Kumas) I want rice pudding!
TRAVIS: An uneventful two weeks for everyone, I assume?
SAM: Not much happened.
MARISHA: Nah, not a lot to report.
LIAM: I got a lot of reading done.
TRAVIS: Oh, that's good. New books?
LIAM: Oh, library books, so they're not mine. That’s the beauty of a library.
TRAVIS: Right. Beau, you look like you got a couple new little marks and stuff.
MARISHA: Oh, yeah. Just, you know, I think I can punch ghosts now.
TALIESIN: A lot of ghosts need punching?
MARISHA: Have you ever met a ghost that doesn't need punching?
LIAM: Is this a realization that you had?
TRAVIS: Yeah, I never even met a ghost. How would you punch it?
MARISHA: I just know if I saw a ghost, I would want to punch it. Ghosts are scary.
TRAVIS: Okay. Nott?
TRAVIS: How was your--?
SAM: I did a lot of drinking.
SAM: Yep. Just drinking and thinking.
LIAM: You're off on your own. Are you okay?
SAM: Yeah, a little bit. You know, it's easier to steal things when you can pay for them with money.
LIAM: That's true.
TRAVIS: How was your time?
TALIESIN: Yes. I've met a ghost that I didn't want to punch.
MARISHA: You have met a ghost you didn't want to punch.
TALIESIN: Yeah. I thought of one. Oh, what?
TRAVIS: Have you met more than one ghost before?
TALIESIN: I mean, yeah.
MARISHA: Oh, you didn't get to see where we found this guy. It was definitely a cemetery. He was living in the middle of a cemetery.
TRAVIS: You don't have to tell me any more, it's fine. I'll just imagine the worst possible--
TALIESIN: That's where the temple is, in the middle of the cemetery. Actually, technically it's not a cemetery. It's a graveyard.
MARISHA: Okay, there's a difference?
TALIESIN: Graveyard has an attached temple, cemetery is just by itself.
SAM: I did not know that.
TALIESIN: Yeah. I know a couple things.
TRAVIS: I have a request. Upon further inspection of this here letter, Quen'pillar is the month that we're in, which we all know, right?
TALIESIN: Is it Quen'pillar already?
TRAVIS: It is. How time flies.
MARISHA: They're going to start putting up Winter Crest decorations in the stores. We have to start thinking about what we're going to get each other.
TALIESIN: Two weeks earlier every year.
TRAVIS: While I have no idea who Marius LePual or Avantika or any of this is, this was supposed to be delivered by the end of this month to the Wayfarer’s Cove.
TALIESIN: What's the Wayfarer’s Cove?
TRAVIS: It's back in-- help me?
MATT: The Menagerie Coast.
TRAVIS: The Menagerie Coast. Where Jester and I are from.
LIAM: Is it an actual cove?
MARISHA: Have you been there?
TRAVIS: I have. Nicodranas is where Jester's from, I'm from Port Damali.
MARISHA: And you don't know any of these people?
TRAVIS: I don't. I don't?
MATT: You don't.
TRAVIS: I don't.
TALIESIN: You talking about making a trip? Taking off?
TRAVIS: I was thinking about it. I journeyed a little further south. I'm actually looking for someone and I had been meaning to head back that way, anyway. If this is taking us in that direction, if it'll teach us anything more about the, you know, (grunting).
MARISHA: Yeah. That definitely looks like it, too. Looks a lot like what sucked into your body. That was a weird night.
TRAVIS: Yes, it was.
TALIESIN: Is that like a peach pit or something?
LIAM: An abused cantaloupe.
TALIESIN: Oh, that'll happen.
MARISHA: An angry marble.
TALIESIN: I don't know why that's somehow weirder than abused cantaloupe.
SAM: Ill-tempered bowling ball.
MARISHA: You get the picture.
TRAVIS: Either way, I don't feel very comfortable with it residing in my person.
MARISHA: How do you feel, actually? Do you feel it?
TRAVIS: Nope, I just feel like me. It was the vision that came with it that fucked me up a little bit.
