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Pre-Show[]

AABRIA: Hello! And welcome to Exandria Unlimited. I am your Game Master, Aabria Iyengar, and I am back, y'all. This is a two-part special of ExU airing over the next two nights. I'm joined by the very best of company. So you know what? Just for old time's sake, let's introduce ourselves to the group starting with my boy, Robbie.

ROBBIE: Yo, yo, yo! It's so good to see you! (cheering) Ooh, we're at the same table, nerds! Let's go! My name is Robbie Daymond and tonight I will be playing one Mr. Dorian Storm. He's been through it.

ANJALI: Baby been through it. Hello, I am Anjali Bhimani, and I will be playing Fy'ra Rai, the fire genasi monk with a very (ahem) serious, far too serious side for a person like me to handle today. That's it. That was my genius introduction. Go team.

AIMEE: Hi, I'm Aimee Carrero, and I'm playing Opal, just a small town girl with a Vestige of Divergence. (laughter) And she has a makeover, which we'll get into later.

MATT: Yeah, she's had a rough summer.

AIMEE: She has. (laughs) (laughter)

MATT: My name is Matthew Mercer. I am reprising Dariax, dwarven nincompoop through and through. He's just been up to nothing. It's fine. It's great. It's wonderful. Hey, how you doing?

AIMEE: Yeah, right.

MATT: (laughs)

ERICA: And my name is Erica Lindbeck and I'm going to be playing Morrighan Ferus.

AIMEE: Who's that?

ERICA: You meet me later.

MATT: Okay.

AIMEE: Yummy.

ANJALI: Oh my god!

ROBBIE: New kid, new kid!

ERICA: I did it.

ANJALI: I know, I know.

ROBBIE: How's it feel?

ERICA: It feels so bad.

AIMEE: Fart, I dare you.

AABRIA: I got to say, with full sincerity, it is so wonderful to be back. I've missed you guys. I love you so much, and I'm so excited to tell this story. Also, I'm legally obligated to say that I can no longer mess with the timeline and make Matt do weird stuff for the ad copy.

AIMEE: Oh, oh no.

AABRIA: I'm sorry. I'll never do it again. That's a lie. But with all of that out of the way, I think it's time for us to get into tonight's episode of Exandria Unlimited: Kymal.

AIMEE: What?

ALL: Woo!

Part I[]

AABRIA: Brontë. Dorian. You look out over the deep unbroken blue of the Ozmit Sea from the safety of the airship that Lord Eshteross so graciously lent you and Cyrus. Cyrus. You watch him sleep fitfully beneath his gray cloak. He seems too wild and too wide for this cramped space. He's not built for this. None of it. You catch your reflection in the window. Both Wyvernwind sons and heirs to the laurels and stewardship of The Silken Squall, both haunted by expectations and doubts, both hunted by the random misfortunes that arise from a life as an adventurer. And yet, you both reached for it. You're well on your way now to Tal'Dorei, fleeing Cyrus's problems, but drawing ever closer to your own in Emon. What are you thinking about right now?

ROBBIE: Hmm. A familiar feeling, being stuck between desire and responsibility and the world seemingly pulling you in two different directions. I guess literally, if we're between two different continents. Sad but excited. Hopeful but nervous. The last time I was here, we didn't exactly-- I don't know if we left it better than we found it, which is, I think, what Dorian's always wanted, in a certain extent. So definitely trepidatious, but... just going with the flow. Floating in the breeze.

AABRIA: Ah, there you go.

ROBBIE: I didn't say it. I did, I'm sorry. Yeah.

AABRIA: Your mind drifts back to Bells Hells and the people you left behind.

ROBBIE: Yeah.

AABRIA: And looks forward to the people that you could, perhaps, seek out. What's your plan?

ROBBIE: Oh, you thought there was a plan?

AABRIA: Well. Look, you mentioned Kymal, not me. This airship won't make it that far. You're going to have to stop in Emon.

ROBBIE: Yeah.

AABRIA: You know what's waiting there. So what's your plan? What are you going to do? You can't talk to Cyrus about it. He doesn't understand. It's all on you right now.

ROBBIE: (scoffs) You know, I think something as frightening as, we're seeking out something that we've maybe always had. And that means our problems boil down directly to there being a bounty on his head. When you place a dollar amount on someone's life, it makes a dollar a lot more important. So I think our first priority would be to hide and then hopefully try and fix this the best way we can. Because neither one of us are going home. Not like this. Yeah.

AABRIA: Yeah. Okay. So you form a plan, a thought, to reach out to friends? You have one incredible ally in Shaun Gilmore.

ROBBIE: Yeah.

AABRIA: You can bring what's left of the gang on this continent back together. You know that if you call, they will find you.

ROBBIE: Yeah.

AABRIA: Even though it's been almost a year, the bonds that you forged running across the continent, those don't go away.

ROBBIE: I think at a different time, I would've been hesitant, maybe even a little mistrustful, to bring anyone else into my problems, but I'm starting to learn that everyone has their own free will. If you put out a call and someone chooses to answer, maybe it's not your fault. Maybe they're doing it because they care about you. So if I'm going to be in Emon, I guess I'll-- I don't know how to contact anyone, but if there's anyone who knows everyone, it's Shaun Gilmore, so.

AABRIA: Absolutely.

ROBBIE: Yeah.

AABRIA: Your heart swells a little bit with hope. But I want to know, what are you most afraid of? What's that little tug at the back of your heart? The fear that you tuck away whenever you make eye contact with Cyrus?

ROBBIE: It used to be what would happen if anything happened to him, what it would mean for me. That's a selfish thing to think for a sibling, but when you're in our position, it's obvious. But now that fear has shifted into what would happen if something happened to him? Because as I'm watching him sleep, I realize that we're just as vulnerable as anyone else in this world. So my biggest fear would be losing my brother, for sure.

AABRIA: Yeah. I need you to make a charisma saving throw for me. We're changing it up, they're not all wisdom, baby.

ROBBIE: (laughs) Charisma, all right. Oh boy. Plus six, 19.

AABRIA: Ooh, okay. With a 19, your eyes trail back to the window and that uninterrupted blue on blue of sky and sea. You're able to put it away, that fear, that worry for the unknown. You're a little stronger now, a little braver, a little bolder, a little smarter than when you left. I said a little.

ROBBIE: A little.

AABRIA: You're ready, in as much as you can believe that for yourself. You can protect him. You can fix this. As you start to ruminate on how, and how even to begin, you are snapped from your reverie, and you find yourself already here in the city of Kymal at a gambling table with your full crew. Can I get the squad, please? We're in it, baby!

ROBBIE: (laughs)

MATT: What's up? (cheering)

MATT: Let's go!

ROBBIE: Ooh, ooh.

AABRIA: Yes. You guys have been here for like, I'm going to say half a day, enough time to just begin to relax into saying your "hi"s and get into a little bit of trouble here at The Maiden's Wish. You are in the city of Kymal. It is known for its casinos and truly nothing else. It is a muddy little backwater that was built on the back of a gold rush decades and decades past, and the casino scene and that low-level crime syndicate that gives you a very Reno now or Vegas in the 1950s flare permeates through everything. This is the perfect place to lay low because you're not the worst people in the room by a long shot.

MATT: Yet.

AABRIA: Yet! There's still time. It's so early.

ANJALI: The night is young.

AABRIA: All right, so let's catch up a little bit with our Crown Keepers. Fy'ra Rai, you're sitting at this table. A little twitchy, a little head over your shoulder. What's got you so on edge right now?

ANJALI: Well, it's been a little over a year since I left them before they left each other. It's been a little over a year since I found out my sister is still alive, and I have yet to fucking find her. I have been scouring the continent. I have been going to every resource that I possibly have. I even returned to Niirdal-Poc. because I was so beside myself. I thought that maybe I would be able to ask the Tetrarchs for some assistance in searching for her, and all they could bestow upon me was some peace and meditation and reminding me that the Gift would-- If she was in immediate danger the Gift would show me where she was. I haven't been able to connect with her through the Gift since that one flash when I was back with Tetrarch Thrascuur. So even though I have found my way back to my chosen family and feel solid in my desire to protect them, and feel like, "Okay, at least I know I am needed somewhere "because my loved ones are here," I am also trying to suss out anyone that might be useful in finding a very missing person.

AABRIA: Incredible. Okay, you guys are all sitting at a table for a game of the Changebringer's Favor. It's very, very simple. 25 gold buy-in. This is how it works. You roll 2d6. If they add together for a seven or a 12, you win. It's your turn, Fy'ra Rai. Please roll 2d6 for me.

ANJALI: This gambling reminds me of my darker days. (laughter)

ANJALI: I've never liked this. I don't like things that aren't a sure thing.

AABRIA: What'd you get?

ANJALI: Six.

AABRIA: Six. The person working at the table reaches forward, looks down, and goes, "You could always double down on your bet. Another 25 gold to roll one more d6. See if you can get to a seven or 12."

ANJALI: How much gold do I have? (laughter)

ANJALI: Anyone, meta, meta, anyone? Good start!

AABRIA: Enough to stay in for at least one more round.

ANJALI: What the hell? Otherwise, I'll be out very quickly. The attendant looks a little crestfallen but quickly covers it with a smile. "Congratulations," and pushes 75 gold in your direction.

ANJALI: I believe I shall quit while I am ahead. That's what they say, yes?

AABRIA: We pan over now to Opal.

AIMEE: Hey. (laughter)

AIMEE: Okay, so it's been a while since I've seen-- How long have we been traveling together? Or have we just decided to come together in this situation?

AABRIA: Well, you and Dariax stuck together.

AIMEE: Yeah, right, right.

AABRIA: But Fy'ra Rai was off looking for her sister and--

AIMEE: Yeah, so it's been a day or half a day or whatever?

AABRIA: Yeah.

AIMEE: I'm trying to stall.

AABRIA: We all respect.

AIMEE: No, okay, so it's been a while and--

ALL: ♪ It's been a while ♪

AABRIA: Start off with, what does Opal look like? Because when last we saw her, you know, big terrifying circlet, dripping black ichor down your forehead. Is that the fit right now?

AIMEE: That's the fit, but she is using her Actor feat to Disguise Self because it is a terrifying image.

AABRIA: Okay.

AIMEE: She still has the circlet, and it's very much entrenched in her skin. She tried to remove it at the end of our last sesh. Wasn't able to, and her clothes are stained with oil or whatever goop came out of that. She's tried to wash it out, but it's still permanently not looking as sharp as it was. She's got stained hands from when she tried to remove it. She still has her opal necklace, which is her connection to Ted, and yeah. So she's looking pretty rough normally, but tonight she has changed into her normal, usual self. She's got her hair up in a nice updo and maybe she, I don't know, stole a fur bolero, or maybe she still has it from that one time.

AABRIA: Wait, did you steal one?

AIMEE: I mean--

AABRIA: This is so important.

AIMEE: I mean, she's very empowered at the moment. She does have a Vestige. I feel like-- I feel like the moral compass--

AABRIA: I'm going to need you to-- We're going to move back in time to you passing by. (flashback noise) We go back in time to--

AIMEE: (yells) (warbling) (laughter)

AABRIA: -- to Opal in tears as you were arguing with, you know it's very full in your brain right now. You've got Ted.

AIMEE: Yeah.

AABRIA: You've got the Spider Queen.

AIMEE: Yep.

AABRIA: It's a lot of women yelling.

AIMEE: Yeah.

AABRIA: You spot it. A fur-- beautiful, pristine-- draped over a chair. The woman that's clearly the owner of it is half in the bag, leaning over the bar, trying to get the bartender's attention.

AIMEE: Yeah, right. So I think what happens is she doesn't think twice. I think she goes by and she may be like, "Oh my gosh!" She drops maybe some of the drink that Opal, that I'm holding, I drop it on the floor. The lady's like, "Oh my god, it's all over my shoes." I'm like, "Oh, I'm so sorry." Then I grab the coat and I leave.

AABRIA: Why don't we work through that a little bit. Go and give me a deception check as you spill your drink to get this woman's attention.

ANJALI: Is this tonight, or is this--?

AABRIA: I'm going to say this was earlier, because I don't want anyone to stop this mess from happening.

AIMEE: 12.

AABRIA: Oh, a 12. The woman looks down at you. "What are you-- oh my god. You spilled alcohol on my clothes."

AIMEE: Oh no, and I think she turns back to what she normally looks like, Opal, and scares the shit out of this woman.

AABRIA: Please make an intimidation check with advantage.

ANJALI: I love this game so much.

AIMEE: Oh! Okay. Hold on. Intimidation. Oh, that's good. That's 19.

AABRIA: "What the--?! Oh my god! Are you some sort of demon? Well, I shouldn't be judgmental. There's so many demons here, but this is fucking worse."

AIMEE: Do you want me to get closer?

AABRIA: "No."

AIMEE: I smell really bad.

AABRIA: "I believe you."

AIMEE: Okay.

AABRIA: "Can you go?"

AIMEE: Yes, I will go. I will go right now.

AABRIA: "You can go."

AIMEE: Okay, you can enjoy yourself. Have a good night! She grabs her coat and her fur bolero and keeps it moving.

AABRIA: She's fully staring at you, you still trying to steal it?

AIMEE: Yeah. (laughter)

AIMEE: Yeah. What she going to do?

AABRIA: Feels so good to be back. (laughter)

AIMEE: What she going to do?

AABRIA: Make a sleight of hand check with disadvantage. Or are you staring her down like, "This is mine now."

AIMEE: Oh yeah, yeah. I think it's like, "Do you want me to get closer?" "No, no, no." "Okay. Have a nice night."

AABRIA: Get up and walk away.

AIMEE: Yeah. I feel like she maybe feels like she's got it. I don't know. She's got a lot of confidence at the moment.

AABRIA: You grab it, you sling it over your shoulder. You hear and feel skittering across the inside of your mind and a contented almost purr of laughter as one of your roommates is like, "This is great." And Ted's like, "What are you doing?"

AIMEE: What? I got so much money.

AABRIA: "You fully stole that."

AIMEE: Yeah. Stealing from the rich, giving to the me.

AABRIA: "What? You're also rich. Do you not remember a year ago when you guys made so much money?"

AIMEE: I mean, that's--

AABRIA: "You could just buy one."

AIMEE: Why would I buy one when it's sitting right here, Ted?

AABRIA: "Oh my god."

AIMEE: Remember when we thought you were dead for a while? That was better.

AABRIA: "You're so mean."

AIMEE: Okay, I was kidding, I was kidding. We do that, remember? We do that.

AABRIA: "Get me a drink right now."

AIMEE: Okay, fine. (laughter)

AABRIA: We move forward to now and your ill-gotten fur bolero.

AIMEE: I guess just sitting at the table.

AABRIA: Just vibing there. Incredible.

AIMEE: But now she looks pretty again.

ANJALI: May I ask?

AABRIA and AIMEE: Yes.

ANJALI: If she's been using Disguise Self to make herself look like this and I've only been here for a day and a half since I've seen you, I don't think I've seen you, I personally, I don't think Fy'ra's you seen her in her normal, natural form yet. I've no idea--

AIMEE: But you would notice that now she has two different colored eyes.

AABRIA: Are you not hiding that?

AIMEE: No, I don't think so. I think that she's maybe got a different outfit, she's cleaned up, but I don't think she's hiding that. So maybe you noticed that.

AABRIA: Interesting. So now you see that she has one brown eye and one iridescent eye.

ANJALI: Interesting. Okay.

AABRIA: You know what, give me a perception check.

ANJALI: First time rolling this dice.

AABRIA: I'm going to say with disadvantage because this is a--

ANJALI: Makes me so sad.

AABRIA: I'm sorry. I'm a bad person.

ANJALI: No, no, you're not. You're a lovely person and I really enjoy your company.

AABRIA: You know what? No disadvantage. That was a beautiful moment, what you got?

ANJALI: Well, that's a 19.

AABRIA: Oh my god!

ANJALI: Ah!

AABRIA: I just got conned so hard.

ANJALI: We are in a gambling town.

AIMEE: Yes. God, you're good at this.

AABRIA: I love this. There's some point when she interacting, as you keep your eye out on Opal as you're all sitting at this table, you notice as she interacts with something and as her hands go over her head, she brushes against a circlet that you can't see. Because Disguise Self can hide that from any visual, but it's still on her head, and you see her move around the circlet even if you can't see the circlet itself.

AIMEE: How've you been?

ANJALI: Wonderful.

AIMEE: Oh good.

ANJALI: No, not true. You're looking particularly radiant tonight.

AIMEE: Thank you.

ANJALI: You're very welcome.

AIMEE: Appreciate that.

AABRIA: We move a little bit farther to the right to see our good friend, Dariax.

MATT: Dariax, our dwarven sorcerer, is on probably his fourth cup and has watched you do this a couple times, watched you win and has been waiting for the timing and is like: I'm going to carry the luck onward. How much can I put in?

AABRIA: "The buy-in is 25, but you can put in however much you want--"

MATT: All right, I'm going to put in...I'm going to put in 20 platinum.

AIMEE: Are you sure that's a good idea?

MATT: Yeah, it's great!

AIMEE: You sure?

MATT: Look, she can do it, I can do it.

AIMEE: Yeah, but she--

AABRIA: The moment he turns and moves his hands away, it is swept up. "All right. Final bets."

MATT: Don't worry, I got this, I got this.

AIMEE: Okay.

AABRIA: Make your rolls.

MATT: All right. So what--

AABRIA: 2d6 and you're looking for a seven or a 12.

MATT: All right.

AABRIA: You can do it.

MATT: It's a six! It's like you did!

ANJALI: You can do again.

AABRIA: "Do you want to double down?"

MATT: Yeah, I want to double down! How much is that?

AABRIA: "It's going to be another 20 platinum."

MATT: Great! I have 40 platinum! Perfect!

AIMEE: Oh my god.

MATT: And what do I do now?

AABRIA: Roll one more d6.

MATT: All right, all right, all right. That is a 12! (laughter) (cheering)

AIMEE: He's lucky.

ROBBIE: He's got the luck of the idiots! No.

AABRIA: And you see, so slowly. 60. Yeah, 60 plat is pushed back in your direction. "That's incredibly lucky."

AIMEE: Good job.

MATT: You know, when people think about luck, they think of good old Dariax. Always rolling well. The dice just come out of his hands and top marks, every time.

AABRIA: "I'm sure-- I'm sure they do. Do you want to stay and play another round?"

MATT: No, I'm good.

AIMEE: Oh good, that's perfect.

MATT: Nah, maybe a little.

AIMEE: No!

AABRIA: "Place your bets!"

ANJALI: Shall we perhaps retire to get some sustenance?

ROBBIE: Maybe now would be a great time to go get a bite or have a drink. You did so good. You feel good? Do you feel good? I don't want to tell you what to do, but--

MATT: I mean, I could probably use some bread. I'm starting to feel a little spinny.

ROBBIE: Thank you so much. Thank you. I'm going to flip five silver to the dealer.

AABRIA: Catches it. Bites it.

AIMEE: Bites it.

AABRIA: "All right. Have a good one."

MATT: It's not edible.

AABRIA: He leans in and whispers something into his shoulder. Those of you who cast spells, can I get an arcana check?

ANJALI: Do my ki spells count?

AABRIA: I count it. So all of you are magic. Amazing.

AIMEE: 18.

AABRIA: Oh.

ANJALI: 15.

ROBBIE: Natural 20.

AIMEE: Oh!

AABRIA: Oh my god.

AIMEE: It's a lucky night!

MATT: Four.

AIMEE: Oh shit. No, it's not.

AABRIA: The baby's back. Yes.

ANJALI: Back and better than ever! That's our boy!

MATT: I mean, I rolled a five, but it's minus one. (laughter)

AABRIA: Incredible.

ROBBIE: I forgot. I truly forgot.

AABRIA and ROBBIE: I forgot.

ANJALI: I lost so much.

AABRIA: Yes.

AIMEE: It's the curse.

AABRIA: Everyone but Dariax notices a little glyph go off, that was sewn into the dealer's jacket, goes off and dissipates in a little poof of gold dust. With a natural 20, you look over just in time to see a similar glyph sew itself into the very edges of Dariax's vest.

ROBBIE: Okay. Does it look like-- has one happened before the other?

AABRIA: It happened simultaneously. You see it disappear and then it reappears on his clothing. He's been marked.

ROBBIE: We're getting up from the table and walking away? Let's go to the bar really quick. As we walk, I'm going to pull Dariax to the side.

MATT: Hey, what's up, buddy?

ROBBIE: Hey, what's up, buddy. That was amazing.

MATT: Thanks.

ROBBIE: Did you use any illusion or magic or anything?

MATT: I'm going to be perfectly honest; the magic was in me the whole time.

ROBBIE: I always knew it. We should all be aware we're being watched. That was a huge pot and we should be careful.

AIMEE: Okay.

ROBBIE: All right?

MATT: All right. Cool.

ROBBIE: So act natural. Very natural.

AIMEE: Perfect. (coughs)

AABRIA: So you guys heading over to the bar?

ROBBIE: Very naturally.

AABRIA: A very natural saunter over to the bar.

ROBBIE: So smooth.

AABRIA: It is extremely crowded down here on the main casino floor. I'll give you a quick rundown because you are able to see some signs in this central area. You notice that, off to your right, at the very edges, you see the high roller den is back behind the main game floor. Down to the south, you see a spa and some iconography as to suggest it is dragon themed. You see that off to the west, there's the buffet. It's called The Taste of Tal'Dorei.

ROBBIE: (laughs) Wait, is every--

AIMEE: It's by the pound.

ROBBIE: -- little station a different place on the bar?

AIMEE: Yes.

ROBBIE: Okay, okay, okay. Yeah, yeah, yeah!

AABRIA: Did I build The Maiden's Wish to be like the New York, New York Hotel?

AIMEE: Yes!

AABRIA: But for Tal'Dorei? Yes, I did.

MATT: Just those of us who put points into constitution, you're thankful right about now. (laughter)

ROBBIE: I thought the oyster shooters were great. (laughter)

AABRIA: There's doors out to the back to the two main outdoor events, which is a big luxury market called The Wish Fulfilled and then out past that, The West Run, which is a big outdoor arena that's normally for racing and fights.

AIMEE: That's fun!

MATT: Hello?

AABRIA: Yep, you're over there at the bar. Give me a performance check to try to get this one bartender's attention. It's hard to see them over the crowd. It's three people deep as they're all crowding around, but you can see some feathers poking around.

MATT: Gotcha, 14.

AABRIA: 14's pretty good. You hop a couple times, elbow your way up, and eventually you get the bartender's attention. Erica, can you come out? (cheering)

ROBBIE: NPC!

ROBBIE and AABRIA: NPC!

AABRIA: NPC! NPC!

ANJALI: Oh my goodness.

AIMEE: Have a seat!

ANJALI: Bartender!

AABRIA: Hi.

ERICA: Hi.

AABRIA: Okay, so you see this tiny dwarf hand popping over the crowd. You're currently dealing with the attentions of everyone at the bar, but especial a pale blue ruggedly handsome air genasi who's just, "So, what are you doing?"

AIMEE: Oh shit!

ROBBIE: Of course.

ANJALI: Really?

ROBBIE: Of course it wasn't me.

ERICA: I push down my feathers.

AABRIA: Please, paint us a word picture. Describe what we see.

ERICA: Okay, so, basically you see a really cute bunny girl.

AIMEE: Oh my god.

ERICA: Okay, so-- (laughter)

AIMEE: Okay, so start from the top.

ERICA: Let's start from the top.

AABRIA: All the way down.

ERICA: So I'm a Lagomore, correct? Okay, so I'm a basically humanoid rabbit. Yes. I think I'm 5'10" or so. I'm wearing a feathered, basically 1950s showgirl outfit--

AIMEE: Stop!

ERICA: That is way form over function. They make us wear them here. It's so crowded and it's so hot. Yeah, I turn around, I have bright green eyes and big gray bunny ears. Yep.

AIMEE: Oh my god.

ERICA: Yes. So I turn. Wait, why does he catch my attention over anyone else?

AABRIA: Well, you can see--

MATT: Hi! I need help!

ERICA: (yelps) I heard you.

MATT: Okay. Hi! Glad you heard me.

ERICA: Hi.

AABRIA: The guy that was talking to you looks over and goes, "Dariax, hey, where've you been?"

MATT: What's up, Cyrus? Apparently not getting drunk enough. I came to get another order of the bread, you know?

ERICA: The bread?

MATT: Yeah. The special drink. The bread.

ERICA: Oh yes, the bread. I'll get it right away.

MATT: Thank you kindly.

ERICA: I turn, my smile immediately disappears. (laughter) Is bread one of the drinks?

AABRIA: Sure.

ERICA: Great.

AABRIA: Do me a favor, make a history check for me.

ERICA: A history check? Okay.

ANJALI: Pure brewers' yeast.

AABRIA: It's just hops.

MATT: You got to put bread in the stomach when you've been drinking there, bud.

AIMEE: Yeah.

ERICA: So that's an eight.

AIMEE: Soak up the rest of the alcohols.

AABRIA: With an eight, the name Dariax is strange. You've not heard it many times, but it does ring a bell.

AIMEE: Oh!

ERICA: I look up into the skies for a brief moment.

AABRIA: It's the ceiling of an indoor building.

ERICA: I say to myself: God, I hate it here. I go and I make the bread. I pour it--

AABRIA: Give me a performance check.

ROBBIE: You what? You pour it?

AIMEE: She pours the bread.

AABRIA: How do you pour bread?

ERICA: Wait, is it a drink?

MATT: It's 12 ounces of bitters, let's be real.

ERICA: Okay, great. It's a bread.

AIMEE: It's a sourdough starter.

ERICA: I'm leaving. I'm done! I'm already done! Oh my god. I'm rolling a performance check?

AABRIA: Yeah.

ERICA: To make the bread?

AABRIA: To make the bread.

ERICA: Great.

AIMEE: To do her job.

ERICA: To do my literal job.

AABRIA: You can have advantage because you do this literal job.

ERICA: Oh, 18, 19, 20, 21.

AABRIA: Crit fish! Roll it again. See if you get a higher number.

ERICA: Okay, let's see. A six, no.

AABRIA: Okay. What was your total?

ERICA: 21.

AABRIA: Yeah. So the moment you're able to turn away from all of the attention, because everyone at this bar wants your attention, whether it's for drinks or for, you know, can I touch your ears?

ERICA: Nefarious purposes.

AABRIA: Yes. You turn around and you are deft to the task. How long have you been a bartender?