MARISHA: Did you have any more visions when you were captured?
TRAVIS: No, but I just kept replaying it over and over. It was dark for so long, and there was nothing really to distract you. I just kept seeing his face, and him holding the orb and pushing it into his, or my chest, and the body on the ground.
TALIESIN: I'm not having visions right now, so I'm happy to follow another one. This is not where I'm supposed to be.
MARISHA: Thanks, Caduceus.
TRAVIS: Does he say stuff like that a lot?
SAM: I'm happy to entertain your desire to go find out more about this ball inside of you, but there's other things we might want to do, too.
TRAVIS: Sure, yeah.
SAM: Caleb, you have things that you wanted to accomplish to to the north, right?
LIAM: Oh, no. No, I have no specific destination in mind. I'm happy to accompany you if the group sees fit.
MARISHA: Have you ever been to the Menagerie Coast? How far south have you been?
LIAM: No, I have never been out of the Empire.
MARISHA: Yeah, me neither.
TRAVIS: It's warmer, and there's certainly less snow.
MARISHA: That's a plus, you guys! Going in the wintertime kind of sucks.
TALIESIN: I'm already sold.
MARISHA: Plus, further away from the frontlines in this war.
LIAM: What about you?
SAM: Me? I'll go where you go, Caleb. I worry about a couple things. Yasha said she'd come back when she was ready, and if we're not here, then I don't know how she'll find us.
MARISHA: I feel like her and Molly always had a connection. She always knew how to find us because she always knew how to find Molly.
SAM: We could leave word, I suppose.
LIAM: Can't Jester send messages?
TALIESIN: Finding Molly’s all about who you know.
SAM: Yes, Jester can send her a message.
MARISHA: Your past self isn't allowed to laugh at current things.
TALIESIN: I'm having a weird-- yes.
MARISHA: No reactions from Molly here.
MATT: Are you drinking from your Caduceus mug?
TALIESIN: Maybe, you don't know.
MATT: I love that. That's amazing.
MARISHA: It's so great.
TRAVIS: Who are you drinking?
LIAM: (shouting) Who are you drinking?
SAM: If we could send Yasha a message, that would be better.
TRAVIS: I previously wanted to go north to the Soltryce Academy, but I feel like that's another step in the direction that's not pressing for right now.
MARISHA: Plus, it sounds like gauging by this letter, someone's going to catch up with us sooner or later looking for whatever's inside of you.
TRAVIS: Yeah. There's no telling they're going to share any information with me, anyway. I'm fucking absorbing things and shit just appears and I'm getting stronger by the day and it has nothing to do with the things that I'm learning. There's no books or knowledge, it's just happening. What if they look at me like you guys look at me sometimes? What if they don't let me go? Maybe that's not where I need to be.
MARISHA: How we look at you sometimes? Like you're awesome? Like we're awestruck?
TRAVIS: Like weird shit is happening.
MARISHA: That's accurate, yeah, I do look at you like that sometimes.
LIAM: And not very explained at all.
TRAVIS: It's hard when you're the only one experiencing it. It's hard to relay.
LIAM: Well, what if you tried?
TRAVIS: I'm certainly open to that.
LIAM: How about right now?
TRAVIS: What do you want to know?
LIAM: Is there any of this that you have not shared yet?
TRAVIS: No, I don't believe so. I did tell Molly before we were taken about a crewmate of mine named Sabian. He was the one that ambushed the ship that caused the explosion that threw me overboard. The one that probably sent Vandran to his fate. After I woke up on the shore afterwards, I found the sword and I wasn't quite sure where I was. I found a road and managed to hitch a ride back towards Port Damali, and when I got there I went to Vandran's storehouse, and I planned to go through his things. I was more high up on the crew than Sabian was, but his place had been ransacked. Gone through. Torn through. There was a local butcher next door that I walked into, and he had said that he was proud to see at least one other of us, that no one else had returned. I said: Who was the other one? He had said Sabian. So I feel like he somehow survived. He knows what happened, why it happened. I can't bear the thought of something happening to me because I'm pursuing this. And I summon the sword.