ERICA: I've been a bartender for a long time, but I've only been working at The Maiden's Wish for a few weeks, so I might not know the drinks as well as I should. Because they're different everywhere, so.

AABRIA: Okay.

ERICA: Yeah.

AABRIA: So you're very quickly able to create bread.

ERICA: I figure out something. He looks drunk, so I don't think he's going to care.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ERICA: I could bring him a literal loaf of bread and he'd be like, yeah, this is what I wanted.

MATT: Legitimately, I'm more enthralled with the process in which she's spinning whatever she's putting in it to be like, what is it? I'm like, that's cool, I'll drink it.

ERICA: I know as long as it looks cool, no one will question it.

AABRIA: 100%.

ERICA: Yeah, yeah.

AABRIA: Yep. You turn around and present Dariax with his drink.

ERICA: Here you go. How much does that cost?

AABRIA: You can decide. You don't have to ask me for everything.

MATT: How much is that?

ERICA: That's one gold.

AIMEE: Oh shit.

MATT: It's a good thing I just came into some money. I put a platinum down.

ERICA: Wow. That's the biggest money I've ever seen.

MATT: I like bread.

ERICA: I take the gold and I pocket it.

AABRIA: Yeah.

AABRIA and ANJALI: It's a platinum.

ERICA: Oh, it's a platinum! Oh my god! I take the platinum and I pocket it. Great.

AIMEE: She eats it.

ERICA: And I eat it. (laughter)

AABRIA: You have to check.

AIMEE: No one's taking it from me!

ERICA: Yeah, yeah. Exactly.

AABRIA: There's three dudes all lined up at the bar, they're like, "We've got platinum. What are you doing later? What is this guy have that we don't have?"

MATT: Apparently manners.

AABRIA: "You got a problem?"

MATT: Yeah, I got a problem!

AABRIA: "You want to take this outside?"

MATT: No.

AABRIA: "We're trying to have a conversation with the lady here."

ANJALI: As soon as I hear this, I step closer to him and make sure that my fire hair is well displayed.

AIMEE: Yes.

ROBBIE: I'm going to walk behind them all toward my brother and whisper out of the side of my mouth: Remember when I said keep a low fucking profile? I'm going to flip my brother's hood back over his head.

AIMEE: Well, I have followed Dorian because I want to meet the handsome brother who I haven't met.

AABRIA: Yeah, Cyrus was given strict orders to lay low and stay in the room, which the moment you went out with your friends, he was like, "I'm going to get a drink." As he's being hooded, he catches your eye, Opal. He's just, "Is this your friend? Move. Hi. Cyrus Wyvernwind."

AIMEE: Oh, nice to meet you.

AABRIA: "So nice to meet you."

AIMEE: Wait, Cyrus what?

AABRIA: "Wyvernwind."

AIMEE: Wyvernwind.

AABRIA: "Yeah, I'm his brother."

ERICA: Are they all near me?

AABRIA: Yeah, everyone's in front of you having this full conversation.

ERICA: Does anyone else want a drink or are you guys just hanging out, or--?

AIMEE: Something clear.

ERICA: Oh. Yeah. I go pour a water.

AABRIA: One of those three dudes fully pushes Opal out the way and be like, "We are having a conversation."

ERICA: Excuse me, we at The Maiden's Wish reserve the right to refuse service to anyone, including loud mouths.

AABRIA: "I didn't think I was being loud. I was being direct."

ERICA: I disagree.

AABRIA: "So why don't you pour me another little drink, sweetheart?"

ERICA: I know how to deal with this. I've done it before a few times.

AABRIA: Okay. First coin in play. So when this normally happens, what do you do?

ERICA: I sweet talk him.

AABRIA: All right. Break me off a piece of that. As he gets louder and angrier and is starting to spread out, you think he's gaining physical mass. He looked human and his skin seems to be getting paler and stretching taut. His hair's receding away from him as he's undergoing some very unattractive transformation.

ERICA: Wow. You're so big.

AABRIA: "Thank you, I've been lifting."

ERICA: I think maybe you are the biggest man I've ever seen. Then I accidentally knock over a tray of olives. Oh!

AABRIA: "Oh, don't you worry about that, I got that, I got it." He immediately, like a vampire I guess, goes and starts picking up the olives and begins to return back to his normal size as your lady in distress act has caught him off-guard enough that he's deescalating the situation.

ERICA: Thank you so much for picking up those olives.

AABRIA: "Anything for you, sweetheart. I know I shouldn't call you sweetheart. I have a lot of internalized things to deal with. That's on me." (laughter)

ERICA: That's okay, I know, I've seen this man before.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ERICA: Yeah, I know. I flick a tray of olives and he's like, "Oh, I have to be the hero."

AABRIA: Every time.

ERICA: I help pretty lady, yeah. I actually come out from behind the bar to grab the olives, because I have to throw them away, obviously. Oliveiously. (pretentious laughs) (laughter)

MATT: I'd still eat them.

ERICA: Oh, please, don't do that. My feathers are so cumbersome that I have to pop myself out through because they're just-- There's like feathers all over them. It can't be sanitary. There's feathers all over the floor from my outfit.

AABRIA: "That's fine. I don't mind. I think you look great."

ERICA: Oh, thanks. That's very kind of you.

AABRIA: "You're on the side of the bar with us. Who's making drinks?"

ERICA: Oh, I was just grabbing the olives to throw them away.

AABRIA: "You could just leave them. This whole city is basically mud. We'll eat the olives. You can put the olives down."

ERICA: Okay, great. I just put them out. The last casino I worked at-- (laughter)

ERICA: If we spilled something, we threw it away. But clearly I'm--

AABRIA: "They're slippery." Grabs a different olive, puts it in. "That's bad. It tastes like hay now." Puts their drink down. Yeah, now you see this entire strange accrue of people.

AIMEE: How'd you do that? That was so cool.

ERICA: Just people person skills, I guess.

AIMEE: What's that like? I mean, I have people person skills, but not like that, not like that. You're really good.

ERICA: Oh, thank you. Well, you deal with a lot of lovely characters working in a casino bar, so. Are all of you together, or...

AIMEE: Yeah.

ANJALI: We are.

AIMEE: He's new.

AABRIA: "Yeah."

AIMEE: He's new.

AABRIA: "We met earlier. I'm Cyrus. I'm not supposed to be out of my room. But these are all my friends."

AIMEE: I'm your friend.

AABRIA: "Opal."

AIMEE: Yes!

AABRIA: "Dorian."

ERICA: Opal, Dorian. Oh, I forgot.

AABRIA: "I didn't meet the other ones."

ERICA: I go back behind the bar. The bar's not that big on this thing, right?

AABRIA: No, you can squeeze on back in there.

ERICA: I squeeze on back there and I go, I grab you your clear thing. I change it to vodka.

AABRIA: "Thanks."

ERICA: Yeah. Or whatever equivalent.

ROBBIE: ♪ Fantasy vodka ♪

ERICA: ♪ Fantasy vodka ♪

ROBBIE: ♪ What is it called ♪

ANJALI: It's opaline, just like you.

ERICA: Exactly.

AIMEE: Dariax, Dariax, give her another platinum.

MATT: Oh, okay. Give her another platinum.

ERICA: Thank you.

ROBBIE: I visibly cringe at just giving away all of our earnings.

AIMEE: Opal and Dariax are good with money.

MATT: Yeah, we're great. Together, we've been poor in Byroden for a while.

AIMEE: Yeah. We couldn't leave.

MATT: No. Been there for months eating lots of pie. It's been great.

AIMEE: It's great.

MATT: Other than the whole, like, bleeding crown thing, but you know.

AABRIA: Hey, Mor, can you give me a perception check?

ERICA: Yeah, sure. Oh, I rolled a one. So it's a five. (muffled laughter)

AABRIA: No, it's a one.

ROBBIE and AIMEE: It's a one. (laughter)

ERICA: So it's a one, yes.

AABRIA: That's fully a one.

ERICA: It's fully a one. I was trying to be tricksy like I just was with that man, but it didn't work.

ROBBIE: (laughs)

AABRIA: Sweet. Opal, I'm going to need a perception check with disadvantage from you.

AIMEE: Okay. Oh, fuck. Well, that was a natural 20. But with disadvantage, that's 12.

AABRIA: Okay. With a 12, you don't clock it because you're immediately going and making ♪ fantasy vodka ♪

ERICA: I'm making the vodka.

AIMEE: Yeah, just pressing the potato.

ROBBIE: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

AABRIA: Six times. You feel at the very end of your pants, like a string shift, and you turn and you see someone is walking briskly away from your group.

AIMEE: Somebody just tugged at my outfit and it did not feel good. So before I kick that person's ass, does anybody want to come with me and just scope it out?

ANJALI: As soon as she says someone tugged at my thing, my pants, I spin around. Which one?

AIMEE: Which one?

AABRIA: You see two different figures in cloaks, a very generic, dark brown hooded cloak disappearing into the crowd. You're struggling to see which one it was, but it's one of those two and they're moving in the same direction.

AIMEE: Can I cast Detect Magic?

AABRIA: Oh my god, of course you can.

AIMEE: Can I? Would that do anything?

AABRIA: Yeah, let's find out.

AIMEE: Okay, let's see.

AABRIA: Okay, there's nothing to roll.

AIMEE: Oh, okay.

AABRIA: Detect Magic just happens.

AIMEE: Oh, great, I'm detecting it.

AABRIA: Okay.

AIMEE: It's a new thing for me.

AABRIA: Before I inundate you with information, what specifically are you looking for?

AIMEE: I just want to know, I guess, if they're using magic, if they're maybe with people that we've encountered in the past, bad casters, or any clue as to what they might want from us, my attention.

AABRIA: So you turn your Detect Magic on. The first thing you notice as you swing out and perceive your group before you turn your eyes in the other direction, is you actually see the little gold glyph on Dariax's shoulder shining very brightly.

MATT: What?

AIMEE: What do you got there?

MATT: I got bread. Well, what's left of it. It's on the last bit you have to chew, but it has like a nice bitter...

AIMEE: Uh-huh. He's got something on his shoulder.

AABRIA: Though you are being, though you're immediately distracted, looking back through the crowd, you see that there are lots of individuals wearing magic items. A couple of the gaming tables specifically, you see very subtle magic going off at these cheater gaming tables. One of them specifically, that game that Changebringer's Favor, there's this big coin gold image of the Changebringer, a goddess of fortune and luck. That's at all of the tables that play that game except for the one that you see where magic is going off. She's blindfolded, to suggest that that's a table where the whole point is to try to get away with cheating.

AIMEE: Oh, cool. Fun.

AABRIA: The two people that are disappearing into the crowd make it in there. Neither of them look like they are casting magic. However, the one on the right has a magical item that you recognize as your Pearl of Power that's been pickpocketed from you.

AIMEE: He stole it! Okay.

AABRIA: He's about 50 feet away and you're losing him. So what do you want to do?

AIMEE: I would like to run after him.

ANJALI: I'll go with her.

AABRIA: Okay.

ANJALI: Now, I'm a little faster than she is.

AABRIA: You are.

ANJALI: Who are we going after? The guy--

AIMEE: The one on the right. He stole my-- do I know he stole my Pearl of Power? He stole my Pearl of Power.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ANJALI: I'm just going. I got nothing. I can't find my sister! I have to use her instead.

AIMEE: But they're both in heels, but we're doing it.

ANJALI: Hey, I'm very adept in these heels. Can you see this picture? So I bust a move to head over to this guy. In fact, no, I'm not going to do it. I was going to, can I dash without ki?

AABRIA: Sure, absolutely, yeah.

ANJALI: Because we're not in a-- So yeah, so I'm going to bust a move. My normal speed is 45, but I'm going to just-- Dash is double?

AABRIA: Yeah. So you can move 90 feet. Do me a favor. Make a general dexterity check for me to see how you can navigate this crowd.

ANJALI: That's a big no. That's a nine.

AABRIA: Okay. You're not able to get your full movement because just like the bar, it's a crowd of people, and you're moving around and trying to keep up. This person is a little more accustomed to moving through crowds. You are great at moving through jungle and terrain, but this is a person that's obviously trained in urban environments. So you are gaining on him, but you do not catch him during this round. Does anyone else want to do anything?

ERICA: Do I see any of this?

AABRIA: Yeah, especially, you can hear her talking very obviously about it.

ERICA: Okay. Interesting. Do we have security at this place?

AABRIA: Of course you do. It's all very subtle, though. You know that there's a bunch of glyphs carved into the bar, that all you have to do is tap them to disrupt them, and it will summon someone to the bar specifically.

ERICA: Oh, cool.

AABRIA: But you know how to spot. They're usually very tall dragonborn wearing pale blue and lilac that are off in the corner, weirdly blending into the walls, but you can catch one of their eyes.

ERICA: I like-- This crew, for some reason, has intrigued me a little bit. They're the nicest people I've talked to all day.

AABRIA: And they tip hella good.

ERICA: Yeah, exactly. The bar is low, but still. So I would say that I maybe tap one of the glyphs and see if I see, because I don't want their things to be stolen, obviously. Is everybody leaving the bar right now?

MATT: I'm still here.

ERICA: Oh.

MATT: Are those, like, actually ears? I had a bunny when I was little.

ERICA: Yeah, they are. I tried to cover them up so people wouldn't ask questions about them, but they're huge. (laughter)

MATT: I just thought it was cool because you know, I had a bunny when I was very young.

ERICA: You did?

MATT: Yeah.

ERICA: What was his, her, their name?

MATT: His name was Cat.

AABRIA: (snorts)

AIMEE: Yep.

ERICA: That's cute.

MATT: No, no, it was adorable.

ERICA: Well, my name is Morrighan.

MATT: Oh, hey. I'm Dariax, nice to meet you.

ERICA: Nice to meet you.

AABRIA: Give me another history check.

ERICA: Okay. That's an eight. It was a 17 and then it went to--

MATT: (sympathy noises)

AABRIA: No.

ERICA: Nope. Did you just nope me?

AABRIA: I just said, "No."

AIMEE: She said, "Nope!"

AABRIA: If there's one thing you need to know about this campaign, is I will never be able to give information if I lock it behind a die roll, because y'all roll like dog shit. Continue. (laughter) (laughter)

ERICA: I have a twofold thing going on here.

AABRIA: Yeah, of course.

ERICA: I need to ask you.

MATT: Yeah?

ERICA: You have so much platinum. It seems. So much, you can just throw it away on a couple little drinks. Bread.

MATT: It is a delicious drink that you made very well and I like to be appreciative of your, you know, the patronage that occurred.

ERICA: Yeah, a nebulous patronage.

MATT: Yeah, you know? Well, either way.

ERICA: Where did you get all of it?

MATT: Well, see, here's the crazy thing. A bunch of us-- Well, we started by peeing off a rooftop, and then we ended up getting in trouble with these people in Emon that were big thieves and shit. Then we went into a big mountain where there was like a fiery letter or something. And then we ended up going by this door to the Feywild. And then we ended up going to a place deep in a jungle where there was awesome elephant people. And then I met like a big cat statue and put its spirit inside me. And then we fought like a giant floating box thing. It turned into a big angry face. And then my friend got a crown and it's crazy.

ERICA: Wow. It sounds like you all have been through a lot together.

MATT: Yeah, a decent amount, I'd say.

ERICA: That's cool. Anyway. (laughter)

ERICA: Is one of the guards coming?

AABRIA: Yes.

ERICA: Great.

AABRIA: In the intervening time, you've got right over your shoulder, a tall dark blue dragonborn that's like, "Mor, do you need something?"

ERICA: Yes, yes, yes. We seem to have a situation over there. That girl in the pink. You're wearing pink, right?

AABRIA: Did you take off after the guy?

AIMEE: I did take off. Am I close to the man?

AABRIA: We'll come to you in a second.

AIMEE: Oh, sure, sure, sure.

AABRIA: Yeah. With his high vantage point, he's almost eight feet tall, he's like--

AIMEE: I've got the fur bolero.

MATT: ♪ With the fur ♪

ERICA: When you fix the situation, tell her that I have some fantasy vodka waiting for her.

AABRIA: "On it."

ERICA: Yeah.

AABRIA: He immediately takes off through the crowd. What are you doing?

ROBBIE: How much of this insanity am I witnessing right now?

AABRIA: You are seeing all of it! Cyrus is just looking at you.

ROBBIE: I am panicking because he's giving away all of our secrets and my friends have sprinted off into the evening.

AABRIA: Is that true?

ROBBIE: Yeah, he just told all of our backstory.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ROBBIE: To a stranger.

AABRIA: "What kind of crown?"

ROBBIE: I'm going to break away and wrap my arm around my brother's shoulder.

AABRIA: "Hey, hi."

ROBBIE: That's a story for a different time.

ERICA: I'm actually curious, too. That sounds cool.

ROBBIE: Oh. (nervously laughs)

ERICA: Would you like a drink?

ROBBIE: Please.

ERICA: What kind?

ROBBIE: I do not care.

ERICA: Bread.

ROBBIE: Sounds great.

ERICA: I'll make you a bread.

ROBBIE: Fantastic.

AABRIA: "Can I also have a bread?"

ERICA: Yeah, of course. Bread's on me.

ROBBIE: While she breaks away to make the bread, I'm going to lean in to Cyrus, say like: I don't what to do here. We've got to make some more money than just rolling dice. Yes?

AABRIA: "Yeah."

ERICA: Do I overhear that?

AABRIA: I'm not even going to make you roll for it. You absolutely did.

ERICA: Yes.

ROBBIE: Okay, so.

AABRIA: "Okay."

ROBBIE: You know, we're doing all right. We've got to milk this town for all it's worth, and the only person we've met-- Not like that. The only person that we've met that seems to know anyone is this bartender. So do you remember when we were teenagers and an envoy would come into town, do you remember the old bromance move?

AABRIA: "Yes!"

ROBBIE: All right. Let's give it a shot. Okay, ready? Yeah, you can take your--

ERICA: Do I overhear that?

AABRIA: He immediately pulls his hair down.

ERICA: Please tell me that I overhear that.

AABRIA: You heard all of this.

ERICA: Okay!

ROBBIE: All of a sudden, we, shoulder to shoulder, square up to the bar and direct all the possible energy we can muster straight.

ERICA: I'm turned around and making the drinks.

ROBBIE: Oh, I totally do not think you've heard any of this.

ERICA: Okay, good. Good, good, good.

ROBBIE: Because I used my best inside voice.

ERICA: She's literally mouthing to herself like: Bromance? What is that?

AABRIA: They will wait for you to turn around. All right, while you are pursuing.

AIMEE: Yes.

AABRIA: You're chasing this down. I need both of you to make dexterity checks for me to try to catch this guy in the crowd.

AIMEE: Oh, for fuck's sake.

ANJALI: Natural 20.

AABRIA: Oh my god.

ANJALI: Plus six, 26.

AABRIA: Okay, the natural 20 was enough.

ANJALI: That'll do.

AABRIA: Sweet. How'd you do?

AIMEE: A four.

AABRIA: Okay.

MATT: Natural one.

AIMEE: Natural one.

AABRIA: You have to tell! Look, it's like cop rules, you have to tell me if it's a natural one.

AIMEE: Natural one.

AABRIA: Cool. So I was going to--

MATT: Enjoy it.

AABRIA: At first, you just didn't do it, but now it's worse because you run smack into the woman whose bolero you stole.

AIMEE: Shit. Okay. She's going to try what Morrighan did. She's trying to learn to be charming in that way. Hi, big lady. (laughter)

ERICA: Oh my god!

AIMEE: Fancy meeting you here.

AABRIA: "That's a very nice wrap."

AIMEE: Yes, I was holding it for you. A lot of pickpockets in this town.

AABRIA: "So it would seem."

AIMEE: How do you feel about olives? I could get you some, a whole tray. This is not going well for Opal.

AABRIA: Make a persuasion check with disadvantage.

AIMEE: She's really trying to be--

AABRIA: The chances are low, but not zero.

AIMEE: Oh, shit, what'd you say? A what?

AABRIA: Perception check.

AIMEE: Perception.

MATT: Persuasion.

AABRIA: With disadvantage.

AIMEE: Oh, persuasion.

AABRIA: Persuasion.

AIMEE: Oh, that's a-- Quick math, 11.

AABRIA: Disadvantage.

MATT: Disadvantage, roll again.

AIMEE: Oh, disadvantage.

AABRIA: Oh, did you think, "Do you want olives"--

AIMEE: I didn't hear it.

AABRIA: -- was going to be the--

AIMEE: Okay, it's still no, that's a nine, so 11. Because it was a seven, right? Yeah, that's good math.

AABRIA: She puts out her hands. "Why the fuck is this wet and sticky?"

AIMEE: Well, because you left it unattended, and then I dropped your drink, and then I may have gotten another drink on it. So, you're welcome.

AABRIA: Her eyes finally slide away from you. You've got your Disguise Self up, so you look pristine. But looking at that fur bolero, it's covered in like little rivulets of that black, that sticky ichor.

AIMEE: Do you still want it?

AABRIA: "I can have it cleaned."

AIMEE: No.

AABRIA: "But why don't you go run and grab me some olives?"

AIMEE: First of all, you can't have it cleaned. Then she touches her circlet. I don't know if it does a weird shifting thing like a video game.

AABRIA: What do you want it to do?

AIMEE: You know like the video games when it's-- Not a video game, you know, when it's bad interruption.

AABRIA: Yeah.

AIMEE: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Maybe the visual goes--

AABRIA: You want it to glitch out?

AIMEE: -- glitches a little bit. She still, I mean, Opal now has permanently stained, goopy hands.

AABRIA: Yeah.

AIMEE: So maybe it's like that moment from "She's All That" when she spills the wine on her, and maybe she pretend trips, because now she's holding the fur, right? This lady's holding the fur.

AABRIA: Yes.

AIMEE: So she like--

AABRIA: You trip again?

AIMEE: I trip again, but it's a fake trip. Oh. Then she gets all that goop all over it.

AABRIA: She catches you by the front of your forehead and pushes you back.

AIMEE: But doesn't she feel the crown?

AABRIA: She feels it, she does not react.

AIMEE: She doesn't react, okay.

AABRIA: She says, "Maybe you shouldn't wear heels if you can't walk in them."

AIMEE: All right, I've had just about enough of this, and she's going to--

AABRIA: "Go get me my olives or I call security."

AIMEE: -- cast Vicious Mockery on this bitch.

AABRIA: What!? (laughter)

AABRIA: This is incredible. Go ahead and slowly begin to do that while--

ANJALI: Oh my goodness.

AABRIA: Let's catch up with, you know, the threat of the thing as you're--

ANJALI: Yes, sure.

MATT: Hey, welcome back, Dorian.

ROBBIE: I'm so glad I called you guys. (laughter)

AABRIA: They are subtle.

ANJALI: So good. It's so good to have family.

AABRIA: So that was a natural 20.

ANJALI: It was.

AABRIA: You're able to catch up to this person. What do you want to do? You're right behind them.

ANJALI: Have the two of them separated?

AABRIA: They've separated, but you know to follow the one on the right.

ANJALI: All right. So, I circumvent, I hook around to in front of him, and I pull my staff out and hold it low but in front. I don't know why I'm still talking like Fy'ra Rai. I hold it right in front of me, but so no one can see that I'm really-- it's blocking him from going anywhere.

AABRIA: Okay.

ANJALI: Between people. Excuse me, sir.

AABRIA: The eyes that meet you are a young, probably say 13 or 14 year old tiefling with carrot-colored skin and a bunch of freckles. Just looks up at you.

ANJALI: Excuse me, young sir.

AABRIA: "Yes? What do you need?"

ANJALI: I believe you may have mistakenly picked up something that my friend dropped. My eyes flame up a little bit.

AABRIA: This tiefling matches you gaze for gaze, and his eyes flare up, too, and he goes, "Okay. Going to assume you are with her. Yeah?"

ANJALI: I don't even look away. I'm like: Describe her.

AABRIA: "White hair, pretty. Gooier than you think when you touch. Pants strappy on the sides."

ANJALI: That's my companion, yes. Do you have something of hers by mistake, I believe? Yes, no?

AABRIA: "No?"

ANJALI: Now, see, what is interesting about this is that I happen to know that you are not telling the truth. I don't really want to do anything physical about it, in such a crowded place.

AABRIA: "You don't have to." He's weirdly starting to take on your accent. (laughter)

AABRIA: "If you don't want to, you don't have to do anything you don't want to do."

ANJALI: But this is where I have this conflict, you see? Because she's a very dear friend.

AABRIA: "Okay. Can I just go?"

ANJALI: No.

AABRIA: "I had to ask. Okay. Do you want to fight? Can I just--" Make a intimidation check for me.

ANJALI: 16.

AABRIA: "Okay. I'll trade you. The thing I took from your friend for a secret, any secret."

ANJALI: Any at all?

AABRIA: "Yeah."

ANJALI: I lean in and I say--

AABRIA: He gets so close that your nose is mushed a little bit.

ANJALI: I'm actually not from around here.

AABRIA: "No shit. That's not a secret. Your hair's on fire."

ANJALI: I'm actually not from this particular plane.

AABRIA: "I would like to direct your attention to the thing I said before. You're a little on fire, lady."

ANJALI: I rather like you, young man.

AABRIA: "I like you, too."

ANJALI: These tattoos--

AABRIA: "Can it be a good secret? What's your tattoos? What does it mean? If you tell me what your tattoos mean, I'll give it back."

ANJALI: My tattoos mean that someone who loved me very, very much, never wanted me to feel pain, but instead wanted others to who tried to hurt me.

AABRIA: "So your tattoos are like magic?"

ANJALI: You could call it that, or you could call it loving touch. Either way, no one here knows about that but you. She boops him on the nose.

AABRIA: He blushes a little bit and gets darker orange. "Promise?"

ANJALI: I promise.

AABRIA: "Okay." He goes and pulls out the Pearl of Power.

ANJALI: Excellent. You did that very deftly, young man. Use that skill for something more noble, no?

AABRIA: "Yeah, because I have a lot of options here in Kymal. Look, next time, I won't steal from someone who's faster than me."

ANJALI: Let me ask you this. This pearl wasn't for you, was it?

AABRIA: "Oh, I don't really care about the things that I take. Just, you know, it's hard to make a buck here."

ANJALI: How about, I don't know what a buck is, but how about--

AABRIA: "No, you know how there's so many coins and they get really heavy, so you have to put them in a bucket to carry them."

ANJALI: Ah, excellent.

MATT: It's canon.

ANJALI: That's it, it's in. It's in. I'll tell you what. Perhaps not a buck, but I will give you not one, but two gold pieces if you tell me who this Pearl of Power was going to.

AABRIA: "Shake on it. So, I don't know, you don't seem like you're from around here. You're from a different plane of existence."

ANJALI: Oh, that sounds good. You're very good at accents as well.

AABRIA: "Thank you, I'm trying."

ANJALI: I really like this kid.

AABRIA: "There's some new people in town."

ANJALI: Oh, you don't say?

AABRIA: "They're crowding in on, you know, what the families and the clans do."

ANJALI: Oh, really?

AABRIA: "I was hoping to get in good with them. They don't have names, but they seem real important, because they've been knocking down every other casino here."

ANJALI: These people, do they, by any chance, wear a particular symbol on their garments?

AABRIA: "Yeah, hold on." You see he gestures for you, you get closer, and he opens up his cloak not to show you anything, but just to be subtle about the little bit of magic that he can do, as he prestidigitates a symbol that looks like, you would know this by now, something weirdly in between the hand of the Clasp and the star of the Myriad. That's, if you've spent any time in Emon, what you have, is the sigil of the Nameless Ones.

AIMEE: Oh shit.

ANJALI: The person who you deal with with this group, one more gold piece to tell me their name.

AABRIA: "That's the thing, they don't say their names."

ANJALI: Okay, then what they look like.

AABRIA: "They just look like normal people. They don't even wear, like, you know. The people in the Clasp, they all wear like, I'm going to wear black, and there's so many buckles. Just lots of belts."

ANJALI: Too many buckles. It's not practical.

AABRIA: "But I saw one of the people from the other group, this group, and it was just like a grandma. It's just a grandma wearing grandma clothes. But there was also-- There's a lot of people, there's dads and kids and someone else that had hair kind of like yours."

ANJALI: Really?

AABRIA: "And a lady in a red coat."

ANJALI: This lady in the red coat, what does she look like?

AABRIA: "Tall, blue hair, dark skin, kind of a fucked up complexion."

AIMEE: Oh fuck.

ANJALI: Young fellow, tell me your name.

MATT: It's fine, it's fine.

AABRIA: "Jinoir."

ANJALI: Jinoir.

AABRIA: "Yeah."

ANJALI: My name is Fy'ra.

AABRIA: "That's a really nice name."

ANJALI: Well, thank you. Keep your ears open, young friend, and be safe. But if you come back for me from time to time, I may have more gold for you.

AABRIA: "Okay, ma'am. Let me be clear, there's nowhere else I can go. They're blocking all the exits and they get really low and they're like, 'Give us your name or give us your head.' So I'm here and I'll find you for money. Okay, goodbye. Thank you for not punching me with your stick."

ANJALI: Goodbye. What was his name again? What was his name again?

AABRIA: Jinoir.

ROBBIE: Jinoir.

ANJALI: Jinoir.

AABRIA: He disappears into the crowd.

ANJALI: So I turn around, looking for Opal, and I see what is happening with this gooey, furry business. I roll my eyes, and I come back towards her.

AIMEE: Opal's like (thwips).

AABRIA: Are you actually Vicious Mock--

AIMEE: Yes.

AABRIA: What are you doing?

AIMEE: I am dressing her down, giving her a read, and also flicking ooze on her. Because she's such a bitch. Okay, we've had enough.

AABRIA: "Do I need to--"

AIMEE: I will stop. I will stop... if you stop. You brought this on yourself. Just let me walk away with the bolero, and we can forget it ever happened.

AABRIA: "Are you trying to gaslight me?"

AIMEE: What?

AABRIA: "It's my jacket!"

AIMEE: No, no, but I had it, and now you're wanting to take it from me.

AABRIA: "Because you stole it from me, badly."

AIMEE: But then why did you leave it out like you didn't care about it?

AABRIA: "It was on the chair, I was ordering a drink. There's one fucking bartender here and she's wearing so many feathers."

AIMEE: Take care of your things a little better.

ANJALI: Pardon me, Opal.

AIMEE: Yes?

ANJALI: I desperately need your help with something, and I turn you away and put this in your hand, and as I do, I turn to this lady. I'm so sorry about my sister, she has some problems.

AABRIA: "You're related to her? She steals things. Her head's wrong. She's stinky."

ANJALI: I'm so sorry about my sister, she has some difficulties. Please, forgive me.

AIMEE: Opal gives you a crazy look.

ANJALI: I take my crazy sister and I keep walking with her.

AIMEE: What happened? Oh, thank you.

ANJALI: Come back to all of these people. We need to go somewhere now, somewhere private.

MATT: Okay.

ROBBIE: I'm still laying it on thick with our bartender here.

AABRIA: (Cyrus) "Yeah, so how's being at a bar? I'm so out of practice."

ROBBIE: You're doing good.

AABRIA: "I'm doing great. Hey."

ROBBIE: What my brother's trying to say is that I have played at so many different taverns, and this is the--

AABRIA: "So many."

ROBBIE: Yeah, so many, and this is the best drink I've ever had. You're so good at what you do.

AABRIA: "You're so good."

ROBBIE: Yeah.

ERICA: Oh, well, thank you so much. I never considered myself that good of a bartender, but if you say it's true, it must be! (laughs)

ROBBIE: You're so funny.

ERICA: Thank you. I think you're funny, too.

ROBBIE: Do you like your job?

ERICA: Oh, it's great.

ROBBIE: Oh, that doesn't sound honest to me. Do you like your job?

ERICA: I mean, the clientele can be a little bit--

ROBBIE: Rough?

ERICA: Yeah.

ROBBIE: I could tell, look at your bracelet. That's a lovely bracelet. May I see it? I just wanted to take a look.

ERICA: Do you want it off of me?

ROBBIE: No, no, can I take a look?

AABRIA: "What is happening?" Cyrus has forgotten the entire thread of it, he's just watching.

ROBBIE: I'll take her hand in mine and say: Look, this place is too rough for you. Look, you've got a broken link in your bracelet. I'm going to rub it with my thumb and cast Mending on it and fix her bracelet.

ERICA: Wow.

AABRIA: "That was really smooth. That was great."

ROBBIE: Shut up, shut up.

ERICA: I have to admit, that was-- No, that was really smooth. You're good. You're really good.

ROBBIE: I'm just playing.

ERICA: Well--

ROBBIE: Just playing.

ERICA: I have other people to get to.

ROBBIE: Sure, it's so busy.

AABRIA: "So busy."

ROBBIE: I was curious, can I ask you one question before you get back to work? Just one.

ERICA: Of course.

ROBBIE: I used to work in security. I noticed--

AABRIA: "Me, too. I'm so good at security."

ERICA: Well, you both are so big, I mean--

ROBBIE: And strong.

AABRIA: "I am big and strong."

ERICA: Yeah, you're very strong.

ROBBIE: I noticed you-- Well, I noticed you pressed a little glyph behind the--

AABRIA: "I'm a prince."

ROBBIE: (shushes) Please.

AABRIA: "What?"

ROBBIE: Please, shush.

AIMEE: (laughs)

ROBBIE: Whatever you do, don't say another word.

AABRIA: "I am."

ROBBIE: I love you so much.

AABRIA: "I love you, too."

ROBBIE: We're wondering, is there anything we should know about this place? We've been gambling here and we feel like there's a bad vibe. You know, we wanted--

ERICA: You're in Kymal.

ROBBIE: That's true.

ERICA: There's always a bad vibe in Kymal.

ROBBIE: Really?

ERICA: I've lived here for 26 years.

ROBBIE: 26 years. Born and raised, obviously.

ERICA: I look up at my ears and I say: Obviously not.

ROBBIE: Oh, I'm sorry. I shouldn't make assumptions.

ERICA: Listen, if you have something else you want to talk to me about, you're going to have to wait until I get off my shift.

ROBBIE: When do you get off your shift?

ERICA: When do I get off my shift?

AABRIA: Honestly, you could walk away whenever and convince someone else here to take over your shift. But technically it's not for another three hours.

ERICA: Can you give me 20 minutes?

ROBBIE: I look at my brother very excited. 20 minutes, yeah.

AABRIA: "Yeah, yeah. Do you want us to wait here or do you want to be alone?"

ERICA: No, please go.

ROBBIE: Okay, okay.

AABRIA: "Sure."

ERICA: You and your interesting group of friends that you have.

ROBBIE: Yes, we're all--

AABRIA: "So interesting."

ERICA: Okay, awesome.

AABRIA: "Prince."

ERICA: That's really, that's so great. Wow, that's amazing.

AABRIA: (shushes)

AABRIA: "We have to be-- (shushes)"

ERICA: Oh, that's so good. I'm so glad for you that that's happened for you.

ROBBIE: Anyway, I think we should go. You're nice, I just wanted to see what your deal was, and you know, you're so cool, you're so cool.

ERICA: Thank you.

ROBBIE: Okay.

ERICA: Okay.

ROBBIE: Let's go.

ERICA: Can I give them a place to meet me?

AABRIA: Yes.

ERICA: Great.

ERICA: Where would that be?

AABRIA: You would tell them to meet you outside. So there's a bunch of different theater halls, and they would normally be running several shows. There was a wonderful residency artist named Tharla Starr that's been performing for months. But for whatever reason in the last week or so, the other two theaters were shut down and it's this godawful one-man show lounge revue of "In the Belly Of Dragons: The Legend of Scanlan Shorthalt and Vox Machina--"

AIMEE: Stop.

AABRIA: "Musical Revue."

ERICA: Okay.

AABRIA: Being put on by the nephew of the owner. So you could meet in front of that theater because no one else is going to be there.

ERICA: Okay. It's called the Tharla Starr? Oh, but she's not there.

AABRIA: She's not there.

ERICA: Great.

AABRIA: You can meet in front of the little cluster of theaters and have a conversation.

ERICA: Do you know where the theaters are?

ROBBIE: No. We know next to nothing.

ERICA: Well, great, you have 20 minutes to find them and meet me there when I'm off my shift.

ROBBIE: We'll see you. Thank you so much.

AABRIA: "Bye, I love you."

ERICA: That is a very weird thing to say. Is that a thing that princes say to people? Is that a thing?

ROBBIE: He's not a prince. This is crazy, come on. (laughter)

AABRIA: Cyrus gets pulled away. Mor, can you give me-- Give me an arcana check.

ERICA: 14.

AABRIA: It's been so noisy here today that you almost miss it. That little sound that your songbird makes that's just for you. You realize now as you attenuate your senses to it, that it's been singing loudly the entire time you were having a conversation with that group.

ERICA: Yeah. On some primal level, I was like, these people clearly want to speak to me. I need to talk to them. Also, what did you say earlier? You said something the city, what did you say?

AABRIA: Juicing the city.

ERICA: You-- what?

AABRIA: Milking the city?

ERICA: Milk the city.

ROBBIE: Oh, no, when I was talking to my brother, I was just saying that--

ERICA: Well, because I overheard it.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ROBBIE: We're aimless, we're wandering, so I wanted to try and talk to anyone who seems like they're in the know to find some sort of direction.

ERICA: Morrighan's had this voice in her head that's saying, "Take what you can, bleed the city." So when she hears milk or the whatever the city, she's like--

ROBBIE: Milk the city.

AABRIA: Milk it.

ROBBIE: Like the moo cow.

ERICA: She recognizes that to be too much of a coincidence. That it was like, "Oh, goals align here." Whatever, yeah, yeah, yeah.

AABRIA: 100%.

ERICA: Cool.

AABRIA: Yeah, once you come to that realization, the true song calms down into a gentle chirp and chatter as you go about whatever you need to do to extricate yourself from the bar.

ERICA: Am I the only bartender?

AABRIA: No, they're circling all over the place. You know that your manager, Gaola, has been rotating everyone around, and she doesn't like you very much, so she gives you the bad bar with very little support.

ERICA: I quietly shimmy out from the back of the bar, popping out with all my feathers. Yeah, and I would say I probably go to a back room to take them off.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ERICA: Yeah.

AABRIA: You notice that when you go back to change, that there's two other bartenders that you work with, a human and a half-orc, that are putting on, you know, the normal baby blue and lilac uniforms here. They're like, "Why do you-- You know we don't have to wear the feather."

ERICA: I think it's pretty.

AABRIA: "Okay. Do you want me to go over to your--?"

ERICA: Yes, it's an unattended bar. They're probably drinking all the alcohol.

AABRIA: "Then why did you--"

ERICA: I had to pee! I had to pee.

AABRIA: "Fine. I'm going. Never say I didn't do anything for you. Next weekend, my cousin's birthday is coming up, so if you could cover my shift for me."

ERICA: No, I will, for sure. I'll do it.

AABRIA: Deception check. (laughter)

ERICA: 17.

AABRIA: "Thank you so much, sweetie. You're so nice."

ERICA: I know, I know. Sometimes it's hard to be so nice. People say, "Morrighan, why are you so nice? Why are your ears so fluffy?" I don't know.

AABRIA: (laughs awkwardly) "I like your ears. Anyway, I'm going to go." You see that they pick up the pace and head out, and both of them go to cover your bar.

ERICA: Great. She wonders, Morrighan wonders to herself if the dragonborn ever found the girl in the pink to help her out.

AABRIA: Yeah, we can cut back to that. He's looking around. "Where did they go? One of them moved so fast. I'm sure it's fine." Just walked away. A plot point forgotten to the annals of history.

ROBBIE: There's someone barfing in a slot machine somewhere for sure. He's got stuff to do.

AABRIA: He's got things to do.

ROBBIE: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

AABRIA: 100%. Okay. The minutes pass, you circle up with the group and let them know.

ANJALI: Told us that-- about the theater?

ROBBIE: Sure.

AIMEE: Wait, who said what? What do we know?

AABRIA: What do you know?

ROBBIE: We've just come together after splitting ways.

AABRIA: Yes.

ANJALI: Okay.

ROBBIE: Hi, guys. Weird night, right?

ANJALI: Very. We need to find somewhere private. I need to speak to you all.

ROBBIE: Okay. Well, motion over and try to find a quiet corner of the bar, somewhere where we can be out of ear shot.

AABRIA: Okay.

ROBBIE: Yeah. What happened? What's the matter? Is Dariax with us?

ANJALI: I hope so.

MATT: I've been at the bar this whole time and I found these really cool splits in the wood beams that create this pattern, so I've been following with my eyes for the past 10 minutes before looking around and going: Oh shit. Where-- where'd everybody go? Oh! (sputters) (laughter) I'm coming!

AABRIA: (laughs)

ANJALI: I pull my hood over my head, my fire resistant hood. (laughter)

MATT: She goes through hoods so quickly.

ANJALI: It's an excellent cloak. It's very, very comfortable. I don't know how to say this, so I will just spit it out. Poska is here.

AIMEE: Poska!

ROBBIE: What?

ANJALI: In Kymal.

AIMEE: What?

ROBBIE: How do you know this?

ANJALI: It's a long story. The point is, I think we need to get you all out of here as soon as possible.

ROBBIE: No. I'm sorry, but the whole reason I asked you here, and I do I care for you all deeply, was to help my brother and I, and I feel like for the last couple of days, all we've been doing is bumbling around, drinking and gambling. Well, we've been doing all right, but--

MATT: Right, yeah. We're okay.

AIMEE: It's kind of what we do now.

ROBBIE: How much platinum do we have between us? Maybe a few hundred. I've got 22. I've barely broken even.

AIMEE: How much do you need?

ROBBIE: 40,000 gold. It's not going to work.

MATT: We're not that far off.

ROBBIE: What? Not that far-- How far do you think we are off?

MATT: Well, okay. So I have 58 platinum, 97 gold.

ROBBIE: Uh-huh.

MATT: So... Oh. No, you're right. We're far away.

ROBBIE: It's a lot.

MATT: We're far away.

ROBBIE: It's a lot.

MATT: I take it back. I'm sorry.

ROBBIE: Yeah. I don't think gambling and bumbling around. I'm sorry. I don't want to be that guy, but we desperately need your help, and it feels like things are getting worse, not better.

ANJALI: Where are we staying?

AABRIA: Here.

ANJALI: Here?

AABRIA: It costs two gold a night.

ANJALI: Okay.

AIMEE: Rough.

ANJALI: I think it would be wise for all of us to make our way out of this city.

ROBBIE: Leave the city?

ANJALI: Yeah.

ROBBIE: I don't think we're going to make much money in the woods.

MATT: I'm also going to be honest about all of this. We're kind of badass. We dealt with some crazy magical elves in the Verdant Glade, we fought, and respectfully, fought your sister into a submissive position within our crew. I think if Poska wants to come for us, we're sitting pretty, plus we're in public. What they going to do? Shoot us and stab us in the middle of a crowded room or something?

ANJALI: Yes.

MATT: Oh shit. All right. Well.

AABRIA: Make a stealth check for me.

AIMEE: What if we do a heist?

ROBBIE: What?

AIMEE: A heist.

ROBBIE: A heist.

AIMEE: Get you your money.

ERICA: 20.

ROBBIE: Steal. Let me ask you-- There's stuff going on.

AABRIA: Yeah, as they're talking about this, you hear them talking about a heist, out loud, in public, in a crowded casino.

ERICA: Yeah.

MATT: I've done four heists before.

AABRIA: But you heard them talk about what they can do.

MATT: Yeah, not successfully.

ROBBIE: Can we stop saying heist?

ERICA: I also want to ask you something.

MATT: Sorry.

ROBBIE: Let's come up with a code for heist. We've stolen a lot of gold before.

AIMEE: Poodle.

ROBBIE: A poodle?

AIMEE: Poodle.

ROBBIE: Poodle's the new word for heist?

AIMEE: Yeah, let's do a poodle.

ROBBIE: Aloud, that also sounds bad as well.

AIMEE: Oh no, that's bad!

ERICA: Hi!

MATT: Oh, hey!

ROBBIE: Hi.

ERICA: Yes.

ROBBIE: Hello.

ERICA: It's me, the bunny.

AIMEE: Hi, bunny.

MATT: Yeah.

ERICA: Hi. Can we go inside of the theater?

AABRIA: Yes.

ERICA: Great.

AABRIA: Do you want to go into one of the locked ones that has nothing in it?

ERICA: Nothing in it. Yeah.

AABRIA: Yeah. Okay.

ERICA: I heard you guys talking about things, so I thought maybe we should go somewhere where other people aren't.

ROBBIE: She's very smart. Let's go!

AABRIA and ROBBIE: (laugh)

ERICA: So I probably have keys to things.

AABRIA: You literally, at this point, without even having to pull out the correct keys or thieves' tools, you've learned exactly how to find the right leverage to get these doors open.

ERICA: Cool. Cool.

AABRIA: You all see her break into a locked room without any sound or any fuss.

ERICA: Okay. Then, okay, so here's what I wanted to say.

AABRIA: Yes.

ERICA: I've completely neglected the fact that I have Disguise Self. So I thought it would be really cool if my outfit was just Disguise Self.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ERICA: All of my bumbling was all fake.

AABRIA: Oh, okay.

ERICA: Right? My actual outfit, I can then dismiss Disguise Self.

AABRIA: Love it.

ERICA: Right? Yeah. So it's easy.

AABRIA: Yeah, I like it.

ERICA: Yeah, yeah. So we go into the dark theater and nobody's in there. What time is it outside right now?

AABRIA: There's no windows here. It's a casino.

ERICA: Oh great. Yeah. They pump in air to make oxygen to make you feel happy.

AABRIA: That's a little harder because it's medieval. But yeah.

ERICA: That's true. Yeah, yeah. That's true. (laughter)

ERICA: Through a fantasy vodka, you know?

AABRIA: Fantasy vodka.

AIMEE: Fantasy perfume.

MATT: [JENGA] Air Ashari trying to make a buck.

ANJALI: There's a spell for that.

AABRIA: Just one tired druid in the back with Gust.

ROBBIE: Spirited air conditioning.

ANJALI: There's a spell for that!

AABRIA: How often-- How long do I have to do this?

MATT: 12-hour shifts. (laughter)

AIMEE: 12 hours.

ERICA: So I would say I went to the store room to gather my bearings, but I still had my outfit on. because we walk into the theater, I dismissed Disguise Self and my actual outfit, which is traditional rogue attire, materializes.

AABRIA: Amazing.

AIMEE: Woo!

ERICA: No feathers. Well, actually there are some feathers on my outfit, but they're functional feathers. (laughter)

MATT: You turn, and suddenly, I'm covered in the same feather outfit that you were wearing at the bar. How did you do that? That's-- That's-- I turn it back normal. See? Can do it, too.

ERICA: That's amazing! Wow!

MATT: I got a cloak off a guy. Hi. What are you doing here? What's happening? I missed a lot of this.

ROBBIE: I don't know. I felt directionless. She seems very smart. How did you do that with the door?

ERICA: I've gotten really good at lock picking.

ANJALI: Why have you brought us here?

ERICA: Oh yes. I'm so sorry. Dorian, right?

AABRIA: "And Cyrus."

ERICA: Yeah, sorry. The prince, Prince Cyrus.

ROBBIE: You remembered our names.

ERICA: I couldn't help but overhear--

AABRIA: "I like being called a prince. That's a thing I've learned about myself now."

ERICA: I couldn't help but overhear at the bar that you said that you were hard up for some money.

ROBBIE: Yes.

ERICA: Also that you two are going to do some weird brother glamor on me. I didn't really understand it.

ROBBIE: Oh, you heard that? That's embarrassing.

ERICA: I heard all of it.

ROBBIE: Oh.

ERICA: You should be more careful about the things that you say in public.

ROBBIE: I thought that were being quiet.

ERICA: No, you were not.

AABRIA: "We were being so quiet."

ROBBIE: Oh! Can you hear very well? Are you an excellent hearer?

ERICA: I can. That's true. But there are other creatures here with big ears. It's not just me.

ROBBIE: Sorry.

ERICA: Anyway.

ROBBIE: I'm sorry. We weren't trying to manipulate you. Actually, we were.

ERICA: No, you were. It's okay. I was manipulating you right back, so it's fine. I do it all the time.

AABRIA: "What?"

ERICA: I do it every day.

AABRIA: "Oh."

AIMEE: She's so good at it.

AABRIA: "Amazing."

ERICA: It's fine. Tit for tat.

ROBBIE: Fair enough.

MATT: She said tat.

ROBBIE: She did.

ERICA: Fine. Tit for tit. Anyway, I thought that maybe our goals aligned. I am not actually a... Well, I am a barten-- I'm a very subpar bartender, but my real job is just stealing things.

AIMEE: That's perfect for a poodle.

MATT: I will say, before we go any further into this, I think you make excellent drinks. After a few breads, I think, just don't think so down on your capabilities.

ERICA: Oh.

MATT: All right?

ERICA: Thank you.

MATT: You're welcome. (laughter)

ERICA: That's very kind of you to say. I'll sleep well tonight.

MATT: See? We're already leaving it better than we found it.

ERICA: You are, for sure.

ANJALI: Uh... So this job of yours is to steal things?

ERICA: Yes.

ANJALI: Are you, by any chance, aligned with some of the organizations here in town?

ERICA: What do you mean? The Myriad or the Clasp?

ANJALI: Or any of the others?

ERICA: Well--

AABRIA: Mor, you've also heard about the Nameless Ones. Yeah.

ERICA: Yeah. Oh yeah. I was trying not to talk about them because they're very scary. Are you, by any chance, referring to the Nameless Ones?

ANJALI: I am.

ERICA: Well, I'm not a part of any of those organizations. I have worked alone pretty much my whole life, But it's been getting more difficult lately to plan my poodles... because of the Nameless Ones, specifically, actually. They're making it very hard to move about the city. Well, I feel like I'm at the end of my rope here and I need to get into the vault of this casino and siphon what I can--

MATT: Whoa!

ERICA: -- and get out. I thought I could do it. I did it with a few of the other smaller casinos. This one, I think, is going to be a little different for multiple reasons, one of which--

ANJALI: So you have done this before?

ERICA: Yeah. Yes, I have.

ANJALI: And stayed in town?

ERICA: Yes. Yeah.

AIMEE: She's good.

MATT: Think about it, you know? You don't suspect the ones that hang around that close to the place where the break in was, right?

ERICA: Exactly. That would be stupid.

AIMEE: You'd never suspect a poodle from a bunny.

ERICA: Exactly. Well, to clarify here, I take a job as a bartender, I scope the place out, I siphon what I can from the vault of the casino, and then I leave, and usually takes a little while for them to realize anything's happened.

ANJALI: How much have you siphoned so far from this one?

ROBBIE: How long have you been doing this?

ERICA: Maybe three years. I have not hit this one yet.

MATT: Wait a second. Wait a second. I care a lot about these people, not you yet. You got time to grow on me. You look like a guy I like, so we'll get there eventually, hopefully. You're on thin ice.

AABRIA: "Wait, why?"

MATT: Because it's funny.

AABRIA: "(laughs)" Why are you trusting us suddenly? This is a lot of very personal and very incriminating information to throw out in front of a bunch of strangers here. Is this a setup?

ERICA: It's not. I know that there's no real way for you to know that it's not, but I'm a little desperate.

ANJALI: Insight check.

AABRIA: Go ahead.

ANJALI: 17.

AIMEE: Oh.

AABRIA: She seems sincere.

ERICA: Have you ever heard voices in your head?

AIMEE: Yes.

MATT: Actually--

AIMEE: So many.

ERICA: Yeah.

MATT: It's a thing.

AIMEE: Uh-huh.

ERICA: Well, I've been hearing this voice, telling me that if I stay in Kymal much longer, I'm going to die here, and I-- I have to go. So. I want to steal as much as I-- I want to take. I don't feel like it's stealing when it's these huge, stupid casinos with so many children on the streets, suffering.

AIMEE: I totally get it. That's why I stole that fur.

AABRIA: (laughs)

ERICA: I'm sure. I'm sure you had altruistic reasons for doing that.

ANJALI: Do we know who owns The Maiden's Wish?

ERICA: Yes. Yes. Jaktur Krishtan. It's actually the only casino--

ANJALI: Dr. Krishan? Doctor?

ERICA: Jaktur.

ANJALI: Jaktur.

AABRIA: Jaktur.

ERICA: Yes.

ANJALI: Jaktur Krish--

AABRIA: Go ahead and give me a history check.

AIMEE: The French spelling.

AABRIA: Yeah, pull English on it.

ANJALI: That was bad.

AIMEE: There's a Q, there's a T-E.