MATT: You see as the blade now, as this unique merger of the falchion shape and size, but now holds this golden tint of the Summer's Dance. It curves towards the edge and has a slight pointed jagged arch in the back that the scimitar had previously held. But still contains the barnacle-encrusted pattern across the hilt and there in the center still is the central yellow gleaming eye.
TRAVIS: I don't want to be focused on this. I want to be focused on that. Plus, I feel like if those events led to this, maybe there's a remedy for the whole thing.
MARISHA: So you want to find Sabian and hope that he has the answers?
TRAVIS: Or just kill him. That'd be fine. But yeah, maybe some answers first.
MARISHA: And you're sure this motherfucker was like, sole sabotager?
TRAVIS: He and I have a long history. But, after he-- So we were in the storm. He ran below decks, and he placed a bundle next to a lot of the crates that we were shipping. That was unusual for him, so I followed him down and I saw him with a lantern in his hand, and when he turned he had lit what looked like a fuse. I called out, he threw a few daggers at me. They hit; I went down, he ran past me. Just as I made my way back above decks, I called his name and I saw him at the bow of the ship, and it looked like he was preparing to jump overboard, which in a storm like that is insane. That's when the explosion hit. It ripped into my back. It threw me over, and I remember going under water and seeing parts of the ship fall, and flames above the water. I could see things falling, and some of it was cargo, and some of it looked like me. I just feel like he was prepared to get the hell out of Dodge.
TALIESIN: Just so I'm clear: as I really feel like I'm playing catch up, he's the one responsible for that, er, pearl that you’ve got in you?
TRAVIS: No. My teacher and my captain, Vandran, is the one I saw in this vision, and he had the same sphere. I saw myself through his eyes, and he was holding the sphere and pushing it into his chest. He was also standing over a man. I saw his reflection. He seemed younger, so I don't know when it was, but I didn't know that side of him. He was an exacting man. Firm, but fair, and it just leaves more questions than I have answers to.
MARISHA: I mean, no offense or anything, but these sound like some crazy-ass fucking sailors.
LIAM: You speak of a remedy. How do you mean? Do you mean you would rid yourself of that blade, these changes in you? Or am I not hitting it?
TRAVIS: I honestly don't know. I’ve thought about what it was like before I had this-- I'll make the sword disappear. Life was simple, but I don't feel like I had the ability to affect my surroundings. I was not a proponent of change. It's selfish, but I feel like I can do things now. I don't know if I would get rid of it, but I want to know what happened to him. I owe him that much.
LIAM: Oh, good morning.
LAURA: Ah, it was a long night. What are you guys talking about?
LIAM: Our next destination.
MARISHA: Fjord's angry marble in his chest.
TRAVIS: Yeah, I was thinking that if you wouldn't be opposed, we could go back to the Menagerie Coast, stop by your mom's place in Nicodranas.
LAURA: Well, I mean, I would have to like disguise myself, but yeah. We could probably go there.
MARISHA: Disguise yourself?
LAURA: Well, I can't go back home.
MARISHA: Oh, right.
LAURA: But if you want to go to the Menagerie Coast, you know I'm always on board for that, Fjord. But what about the Academy?
TRAVIS: Yeah, but I was telling them I feel like instruction isn't exactly what I need; it's not going to get me anything, yet. I just feel like I need to take steps in the right direction, does that make sense? Feels like I'm stalling.
TALIESIN: Also the deal with his little--
TRAVIS: Yeah, the letter does say the Wayfarer's Cove and it says it's supposed to be delivered by the end of this month, so I feel like there's some urgency if we're going to capitalize on intercepting this.
LIAM: For what it's worth, Fjord, Soltryce Academy normally starts with younger students. Not exclusively, but generally.
TRAVIS: Oh, I hadn't realized. What if you show up with inherent abilities?
LIAM: I don't know.
MARISHA: I mean, you don't want to give-- (sigh) I think, whatever gifts you've been given, they're natural and progressive. I mean, figure that out on your own first. You don't want to give them back, right?