ANJALI: It's a seven.

ROBBIE: 19.

AIMEE: Thank god.

AABRIA: With a 19, as you're coming into town and researching more about getting into Kymal properly, you recognize that as the name of one former Margraves of the city. So this is someone who is a celebrity turned politician, turned retired bad boy. Yeah. That name specifically has been a foundational one in Kymal. If the city belonged to a family, it would be the Krishtans.

ROBBIE: Oh.

ERICA: Yes. The Maiden's Wish is unique in that it's never changed ownership. So I'm assuming their security is probably as tight as you're going to get.

ROBBIE: I'm assuming, if you are the head of the family with a very prosperous casino that's been in your care for a long time, it's probably pretty full, right?

ERICA: Yes.

ROBBIE: All right. Let's just be honest. My brother and I are in big trouble.

AABRIA: "So much trouble."

ERICA: I heard.

ROBBIE: These are my very good friends, my very capable friends.

MATT: We can also get into big trouble.

ROBBIE: This is the kind of lucky break we've been looking for.

AIMEE: Capital P.

ROBBIE: For poodle? All right.

ERICA: It's not going to be easy. The Nameless Ones are seemingly everywhere. They're going to make it really hard to get what we need and they're going to make it really hard for us to leave.

ANJALI: To get what we need, as in the money from the casino, or to get what we need in order to do the--

ERICA: Yes, they just seem to have eyes everywhere. I know that nobody ever goes to these shows. So I know we're safe here.

AABRIA: As you look up at the poster for this one man, one sad little boy show, you see that the name of the performer is Phaedrov Krishtan.

AIMEE: Oh.

AABRIA: The nephew of Jaktur.

ANJALI: Can I do whatever check I would need to do to see if we're actually alone in here?

AABRIA: Oh, yeah. Please, give me perception or investigation, your choice.

ANJALI: Perception. Natural 20, plus five.

AIMEE: Oh! Baby!

AABRIA: Looking around the room, you know that you're alone. This place was shut down and well-locked. She's just very good at slipping into places she shouldn't be. Give me another bit of information that you're trying to glean while you're here. Yeah.

ANJALI: Is there anything here that gives me any insight to this particular actor, any personal effects, or is there a dressing room with the personal effects in it or anything like that?

AABRIA: Looking at this theater, you can actually case this theater with a strong assumption that the other two theaters would be the same, that yes, behind the main stage, there is a dressing room, that whatever holding pattern would be, would be there. Yeah. I'll do you one better. You've been walking around for the last day, day and a half, and you caught, at some point, that there was someone who looks very much like these drawings on the posters with very impressive security detail that was being escorted to the back of the casino and up to the penthouse.

ANJALI: To the penthouse.

AABRIA: He's an important person here.

ANJALI: Mm-hmm.

AABRIA: If you're looking for information or maybe a key or blueprints to get to the vault, Phaedrov might be the easiest way in, if you can sneak into his room.

ERICA: Would I know where his-- You mean like his bedroom?

AABRIA: The penthouse.

ERICA: Where he sleeps.

ANJALI: What?

AABRIA: Where he sleeps.

ANJALI: Do we know anything about this Phaedrov? Does he have any particular predilections or likes?

ERICA: Do I know anything about that?

AABRIA: Everything you've seen of him, especially over the last couple months, as he's been starting his show is that he's very into this idea of he's trying to be an actor, but he was never trained for it, and all of this is being given to him. They literally shut down the other shows so everyone would have to go see him. So he's extremely vain, kind of silly, not as sharp, as you've noticed some of the other members of this family would be. They're just humoring him.

ANJALI: Does he travel with security and an entourage as well, with ladies or men or rabbits?

ERICA: He does not discriminate. I don't know that he's ever traveled with a rabbit, because I'm the only one I've ever seen, but he travels with the security detail. He's very wealthy. He lives in the penthouse of The Maiden's Wish. I've never been up there, but it feels like it might be a good place to start, scoping it out, you know?

AIMEE: When's his next show?

AABRIA: You look at his poster.

AIMEE: Right in front of my face.

ANJALI: Yeah.

AABRIA: It's right over your shoulder.

AIMEE: When's the next show?

AABRIA: You meet pasty little visage with yours and the next show starts in an hour.

AIMEE: Oh shit!

ROBBIE: Oh.

AIMEE: Okay, having been the Gem of Byroden a couple of times, I can tell you that, the actor's always here 30 minutes before the show starts. So his penthouse will be empty while he's here. So in 30 minutes-- Checks her watch that she's not wearing-- I don't know, maybe now's a good time to check out his digs.

AABRIA: Okay. Well with the beginnings of a very good poodle in hand, let's go ahead and take a quick break. (oohing)

ANJALI: That quickly.

AIMEE: That quickly.

ANJALI: My god.

AABRIA: That quickly. The time flies!

AIMEE: Very quickly!

AABRIA: All right, we will be back in just a moment. Go to the bathroom, I guess. We'll be back soon. Bye.

ROBBIE: Let's do some crime!

ANJALI: Yeah!

AIMEE: Poodles.

Break[]

What? I'm just laughing, 'cause we have such a great mix of original characters, original storyline, each campaign. And then there's this asshole that tried to kill Santa. (all laughing) Yeah. It's- Ooooh! Whoa! Put that on a Smucker's jar. Sorry, Taliesin. I love you, Taliesin! (all laughing) Spill the tea, because I was like, is he crushing on (bleep)? Oh my character died last night. Oh, what were you fighting? Inevitability and... (laughing) Is this a prop or is it edible? (hopeful adventure music)

Laura: Hey Critters, Laura Bailey here to guide you through what's new in the Critical Role shops. Style should never be a dump stat, darling. Could anything be more perfect? It's the little things in life. Roll an investigation if you want. It's basically perfect. I mean, the Traveler always says impulse purchases are a good decision. And hey, if you want, you could head over to the Critical Role shop right now.

(sneaky music) (typewriter clicking) (sneaky music) (hopeful piano music)

Oh hey, everyone. It's me, Jester. So the Traveler and I were going to tell you guys all about subscribing to Twitch, but it sort of seems like he's not really here right now, which is so stupid. Traveler? Traveler? Arty. (grunts) You know what, it's fine. I can do it by myself, with myself. I invoke Duplicity. Oh, hello Jester. Hi Jester. Okay, so what we're going to do today is tell the people at home all about the good stuff they get when subscribing to Twitch. Oh, I dunno what Twitch is, but that sounds good, let's go. No, that's perfect, 'cause this works for you too then. Okay so, there's a professionally-moderated live chat, and if you subscribe, you can post the links in the chat. Like a link to a cool hamster video? Exactly like that. So what we do here is tell like, really cool stories, right? And sometimes like crazy shit happens when we're telling those stories, and people that subscribe get special emotes so you can express how you feel. What if you live on the side of Exandria where it's really late, and you're like, "I'm just gonna close my eyes for a few seconds," and then it's two hours, and the music is playing, and you're like, "Oh no, I missed the whole show." Oh no, that's a great question. Well, if you subscribe to Twitch, then you can just watch all of our VODs as soon as the live broadcast ends. So cool, right? So cool. I know. Another really cool thing is you can give subscriptions to people. Like I could buy a subscription for you, duplicate Jester, and for other p-- What are you doing? Look what I found. Oh my gosh, hey precious. I could draw a dick. Oh, well, technically, technically that might break Twitch's terms of service, so. But, there's no rule against, like, drawing chubby little snakes. (giggles) Yeah, or, or a really long balloon sword. Yeah, or like a really thick rope, with like, two hunky knots at the end of it. Cucumber, with two tomatoes, Yeah, a banana, you know, sitting next to an onion and an avocado. Like a mushroom, with like a little cap on it. A wiener dog, with just two feet. Yeah. Arty, where are you? Should we go look for him? Yeah, sure, why not. Oh, don't forget to subscribe to Critical Role. Okay, let's go. Okay. (whimsical music)

Part II[]

AABRIA: And we're back. So our intrepid heroes have come together to begin a poodle to rob The Maiden's Wish blind and try to make their way out of the--

ANJALI and MATT: ♪ Makin' my way! ♪

AABRIA: That's on me for not knowing that was coming. The besieged city of Kymal under the increasingly tight throttle of the Nameless Ones. Mor, your new ally and heist daddy-- is an appellation I would love to give you, if you're open to receive it.

ERICA: I'm the heist daddy?

AABRIA: You're the heist daddy, yes.

ERICA: (sighs)

AABRIA: Yes. Has directed your attention to Phaedrov Krishtan, giving a one-man show in one hour, and you know what you need to do. Get the key to the penthouse so you can break in, loot there, grab blueprints, and find your way to the vault. So what do you want to do?

ERICA: Okay, so we said that Phaedrov's next show is in an hour, right?

ANJALI: Yeah. So we need to get out of here.

ERICA: Well, we need to get out of here, but also we need to find a way to get into his room. The back room, his, my gosh, what are they called? The stage--

AIMEE: The green room!

ERICA: The green dress, the dress room, the green dress--

MATT: Where they put on the green dresses.

ERICA: Where they put on the green dresses. We have to go get in there, we have to get his key, because of course, if he's not in his penthouse, the key should be back there, right?

MATT: Well, keys aren't always a problem. You see, that's just a temporary issue. We should get the key. If we can get the key, that'd be a lot helpful. But if we can't get it, we got-- We've dealt with that in the past.

ERICA: What, are you going to hack down the door?

MATT: I mean, if we need to.

ANJALI: Not now that we have you. It seems you have skills.

ERICA: Oh, well, I mean, there's a limit to everything, you know. But anyway, so we should figure out a way to facilitate that. I was actually thinking that maybe if some people posed as people actually going to a show, right?

AIMEE: Or--

ANJALI: So perhaps, as I was asking before about his predilections, perhaps someone could charm the pants off of him, so to speak, I hear that's a saying among-- you know this and see if they could find a way to relieve him of his keys.

MATT: That's possible.

ERICA: That's definitely an option. Essentially, there's two paths we can go here. We can try to steal it off his person, or we can wait until he is performing and try to get into the room where his key might be.

AIMEE: Hmm.

ANJALI: Why not both?

AIMEE: Yeah!

ANJALI: What if someone, whoever seems to be the most likely to charm him, visits him before the show as a fan.

ERICA: Or--

ANJALI: Then places themselves somehow in the front row of the audience to keep his attention. So if they are not able to get the keys at that moment before the show, we at least know that he is enthralled and someone can go backstage.

ERICA: I do, you know, it might be a little risky. I do work here, technically.

ANJALI: Oh!

ERICA: You know, I am actually employed as a bartender here, so I could bring him a drink or something.

AIMEE: Hmm!

ERICA: I don't think that'd be that weird. I know he likes to drink. (whispered) He likes to drink, right? He loves to drink. So he's at the bar all the time. He's at the bar all the time.

AIMEE: If we spike his drink--

ERICA: With?

ANJALI: But then the show doesn't go on and something happens.

AIMEE: Oh yeah.

AABRIA: Cyrus just raises his hand.

ROBBIE: You don't have to raise your hand.

AABRIA: "Okay."

MATT: He does have to raise his hand. He's the newcomer, he's the second blue boy. Yes?

AABRIA: "Second blue boy? I'm older."

MATT: Doesn't matter. You're new to us. You're on thin ice, Cyrus.

AABRIA: "I don't like that we have a problem."

MATT: I like it.

ANJALI: What did you want to say?

AABRIA: "I don't remember anymore."

ERICA: Oh.

ROBBIE: Oh, come on. Dig deep. What did you want to say?

AABRIA: "Oh. You're part of this group, right, right? Cyrus is a part of the group, isn't he?"

MATT: Yeah.

AIMEE: Sure.

AABRIA: "Just, how do I-- Do you want me to-- I can, we can do the brother, we can bromance?"

ROBBIE: We did that, and it was very silly.

AABRIA: "I think it worked."

ERICA: They're not as smart as I am.

ROBBIE: Oh. You want us to be the wooers?

AABRIA: "I don't know."

ERICA: I mean, you can, if you want.

AABRIA: "I don't know."

ERICA: I could bring in a drink, I could disguise myself back into my fluffy feather uniform that I wear when I work here, and I could bring him a drink or something. But my only fear is if it goes horribly awry, then we're kind of screwed.

AABRIA: "We killing this guy?"

ERICA: No.

ROBBIE: No, no, no.

AIMEE: No?

ROBBIE: Well--

ANJALI: Who here is good at stealing things? Sticky fingers? You and you, no?

ROBBIE: Not bad.

ANJALI: So wouldn't it make sense--

AIMEE: Did everyone forget I stole a fur today? In broad daylight?

MATT: It's true.

AABRIA: "You didn't have it when you came back, what happened?"

AIMEE: Hmm?

AABRIA: "What?"

AIMEE: Hmm?

ANJALI: What if the two of you, ostensibly, send a drink through her, then being very charismatic, but also wealthy patrons--

AABRIA: "Yeah!"

ANJALI: Might distinctly keep him off his guard.

AABRIA: I don't have any money--

ANJALI: After all, he does seem to like to show off his playboy sensibilities, no?

ROBBIE: All right, so pre-play drink from the adoring fans sent by the charming bartender off-hours cocktailing for the play, while the other group breaks into the back and tries to find the key?

ANJALI: Or you guys lift it from him if there's an opportunity.

MATT: I mean, if we have to try and be very convincing, should we fail the first option, it's good to have the backup crew there. You know what? If records are any indication, there's probably a 50/50 chance we fuck this up, so.

ROBBIE: 50/50 chance.

MATT: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

AABRIA: "That's pretty good."

AIMEE: Plus, you know, we've got plan C.

ROBBIE: Which is?

MATT: "What's that?"

ROBBIE: No one knows what that means.

MATT: (laughs)

AIMEE: I mean, he knows what I, that's what I mean.

ERICA: Oh!

AIMEE: Plan C.

ROBBIE: Plan C, plan C.

MATT: Mm-hmm.

AIMEE: (hisses)

ROBBIE: C?

AIMEE: (continues hissing)

ROBBIE: C as in crown? C as in crown, I got it. I get it.

AABRIA: "What is the crown? I don't understand. I have--"

AIMEE: (shushes)

AABRIA: "I don't know when I'm supposed to ask questions."

ROBBIE: I think the less you know, the better.

AIMEE: Just stand there and look gorgeous.

MATT: Yeah, new kid.

AIMEE: Just take off your shirt and stand there.

ROBBIE: You don't have to take your shirt off.

AABRIA: "Don't have to."

ANJALI: Can I do a quick perception check, because I realized that again, I have not seen her wearing it. I know she's doing her disguise, but now I'm curious.

AABRIA: Yeah, go ahead. Make it with advantage.

ANJALI: Oh good, because that really sucked. Oh, it's cocked. (sputters) Yeah, no. I'm so worried that I can't tell anything.

AABRIA: Well, I mean, what are you trying to figure out? She has--

AIMEE: Or I could just show you.

AABRIA: Yeah. You can just have a conversation.

ANJALI: Oh, for the--

AABRIA: "Ah!"

AIMEE: I know it's scary, but it has its advantages.

AIMEE: Now she's back to the--

ANJALI: So many feelings that she has that on her head, because that is not something that I realized happened when they were gone.

AIMEE: Oh. You didn't know? Oh. I'm pretty connected.

ANJALI: Can I flick to the Gift real quick and see how corrupted she is?

AABRIA: Evil check. Yeah, go ahead. Give me a--

ANJALI: Insight?

AABRIA: Yeah, let's make it an insight.

ANJALI: 20.

AABRIA: Okay. You look--

ERICA: Oh.

AABRIA: -- toward her and then deep within yourself as you check in with what's happened here. You remember some of the teachings that Tetrarch Thrascuur would go on and on about. That power, in and of itself, was undifferentiated. It wasn't natural or divine or arcane. It wasn't good or evil. It just was. It always was up to the person to use it in whatever way they saw fit. So what you see when you look at Opal is someone who is incredibly fragile and vulnerable under the weight of this incredibly powerful artifact. And if there is corruption there, and you do see some there, it's coming from within and not from without. Opal is beginning to make new choices, but that's on Opal.

ERICA: I think I may have a solution. I think I might be able to get in, and get it, and get out.

ANJALI: Okay.

ROBBIE: All right.

ERICA: I think I think I can do it. Can you--? I have-- Sorry, above board, are we allowed to talk about spells and things that we have? Or how does that--

AABRIA: I mean, yeah. Speak, go ahead.

ERICA: Yeah. It's a Mage Hand of legerdemain?

AABRIA: Legerdemain.

ERICA: Legerdemain, yeah. I feel like I can use that to get it while he's-- I can literally get it off of him while he's there.

MATT: Let's say, in a theoretical sense, as world traveled individuals, purely theoretical, I didn't know what any of that meant, what does that mean?

ERICA: Basically, I can make this kind of hand, okay? It's like a wind hand that nobody can see.

MATT: Ooh!

ERICA: I can use that wind hand.

AABRIA: "Can I see it? I'm sorry. I get it. I'm sorry. I heard myself that you can't see it. I heard it when I said it."

ERICA: I can essentially use that hand to get the key off of him unnoticed.

MATT: Ah!

ERICA: Yes, so if I walk in there with a drink, right? He's there. I can take it off of him and leave, and he'll be none the wiser. I feel like that's the simplest solution here, right?

AIMEE: We love it.

ANJALI: That sounds plausible to me.

ERICA: Yeah.

MATT: So what we do is we try and first connect with this Phaedron fellow to try and see if we can get the key off of him personally, and in the circumstance in which you, in trying to do so, realize he doesn't have the key, then it's likely in his room, and we have a second group ready to break in while the other one distracts him?

ERICA: He's going to be doing the performance, right? So he's going to be in the green dress room.

MATT: Right, right.

ERICA: Then he's going to leave that room.

ANJALI: And be on the stage.

ERICA: And be on the stage. So basically, I'll go in and I'll do my wind hand and I'll see if I can find it, and if I can't, then I will leave and we can enact plan B whatever that might be.

ANJALI: If there is someone left behind in the room, a guard, an assistant.

ROBBIE: Cross that bridge when we come to it.

ERICA: Yeah.

ROBBIE: No need to preplan--

ANJALI: Everything.

ROBBIE: Or a murder.

ANJALI: Sorry, I have been told that I am--

AABRIA: "Murder?"

ANJALI: -- a bit of a control freak.

ROBBIE: Well, what can we do to help you? Does anyone have anything that we can--

ANJALI: You can order the drink. Right?

ERICA: Yeah.

ANJALI: Because you have to go in there.

ERICA: Yes. Or-- well, no, the key's probably-- I feel like we need to see what happens here, because I don't know where the key's going to be. We don't know. I mean, I can't imagine he'd take it out on stage with him.

ANJALI: Do we need "tickets" of some kind to see this show?

AABRIA: You would know that absolutely not. Normally, you have to buy tickets.

ROBBIE: They're paying seat fillers for this one.

AABRIA: Kind of, yeah. Yeah, there's drink tickets being handed out if you go and you check in at the beginning and the end, you get a drink ticket.

ROBBIE: How far out we from the show?

AABRIA: About 20 minutes out.

ROBBIE: 20 minutes.

ERICA: So he'd be backstage at this point, right?

AABRIA: Or on his way.

ERICA: Or on his way.

ROBBIE: Are you going to try it right now?

AIMEE: Mm-hmm!

ERICA: I mean, if he's back there, sure.

ANJALI: No time like the present.

ERICA: Great.

ROBBIE: Come here. I put my hand on her shoulders and I go: I know we just met, but one of my superpowers is positive affirmations, and I think you are going to do just great! I cast Bardic Inspiration on her.

ERICA: Oh wow.

ROBBIE: Do you feel it? Do you feel the confidence?

ERICA: I feel so strong!

ROBBIE: Yes!

MATT: He's so good at that.

ERICA: I feel so good about myself. Thank you.

ROBBIE: Godspeed.

ERICA: Dare-- Dorian.

ROBBIE: Oh, you suck so much. (laughter)

ERICA: Anyway, so all right. There's nobody else but us in here, right?

AABRIA: Correct.

ERICA: So I'm going to cast-- oh my goodness, Disguise Self and put on my feathers. Feathers. Great. We're pretty close to the bar, right? Still? Or is there any--

AABRIA: You still have to cross the main thrust of the casino floor. It's not close, but you can get there and back in like 10 minutes.

ERICA: Perfect. I will saunter over there. I'll say: I'll be right back. I'm going to go make a very fancy drink.

AABRIA: "Make it a double. I don't know what that means. It felt powerful to say."

ERICA: Yes.

ANJALI: Any of you who have this power to change appearance, can you do something about toning this down while we are trying to be a little bit--

MATT: Here, tell you what. I'm going to take the cloak off of my shoulders and wrap it around.

ANJALI: Oh no! I don't want to catch on fire.

MATT: Well, no, no, no.

ANJALI: Oh, oh!

MATT: It's magical. It won't burn. Also, here. I fix the clasp in front and be like: Think of yourself looking a specific, cool kind of way.

ANJALI: So I imagine myself exactly as I am, but instead of my hair being on fire, it's ombre red and gold and blonde, so it's beautiful, but not actual flames. It's big, curly, fucking beautiful hair.

AABRIA: In the space of a blink, your hair goes out and is replaced with luscious, shiny, bouncing curls.

AIMEE: Hmm!

ROBBIE: (whispers) It's a wig!

MATT: It's a front-laced at least, okay?

ANJALI: Thank you, Dariax.

MATT: Take care of it.

ANJALI: I shall.

MATT: All right. While I'm thinking of--

ANJALI: I might have to use my imagination a little bit more than I just did.

MATT: You got options. You can think on it. You got time. Before we get this situated, you got a minute?

ROBBIE: Sure.

MATT: Sorry.

AIMEE: I get it.

AABRIA: Cyrus starts to follow, too.

MATT: You-- It's fine.

AABRIA: "I can stay!"

MATT: I'm sobered up a bit.

ROBBIE: Okay.

MATT: I think I'm feeling a little more comfortable in the space. So I'm waiting for the right moment to-- We got you something.

ROBBIE: What?

MATT: While you were away and you were doing this whole journey thing, helping out, you know, Orym and Fearne, we kept an eye out and there's this douchebag traveling performer that came through Byroden named Canaith, and kind of a total dick, kind of took his instrument. I just think it'd be better in your hands if you don't mind, so.

ROBBIE: Okay. Didn't expect presents, but it's very nice! What is it?

MATT: I pull it from-- it was under the cloak previously, holding it the whole day waiting for the right moment. It's kind of uncomfortable.

AIMEE: Oh, how sweet!

MATT: But now the cloak's gone, you can see the strap over the shoulder and pulls off this heavy looking mandolin, this beautiful inset deep red mahogany tint to it and passes it over to you.

ROBBIE: This is gorgeous! Wait, you said you took it off of him? This isn't a dead man's mandolin, isn't it?

MATT: No, no! (laughs) I don't think so.

ROBBIE: All right.

MATT: Right?

ROBBIE: To be truthful, I've never really played it. It has a different tuning, right? I'm going to try to pluck a little something out of the mandolin.

AABRIA: Yeah! Give me a performance check, baby!

ROBBIE: (hums excited tune) Dirty-- oh no! What am I saying? 23.

AABRIA: Oh my god.

AIMEE: Whoa! It's nice! Good one.

ROBBIE: Yeah!

AABRIA: You absolutely noodle on it, and it feels-- You're right, it's awkwardly-shaped and a little different, but the moment you start to play, it feels like your hands know instinctively exactly where to go, and you lose yourself almost immediately in whatever song you're playing.

ROBBIE: This is very fun. Thank you so much!

MATT: Of course, yeah. Figured it was, you know, better in the hands of a talented sort than some of these wandering individuals who played themselves off as professionals.

ROBBIE: Yeah. Yeah. Who would ever pretend to be a professional musician? Gross! Ah! I'll sling the mandolin over my other shoulder. I guess now I've got criss-crossing stringed instruments.

AIMEE: Hey-o!

ANJALI: Baby! Kris Kross'll make you!

ROBBIE: Yeah, baby.

MATT: Twelve-String Samurai.

ROBBIE: Twelve-String Samurai! That's a deep cut.

AABRIA: Amazing.

MATT: You get to add that to your sheet.

AABRIA: Cyrus is going to hang back a step to try to catch Dariax as everyone's leaving the room.

MATT: Hey.

AABRIA: "I just want to say-- Look, I understand I'm new and on thin ice, but that was really nice. My brother keeps a lot of stuff close to the vest, but I know you guys went through a lot here before he was-- before I found him again. So thank you for taking care of him."

MATT: Of course. You know why this works well?

AABRIA: "Why?"

MATT: Because before we do something, we make sure it doesn't hurt anybody else in this group. There's some lessons here to learn, buddy.

AABRIA: "Yeah."

MATT: Doesn't mean we think before we do it, but when we do it, we try and make sure it doesn't hurt anybody into the circle. (laughs)

AABRIA: "Okay. I'll be better."

MATT: All right.

AABRIA: "Thanks."

MATT: Ice, a little less thin. For now.

AABRIA: You see a little ripple of invisible wind runs through his clothing and through his hair as he feels a little better and stands up a little straighter in his full like 6'3", and follows you out.

MATT: Told you he'd like it.

AIMEE: Yeah, you're good. You're a good friend.

ANJALI: So are we just hanging out in front of the theater? What, where where where...

AABRIA: Mor has disappeared. What are you going to do?

ANJALI: Yeah, I want to be somewhere where I can be... Is there, in the theater, is there an emergency exit by the back?

AABRIA: No.

ANJALI: I imagine a proscenium--

AABRIA: This is a little--

ANJALI: With a backstage door and a little exit, a little fire exit.

AABRIA: There's no exit to get outside of the casino itself.

ANJALI: Mm-hmm.

AABRIA: The only exit from the theater goes back into the casino proper.

ANJALI: Is it--

AABRIA: It's back behind you.

ANJALI: -- far, far away? Okay.

AABRIA: This whole place is probably only... I would say a 100-foot square? No, that's like... 100-foot by 100 feet.

ANJALI: Got it.

AABRIA: There we go.

ANJALI: Got it. Okay. I just want to be somewhere in the shadows, but able to get to that door. If there's a way to be able to hear if there's a commotion backstage or anything like that, as close as you can get to the backstage door without being...

AABRIA: Give me a stealth check.

ANJALI: Oh no.

AABRIA: As you're walking through, there are twelves of people in this theater.

AIMEE: Twelves.

ANJALI: Oh, wow. So many, no. No, now is not the time to use it.

AABRIA: You sure? Coward.

ANJALI: (high-pitched whine) I'm a coward.

AABRIA: Burn it.

AIMEE: You've got slots.

ANJALI: I've got Inspiration. I'm going to fix it.

AABRIA: Yeah. I'll never give Inspiration again.

AIMEE: (laughs)

ANJALI: It wasn't much better.

AABRIA: Oh no.

ANJALI: It's an 11.

AABRIA: You start to move towards the backstage area. But again, because there aren't a ton of people in there, in the theater proper, the few patrons that are sitting and sipping on drinks, and they're like, "What is this? I don't know what this is," spot you, and they're watching you walk back. No one's stopping you.

ANJALI: Mm-hmm.

AABRIA: But you are definitely seen-- as you sidle back towards the green dress room door.

ANJALI: Try to look as casual as possible like I belong there--

AABRIA: Yeah.

ANJALI: Just kick back against the wall. I just keep a staff handy.

AABRIA: Sweet. You peek into the room, and you see that there are like eight people there. A couple big, burly guards that look like... One's very clearly a full orc. Another is just a yoked out, reddish-color dragonborn, that are hanging in the very back, standing and flanking an empty leather chair.

ANJALI: Okay.

AABRIA: Then the rest of the people in the room, the other six people just seem like various hangers-on.

ANJALI: Okay.

AABRIA: Groupies and entourage, oh my.

ANJALI: I don't see Mor anywhere?

AABRIA: You don't see Mor because Mor is--

ANJALI: Went to go get a drink.

AABRIA: Yeah. Hundred-- Hundo p. What are the rest of you doing?

MATT: Where'd the... Where'd Morrighan go?

AABRIA: She went to the bar to go make the drink.

AIMEE: The drinks.

MATT: Right, right. Okay, okay.

AIMEE: Would we... We wouldn't know where the penthouse is, right? It's hidden in the casino? Unless we work there, we wouldn't know where his penthouse is?

AABRIA: You know what? Give me a-- We'll just call this a retroactive investigation check to see how much detail acuity you picked up as you were floating around earlier.

AIMEE: You said investigation?

AABRIA: Mm-hmm.

AIMEE: 13, ugh.

AABRIA: It's not bad.

AIMEE: Okay.

AABRIA: Opal, if I may offer this, is a bit of a social striver and would look for egresses for important people.

AIMEE: VIP, yeah.

AABRIA: Yeah, so there are a couple doors that are painted to be glossed over and not directly seen--

AIMEE: Gotcha.

AABRIA: That you've seen the guards and important people flow in and out of. You have a pretty strong understanding that, if you went back to the left of the entrance to the high rollers den--

AIMEE: Mm-hmm.

AABRIA: -- would be probably the best direction to get towards the penthouse.

AIMEE: Okay. So I think maybe I'd confer with the group and ask, would it be worthwhile for one of us or two of us to be near the penthouse, just in case, so that, when we get the info, we get the key... Or if we don't get the key, we can hit plan B.

ANJALI: Just go straight in, yeah. Because this is our only chance for him to definitely not be in there.

AIMEE: Yeah.

MATT: How do we have a way of contacting whoever might be waiting by the penthouse?

AIMEE: Hmm.

MATT: Because that... Otherwise, what's there to keep us from going there when we realize that's the scenario? Otherwise, one of us is just sitting there, picking their butt the whole time.

ANJALI: No one has a--

MATT: Which would probably be me. But just--

AIMEE: Don't touch your eye after.

MATT: (laughs) Fool me threece, shame on me. (laughter)

AIMEE: Threece.

ERICA: Diarying: "Fooled me threece."

AABRIA: Fool me threece.

AIMEE: Do I get a look at any of the guards that Fy'ra Rai just saw that are maybe with our actor?

AABRIA: Did you walk up with her?

AIMEE: Sure.

ANJALI: (gasps)

AIMEE: What?

ANJALI: Oh, sorry. What? I just. Sorry, I have an idea, but I didn't mean to interrupt you.

AIMEE: No, please.

ANJALI: Is Jinoir anywhere... If I look out back at the casino, do I see Jinoir anywhere?

AABRIA: There's a lot of people here. You would have to make a concerted effort to find him.

ANJALI: I want to make a... Do I have to leave, you mean?

AABRIA: You have to leave to go find him.

ANJALI: Fuck.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ANJALI: Because he would be a great little messenger.

AABRIA: He would. He super would.

AIMEE: Wait. I thought he was the owner. Oh, no, Jinoir was the kid.

ANJALI: Jinoir was the little kid.

AIMEE: The little kid, oh, oh.

AABRIA, AIMEE, and MATT: J'accuse!

ANJALI: François. Je m'appelle Jinoir.

AABRIA: Everyone's name starts with a J because that's the only letter I know today.

ERICA: Would I... I'm assuming Mr. Phaedrov has come to the bar before in the last few weeks--

AABRIA: He's never come to the bar.

ERICA: Oh, he's never, okay.

AABRIA: But he'll send people over.

ERICA: Okay, gotcha. So would I know what his favorite drink was?

AABRIA: Absolutely.

ERICA: Great.

AABRIA: It is called the Cloudtop. It is just one of those drinks that takes like six minutes to make. It's got egg white in it.

AIMEE: Oh, for sure!

ANJALI: Egg whites, I knew it. It's the frothy egg whites.

ROBBIE: It's a 12-step process.

AABRIA: It's a 12-step process.

AIMEE: It's a fizz of some sort.

ANJALI: Technically, you're supposed to be a mixologist in order to do it, not a bartender.

AABRIA: You have to do a special shake because you can disrupt the balance of oils.

ERICA: That's true.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ANJALI: It's true.

MATT: It's no Bread.

AABRIA: The drink is so tiny. You have to do so much work for it.

ERICA: Yeah.

AIMEE: I don't know, should we go? Should we split up?

ANJALI: I think you're right. I think someone should.

AIMEE: Just to save a little time.

AABRIA: Yeah, split up.

ANJALI: Oh god, I hate splitting up. But we have to.

AIMEE: Yeah.

ANJALI: I just don't know how to get a message.

AIMEE: How about if we don't hear from you in 20 minutes, we just fucking beat down the door.

MATT: I can do that.

AIMEE: We can both do that.

MATT: Let's do it.

ROBBIE: This group has no means of communication, and we're like, "Everybody go a different way!" (laughter)

ROBBIE: Yeah, then that means beat down the door if no one shows in 20 minutes. All right, sounds like a plan.

AIMEE: Okay, we'll wait for the key to show up. What, 30 minutes?

ANJALI: How long is the show, one hour?

MATT: I don't know if I'm that patient.

ROBBIE: 15.

ANJALI: 15!

MATT: 15, all right, we can do 15.

AIMEE: We can wait 15 minutes.

ERICA: Mor is sweating from... From where she's making the drink.

AIMEE: She hears them with her ears.

ERICA: 15 minutes, oh my god. She's actually a very good bartender. She's just used to making herself small, seem smaller to everyone else. So she's like, "Well, I..." She's actually a really, really fucking good bartender. She's been doing it for a while, yeah.

ROBBIE: Let's just all try to blend in as you work your way closer to Mor and see what happens. If anything goes south, we'll be ready. As I'm talking about this, I feel like my shoulder aches where I put the mandolin onto my shoulder. I'm just trying to play honest here. After my little strumming thing, I am not attuned to this instrument that I was just given, and I just failed my wisdom saving throw. So I would need to... You said who had that mandolin? Was it Canaith?

MATT: Yeah, Canaith.

ROBBIE: Yeah. I... Oh my god. I just get a splitting headache, and I take 10 points of psychic damage.

AABRIA: Amazing.

AIMEE: Oh shit.

ROBBIE: I'm just trying to play honest here.

AABRIA: Honest.

ROBBIE: Call me if I'm wrong here, Dariax, but I don't think so. If I just picked it up and started strumming it, if I'm not attuned and I try to play it, I take 2d4 of psychic damage.

MATT: No, that's true.

ROBBIE: I rolled a 10. So I just feel a little weird about it, and I'm going to say: Give me a minute. And I'm going to work my way off by myself, and I'm going to pull it back on. I feel like I have a sense of what's going on here. I feel like it's that. I'm going to try and find a quiet place and mess with this thing a little bit and try to attune myself to it. I'm going to find a quiet corner and just try to tune into this thing--

ERICA: So that it stops trying to slowly kill you?

ROBBIE: So it stops trying to hurt me.

AABRIA: Yeah, great.

ROBBIE: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah, yeah.

AABRIA: All right. Cyrus ducks next to you, "Do you want me to..."

ROBBIE: Ouch.

AABRIA: "Yeah, did..."

ROBBIE: I'll work it out.

AABRIA: "Did your guitar try to kill you?"

ROBBIE: Maybe not kill me, but it definitely gave me a little bit of a headache. Just hang with me for a minute.

AABRIA: "Yeah, okay."

ROBBIE: I'll start tuning and playing and trying to attune to this.

AABRIA: All right.

ANJALI: I am going to step out of the theater and just eyeball and see if I can see Jinoir.

AABRIA: Okay, make an investigation check for me.

ANJALI: Investigation, doesn't want to be perception?

AABRIA: Nope!

ANJALI: Okay. Natural 20!

AIMEE: Oh shit.

AABRIA: Shut up.

ROBBIE: Man.

ANJALI: Plus...

ROBBIE: We need you.

AABRIA: You don't have to have a plus.

ROBBIE: You're done, critical.

AABRIA: It's a natural 20. You did it, you did the whole thing.

ANJALI: Yay!

AABRIA: Yay!

ANJALI: Yay, me!

AABRIA: So you're looking out and you let your eyes relax because you can see the flow of the way people are in here reminds you of how water flows through a river and passes around rocks. Then you see something working against the current. You see a couple things. Jinoir was not the only pickpocket here. But that anti-flow is so easy to spot now, you wonder how you never failed to notice it before. You see he is over near the Eiko table, and he's just gently liberating coins from patrons as they're sitting and gambling.

AIMEE: Love him.

AABRIA: He's about 30 feet away. I am going to make you leave to go talk to him.

ANJALI: Of course. Fuck. All right, I'm going to go over and... I'm going to head over to him and be like, "Brother, come. They're waiting for us." Then I'm going to flash my eyes a little bit so he knows it's me because my hair is different.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ANJALI: They're waiting for us. The show is about to begin. Come, come.

AABRIA: "Money, no, money."

AIMEE: No money. ♪ Money, money, money, money ♪

AABRIA: You lead him away, and he follows you, but you can see he's a little perturbed that you've disrupted his brisk trade. "Okay, what, why... What, why?"

ANJALI: I have more money for you.

AABRIA: "I love money."

ANJALI: But you have to be very, very skillful, and very, very stealthy, and very, very quiet.

AABRIA: "So all of those three things."

ANJALI: Because you know I will kill you if you do not do this thing that I ask.

AABRIA: "(Fy'ra's accent) Don't know how we got to murder already, but maybe it's the accent. (Jinoir's accent) I'll stop it. I'll stop the accent, if maybe that would help."

AIMEE: Oh my god.

AABRIA: "Please don't kill me?"

ANJALI: I need you to stand here in the back of the theater and--

AABRIA: "No. I've seen this guy. He's so bad."

ANJALI: It's all right. Keep an eye on me, not on him. If you see--

AABRIA: "You know I'm a child, right, ma'am?"

ANJALI: Yeah.

AABRIA: "Okay."

ANJALI: Yeah, keep an eye on me and not him.

AABRIA: "I'm a mature 13."

ANJALI: Yeah, I feel it, I feel it. Keep an eye on me, and not on him. If you see me run backstage, I want you to find my friends. You remember them?

AABRIA: "No. Just the lady I stole from."

ANJALI: Great. I want you to find the lady you stole from. I want you to run to her and say... If you see me run backstage, say, "Go, go now."

AABRIA: "Go, go now."

ANJALI: Mm-hmm.

AABRIA: "Okay, where is she? Do I have to find her?"

ANJALI: You're heading up to the penthouse?

AIMEE: I think we're just leaving at the moment.

MATT: We're going to try to meet up with that Morrighan girl because we don't know where the penthouse is.

AIMEE: Correct.

MATT: So we need to figure out where that is. I think probably since she works here, she'd be the one to ask about it.

AIMEE: Right.

MATT: So let's go talk to her.

AIMEE: Okay.

MATT: We'll do that.

AIMEE: Maybe you see my slinky, pink evening gown just...

AABRIA: Did she change? Is that her?

AIMEE: That's what she was always wearing. Oh.

ANJALI: Is there anywhere in the theater, or at the entrance of the theater, where you can see the bar area, these guys, and see--

AABRIA: Oh, do you want a perfect viewing area?

ANJALI: Yeah.

AABRIA: No.

ANJALI: Okay.

AABRIA: No. You know how casinos are built to be confusing and hard to navigate?

AIMEE: Time warps.

ANJALI: Even for savvy children?

AABRIA: Especially for savvy children.

AIMEE: For savvy teens.

ROBBIE: Can I perch in the rafters?

ANJALI: Can you stand on a slot machine?

ROBBIE: He's a little carrot gargoyle.

ANJALI: Can you stand on a slot machine and-- Okay. But yeah, this seems right, right? If something goes awry, and I run backstage, that means he has to go find them.

AABRIA: "Who are you... Yes, talking to. Oh, got it."

ANJALI: Will you have to find them? Yes, just keep an eye out for her. Likely she will be near the bar.

AABRIA: "Near the bar, okay."

ANJALI: Near the bar--

AABRIA: "How much money am I getting for this? Am I going to die?"

ANJALI: I'm going to hand him-- How much gold do I have? A bunch, I don't know.

AIMEE: Put a down payment.

ANJALI: I'm going to give--

AABRIA: "Ma'am, I'm going to need you to give me a number."

ANJALI: I'm going to give him a down-- I don't know where I find it.

AIMEE: Go to inventory.

ROBBIE: Inventory. Did you give... Do you have...

ANJALI: I don't even see any gold in my inventory.

AABRIA: Lie.

MATT: It's the upper right of the...

ERICA: Lies.

ROBBIE: There it is.

AABRIA: You can do it and lie about it.

ANJALI: Oh, okay. I already gave him two, so there's less than that.

AABRIA: Mm-hmm.

ROBBIE: You're broke.

ANJALI: I have...

AABRIA: Yeah, you're a monk.

ROBBIE: You're bad at gambling.

ANJALI: I'm a monk.

ROBBIE: And a monk.

ANJALI: Oh no, wait, I made money when I gambled, right?

AABRIA: Mm-hmm.

ERICA: 25.

ANJALI: I made 25.

AIMEE: Did she make 25?

AABRIA: You bet 25.

ROBBIE and AABRIA: You made 75.

AIMEE: Oh nice.

ANJALI: Fuck yeah. Okay, this is fine, then. We're fine. So I have 73. Okay, great. So I give him two gold pieces right now. I say: A down payment, yes? More to come when we are done.

AABRIA: "Okay, you run into the room, and I go find you."

AIMEE: Mm-hmm.

AABRIA: I say, "Go, go now."

AIMEE: Mm-hmm.

AABRIA: "Yeah, okay, this is great."

ANJALI: Great. Okay.

AABRIA: "Can I continue to pickpocket people in the interim? You know, to keep up appearances."

ANJALI: As long as you can see me.

AABRIA: "Yeah, I can see you."

ANJALI: Only if you can see me.

MATT: Are we pickpocketing people?

ANJALI: Not you.

AIMEE: Not yet.

AABRIA: "You want to pickpocket?"

ANJALI: Not you.

AABRIA: "Try to pickpocket me."

ANJALI: If you're a good boy.

MATT: Okay. (laughs)

AIMEE: Fy'ra Rai, are you kidding?

ANJALI: I don't have a sense of humor. Have you met me?

AIMEE: You kind of do.

AABRIA: "I'll give you one gold if you can take his whole bag of gold."

MATT: I'll give you two gold if I can take it. He walks around, and he's going to try and pickpocket the guy. (laughter)

AABRIA: Yes. Give me a sleight of hand roll.

MATT: All righty.

AABRIA: As you rock up on a fairly portly, older human man.

MATT: That's a... That's 29.

AABRIA: No, shut up! Seriously?! I didn't know you were good at this.

ANJALI: That's my boy.

ROBBIE: He's good at what he's good at.

MATT: Look, I've done a few--

AABRIA: Yeah.

MATT: I've done a few unlawful monetary gain circumstances.

ANJALI: There's a reason you used to run with Deni$e dollar sign S.

MATT: Right, right?

AIMEE: Yes, yes.

ANJALI: Do you say that out loud?

ANJALI: No. (laughter) No, I just said that in this tone of voice. Why would I say that?

AABRIA: I don't know.

ANJALI: This is above table top.

AABRIA: We were all doing voice.

ANJALI: Fy'ra Rai doesn't have accents, only the crazy, unplaceable one that she actually speaks with. (laughter)

ANJALI: She don't know shit.

AABRIA: Okay, Dariax, you explain to me what it looks like as you absolutely fleece this gentleman.

MATT: I do not even break eye contact with this 13-year-old kid--

AIMEE: Oh shit.

MATT: I'm, on one hand, now competitive with this kid, for no reason, suddenly fiercely competitive, and also I want to be friends with this kid because he seems cool and he steals from people. That's my old bag, you know? So I just keep like, "Yeah, what up?" I give him his two gold.

ANJALI: Hah! Sorry, that was involuntary.

AABRIA: He's crying just a little bit.

AIMEE: Aw.

AABRIA: Like, "That was beautiful. That was the most beautiful thing I've ever seen. I'm different now."

MATT: Good. I walk by, I change lives. That's what Dariax does.

AABRIA: "Oh my god, Dariax."

MATT: I'm Dariax, by the way.

AABRIA: "Dariax. Do you know Deni$e?

MATT: No. I-- We got to go.

AABRIA: (laughs)

MATT: I got to go. I got to go.

AIMEE: No, we don't.

MATT: We got to go.

AIMEE: No, we don't. No, we don't. Okay.

ANJALI: As we walk off.

AIMEE: Jinoir?

AABRIA: Yeah?

ANJALI: Focus on the idea. Focus on the plan.

AABRIA: "Yeah."

ANJALI: Yes?

AABRIA: "On the plan."

ANJALI: Please.

AABRIA: "You know, there's a lady here that's going to--"

ANJALI: Focus on the plan.

AABRIA: "Okay. I'm just saying."

ROBBIE: How much time has passed?

AABRIA: "He's going to die."

ROBBIE: How close are we to the moment of truth?

AABRIA: I want to say, by this point, as Jinoir eats his enthusiasm for the butt whooping that Deni$e wants to distribute to her ex. You can come over with your drink. I'm going to say, I understand that attunement is supposed to be a short rest, hour-long thing, but you were so kind as to be on it.

ROBBIE: Hurt myself.

AABRIA: You hurt yourself for the culture. I'm going to say you're attuned to it now.

ANJALI: Yeah!

ROBBIE: All right. That's very kind of you.

AABRIA: You can come back over.

ANJALI: Handsome boy, honest boy.

AABRIA: Yeah, we love an honest boy.

AIMEE: So did we at this point catch her and get directions to the penthouse before she landed with the drinks?

AABRIA: She's now walking past you with a gilded tray with one tiny, precariously-perched glass-- covered in foam in it.

AIMEE: Perfect. Less, right?

AABRIA and ANJALI: (laugh)

ERICA: Oh, no. It's Mor.

AIMEE: Of course it is. Can you tell us where the penthouse is? We just want to be at the ready.

ERICA: A penthouse is at the top. It's a penthouse.

AIMEE: We didn't think of that. (laughter)

AIMEE: How do we get there?

ERICA: Does this place have an elevator, or is it stairs?

AABRIA: It's stairs, because again, technology.

AIMEE: Pulley system.

ERICA: Mor leans in really close. It's the stairs.

AIMEE: Gotcha.

AABRIA: She very specifically points at a recessed door to a staircase that's, again, to the left of the high roller's den.

ERICA: Oh yeah. The stairs are always unlocked because they'd be a fire hazard if they weren't.

AIMEE: You're so good at this. She's so good at this.

ERICA: I try.

MATT: What's up?

AIMEE: She's so good at this.

MATT: Yeah, you're great at this.

ERICA: Oh my god, thank you.

MATT: Yeah, no, it's awesome.

AABRIA: "Hi, I'm Jinoir."

ERICA: Hi.

MATT: This kid's awesome.

AABRIA: "Can I have a drink?"

ERICA: You cannot have this drink.

MATT: Can I have it?

AABRIA: "Please?"

ERICA: No!

MATT: Oh, right.

AABRIA: "Can we share it?"

MATT: I'm sorry.

ERICA: No.

AABRIA: "Okay."

ERICA: I can get you a seltzer or something when I'm done with what I'm doing.

AABRIA: "I'm a man."

ERICA: Absolutely, you are.

AABRIA: "Okay."

ERICA: And my father always said that--

ROBBIE: Go on. (laughter)

ERICA: That men drink seltzers. So that's a thing that he always said, so.

AIMEE: Wow.

AABRIA: "I don't have a father, so I'm going to pretend your dad's my dad, and he told me that."

ERICA: Oh, that'd be very sad for us both, indeed. Anyway, I should go.

AABRIA: "Yeah, me too. I'm watching," and he fades back.

ERICA: So I'll keep walking. Is he on stage at this point? Is Phaedrov on stage?

AABRIA: Yeah.

ERICA: Oh, okay. Great. Well, it took me a little longer to make the drink than I thought. I forgot that a Cloudtop is very involved.

AABRIA: Yes.

ERICA: So I'm going to take it. My plan becomes to take it to the back, to put it down, so he'll have it when the show is over, because how long has he been performing for?

AABRIA: He just walked on.

ERICA: Great, okay.

AABRIA: He's now up. You walk into the theater, you hear him beginning these warbly, pitchy, refrain of a song called Beads of Love. Yeah, you're able to immediately sweep towards the green dress room, where there's eight people, some hangers on and his security detail that straighten up as you come to the back.

ERICA: Hello? I have a delivery. It's a Cloudtop for Mr. Phaedrov.

AABRIA: "He's on stage right now."

ERICA: Oh, absolutely. It's for after the show, so.

AABRIA: "Oh, okay."

ERICA: Yeah. Sent by one of his biggest fans. They didn't tell me their name, but I think they're in the audience right now, so.

AABRIA: "Who is this fan? Point him out to me." This tall, very dark, slicked-back hair elf, puts his arm around your shoulder and leans you out into the theater and he's like, "Point him out."

ERICA: Oh, for the life of me, I can't see them. They might have gone to the bathroom or the bar or something. I don't know. Anyway, I'd love to take this drink in.

AABRIA: Make a deception check for me.

ROBBIE: Oh boy.

ERICA: Where's my d20? Okay. It is a-- Wait. Oh my god, what's 11 plus nine?

AABRIA: He goes, "Okay, sure. You can drop it off and then--"

ERICA: Yeah, I'll drop it off. I just want to make sure no one spills it.

AABRIA: "Okay." He backs off. The arm wasn't there in a creepy way.

ERICA: No, no, no.

AABRIA: He immediately backs off and allows you access into the room. There are still seven people in the room.

ERICA: In the room?

AABRIA: Mm-hmm.

ROBBIE: Oh shit.

AABRIA: Where is everyone else? Are you waiting?

AIMEE: Yes, we're waiting. Right? Were we waiting at the door?

MATT: At the door of his penthouse, right?

AIMEE: Yeah.

MATT: Yeah, yeah. Okay.

AIMEE: I-- oh.

AABRIA: I'm trying to get locations for everyone.

AIMEE: Yeah.

ANJALI: I'm still hanging, to make sure that she comes out safely.

AABRIA: Cool, cool, cool. Where are you?

ROBBIE: Me and bro have made our way over back over to the group, I think.

AABRIA: Which group?

ROBBIE: Good point.

AABRIA: "Where are we going? Everyone went in different places."

ROBBIE: Yeah, yeah. Too sus if they're at the penthouse door, so I'll go with Fy'ra Rai. Yeah, and we'll just--

AABRIA: "Okay, you're all just going to lean against the wall. I'm going to sit in the audience."

ROBBIE: Oh, Cyrus is?

AABRIA: Yeah.

ROBBIE: Oh, okay.

AABRIA: "I'm going to just watch it."

ROBBIE: Okay. So I'll walk over, lean up next to her with a foot on the wall and see my brother do the smart thing and go sit in the audience, and I'll immediately walk and go sit over by him. (laughter)

ROBBIE: Yeah, okay, I'll sit in the audience.

AIMEE: So if we're at the door, I'd love to summon my familiar.

AABRIA: Oh!

MATT: Mm!

AIMEE: Which I have dangling as an earring. It's a little spider and I've named her Ted 2.

ANJALI: Oh my god.

MATT: (laughs)

AABRIA: (Ted) "I just want to say," you hear deep within your own mind, "I just want to say, I find that name incredibly problematic."

AIMEE: Why? Why?

AABRIA: "Why would you name it after me?"

AIMEE: Because she's kind of ugly--

AABRIA: "That's so fucked up."

AIMEE: I'm kidding! I'm just kidding.

AABRIA: "You're not even kidding. I'm inside you."

AIMEE: I'm kidding a little bit. I know, but that's not--

AABRIA: "You're not kidding."

AIMEE: I just to hold you close, you know, on the outside, too.

AABRIA: "That's some bullshit."

AIMEE: She takes off the earring and I guess summons Ted 2. Can a little small spider crawl under the door frame?

AABRIA: So you're standing outside of the actual penthouse door.

AIMEE: Yeah, I think we're looking like, you know, maybe a few feet off, looking like drunk tourists. We're pretending we're like, "Anyway, so (fake laugh)" while I do this.

MATT: Yeah. What?

AIMEE: Hmm?

MATT and AIMEE: (fake laughing)

AABRIA: Making noise outside the door.

AIMEE: Oh no!

MATT: Well, we're moving past it.

AIMEE: We're moving past it.

MATT: Yeah. (laughs)

AABRIA: Let me paint you a picture really quick of how a penthouse works.

AIMEE: Wait--

AABRIA: You go up to the top of the stairs and it's the only thing there.

AIMEE: Uh-huh.

AABRIA: Mm-hmm.

AIMEE: Okay.

AABRIA: Because there's not other stuff, because it's a penthouse.

AIMEE: Gotcha.