TRAVIS: No, certainly not yet. If it will help me find that fuck, then I’d prefer to hold onto them.
MARISHA: They're called gifts for a reason, right? It'd be rude to give them back.
TRAVIS: I don't know how I'd give it back.
TALIESIN: I like that, that's really good.
LAURA: Maybe you have to poop it out.
SAM: Yeah, like passing a stone.
TRAVIS: Poop it out?
LAURA: It would really hurt, but it could happen.
SAM: Could go through his pee-pee hole too.
LAURA: That's true.
MARISHA: Kidney stones.
LAURA: You never know. Maybe somebody else has already done what you did and they already pooped it out, and now it's in you.
TRAVIS: Then I ate the poop stone. Yep. Didn't wash it off or nothing.
TRAVIS: It was underwater, though, so--
LAURA: That’s true. That is true. That's probably why it was underwater.
LIAM: We're all agreed, then, that Fjord eats poop.
MATT: No, that's what would have happened if it actually came out of your pee-hole.
TRAVIS: (laughing) I poop out my pee-hole.
LAURA: Menagerie Coast, then?
TRAVIS: I would hate to go without all of you.
SAM: We stick together.
LIAM: After what we have been through in the last month, it'd seem foolish to split up now. I'm curious about the Menagerie Coast.
MARISHA: Me, too.
LAURA: (gasp) You guys can meet my mom!
SAM: I'm excited.
MARISHA: I so want to meet your mom.
TRAVIS: Just to be clear, we can meet your mom, but you can't?
LAURA: I can meet her; I can see her.
TRAVIS: You're just not supposed to be seen coming back?
TRAVIS: Got it.
LIAM: She would be okay with you--
LAURA: I will let her know to expect us.
TRAVIS: Oh, speaking of-- Before you came down--
SAM: We're going to need you to send a message to Yasha. Do you need to know where she is to send that message?
LAURA: Nope, I just need to know it's her.
SAM: It might be good to let her know where we're going, in case she wants to find us.
LAURA: Okay. I send a message to Yasha. Hello, Yasha. I'm really sorry that the last time we left, it was really hard for all of us, but we wanted to let you know that we are probably--
TRAVIS: No destination.
LAURA: I send another message to Yasha.
SAM: The next day?
LAURA: No, I've got three-- *four* 3rd-level spots, I think. Four, because of my pearl. So I'm going to send another one: Sorry, I got cut off earlier. Anyway, what I was saying is that we are leaving Zadash, and we're on our way out, over the hills, and we're going to go to probably--
LAURA: Anyway, I get to it eventually.
MATT: Best use of Sending ever.
LIAM: Seven spell slots later.
SAM: (robotic voice) You have seven new messages.
LIAM: (as Jester) Okay, I'm starting at the top again.
MATT: Yasha's somewhere just going like, (sigh). All right, have you guys decided to start making your way to the Menagerie Coast?
LAURA: Wait, I got to get my handaxe first, so I pick that up.
MATT: Yeah, easy enough. Pumat's there, "Yeah, we worked real hard on this one, so I hope you enjoy what we've imbued into this previously-not-very-interesting weapon to make it just a whole lot more interesting."
LAURA: It is so interesting now. Did you want to put a ribbon on it or something to make it prettier?
MATT: "Do you want to request a ribbon? We've got multiple colors."
LAURA: (gasp) What colors?
MATT: Green and gold.
SAM: That's multiple.
MARISHA and TALIESIN: It is!
MATT: "By definition, respectfully, not an incorrect statement."
LAURA: Let's do-- Let’s do green.
MATT: "Very well."
LAURA: That way it matches my cape.
MATT: He does this little nice bow.
LAURA: It's really pretty, thank you.
MATT: "Oh, quite literally, the very least I can do."
LAURA: What does it do?
MATT: It's a plus one.
LAURA: To hit?
MATT: Hit and damage.
MATT: Plus one handaxe.
LAURA: Plus one handaxe, thank you.