AABRIA: Okay.

AIMEE: Good point.

AABRIA: So you can go up these stairs, it's back recessed away. There's no other people in this hallway or near the staircase, but the door you see is incredibly heavy.

AIMEE: Okay.

AABRIA: There's no leeway between the edges. It is a tight, perfectly crafted fit. This is an expensive, impressive door.

AIMEE: What about the lock hole?

AABRIA: Are you trying to fit it through the little--? How big is your familiar?

AIMEE: I mean, she's small enough to be on a little bit of an earring.

AABRIA: You're wearing big-ass earrings right now.

AIMEE: I mean, in the picture, okay.

AABRIA: Stop it.

AIMEE: Listen, it's real small.

AABRIA: Okay.

AIMEE: Yeah. Ted's small. Ted 2 is small.

AABRIA: How badly do you want this to work?

AIMEE: Very badly. Oh, I know this game. (laughter)

AIMEE: I just had a flashback.

AABRIA: So you detached Ted 2 from your earring.

AIMEE: Yeah.

AABRIA: What does it look like as this little piece of jewelry enervates into a living spirit of a spider?

AIMEE: I think because I've named it Ted 2, it probably bites me or something on the way down. (laughter)

AIMEE: Just like-- I guess, I don't know, it goes from being a black little spider to very briefly, momentarily, glowing like a little opal, and then iridescent and then going back to a normal spider.

AABRIA: Okay.

AIMEE: Then maybe it crawls through the hole?

AABRIA: This tiny little spider squeezes its bulbous little butt through that hole.

AIMEE: Tense, tense. Yep. Can I tell Ted 2 what I want it to look for?

AABRIA: Absolutely. Do you say it out loud or telepathically?

AIMEE: Telepathically. Ted 2, I want you to look for a blueprint or a little map, or a big map rolled up, and you tell me where exactly it is in the room. Also tell me if there's some people in there. Okay. Love you, bye. (kisses) (laughter)

AABRIA: Ted 2 begins their search.

AIMEE: Oh my god.

AABRIA: We'll come back to that in a second. Has Dariax ever seen Ted 2 in action?

MATT: No, Dariax, oddly, is not even paying attention to it. (laughter)

AABRIA: What is he doing?

MATT: He is lost in thought.

AIMEE: Oh no.

AABRIA: Oh!

AIMEE: That's not good.

ROBBIE: "Thought" in quotes. Lost in "thought." (laughter)

AIMEE: One little gnat rolling around in the empty--

MATT: There is lost in thought, and then there's lost in thought.

ALL: Oh!

ANJALI: Yes. Which world is he lost in?

AABRIA: What is burdening our sweet Dariax's soul?

MATT: I don't know. He heard a name he hadn't heard in a while.

AIMEE: Okay.

ANJALI: Oh no.

MATT: He's listening now best he can, but he is also like--

AABRIA: (laughs) Amazing.

AIMEE: He's waiting for an, "Oh my god!"

AABRIA: (laughs)

AIMEE: Chandler Bing.

ANJALI: (laughs) Sorry, that's the third time that involuntary loud laugh.

AABRIA: Look, that's good!

MATT: Let it happen.

AABRIA: Let the joy roll out of you. We cut back downstairs to the theater. All right, you're back in this room with seven people, two guards, five entourage members.

ERICA: Great. I would like to see if there's any kind of bag that's been left back here. I'm assuming that Phaedrov does not carry his room keys onto the stage with him.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ERICA: So I'm trying to perceive whether there is some kind of thing, bag, bag man bag that he has left.

AABRIA: Give me an investigation check.

ERICA: Great.

ANJALI: Murse.

AABRIA: Check for man bag.

ERICA: Investigation.

ROBBIE: (laughs) Man bag.

ERICA: Okay, that's an 11, but--

AABRIA: But?

ERICA: I do have inspiration.

AABRIA: So you using it?

ERICA: I mean, yeah. What is that, a d--?

AABRIA: No, just roll again?

ROBBIE: Wait, what was it?

ERICA: It was bardic inspiration.

AABRIA: Oh, you're using a bardic inspiration.

ERICA: Sorry, yeah, a bardic inspiration.

AABRIA: Yes.

ROBBIE: Get to add to the-- That's right?

AABRIA: Yeah.

MATT: Yeah.

AABRIA: What's your inspiration die?

ROBBIE: I don't know, I always forget. I never use it ♪ properly ♪

MATT: 6th level, it should be a d8?

AABRIA: It's a d8 now? (gasps)

MATT: I think it's a d8.

AABRIA: That's right! You're such a big boy now.

ROBBIE: Oh, I know.

AABRIA: My sweet babby.

ROBBIE: It's a d8, you're right.

ERICA: Let's see if this helps us out. Oh, it's a one.

ANJALI: Oh no!

ROBBIE: Yeah!

ERICA: So that's going to be a 12.

AABRIA: Yes. With a 12, you look around the room and you see that there is a little coat rack area over the empty leather chair that the two body men are guarding. On it are a very fancy green velvet robe and a man bag, and three scarves.

ERICA: Oh god.

AABRIA: One of the scarves has pockets. So you now have--

ANJALI: Oh boy!

ERICA: I'm sorry, let's take that back a second.

AABRIA: Yeah. You want me to say it?

ERICA: The scarf has pockets?

AABRIA: Yes. It's the big--

ERICA: You want to stick to that?

AABRIA: You know the big Lenny Kravitz scarf that's so much scarf?

AIMEE: Yes!

ANJALI: That's a blanket!

AIMEE: It's a blanket!

AABRIA: It's a blanket and it's got pockets.

AIMEE: Oh my god.

AABRIA: I said what in the fuck I said. (laughter)

ERICA: All right. All right.

AABRIA: All right, you've got some choices to make.

ERICA: Oh fuck.

AABRIA: What you going to do?

ERICA: I'm sorry, let's see here. Man bag, coat?

AABRIA: Man bag, robe.

ERICA: Robe.

AABRIA: Scarf, scarf, scarf with pockets.

ERICA: I'm going to go for the man bag.

AABRIA: Oh, you're just going to walk toward it?

ERICA: Well, how else am I going to know? How am I going to know?

AABRIA: You're right. You walk towards the bag.

AIMEE: Oh shit.

ERICA: Oh, I have an idea. No. No, no, no, I'm sorry.

AABRIA: You rolled-- Okay.

ERICA: No, no, no.

AABRIA: This is your last one before I punish you for words you say.

ERICA: No. No, no, no, Listen, listen, listen.

AIMEE: And she'll do it.

AABRIA: I will.

ERICA: I'd like to walk--

AABRIA: I'm a bastard.

ERICA: Okay, I'd like to put the drink down. No.

AABRIA: (laughS) I want to spill the drink.

ANJALI: Oh.

ERICA: I want to--

AABRIA: (laughs) We keep spilling shit.

ERICA: I want to run in. I want to walk in and say: Hi, everybody. I'm so happy to be here. I'm so happy to deliver this dr-- oh! (laughter) The drink goes everywhere. This is my plan. I fall into the coat rack.

ANJALI: Oh yes!

ERICA: I listen for jangles. I try to touch everything.

MATT: Who's Jangles? (laughter)

ERICA: I listen-- My familiar.

AIMEE: That's her twin!

MATT: Okay, now I know.

ERICA: My little spider named Jangles.

AABRIA: Everyone's got a twin.

ERICA: No, I'm trying to-- I have a plan.

MATT: Yeah, yeah.

AABRIA: All right. Step one of the plan, a convincing pratfall. Please make a performance check for me.

ERICA: Yeah, absolutely.

ANJALI: I've seen her cross in, right? I mean, I'm not in there.

AABRIA: Yeah, she walked right past you.

ERICA: It's a seven.

AIMEE: Oh, for f--

ERICA: Wait. as this tiny drink goes ass over tea kettle and shatters on the ground in front of the leather chair, and both guards look down at you, and one catches you before you're able to get within five feet of the chair and the rack. Like, "Watch out!" You see that as he catches you, he looks down and notices the difference between what he feels with you in his arms versus what he sees with your giant feathery costume.

ERICA: Oh.

ROBBIE: Busted.

ANJALI: Can I hear any of this outside the door?

AABRIA: Yeah. Yeah, you super can.

AIMEE: Yeah, you can.

ERICA: Well, this is not how I thought it was going to go.

ANJALI: Okay, fuck it. I'm going to think--

AIMEE: Oh no!

AABRIA: Let's go!

ANJALI: I'm going to think--

AIMEE: Fuck!

ANJALI: First, I'm going to look at--

AIMEE: Jacques Cousteau. No. (laughter)

AABRIA: J'accuse! Jinoir.

ANJALI and AIMEE: Jinoir.

ANJALI: Jinoir. I'm going to do this. I'm going to go, stay. Don't, you know, not... No, no, no, no, no, no. No, I'm not. I'm going to skip that, and I'm going to--

MATT: Wait.

ANJALI: -- in my head--

ROBBIE: Stop!

AIMEE: The indecisives!

ANJALI: I'm going to be indecisive. So, I'm going to look at him and then I'm going to turn into the room, and as I do, I'm going to think really hard about the posters that I saw of the beautiful actress who does shows in the other theaters and--

AABRIA: Tharla Starr?

ANJALI and AIMEE: Tharla Starr.

ANJALI: I'm going to walk in.

AABRIA: Tharla Starr!

ANJALI: I'm going to say, "Gentlemen. Oh! Oh, I'm so sorry. Shh, the show is going on. Shh! Very, very quiet."

AIMEE: Oh my god, stop.

ANJALI: Don't--

AABRIA: "Tharla fucking Starr? Oh my god!"

ANJALI: I don't want to make a scene.

AABRIA: "I'm your biggest fan."

ANJALI: I'm just so excited to see my young friend's show. Oh, what a sweet, sweet boy. A sweet, sweet boy. He--

AABRIA: "He would be so happy. He's on stage right now."

ANJALI: I know he is right now. That's why I'm sneaking back here because I want to leave him a little present. Would you guys mind? Would that be all right if I left him a little present?

AABRIA: "Yeah. I'm sure, everyone's got things for him right now. This is such a strange performance."

ANJALI: Oh, you sweet, sweet thing. I'll tell you what, since you're fans, would you like an autograph or anything like that?

AABRIA: "I would love one."

ANJALI: I specifically look at the gentleman who is holding-- who are like--

AABRIA: Oh, the guards that are holding up Mor are not paying attention to you.

ANJALI: They're not paying any attention.

AABRIA: None, but the five hangers on, especially a young, gnomish woman in the front are just fawning over you.

ANJALI: Wonderful. I'm going to say: I'll tell you what, since we're in the theater, let's get a moment in front of all of these beautiful costumes on this rack. Shall we? Oh, gentlemen! I'm going to walk up to these guys and be like: Excuse me. Excuse me. We're going to have a moment here to soak in the theater, to soak it in. Oh, can you feel it? Can you feel the smell of the costumes? Oh, it's so beautiful.

AABRIA: Give me an insight check.

AIMEE: Hey!

ERICA: I feel it really hard.

ANJALI: ♪ Fuck me! Fuck me! ♪

ROBBIE: Is the show going on at this point?

AABRIA: Yeah.

ANJALI: Yes! Ah, it's a 19 plus five! It's a 24.

AABRIA: Cool. With an insight check, you see that the other guard, the one that's not holding Mor by the shoulders, because he's still looking at you like, "What the?" The half-orc looks you up and down and goes, "Miss Starr, you are under strict orders to not show your face here while his nephew is performing. You have a tendency to pull focus."

ANJALI: Can I tell you a little secret?

AABRIA: "Okay."

AIMEE: I can't.

ANJALI: I lean into his ear, I'm like: The reason I'm not supposed to be back here is because the two of us have begun a bit of a dalliance. You see?

ROBBIE: Oh.

AABRIA: His ears immediately turn bright red.

ANJALI: Now, if you would be so kind as to allow me this moment, you know, for my young beloved, after all, at my age, it's so rare that we are able to have this kind of attention with someone. I promise to make it worth your while.

AABRIA: Make a deception check.

ANJALI: Fuck! I hate rolling.

AIMEE: I'm so into this shit.

ANJALI: Please, please, please. Oh, why did I use my-- (groans) It's a ten.

AABRIA: "I'm under strict orders to not-- You know he's sleeping in Mr. Jaktur's penthouse. You can just meet him there later. I'll be watching out the front, and if you want to--"

ANJALI: Oh.

AABRIA: "-- slip in, but maybe not here, where there's people."

ANJALI: This is a lovely idea. Do you have any idea, I mean, I obviously need a little help getting in there.

AABRIA: "Yeah, I-- yeah. The implication was that I would let you in later after his show."

ANJALI: Oh, you sweet, sweet boy. I love this. This is wonderful.

ERICA: Oh, this is great. I'm so glad all this has worked out. I try to extricate myself. (laughter)

AABRIA: "Why don't I feel your feathers?"

ERICA: Oh, they're hard--

ANJALI: Oh, you, you! The bartender who makes that delicious drink, what's it called, the Bread?

ERICA: Ah, the Bread.

ANJALI: The Bread.

ERICA: Oh, yes.

ANJALI: Oh, I must take you with me.

AABRIA: "The Bread?"

ANJALI: Excuse me. I'm just-- I need her services. I want her to bring my favorite drink and--

ERICA: Thank you.

ANJALI: -- his favorite drink up to the room. Thank you so, so much. Come with me.

ERICA: Yes.

ANJALI: I'm going to take her by the hand,

AABRIA: You're able to pull her out of the room.

ERICA: Oh my god.

ANJALI: I'm going to pull her out of the room.

AABRIA: But you watch the two guards begin to confer amongst each other as you leave. That little gnomish woman was like "What happened to our moment? Oh no!"

ANJALI: Shit.

AIMEE: Oh no.

ERICA: "Our moment."

MATT: I imagine one of the guards is like, "When was she British?" (laughter)

ANJALI: No idea.

AABRIA: Mostly.

AIMEE: Yeah.

AABRIA: What's going on-- Really quickly, I just want to know what's going on with my sweet boy, watching--

AIMEE: She spent some time--

AABRIA: -- just watching Phaedrov's terrible performance.

ROBBIE: Yeah. We are sharing a paper bag of hot salted nuts, me and my brother. I lean over there like: I don't see what all the bad reviews are about. It's not that terrible.

AABRIA: (as Cyrus) "I think it's more just that, after decades, who still is interested in this story, you know?

ROBBIE: Yeah, yeah, but you know, it's up to interpretation. I think he's making it his own. His voice isn't that bad.

AABRIA: "Hold on. Hold-- are you my brother?"

ROBBIE: Yes.

AABRIA: "Do you remember when you gave me a hard time for like a week--"

ROBBIE: Mm-hmm.

AABRIA: "-- because I was a little pitchy when I sang 'Happy Birthday' to our mom?"

ROBBIE: You are a terrible singer. I was being nice, like I'm being nice right now.

AABRIA: He slaps the shit out of you. Just on the chest.

ROBBIE: I'm just enjoying the show, legitimately enjoying the show.

AABRIA: Yeah, he's doing that awful thing, where he plays a little bit on the piano, and then crosses over and tells the story, as Scanlan, but about him.

ROBBIE: (laughs) (claps)

AABRIA: It's not great. Still happening. You watch--

MATT: It would be very Scanlan.

AABRIA: Yeah.

AIMEE: But I'm picturing like an Elaine Stritch-like outfit, like a leotard, very leggy, with like a fucking big blazer on, just like--

AABRIA: Yes. (laughter)

AIMEE: Let me tell you a story about show business.

AABRIA: Yeah, he lights a cigarette--

AIMEE: Yeah, oh god.

AABRIA: -- and begins just telling his story.

AIMEE: My fourth husband.

AABRIA: Yeah. (laughs) A hundred percent. But you are able to spot, as a far less star--

ANJALI: When I come out of the room, and shut the green dress room,

AABRIA: It's open.

ANJALI: Oh, it's an open green dress room.

AABRIA: Yeah. That's how you were able to peek in there before.

ANJALI: Fuck me. Okay.

AABRIA: So are you going to drop it immediately?

ANJALI: So they can see me.

ANJALI: What do you do?

ERICA: Oh, oh.

ANJALI: I don't know, I'm just staring at you.

ERICA: Oh, I have--

ANJALI: I'm just staring at you.

ERICA: No, no, it's fine.

ANJALI: It's not helpful.

AABRIA: You have to decide now in this moment.

ANJALI: Yes.

AABRIA: Do you exit as Tharla--

ANJALI: Do I exit as Tharla?

AABRIA: -- or do you exit as--

ANJALI: Because I will draw so much attention.

ERICA: Oh, I can use--

AABRIA: Hold on. Make your choice.

AIMEE: Oh no, crazy eyes.

ANJALI: Fuck, fuck, fuck. I'm going to have her walk behind me. So her big bunny ears are blocking what I look like, maybe, so that you're blocking me.

AABRIA: ♪ You're not answering my question. ♪

ANJALI: Then I'm going to drop it as I come into the audience, so that you are blocking me, and I'm hiding in front of her.

AABRIA: Okay. So you see Fy'ra Rai and Mor exit the green dress room.

ANJALI: I move, and I tell her: Cover me as much as you can right now, until we get out of here.

ERICA: Okay.

ANJALI: (like Fy'ra Rai) Only I say it with this accent. (laughter) Cover me as much as you can. I'm sorry, it's so many different parts. I don't know how actors do it. It's very confusing.

AABRIA: Okay. Mor, did you have something you wanted to add?

ERICA: It is moot at this point.

AABRIA: Oh, no!

ERICA: It's fine, no, no, we didn't need it. It's fine.

AABRIA: Okay.

ERICA: No, no, you're fine.

ANJALI: So we're busting a move to get out of the theater.

ERICA: Yeah.

AABRIA: Taking off?

ROBBIE: Is this-- I don't know if this is perceivable from our vantage point.

AABRIA: I mean, you do see your two friends hauling ass out of the theater.

ROBBIE: Let's go, let's go, let's go.

AABRIA: "Well, now I'm into it."

ROBBIE: I know, I'm sorry, come on. Excuse me.

AABRIA: "We can come back. He performs a lot."

AIMEE: Come back tomorrow. (laughter)

ROBBIE: Got to see the ending.

AIMEE: The matinee.

ROBBIE and AABRIA: Yeah.

ROBBIE: We'll do that thing where we shimmy through a too-small thing where, yeah, yeah. But I'm going to do butts--

AABRIA: "I'm so sorry."

ROBBIE: -- and Cyrus is going to do crotch.

AABRIA: Yeah, Cyrus goes frontsies. Yeah.

AIMEE: Oh god.

AABRIA: "It feels worse to throw my donk out there."

ROBBIE: I'm going to look around for Dariax. Can I see him anywhere? Is he seated-- is he--

ANJALI: Can we see them anywhere? No, you can't, because--

AIMEE: We're at the penthouse.

AABRIA: Yeah, Dariax and Opal are--

ROBBIE: Oh, you're there, too?

AABRIA: -- both up at the penthouse.

MATT: You don't see either of us.

ANJALI: But you are behind me, right?

ROBBIE: Stop, where the fuck is everybody?

ANJALI: They're at the penthouse. I have just busted a move with Bunny. I'm so sorry, with Mor, out the--

ERICA: I like Bunny.

ANJALI: -- out the back.

AIMEE: Bunny's cute.

ANJALI: She's here, I'm here.

ROBBIE: But you're still at the penthouse door?

ANJALI: They're up at the penthouse door.

AABRIA: They've been waiting at the door.

ANJALI: They've been waiting at the penthouse door.

ROBBIE: I don't know shit, okay.

MATT: Yeah.

ANJALI: They-- yeah. Because they were waiting there for a signal of something.

ROBBIE: And this looks tense?

MATT: We've been waiting 15 minutes.

AABRIA: Yes.

ROBBIE: Their escape looks tense? I'll try to-- It's dark in the theater.

MATT: You're good.

ANJALI: Yeah yeah yeah.

ERICA: Yeah, I'm good.

ANJALI: We've got to get to the penthouse. We've got to get there.

ROBBIE: I'm sorry. I'm having trouble clocking the space.

AABRIA: No, you're good.

ROBBIE: Where are they? Where am I seeing them leave? If the stage up front, where in the audience?

ANJALI: In the aisles.

AABRIA: Yes, then you're seeing them move along the left wall, back out through the door to the casino.

ROBBIE: Out the back? Okay, easy, we'll break out that way.

AABRIA: Perfect, yeah.

ROBBIE: I'll start following them out the back of the theater.

AABRIA: Okay.

ROBBIE: Yeah.

AABRIA: You guys fall into step, and do you head straight to the penthouse?

ANJALI: Yes.

AABRIA: To meet up?

ANJALI: As we leave the theater, I would like to look like a random patron that I have seen somewhere. Just look like someone completely different, so that I blend in.

AABRIA: Not a problem.

ANJALI: So they won't see Tharla and they won't see Fy'ra. They will see me and Mor. But me being someone that they don't recognize.

AABRIA: Being pursued by two giant blue men, got it. Cutting upstairs.

MATT: You know, it's just over time, I realized she was kind of controlling. I had to reach a moment where I was like, you know, there wasn't really way to break it away cleanly. I figured, you know, if I just wasn't there anymore, she'd understand in time.

AIMEE: Oh no. Just ghosted.

MATT: Yeah, well--

AIMEE: That's unlike you, Dariax.

MATT: I know, but it was-- if you met her, you'd know what I mean. She's-- she's an intense person. Not a bad person, just an intense person.

AIMEE: Yeah, hmm.

MATT: And, you know, I just, I needed to get away, far away, from her.

AIMEE: So you left her with a bunch of people after her?

MATT: No, after us, but then I was gone, so yeah.

AIMEE: Yeah, that sucks.

AABRIA: "Excuse me. Excuse me."

AABRIA: You just hear it in your--

AIMEE: Oh, Ted!

AABRIA: -- head, yeah, just a little--

AIMEE: Ted 2. How you doin', baby?

AABRIA: "I don't see any blueprints."

AIMEE: Oh.

AABRIA: "There's three guys in here."

AIMEE: Oh!

AABRIA: "They're just sitting and talking."

AIMEE: Okay.

AABRIA: "But there's people in here, and they're big, and they have weapons."

AIMEE: Weapons.

AABRIA: "But I don't see blueprints. Please advise."

AIMEE: Okay, can I look--

AABRIA: "Do you want me to do a kill? I can do a kill."

AIMEE: Not yet. (laughter) Not yet.

AABRIA: "Like I murdered you, when you took me off your ear."

AIMEE: Can I see through Ted 2's eyes?

AABRIA: Yeah, you can absolutely look through Ted's eyes. You can work into your spider.

AIMEE: Okay, great. I want to do that.

MATT: Whoa!

AIMEE: Is there a way to, because maybe a spider doesn't know what blueprints look like.

AABRIA: In fact, hold on. So for what it's worth, you are blinded and deafened the moment you do this.

AIMEE: Okay, okay.

AABRIA: So you are just going to zonk out a little bit.

AIMEE: Okay.

AABRIA: But I'm just going to show you what you see as Ted 2 by bringing out my map.

ALL: Oh! (exclaiming)

ROBBIE: We're in a new place.

ANJALI: I'm going to use this moment to go pee.

MATT: Go do it, go do it.

AIMEE: Go make a peepee.

MATT: Make it quick, make it quick.

AABRIA: Oh my goodness.

ROBBIE: Pay your debts.

AABRIA: I need to lift a weight, because this is so heavy on my wrist.

AIMEE: Need help?

AABRIA: No, I got it. I was just holding it--

AIMEE: Oh, whoa.

AABRIA: -- at the worst angle.

MATT: At an odd angle. Oh no.

AIMEE: That's gorgeous.

AABRIA: My poor little wrists.

MATT: Oh, cool.

AIMEE: Wow, that's gorgeous.

AABRIA: Sweet.

AIMEE: Whoa.

MATT: All righty.

AABRIA: Here's the little door you guys are waiting outside of.

AIMEE: Oh, holy shit.

ROBBIE: Oh, that's cool.

AIMEE: Yep, yep, yep, yep, yep.

AABRIA: You've got two little guards, they're just sitting on the staircase up to the sex pests--

ROBBIE: The sex pests?

MATT: The sex pedestal?

AABRIA: Yeah, sex pedestal.

ROBBIE: We knew what you meant.

AABRIA: It's a sex pest sex pedestal. It's both things. I said what I meant. There's a third guard over here, just vibing next to the fireplace.

MATT: Gotcha, gotcha.

AABRIA: This table will stand up, so help me. You know what? You stay down now.

ROBBIE: It's cursed.

AABRIA: Matt, help.

MATT: I gotcha.

AABRIA: Thank you, buddy. Oh, inspiration.

MATT and AABRIA: Yay!

AIMEE: Okay, so I'm looking through Ted 2's eyes. Is there anything that I can discern through my own understanding of what a blueprint, or a map, might look like? Just in case, you know, a spider doesn't know what that means.

AABRIA: Yeah.

AIMEE: Okay. I mean, she did her best, and I'm proud of her.

AIMEE: I'm proud of her, I love her.

AABRIA: Go ahead and give me an investigation check.

AIMEE: Okay. Here we go, here we go.

ROBBIE: So cool.

MATT: Here I go again, girls, what's my weakness?

AIMEE and AABRIA: Men!

AIMEE: That's an 11.

AABRIA: I just got so excited. With an 11, you're slowly moving through the space and trying not to pull the focus of these big burly guards.

AIMEE: Yep.

AABRIA: You see that there's a bunch of papers on a desk over here.

AIMEE: Yep.

AABRIA: But there's no clear, obvious sign of blueprints. It would require, you know, more fiddly, focused unrolling, which tiny little spider arms can't do.

AIMEE: Okay.

AABRIA: You hear footsteps.

AIMEE: Okay, I'm going to zoom out of her, and where are the footsteps?

AABRIA: Coming up behind you, up the staircase.

AIMEE: Okay.

AABRIA: They sound frantic.

AIMEE: Okay, I'm going to use Disguise Self to look like one of the guards, one of his guards.

AABRIA: Okay.

MATT: I'm going to do the exact same thing, but I don't have my cloak, so nothing happens.

AIMEE: Right.

AABRIA: Perfect boy.

AIMEE: Oh, oh, oh, I know! I know! I pull out my Ring of Invisibility, and I give it to Dariax. Can I do that?

MATT: Oh shit! This is very forward.

AABRIA: Does it require attunement?