MATT: No worries.
SAM: Before we set out, I'm going to pull Caleb aside, and-- A moment, Caleb? Are you sure you want to go down to the coast? There's stuff for you to do up north where you were from before.
LIAM: It is dangerous there.
SAM: Of course, but we will have to do it at some point. We're all together now.
LIAM: Not yet.
SAM: All right. I won't lie, I’m sort of-- Now that we're all together again, I wouldn't mind swinging by my old stomping grounds either.
LIAM: Where's the map? Is that on the way?
SAM: It's on the way. Well, it's on *a* way north, if we wanted to go that way.
LIAM: Oh, it's to the north, it's not towards the Menagerie Coast?
SAM: No, it's more east.
LIAM: Where's the map?
SAM: It's east, it's due east. It's definitely not west. We're here. It's due east, but the coast is down here?
MATT: It would be a detour.
TALIESIN: If you really wanted to, we could PCH this and basically hit the coast and then take that really annoyingly long drive from San Francisco-- but it's so pretty.
MATT: There we go, there it is.
MARISHA: (whispering) Thanks, Max.
LIAM: Do you want to propose it to the group? I'm happy to go, of course.
SAM: I can wait. I don't mind waiting. I don't have a specific--
MARISHA: You're from Deastok?
SAM: No, Felderwin.
LIAM: What's the time limit on that? It's the end of the month, right, on the delivery. And we're at the beginning of this month, or the middle--
SAM: We'll be back this way again soon. We'll have to come through Zadash, and we can--
MARISHA: I mean--
LIAM: What if that is the next place we go?
MARISHA: Nott, it looks like the main road goes through Felderwin anyway.
SAM: Yeah, the main road *away* from the Menagerie Coast.
MARISHA: Yeah, but-- yep, you're right. Maybe that's-- that's a river. That's not a road.
TRAVIS: That's a big-ass road.
MARISHA: That’s a real big--
TRAVIS: You can see that and mountains.
LIAM: So much water on this road!
LAURA: Before we leave, can I stop by the Pillow Trove and let them know any mail coming for me or Ms. Lavorre, Esquire, please forward that to the Menagerie Coast by way of Nicodranas and my mom's place?
MATT: Okay. The Ruby of the Sea has been placed in as your forwarding service.
LIAM: Tell you what: after the coast, we will propose it to the group. If they don't want to go, I will go with you.
SAM: All right. You're more powerful now, aren't you? I saw you got a bunch of paper.
TRAVIS: Got that paper!
LIAM: Eh. I don't know.
SAM: Well, you've been doing new spells and things. It's pretty--
LIAM: Go ahead.
SAM: No, it's pretty incredible. Have you been able to do anything that you've wanted to-- Been studying? Like some special, spectacular spells that can--
LIAM: I mean, I've expanded my repertoire. I have a few new tricks that I will hold onto for the right moment. Are you okay?
SAM: I think so! I think I'm okay.
LIAM: Okay. You seem a little restless to me.
SAM: Ever since Molly fell, I've just been-- there's a bit of a sense of urgency, you know? We have things that we need to do and we don't have forever to do them. I want to keep you on your path and I want to keep on my path as well.
LIAM: I'm working on mine. Mine is a little long-goal, perhaps.
SAM: What is it you're working on? Just learning new magic?
LIAM: You know what I've done.
SAM: I know, but I don't know how you're going to undo it.
LIAM: Well, I don't have one plan in mind. Part of me thinks that I should stop it from happening to anyone else. Part of me is very selfish and wants to carve it out of my past.
SAM: That's not selfish, that's important.
LIAM: It's dangerous, not just to me.
SAM: Oh. Well, I think I understand a little about that, too. There's things that I want to change as well. Things that would be risky to change. But sometimes you have to take a big risk, if it's that important.
LIAM: That is true. You are my greatest friend.
SAM: Little ol’ me?
LIAM: I like you because you are funny, but it's more than that. We will get you what you want. Even if there is some risk. Because if it's really important, it's worth the risk, *ja*?
LIAM: Okay. You and I, we have an agreement. A pact.
LIAM: Whatever you need, we are going to make it happen.
SAM: Even if it’s risky, yes. We're going to do it. You'll help me?
SAM: No matter what?
LIAM: If it is in my power, I will do it.
SAM: Good. Well then, onward to the beach!
LIAM: That's funny. I've never been to the beach.
SAM: Oh! I bet you would sunburn easily. You should probably coat yourself with a layer of dirt, just to make sure.
LIAM: Done and done.
TALIESIN: Were you just thinking about that? Don't think I wasn't.
LAURA: I'm sorry. I'll buy you another one.
TALIESIN: Oh yeah, you are.
MATT: As you've reconvened, are there any last materials you need to pick up for the journey, or are you ready to move?
LAURA: I'm going to buy Cad a hat. A straw hat, to replace the one I stole from him.
MATT: Okay. Caduceus' hat replaced.
TALIESIN: I'm also going to distribute-- I made everybody a potion of healing, so everybody gets--
SAM: You made that?!
TALIESIN: I done made them myself. They've got a bit of a weird flavor, but they're--
LIAM: The Cad in the Hat delivers.
TALIESIN: They’re great.
TRAVIS: What level are they?
MATT: Basic: level one.
MARISHA: But still.
MATT: Caduceus can now--
MARISHA: You basic!
MATT: Caduceus can make one healing potion for 25 gold and one day of downtime.
TALIESIN: It's a nice little pick-me-up if anyone goes down next to you.
MARISHA: You know, I had that as Keyleth at later levels; I never fucking used it.
LAURA: Wow, thanks Keyleth.
LAURA and TALIESIN: #ThanksKeyleth
MATT: She had better options by then.
TALIESIN: Kiki had other things going on.
MARISHA: We got super busy.
LIAM: We could go anywhere on the planet at any time.
MATT: Yeah, don't miss those days.
MARISHA: It's a bad thing to have at later levels; it was better at lower levels.
MATT: It's like, "Oh, you can teleport anywhere? Cool, let me just prepare the world every week." Don't miss that at all.
LIAM: Matt, we want to go to Brazil-- No, Norway.
MATT: All right. Goddamn it, Sam.
SAM: Oh. Sorry.
MATT: You gather your supplies, finish your business here for the time being. You gather up your new cart that you brought down from Shadycreek Run.
TRAVIS: Hey! Invisi-cart.
MATT: And your horses, which are two that pull the cart, and you have--
LAURA: Dancing Queen and Mamma Mia.
MATT: Correct, you have your two horses and the cart.
SAM: Do we need more for the journey, or is that enough?
MARISHA: Didn't we have a couple of more, too?
SAM: No, we set them free.
MARISHA: Oh, that's right.
MATT: That's enough. So your two horses and your cart. You leave the southern gates of Zadash, making your way southward, retracing your steps down through Alfield and Trostenwald, to eventually make your way through the Wuyun Gorge, the Wuyun Gates, where you two first began this journey in session zero, and southward to the Menagerie Coast beyond. And that's where we'll finish tonight's episode, we’ll pick up with that next week. This is going to be a whole different flavor, I'm excited.
TALIESIN: I'm so excited.
MATT: Well, shit. All right! We'll pick up for that next week. As a reminder, the week after that, Marisha, myself, and Taliesin will be out in the thing in the desert.
TALIESIN: Unavailable, yeah.
MATT: Indisposed. However, that doesn't mean that we're going dark. There will be a special one-shot happening that week. The last Thursday of August. More details to come as far as that's concerned. Just preparing you guys for that. There will be a week off from the main story. We'll be back next week to see this next leg of the journey and see where it takes us. In the interim, thank you again, D&D Beyond. Thank you guys for coming along with us.
SAM: (singing) D&D Beyond!
MATT: No. We're done.
SAM: (singing) Make love to me tonight.
MATT: Anyway, have a wonderful night, guys. Thanks for coming along with us. We love you, and is it Thursday yet? Good night.