AIMEE: I don't know!

AABRIA: I like that you pantomimed taking it back.

AIMEE: Wait, where would that be?

ROBBIE: That's the shortest proposal ever.

MATT: I was about to say.

ANJALI: In your inventory.

AIMEE: Okay, while wearing this ring, you can turn,

MATT: Fair enough, I mean,

AIMEE: Attune? Un-equip? Attune?

ANJALI: So, yeah.

MATT: Requires attunement.

AIMEE: Requires attunement! You can't have it!

MATT: No, I can do it, I can do it, okay, here!

AIMEE: Are you sure? No!

MATT: Nothing?

AABRIA: No.

AIMEE: Goddamn it.

MATT: Shit!

AIMEE: Fucking. All right. You, stop right there.

AABRIA: You yell outside the door.

ANJALI: Oh no.

AIMEE: Fuck me, man.

AABRIA: As the rest of your party comes and joins you--

AIMEE: Oh no.

ROBBIE: Oh, yeah.

AABRIA: -- on the staircase.

ROBBIE: Clutch sneak attack. (laughter)

MATT: It's okay. Maybe no one heard us through the door.

AABRIA: With perfect comedic timing, you hear Ted in your ear go, "Oop!"

AIMEE: Fuck. All right, well, I guess because I can do it at will, I'm going to disguise myself again, as our actor. What's his name?

ANJALI: Phaedrov.

AIMEE: Phaedrov. In case they open the door. Ha-ha.

AABRIA: They're going to.

AIMEE: Okay, I'm him.

ANJALI: Amazing.

AIMEE: I am he.

AABRIA: The two guards in the front, I don't have to move them, move out and open the door, and they see Phaedrov, a dwarf they don't know. A generic woman.

ANJALI: Oh, okay, I was going to say, when she does that, I immediately transform myself into Tharla as well.

AIMEE: That's good, that's good!

AABRIA: Tharla Starr, two blue men, and a bartender.

MATT: We're Blue Man Group, if you think about it.

ANJALI: Yeah, really.

MATT: Well, we're in theme.

AABRIA: Anything else you want to do in advance of this?

ERICA: Quick Q, for Disguise Self, can you change it throughout, or no?

AABRIA: No. She has the ability to do it at-will, and recast it over and over.

ERICA: Okay. So I put the feathers on. I maybe should have thought of that before I put on feathers. I could have like--

AABRIA: You're good, you look like you work here, which you do.

ERICA: That's true, that's true.

AABRIA: The doors open, and you see these two towering, almost monstrous looking-- they are something between dragonborn and lizardfolk, and a little more feral than you've seen some of these bigger races to be. They look out at you.

AIMEE: I think, because she can't help herself, She goes: (high-pitched) Ah! Oh hey, hey, what's up? Uh, we know each other. These are my friends. Get out of the way, move, move, move. I'm trying to get to my sex den. We're having a little party here.

AABRIA: An important question. Have you ever heard Phaedrov talk?

AIMEE: You know, that's a good question.

MATT: We were at the bar.

AIMEE: We were at the bar, and you know, I'm a little hoarse tonight. I just did my show.

AABRIA: "You finished early."

AIMEE: Listen, there was no one there.

ANJALI: So I have heard Phaedrov, does she sound anything like him?

AABRIA: Nope!

AIMEE: Oh, shit!

ANJALI: Oh, darling. I love it when you do these voices. You just can't come out of character, can you?

AIMEE: No, I can't. This is my girlfriend, Tharla.

ANJALI: Ssh.

AIMEE: Oh, it's a secret.

MATT: Have you ever heard Tharla before?

ANJALI: Yes, because I watched, remember I spied on the, meta, no, I spied on them when they were getting in trouble with Poska. That wasn't as early, was it? He wasn't--

ROBBIE: (squeals)

MATT: It's just a circle of bad impressions.

ROBBIE: Oh yeah. Oh yeah.

ANJALI: I just love it. Wait, what if we do another one?

AIMEE: Let's all do one.

ANJALI: Let's do another one.

AIMEE: Okay, what about a House of Gucci accent?

ANJALI: That's a beautiful one. (Cockney accent) What if I talk like this? Oh, isn't it fun?

AIMEE: Oh, I love when you talk like that.

AABRIA: "Sir, ma'am, others. "Why don't you come on inside?"

AIMEE: Yeah, yeah. We're going to go in, you're going to get out, go get us a drink.

MATT: I actually think that worked out okay.

AABRIA: They stand by the door to let you in.

AIMEE: Okay.

ANJALI: Oh god, this is going so bad.

AIMEE: This is going so bad.

AABRIA: You guys go inside?

ERICA: I'm sure there's a bar in there, right?

AABRIA: There is a little bar.

ERICA: I will--

AABRIA: Jesus.

ERICA: -- start making-- Wow, you guys are so big. You're the biggest men I've ever seen. I should make some drinks. And I run--

ANJALI: I love you so much.

ERICA: Everyone's so big. She looks like she's about to cry. She runs over.

AIMEE: Hey, make me a Mountaintop. A Cloudtop.

ANJALI: A Cloudtop.

ERICA: Oh, you're so funny, Phaedrov, everyone knows your favorite drink is a Cloudtop.

AIMEE: Cloudtop, yeah.

ERICA: I'll make one of those--

AABRIA: The two guards--

ERICA: -- stat.

AABRIA: -- close the door behind you--

ROBBIE: We're fucked!

AABRIA: -- and lock the three of you in. You see one is, with a giant hammer, standing right behind you, Dariax. The other one very calmly begins to walk over to this dresser.

AABRIA: So. You know what? Let's get a group insight check to see how this is going.

MATT: Cool.

AIMEE: Totally.

ANJALI: It's going so well. I don't understand why we have to roll for it.

MATT: Hell yeah.

AIMEE: Oh shit.

ANJALI: 15.

AIMEE: Insight, you said?

ROBBIE: 18.

AABRIA: Yeah.

AIMEE: 17.

MATT: Two.

AIMEE: Oh!

ROBBIE: Jesus.

ERICA: 11.

ROBBIE: Wow!

AABRIA: You two think this is going fine. You're so convinced that you're like, if I make a good enough drink, I can pull out of this nose dive, and you three know that this has gone the worst it can go. So they haven't made a violent move yet, but they are beginning to surround you, and the one that was over by the fireplace stands up and squares off.

ANJALI: All three of them are the mix of dragon and--

AABRIA: It's like dragon and lizard folk and seems a little orcish, too. I don't know if you've seen, necessarily, this kind of humanoid.

AIMEE: One's by the chest?

AABRIA: Yeah, he's walking over towards the chest.

AIMEE: Walking over, there's one by the, where's the fireplace, sorry?

AABRIA: Fireplace is over here.

AIMEE: Then the other one is right behind Dariax?

AABRIA: Yes.

AIMEE: Okay. Which one looks the biggest?

AABRIA: They're all very big.

AIMEE: Is there a boss?

AABRIA: To scale, the one with the giant hammer behind you is very big.

AIMEE: Okay, okay.

MATT: Especially if you're using me for scale. (laughter)

AABRIA: He looks extra big.

MATT: Yeah.

AABRIA: All right.

ROBBIE: Is my-- oh.

MATT: Hi. No, that's it. I just say hi.

ROBBIE: (laughs) Is my broheim in the mix anywhere?

AABRIA: Oh, yeah. So knowing what you were probably running up to, would you have Cyrus be here? I don't have a little mini for him, but he can be here.

ROBBIE: Yeah, I would never have us in the same space of danger if ever possible. So I think, if we go back, if possible--

AABRIA: Yeah, we can walk that back.

ROBBIE: -- if we walk it back, I'm going to keep him by the door and say: Just for a moment. Anticipating the worst, because what else could we expect?

AABRIA: Yeah, I think you got up to the top of the stairs, saw the immediate transformations, saw that as maybe a bad sign, and he was like, "I'm going to wait at the bottom of the staircase."

ROBBIE: Yeah, yeah.

MATT: He's learning.

ANJALI: Good job, Cyrus.

ROBBIE: Learning (chuckles) to listen. He's learning.

AABRIA: He puts his hands on both of your shoulders and says, "Words of affirmation. I believe in you and I think that you're great." Pat, pat.

ROBBIE: Are you giving some sort of inspiration?

AABRIA: "Do you feel inspired?"

ROBBIE: No.

AABRIA: "Did my best," and he slaps you, then heads down the stairs.

AIMEE: Inspired.

ROBBIE: So now that we're here without him, Dariax turned to the big guy and said, "Hi"?

MATT: Yeah.

ROBBIE: I know what's coming. I am going to turn toward Dariax, and as my back is toward all the enemies, I am going to, like the sign of the cross but not quite, I'm going to trace a sigil in the air as I turn and cast Blade Ward on myself and turn to face Dariax. Hi.

MATT: I think it's going good.

AABRIA: The moment you cast a spell--

ROBBIE: (sighs)

AABRIA: -- because it has a verbal component, does it not?

ROBBIE: It does, yeah.

AABRIA: They go--

ROBBIE: Wait, oh, yes, it does, yeah.

AABRIA: "So we're doing this," and they all begin to unsheathe these massive heavy weapons, and they look almost excited that they haven't been able to use them in quite a while, and I need all of you to roll initiative.

ROBBIE: Yep, yep, yep.

AABRIA: Yay!

ROBBIE: Sorry, guys, it was happening one way or the other.

AABRIA: Oh, it was happening. It was just who was going to make the final move.

MATT: Yeah! (laughs) It is incredible.

ERICA: We are twins, because--

MATT: Oh my god, yeah.

AIMEE: What'd you get?

MATT: I got a natural one.

AABRIA: Oh no!

MATT: Three total.

ANJALI: Goddamn it.

AABRIA: Whoa. Two 17s in a row.

ERICA: My initiative is seven, so.

MATT: Oh man. Oh yeah, you go way ahead of me.

AABRIA: Incredible, okay.

MATT: It's fine. Play reactionary.

AABRIA: 25 to 20.

ROBBIE: 19 plus four, 23.

AABRIA: Shut up.

MATT: Yep.

AABRIA: Okay, 19 to 15. I just baby barfed a little bit that no one raised their hands. Okay, 14 to 10?

AIMEE: Eh, no.

AABRIA: Oh, thank god.

ERICA: It's a 10.

AABRIA: Oh no.

AIMEE: It's not good.

AABRIA: Okay, nine to five?

AIMEE: Six.

ANJALI: Six.

ROBBIE: Whoa.

AABRIA: Who's got the higher-- Yeah, I know the answer--

AIMEE: Yeah, she does for sure.

AABRIA: -- to that question.

AABRIA: Yeah, what's your total? What's your total, Dariax?

MATT: Three.

AABRIA: Oh boy.

MATT: Big old tres.

AABRIA: Okay, all right, you have some new things that come into effect. You need to roll initiative for your familiar.

AIMEE: Ah. Oh, same shit. Using my initiative?

AABRIA: You should have a stat block for your familiar. Pull up a little spider. Can you pull little spider?

AIMEE: Oh, here, wait, here it is.

MATT: Dex bonus there.

AIMEE: Add that?

AABRIA: Yeah.

AIMEE: Okay, five.

AABRIA: Perfect.

MATT: Your spider is faster than me. Hell yeah.

AABRIA: Oh no.

MATT: It checks out.

ROBBIE: Yeah, only moves a millimeter at a time.

AABRIA: I'll do it. I'm Cyrus. Oh, he also rolled a five, incredible.

AIMEE: Oh, I didn't think he could attack.

ANJALI: How big is that one?

MATT: Mm-hmm.

ANJALI: A square is how many feet?

AABRIA: Five feet.

ROBBIE: He's down the hallway?

AABRIA: Just in case. I just want him in the order. Yeah, okay, first up, Dorian.

AIMEE: Doesn't even fucking go through their shoes.

ROBBIE: All right.

AABRIA: So you've got a bad boy here and here and here.

ROBBIE: Yeah, first instinct is to protect Dariax. So I'm going to cut around and beeline for our lizard-hammer friend, and as I'm running, I'll unsheathe my scimitar, and no words. I'm just going to fuck this guy up.

AABRIA: No words.

AIMEE: Ay-oh.

AABRIA: I love it!

ROBBIE: No, no, no, there's a time to perform and a time to... perform. (laughter)

AABRIA: They should've sent a poet.

AIMEE: They should've sent them.

AABRIA: How'd you do?

ROBBIE: That's a one. (groaning)

ROBBIE: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. So I am going to take the biggest, bravest arcing swing with my scimitar, and--

MATT: I duck, because it comes for my head.

ROBBIE: Shit!

AABRIA: "Whose side are you on?"

AIMEE: Oh no.

AABRIA: You've got multiple attacks.

ROBBIE: Yeah, so I'm going to guess a big whiff on that one, and as he ducks, does it ding off of him, or do I--

AABRIA: No, just a full haymaker. He just leans back.

ROBBIE: He just leans back. I go: Uh-oh, little rusty. As I come out back off my other, I'm going to pull out-- Oh, you know what? I do have a second attack. So I'll stick with this, and I'll slash back the other way.

AABRIA: Perfect, try to catch him with the back hand, baby.

ROBBIE: Okay, got that one hopefully. That is a dirty 20.

AABRIA: A dirty 20 just hits. You're level six now, and I don't have to keep you alive.

ROBBIE: Just hits? Just hits.

AIMEE: Just hits, the fuck is this?

ROBBIE: Mamma mia, that's no good.

AABRIA: Heavy, big boys. Bring your best.

AIMEE: I don't have a best.

ROBBIE: Okay, as good as it gets. Six plus four, 10.

AABRIA: Okay, 10 points of slashing damage.

ROBBIE: That's correct, and then I am going to use my bonus action, two-handed fighting, and I'm going to catch him with that big slash, and I'm going to unclip my flute and try to uppercut him with my handaxe.

AABRIA: Amazing.

AIMEE: Give him the flute.

ROBBIE: I know, let's hope. Oh, it's turned over! That's a 12, yeah.

AABRIA: You catch him with the slash, and he looks down. He just takes it as it cuts through a little bit of leather in between the pieces of his massive, platemail armor, and he sees a little trickle of blood and smiles, and then sees you come around with your off-hand for another attack, and he catches it and pushes your hand away. "Keep trying."

AIMEE: Are you going to kill us? (laughter)

AIMEE: She's going to kill us.

AABRIA: I'm sorry. Maybe I will. Maybe I want to go home early tonight.

ANJALI: ♪ TPK ♪

MATT: (laughs) Respect.

AABRIA: Yeah, all right, it's my bad boys' turn, because, again, you all rolled very, very badly. All right, so we're going to start with my hammer boy, who's going to look at you and go, "My turn."

AIMEE: Oh no.

AABRIA: He takes his massive two-handed hammer, and he's going to swing for you, and he misses with the first attack with a natural three.

ROBBIE: Nimbly-bimbly, baby.

AABRIA: Yeah, you have so much time, as he builds up all of this momentum, you're able to easily, gracefully swirl away from his attack, but on the second attack, does a 16 hit you?

ROBBIE: Yes, it does, just.

AABRIA: So he slams down with the hammer, and then as he brings it back, he catches you with the off-side of the hammer in the direction that you flowed to, and it catches you right across the shoulder, and is going to do five points of bludgeoning damage.

ROBBIE: Okay, okay.

AABRIA: That's him. My other guy is going to cross the room, and you see him open this massive cabinet, and Mor's got the best angle on this. When he opens it up, it is a black void.

ANJALI: Oh, no, no, no.

AIMEE: Oh, for fuck's sake.

AABRIA: He leans his head in, and you hear him make this guttural, snapping, call, bark, howl into it, and he backs away and is clearly waiting for something to happen.

AIMEE: What the fuck?

MATT: It's fine, guys. Don't worry about it, we got this.

AABRIA: Sweet.

AIMEE: I don't have enough spell slots for this.

AABRIA: You never did, warlock, you never did. (laughter)

AABRIA: My big guy's going to come over, and he's going to swing for you, Mor.

ERICA: Great.

AABRIA: I need different dice so I don't roll bad. Natural one is not going to do it. I'm going to put you in the corner on time out. Okay, so the first swing with his massive sword, you're able to duck out of the way, but he comes across with his elbow and catches you with the elbow across the face and sends you scattering back. Actually, can I get a strength saving throw to see if you get knocked back from this?

ERICA: (chuckles) Oh, actually, it's an 18.

AABRIA: Oh, okay.

ERICA: Yeah.

AABRIA: You take seven points of bludgeoning damage as he comes across your face, but it doesn't knock you back into the wall like he'd hoped, and he goes, "Sturdy, I like that."

ERICA: I say: That's a big sword you have. Shame you're not any good with it.

AIMEE: Ay!

ANJALI: Fuck you.

AABRIA: Hurtful. I don't why you're out here hurting feelings. That's rude.

ERICA: I'm really sorry. Did you say seven?

AABRIA: Yeah. Okay, that's their turn, and next up is Mor.

ERICA: Oh no, oh no. I've never used this interface. Hold on.

AIMEE: Oh no.

AABRIA: It's okay, it's okay.

ERICA: Seven, okay, oh god. Seven, apply changes. Ha, ha, ha!

MATT: You did it, congratulations.

AABRIA: You did it, and I'm proud of you.

ERICA: Yes, okay, so he's right next to me, right?

AABRIA: Yes.

ERICA: Okay, so I'm going to swing to hit him with my rapier.

AABRIA: Okay.

ERICA: Oh, oh, this is interesting. Okay, I'm actually going to use my bonus action to give myself Steady Aim--

AABRIA: Okay.

ERICA: -- which gives me advantage on my roll, okay. So, oh my god. (dice rattles across table) (exclaims jokingly) (laughter)

ERICA: All right, that was a two.

ROBBIE: Yeah, good thing--

AABRIA: I don't think that's going to make it.

ERICA: Yeah, so. And that's a five. So that's a 12 to hit with my rapier.

AABRIA: It does not to hit.

ERICA: Good, I guess I'll try again, right? Oh wait, no, no. That was just advantage on the first one, right, two-weapon fighting?

AABRIA: So two-weapon fighting, you can technically attack with your off-hand. Oh, no, you used your bonus action for Steady Aim.

ERICA: I did, oh yeah, so no.

AABRIA: So that's your action and your bonus action, and you're now stuck here because you burned your movement.

ERICA: I made a mistake. I made a mistake.

AABRIA: What a gift. Going to kill a guest on the first encounter. Let's go.

MATT: Respect.

AABRIA: You're part of this.

ANJALI: Not on my watch.

AABRIA: I'm going to kill a full table member in the first encounter. I love that.

ERICA: I'm going.

AABRIA: Okay, next up is Fy'ra Rai.

AIMEE: Pull up Sharon.

ERICA: My secondary character, Sharon.

AABRIA: Yeah, Sharon with three hit points!

ERICA: Get Sharon in here.

ANJALI: Where I am, I don't have to worry about disengaging, right? That guy's far-- I'm a step away from that dude, right?

AABRIA: Oh yeah, he's nowhere near you.

ANJALI: The dude-- The cupboard is open?

AABRIA: Cupboard's open, and he's waiting beside it.

ANJALI: Okay, I am going to a bust a move to that guy.

AABRIA: You can make it no problem. You have 400,000 feet of movement.

ANJALI: Can I shut the door as I'm coming to him? Not really.

AABRIA: You can do it, but it would be an action.

ANJALI: It would be an action, and he already barked in there.

AABRIA: Yeah. (laughs)

AIMEE: Woof! (dog barking)

AABRIA: It's a poodle!

AIMEE: It's a poodle!

ANJALI: We did say we were going to do a poodle.

MATT: That's true.

ANJALI: There might be more than one poodle. I have a bad feeling about--

AABRIA: Am I good to walk you over?

ANJALI: -- what's coming over there. But yeah, walk me over there, and I'm going to go at him with all my attacks.

AABRIA: Let's go.

ROBBIE: Kick his ass, sea bass.

ANJALI: So let's go. All right. We have number one is an--

AABRIA: Ease of use, you guys all know the AC is 20.

ANJALI: Okay, that's a miss. It's an 18. Number two, fuck, is a 15, then my two unarmed strikes. Oh my god, fuck me. Ah, that's a 26.

AABRIA: Absolutely hits.

ANJALI: Okay, cool.

AABRIA: I knew you could do it.

ANJALI: I did, too, and I believe that these count as magical attacks now.

AABRIA: They do.

ANJALI: 1d6 plus, yes, 1d6 plus five. It's seven points of damage.

AABRIA: That's great.

ANJALI: It's not great. (laughter)

ANJALI: Let me just-- I'm not happy.

AABRIA: Are you calling me a liar?

ANJALI: No, I'm calling myself an overachiever, but she's so worried about what's about to come through that thing that she flails until she finally, with her heel, connects, because she's like, boom, boom, and then she connects with her heel at the side of his knee.

AABRIA: Oh, I love that. Give me an athletics check.

ANJALI: Oh yeah.

AABRIA: You wearing your item?

ANJALI: I am wearing my item.

AABRIA: Okay.

ANJALI: I'm wearing all my items. Oh wait, which?

AABRIA: Your belt?

ANJALI: Oh yeah.

AABRIA: Okay, cool.

ANJALI: Oh yeah, yeah, yeah.

AIMEE: Oh, yeah.

ANJALI: Oh, yeah.

AABRIA: Oh, yeah. Oh, buddy. You have to beat a 12.

ANJALI: That's an 11. You said athletics check?

AABRIA: Yes.

ANJALI: Fuck, it's too low.

AABRIA: You see his knee wobble, but he doesn't quite drop, And goes, "Okay, okay. You know there's more coming, right?"

AIMEE: Ugh.

AABRIA: "Yeah."

ANJALI: Do I have anything else? Action, movement. Do I have more? Oh, I can't move.

AABRIA: Did you use your bonus action? You still have more movement You went--

ANJALI: Yeah, but if I move right now, then I disengage. So fuck that, and then I can--

AABRIA: You could do it. It will be funny.

ANJALI: Is there anything I can do to dodge? Yes, I'm going to spend one, oh no, that's a bonus action. Fuck me!

AABRIA: Action economy is fun.

ANJALI: ♪ Sucks. ♪

AABRIA: (chuckles)

ANJALI: All right, I'm going to stop right there.

AABRIA: Perfect, Opal, you're up.

AIMEE: I'm up.

AABRIA: Eyy!

AIMEE: Okay, so let's see. Well, first thing I'm going to do is I'm going to cast Hexblade's Curse as a bonus action to the big guy with the hammer.

AABRIA: Love that for you.

AIMEE: Then, is there one of the dudes by himself?

AABRIA: They're--

AIMEE: Like, away from people?

AABRIA: No. Everyone is engaged with someone.

AIMEE: Well, that's no good.

AABRIA: You hate to see it.

AIMEE: Can I tell someone to duck?

AABRIA: You certainly can, but if they've... They're going to do whatever they're going to do, so why don't you do whatever you're going to do.

AIMEE: Okay well, all right, well I'm trying to make a calculus here because I would like to use my very cool new Eldritch Blast. Because I get two.

AABRIA: Yes.

AIMEE: But I don't want to hurt anybody. So is that possible?

AABRIA: Oh, you can you try to shoot through your friends. That's fine.

AIMEE: I'm not going to shoot through my friends.

AABRIA: Not through! Around. (laughter)

AIMEE: Oh, around!

ROBBIE: Around!

AIMEE: What do I look like?

ROBBIE: Shoot the hostage!

AABRIA: Bend the bullet around Angelina Jolie.

MATT: There's some Wanda shit right there.

AIMEE: Great, great. Okay, so then how close am I to the guy with the hammer?

AABRIA: Your Eldritch Blast is 120 feet.

AIMEE: I know.

AABRIA: You can hit anything in this--

AIMEE: But when does it become--

MATT: In the casino. (laughter)

AIMEE: But when does it become where it doesn't help me because it's too close?

AABRIA: Any time they're in melee with you.

AIMEE: And I'm not?

AABRIA: No, you're great.

AIMEE: So I would like to--

AABRIA: Pick your two targets for me. Unless you're going to aim both of them at one person. Which you could do.

AIMEE: I'm going to aim both of them at the guy with the hammer.

AABRIA: Good call. Give me two attack rolls, baby!

AIMEE: Eee!

AABRIA: You know what you need to hit.

AIMEE: Yeah, you said 20?

AABRIA: Mm-hmm.

AIMEE: Okay, do I have to add anything?

MATT: Your spell attack.

AABRIA: It's on your thing!

AIMEE: Oh, here it is! Okay, so... Wait, okay, we got this. Aimee, this is not hard.

ROBBIE: ♪ Math under pressure ♪

AIMEE: Oh fuck me, 19.

AABRIA: Hold for math.

MATT: Argh, man.

AABRIA: First bolt misses.

AIMEE: Don't I get a special thing? No. Every time I hit them, okay.

AABRIA: Yeah, you're working so hard to make sure you don't hit Dariax in this moment that you're just not as precise. Second bolt.

AIMEE: Okay. Don't fucking fail me now, Opal dice. Oh my god. That does not hit! Because--

MATT: Don't worry about me!

AIMEE: (screams) It's a 14!

MATT: I'm the worthy sacrifice, just take him out! (laughter)

AIMEE: I'm very sorry.

AABRIA: It's all good. You send both of your blasts out and they shatter against the wall behind our big hammer boy.

MATT: Great it went around.

AABRIA: Do you want to do anything with your movement? This is incredible. I'm nervous.

ANJALI: I'm nervous.

AABRIA: Not for me, I'm excited.

AIMEE: I want to get to the middle of the room on top of the bed with my movement.

AABRIA: Yeah, of course. So yeah, you're able to run straight up. Hop on the bed. It's incredibly plush.

ANJALI: I was going to say, that is seriously--

AABRIA: It's a really nice bed.

AIMEE: Is this a waterbed?

AABRIA: As you walk on, you actually see--

MATT: That's difficult terrain. (laughter)

AABRIA: You actually see that what you thought was a tiger skin rug was actually a rakshasa skin. Which is a demon.

ANJALI: Oh shit.

AIMEE: Oh, for fuck's sake.

AABRIA: So this is-- now that you're up here and getting a 360 view of everything, this room is almost museum-like.

AIMEE: Yeah?

AABRIA: In its collection of high value, high stakes curios. You see bits of wall and molding that clearly don't match, like they were taken from somewhere else and installed here. There's pieces of the floor that are incredibly inlaid. Everything feels transported and curated for this very nice penthouse.

AIMEE: Okay.

AABRIA: Cool. All right. Next up is your familiar.

AIMEE: Perfect. Where's my little Ted? My little honey, where's my little honey?

AABRIA: Little baby.

AIMEE: Okay, so I could go 20 feet?

AABRIA: Yeah.

AIMEE: Do we know where she is?

AABRIA: I would say-- Let's get a little something out on the field. Okay, for right now we're going to go old school and put a little dial there.

MATT: There you go.

AABRIA: There you go.

AIMEE: Okay.

AABRIA: Was looking through and trying to find blueprints.

AIMEE: Yeah, yeah, okay, so I got two options here. What I want to do is I'd like to go into that bookshelf or whatever he barked in and peer inside.

AABRIA: You're not going to be able to make it that far.

AIMEE: Right, okay.

AABRIA: If it's only 20 feet to move.

AIMEE: Great, so then what I'd like to do is maybe travel up the pant leg of the guy with the hammer. (laughter)

AABRIA: You can.

ROBBIE: Yes.

AABRIA: To what effect?

AIMEE: Oh, I'd like to bite him.

AABRIA: So remember, your familiar can't attack.

AIMEE: It says I can bite. No?

AABRIA: Right, but the Find Familiar spell says very specifically your familiar can't attack.

AIMEE: Okay, well then, if that's--

AABRIA: But can take other actions. So the strongest thing your familiar can do right now is give the help action to someone else. So they roll their attacks with advantage.

AIMEE: Oh okay, so who's next? Dariax?

AABRIA: Yep.

AIMEE: I'm going to give him the help.

AABRIA: Cool. So we can say that Ted 2's out there trying to do little chomps. It doesn't do damage.

AIMEE: No, it doesn't.

ERICA: (giggles)

AABRIA: But it's distracting.

AIMEE: Distracting.

AABRIA: So Dariax can get some good hits in.

AIMEE: I'll help Dariax then.

ERICA: I love trying to do a murder. Trying to do a little--

AIMEE: With a little fucking spider.

ROBBIE: He can't attack, but he can caress.

ANJALI: Yum, yum, yum!

AIMEE and ANJALI: Yum yum yum! (laughter)

ERICA: Ted 2 is the star of this entire show.

AABRIA: A hundred percent. Okay, so Dariax, you're up, and if you attack our hammer boy, you can do so with advantage.

MATT: All right, all right, then seeing all this go south very quickly I'm like--

ANJALI: It's so bad.

MATT: -- Man. I got to do everything. (laughter)

MATT: Turn the spear around and turn around to the buddy, see the spider crawl up the leg and be like: Looks like you got something going for your taint there, buddy.

AABRIA: "What?"

MATT: As soon as he looks down I take the spear and with the blunt end of it try and crack him in the face.

AABRIA and AIMEE: Yes!

AIMEE: Finally, baby!

MATT: We can manage...

AABRIA: Let's go!

MATT: All right. It's a 13. Other roll, yeah, that's 10.

AABRIA: Fuck.

MATT: Both miss. I go. All right, let's turn this around a little bit. I'm going to back away. Which I assume might give him an opportunity attack.

AABRIA: It is going to incur an opportunity attack.

MATT: That's fine.

AABRIA: How far back do you want to go?

MATT: I'm going to back up an additional 10 feet to be next to the bed there.

AABRIA: Yeah, okay. Let me get a little swingy thing on you. Does a nine hit?

MATT: Nine does not hit.

AIMEE: Yes!

AABRIA: Okay.

MATT: That's what I thought! All right, I'm going to spend a sorcery point to do Quicken Spell. Metamagic.

AABRIA: Ooh, yes!

MATT: On my Bless at 2nd-level.

AABRIA: Bless.

MATT: Which is going to--

AABRIA: I hate this spell so much.

MATT: I love it. (laughs)

AABRIA: Cool, cool, cool.

MATT: All right, friends! Take within you the guidance and glory of big cat statues! I'm going to throw my hands out in a big circle arc around me, like in a sparkle spin.

AIMEE: Oh, amazing.

MATT: I'm going to bless the four of you around me.

AABRIA: Aww!

AIMEE: (claps) Thank you.

ERICA: What does that mean?

MATT: So any attacks or saving throws you make, you get to add a d4 to it.

ERICA: Oh nice, that's amazing.

AABRIA: Incredible. A problem for the rest of my life.

MATT: I cast at you Bless, but thank you.

ERICA: I think we just live here now.

AABRIA: Yeah, this is--

ERICA: I think this is just our life.

AIMEE: It's like Poska's penthouse we took over. Well, it wasn't hers, but now it is.

AABRIA: You're up.

ROBBIE: All right. I'm feeling invigorated by Dariax's speech and then his little magic flare. I look up at the lizard man, who I know he's tough as shit, and I'm like: I've got a question for you. We're in a theater. Do you like to dance?

AABRIA: "We're not in a theater. We're in a--" (laughs)

ROBBIE: You know what I mean! (laughter)

AABRIA: "I mean, yes?"

ROBBIE: Then watch this.

AABRIA: "This feels like such a long interaction."

ROBBIE: It's long, yeah. (laughter)

ROBBIE: I'm trying to make it as weird for you as possible.

AABRIA: It works. He's like...

ROBBIE: You said pulpy in the breakdown. (laughter)

AABRIA: "There's a spider coming for my taint and you're asking me to dance. This is not going--"

ERICA: I like that he internalized that.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ERICA: It's coming for his taint.

AABRIA: Yeah, he's worried! (laughter)

ERICA: Yeah, exactly.

MATT: I'd be.

ROBBIE: From behind my little winged pauldron as I keep a lot of things there.

AABRIA: Eyy!

ROBBIE: I'm going to pop out this little vial full of phosphorescent crystal that's got a piece of filigree chain attached to it. I'm going to start swinging it around.

ERICA: Oh my god! (laughter)

ROBBIE: And do a little dance, but almost like poi at a festival, you know? It's going to suddenly start creating this psychedelic light. I'm going to cast Hypnotic Pattern.

AIMEE: Oh!

AABRIA: Incredible!

ROBBIE: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

ANJALI: That was so Coachella.

ROBBIE: It's a 14 wisdom save.

AABRIA: Surprising literally no one, the brain stats are not good for these boys. A 12 fails.

ROBBIE: Let's go. So that means--

MATT: Hell yeah.

ROBBIE: -- you are incapacitated and have a speed of zero that only ends if you take damage or someone else, one of your homies takes a chance to shake you out of it.

AABRIA: ♪ Take a chance ♪ He's out here. He puts his hammer down and leans on, he goes, "My claws can touch everything but themselves." (laughter)

ROBBIE: While he's into it I'm going to take my hand and wiggle it at him and I'm going to back away.

AABRIA: Yep.

ROBBIE: Up onto the sex pedestal with everybody.

AABRIA: Sex pedestal! (laughter)

ANJALI: I hear this behind me and I start-- Literally, I feel like everyone in the room is doing a double take, seeing Dorian becoming a Chippendale all of a sudden. Like, what is happening?

ROBBIE: Psychedelic Chippendale.

AABRIA: Somewhere Cyrus is like-- (laughter)

AABRIA: "Oh, who are those people?" We cut away.

ROBBIE: That'll end my turn.

AABRIA: All right. No bonus action?

ROBBIE: I mean...

AABRIA: Sir, if you do not use your action economy, I will bury you.

ANJALI: Please use it.

ROBBIE: I know, but I did my move.

AABRIA: We're going to learn today!

ERICA: Punished for our words, for our action economy.

AABRIA: "I don't want to use my flourishes." If you don't, you die.

ANJALI: Could do something fancy.

ROBBIE: But I didn't attack, so I can't--

AABRIA: No, I know. I'm just saying.

ROBBIE: I'm still limited in what I can do.

AABRIA: ♪ Better smoke them if you've got them ♪

ROBBIE: I want to save it for flourishes later hopefully because he's mean and tough.

AABRIA: Yeah, later.

ROBBIE: I'm done. I'm going to call it.

AABRIA: He is incredible.

ROBBIE: I'm going to call it.

AABRIA: All right, next up are my boys. So this little guy. What's the meanest, oh he's incapacitated.

ROBBIE: He's incapacitated, move speed of zero. He's entranced!

ERICA: He's entranced by your hips.

AABRIA: Does he have a chance to break out of it on his turn or no?

AIMEE: Next turn.

ROBBIE: Okay, each... creat-- Let's see...

ANJALI: (giggles)

ROBBIE: No. "The spell ends for the affected creature if it takes damage or if someone else uses an action to shake the creature out of his stupor."

AABRIA: Incredible.

ERICA: Wow. That's amazing.

ROBBIE: I don't see it on his turn.

ANJALI: Don't attack him.

ROBBIE: I don't think so.

ANJALI: Don't attack him.

AIMEE: Don't attack him.

ROBBIE: Don't attack him.

AABRIA: He remains vibing. My big boy here is going to go after Mor again. Two swings. The first one's a 12.

ERICA: That's a no.

AIMEE: Yes!

AABRIA: No. The next one is an 18.

ERICA: That does hit, but I'm going to use Silvery Barbs.

AABRIA: Ooh.

ERICA: Which means that you have to reroll and use the lower roll.

AABRIA: Um. (oohing)

AABRIA: With a natural three, he misses twice.

ERICA: I get to choose someone to give advantage on their next attack roll or save.

AABRIA: So what does that look like as you interrupt his heavy sword swings?

ERICA: Wait, I don't know how this-- I mean, does it--

AABRIA: You can just decide.

ERICA: Okay.

AABRIA: So the intention of the spell is something you do interrupts his action.

ERICA: Okay. Oh, I go: You're so big! (forced laughs) (laughter)

ERICA: I go: Oh wow, you're so big! And I look over at Opal I go: And Opal, you're amazing!

AIMEE: Thanks! Oh my god!

ERICA: It's just tears and she's like, (fake laughs)

AIMEE: Get up here on this bed with us! Get on the sex bed!

ERICA: So you have advantage on your next attack roll--

AIMEE: Thank you.

ERICA: -- ability check, or saving throw, within a minute, so one round again.

AABRIA: Brilliant.

ERICA: Cool.

AABRIA: That's his turn. Next up is my big guy here. He's going to attempt to do a hurt. To the monk. 16 to hit?

ANJALI: Yep.

AABRIA: Second swing.

ANJALI: Not happy.

AABRIA: It's higher than that.

ANJALI: Fuck.

AABRIA: As he comes through and he's actually going to bash you with his shield first.

ANJALI: Okay.

AABRIA: Just to knock you back. Give me a strength saving throw.

ANJALI: 15.

AABRIA: Let's see. Yeah... You get knocked back and stagger. Then he follows through with the scimitar in his other hand. You're going to take a total of 14 points of damage. It's a mixture of bludgeoning and piercing damage. As you stagger back this way, leaving just enough room--

ANJALI: Damn it.

AABRIA: -- for the new combatants to enter the field.

ROBBIE: Plural?

ERICA: Whoa!

AABRIA: As reinforcements--

AIMEE: Oh, for fuck's sake.

AABRIA: -- pour out.

AIMEE: Four?!

ERICA: Pour out.

AABRIA: No pour out.

AIMEE: Oh. (laughter)

AABRIA: It's just two.

AIMEE: Four!

MATT: It's "just two."

AIMEE and ERICA: Just two.

AABRIA: It's just two more guys.

ROBBIE: They look a little shorter.

AABRIA: They're a little shorter. They were able to fit through a cabinet.

ROBBIE: Yeah yeah, fair enough.

AABRIA: They're little guys.

ERICA: They're cabinet boys.

AIMEE: I'm going to send Ted 2 after those fuckers.

AABRIA: Yeah, you'll get them. They come through and that's the entirety of their action. They will act at the top of the next-- on the next round. So next up is Mor.

ERICA: Is it actually all stone?

AABRIA: Where?

ERICA: Just the whole room? Is the room stone? It's not wood?

AABRIA: It appears to be stone.

ERICA: Oh my god.

MATT: (laughs)

AABRIA: Make a... investigation check for me.

AIMEE: Investigate.

ERICA: Okay. That's a three-- a four.

MATT: But you do have advantage.

ERICA: I do have advantage, so I'm going to use that.

AABRIA: Please do.

ERICA: 20! Natty 20!

MATT: There we go.

AABRIA: Oh my god. (cheering)

ERICA: I can see...

AIMEE: Clearly now!

ROBBIE: Everything!

ERICA: Everyone's thoughts, I can see them. (laughter)

AABRIA: You look around this room and it certainly does look like stone. Then you realize it looks like stone. There's one area in particular, with a natural 20, right next to you. This inlaid bit of stone covered in a beautiful serpentine Gordian knot that only looks like stone. You don't know what it is, but that sure as shit ain't rock.

ERICA: Okay. Great, I note that.

AABRIA: I mean, it's also interesting to note that he has very specifically interposed himself between you and it.

ERICA: Okay.

AABRIA: He kept trying to knock you back and away from this corner of the room.

ERICA: I kind of want to use... Everything just went out of my brain. I kind of want to use--

AABRIA: No thoughts.

ERICA: -- Burning Hands.

AABRIA: Okay.

ERICA: But it also ignites things.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ERICA: But if it looks like stone, I mean everything's stone. Except that one thing. You know what, I'm going to use Burning Hands. It's fine.

AABRIA: Okay.

ERICA: Okay, so it is a dex save.

AABRIA: Okay.

ERICA: Dex 12.

AABRIA: Dex 12. It's got 13 on the dice. So he's going to make it, but he still takes half damage?

ERICA: Half damage, yeah, so 3d6. It's a six.

AABRIA: Okay.

ERICA: And a one. And a five.

AABRIA: Actually, you know what? Here's what I'm going to say. He'll take the full damage because he doesn't move out of the way.

ERICA: Oh.

AABRIA: You're able to catch the edge of this very clearly wooden sofa bench, and the area, and the rug, but you see your fire hits that stone tile. Doesn't necessarily catch.

ERICA: Okay, cool. So he takes 12 fire damage.

AABRIA: Perfect. He absolutely wears it.

ERICA: Cool, and then I'm actually going to take my cunning action to disengage.

AABRIA: Cool. Which direction do you want to move in?

ERICA: Back.

AABRIA: What does that mean?

ERICA: Back. Just away.

AABRIA: Sex pedestal? Where do you want to go?

ERICA: Yeah, yeah!

AIMEE: Get us all on the sex pedestal.

AABRIA: On the sex pedestal.

AIMEE: Sex ped.

ROBBIE: And make us one big target. (laughter)

AIMEE: That's a good strategy, baby!

AABRIA: Beautiful target.

AIMEE: The Crown Keepers.

AABRIA: Sweet.

ERICA: And me!

AABRIA: Is that it for your turn?

ERICA: Yeah, I think that's all I can do.

AABRIA: You hear-- I'm going to offer it to you for free, Dorian. Just very faintly. "Oh no, oh no, oh no!" From your brother at the bottom of the stairs.

ROBBIE: Fuck. "Oh no, oh no, oh no"?

AABRIA: Then crashing through the door.

AIMEE: What?

AABRIA: I got to move this little guy out the way.

AIMEE: Little spidey?

AABRIA: Little spidey, he's great. We know what he's doing. He's hanging out.

AIMEE: Just in the junk.

AABRIA: As three people, just normal looking people, bum rush into the room.

ANJALI: Oh--

AIMEE: Who are the people?

AABRIA: They immediately start attacking the man with the hammer. Hits. Hits. Miss.

ROBBIE: Who are they?

AIMEE: Yeah, tell us.

ROBBIE: Who are they?

AIMEE: Tell us, tell us!

ROBBIE: Who are they?

ERICA: Have they come to help us?

AABRIA: They all swarm--

ROBBIE: They must die.

AABRIA: -- this massive man with his hammer and take him down. Slit his throat and stand up. They point their blades out at all of you. "You're going to lose your names or your heads tonight."

AIMEE: Fuck.

AABRIA: As three Nameless One assassins--

AIMEE: Okay, okay, okay, okay!

AABRIA: -- join the fight.

AIMEE: Goddamn it.

AABRIA: So this guy, your Hexblade's Curse-- Yes, but what happens when your Hexblade enemy--

AIMEE: I get--

AABRIA: -- dies.

AIMEE: -- 10 hit points!

AABRIA: There you go.

AIMEE: Yay! Love that for me, thanks, everybody.

MATT: Temporary hit points?

AIMEE: Temp? Temp?

AABRIA: No? Is it temp?

AIMEE: Or regular?

MATT: Or is it just heal up?

AABRIA: I think it's just heals up.

MATT: No, it's just heal up for them, you're right.

AABRIA: I think you just heal 10.

AIMEE: But can I add or no? Because I'm good--

MATT: Well, no, because if you're maxed then it's used.

AIMEE: Oh, I'm maxed out.

ERICA: No, 10 hit points permanently, I'm pretty sure.

ROBBIE: Yeah, forever. (laughter)

AABRIA: I'm going to have to hit you more. That's fine. That's on me.

AIMEE: Can I have it in my pocket? Okay.

AABRIA: That's on me.

AIMEE: All right, all right, all right, all right.

AABRIA: Okay, so you have more combatants in the fight, but they're not just fighting you.

AIMEE: Great.

AABRIA: Next up, Fy'ra Rai.

ANJALI: So I am going to-- The dude farthest from me, how far is he?

AABRIA: Farthest from you over here?

ANJALI: No, no, I'm sorry, the dudes-- of the three dudes that are by the cupboard.

AABRIA: Oh, the very farthest one is 20 feet away.

ANJALI: Okay, I want to get to a point where there is, like-- I am the center of a 15-foot square--

AABRIA: Yeah, I hear you.

ANJALI: -- that includes all three of them and perhaps the cupboard. No, no, no, within them.

AABRIA: I understand. I can't put you at a goofy angle because you'll fall off.

ANJALI: Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, but you understand what I'm saying.

AABRIA: Assume if you're here, then you can hit all of these.

ANJALI: Can I also hit the cupboard?

AABRIA: Yes.

ANJALI: Excellent.

AABRIA: I'll give you the cupboard, too.

ANJALI: I'm going to use three ki points.

AABRIA: Okay.

ANJALI: So I'm going to cast this at a higher level.

AABRIA: Okay.

ANJALI: 2nd-level. I'm going to take one fist and I'm going to pound the floor and cast Thunderwave.

AIMEE: Yeah, bitch!

AABRIA: Amazing, let's go. I have to make some saves, I think.

ANJALI: Yes, you have con saves.

AABRIA: Constitution, one passes, what's my-- What's my DC? I had one with a natural 19 on the dice.

ANJALI: Where do I find that? Spells, Thunderwave. Con, it just says 13.

AABRIA: 13, okay. The second one fails. Third one makes it. They're all pretty con beefy.

ANJALI: Okay.

AABRIA: So just the guy in the middle fails.

ANJALI: Okay.

AABRIA: And a construct is a construct and will just take the full damage.

ANJALI: Great. So on the failed save, they will take

AABRIA: Perfect.

ANJALI: The failed saves are pushed 10 feet away from me.

AABRIA: Yeah. They get slammed back into the wall.

AIMEE: Oh, yeah! Oh, I thought into the thing. Celebrated too soon. Too soon.

ANJALI: 3d8 damage.

AABRIA: Okay, you have to roll that.

ANJALI: Oh, I have to roll it myself, you don't do it.

AABRIA: That's on you.

ANJALI: That's my job, guys--

AABRIA: I'll just lie and be like, "It was three points."

ANJALI: That's also a six-sided die. I play this game.

AABRIA: Oopy.

ANJALI: I know things! I do things.

AABRIA: You're good. I don't know what dice are.

ANJALI: One, that's five. That's seven, 12. Another seven, 19. For the people who failed.

AABRIA: Okay.

ANJALI: Half of that for the people, so nine for the people who--

AABRIA: Okay. I'm going to say that 19 is enough to destroy the cabinet.

ANJALI: Excellent.

AABRIA: My new guy, he's hurting, but still up. I'm assuming the other two take half of that?

ANJALI: Correct.

AABRIA: Rounded down, so they'll take nine.

ANJALI: So that is my one action. Then as a bonus action, I would like to-- When I don't use melee attack as my action, can I still use an unarmed strike as my bonus action?

AABRIA: I don't think so.

MATT: I don't think you can.

ANJALI: In that case, (high-pitched) as my bonus action, I will change my voice.

AABRIA: Perfect.

ANJALI: As my--

AABRIA: Everyone, drift in accents with me.

ANJALI: (laughs) Fuck me. As my bonus action, I will spend one more ki point to-- To disengage?

AABRIA: You're not engaged with any of them.

ANJALI: Okay, so then-- Fuck.

AABRIA: You would've taken an attack of opportunity to get away, though. Good, a natural one, that's fine.

ANJALI: Nobody else has to go besides these new people, right?

AABRIA: Huh?

ANJALI: Those guys have already-- all three of those dudes have already gone?

AABRIA: Yeah, they fully merc-ed the hammer boy. I think they're doing a great job. Granted, he was just--

ANJALI: Damn it, okay, I'm sorry.

AABRIA: -- piggy dipping over in the corner.

ANJALI: Learning is hard. I will spend one more ki point to take the dodge action. Since those three-- the three--

AABRIA: Good call.

ANJALI: Yeah.

AABRIA: Okay. Perfect, Opal, you're up.

AIMEE: Okay, this is, again, real dumb. I'm going to turn around and face our new friends. And I'm going to cast Hunger of Hadar on their asses. Hopefully, that will take care of the problem of the open door. Anybody that comes through that door will have to deal with that, yes?

AABRIA: 100%, okay.

AIMEE: Okay, not stupid?

AABRIA: Can you describe for me-- hey, hey, don't look at them, look at me.

AIMEE: I'm like, "Is that stupid?"

AABRIA: That's incredible, and I need you to describe what your Hunger of Hadar looks like.

AIMEE: Okay. Does it have to-- Okay, I think what I would like it to look like--

AABRIA: Yes!

AIMEE: -- is I think whatever oozy, nasty-- oh, also, she still looks like what's his face, like one of the guards.

AABRIA: Sure.

AIMEE: Would it cost anything to change back into my scary self?

AABRIA: For this, no, you're good.

AIMEE: Okay, I'm going to change back to my scary self. Hopefully, scaring them with my looks. Then I'm going to have that whatever stained hands I have, I'll just shoot out this disgusting substance that will just make it very unpleasant and dark, right?

AABRIA: And dark.

AIMEE: They're going to be trapped in whatever it is plus also the black ooze.

AABRIA: Amazing. So you all watch as Opal drops her disguise and she's oozing and covered with black ichor and she sends it out. A single droplet leaves her fingertips and splashes on the ground in front of those three assassins and it spreads out and pools and starts sending up sticky tendrils that look like spiderwebs but wet and dark and moaning.

ROBBIE: Excuse me, moaning?

AABRIA: Yeah. And it really--

ANJALI: Delicious.

AIMEE: Not delicious moaning. Painful moaning.

ANJALI: Yeah, no, I'm-- it's--

AABRIA: Opal, I need you to make a charisma saving throw.

AIMEE: Okay.

AABRIA: Difficulty of 17.

ERICA: I gave you advantage, remember.

AIMEE: Oh, yeah, thank you. All right, do I-- Oh, I'm going to need it. Do I add anything to that? Oh, yeah, that.

AABRIA: Yeah, it's a charisma save.

AIMEE: Okay, here we go.

MATT: You get to add a d4 because of Bless.

AIMEE: Oh, Bless!

ANJALI: Oh, I forgot.

AIMEE: Okay, so that is-- Goddamn it! Same thing! Okay, so, okay. d4.

AABRIA: I love stress math. That's how you know it's going well.

AIMEE: 20.

AABRIA: With a 20, you feel inside your own mind, arms wrapping lovingly around you.

AIMEE: Thanks, bitch.

AABRIA: "Very good. They're mine now."

AIMEE: Take them.

AABRIA: You hear a little, a little laugh, but none of you hear that. It's just inside Opal now. They are covered. They're blinded and deafened and in horrifying darkness. Also, probably don't walk that way, just a thought. Anything else with your bonus action or movement?

AIMEE: I don't think I can do anything. I think I'm all out of bonus actions so I will stay put in my spot up there.

AABRIA: Perfect, okay. Next up is your familiar.

AIMEE: Okay, oh, and, okay, so I'll have Ted crawl out of that man's pant leg.

ERICA: (laughs)

AABRIA: Hold on. How much damage does it do? Because anything that starts-- That man died where you set your Hunger of Hadar.

AIMEE: Right.

AABRIA: So how much damage is dealt to something that starts--

AIMEE: Oh, for fuck's sake, I'll tell you in a minute.

AABRIA: Yeah.

AIMEE: "Any creature that starts its turn in the area takes 2d6 cold damage," my poor Ted 2.

AABRIA: Go ahead and roll your cold damage,

AIMEE: Okay.

AABRIA: For your own familiar.

ROBBIE: You got to roll to kill your own familiar?

AIMEE: My familiar.

AABRIA: I'm going to make you kill your own familiar.

AIMEE: Oh, please roll poorly for the first fucking time. (laughter)

AIMEE: That's a seven.

AABRIA: How many hit points does--

AIMEE: I'll tell you.

AABRIA: -- your familiar have.

AIMEE: Come on, bitch. Don't fail me now. How many, what?

AABRIA: How many hit points does your spider have?

AIMEE: Oh.

ROBBIE: How much?

AIMEE: One. (laughter)

ERICA: Oh my god.

AIMEE: I'm so sorry, Ted 2. I love you.

AABRIA: It just blinks out of existence.

ANJALI: Oh no!

AABRIA: All right, we tried.

AIMEE: She'll come back.

AABRIA: The Spider Queen goes, "You can have it back when we're done killing."

AIMEE: Okay, thanks.

AABRIA: Okay, well that takes something off the board, which is nice for me. Dariax, you're up.

MATT: All right.

AIMEE: One hit point.

AABRIA: Yeah, he's just a little guy.

ANJALI: He's a good little creeper, though.

MATT: Morri, these friends of yours? Pointing at the three individuals that came in, slit a throat, are now covered in black ichor. No?

AABRIA: (laughs)

ERICA: No.

MATT: Okay.

ERICA: No.

ROBBIE: Me?

MATT: Are they friends or foe?

ROBBIE: No!

MATT: All right, he goes and picks his nose and flings it and casts Fireball in the far corner.

AIMEE: Yay! (cheering)

MATT: You watch as this errant booger begins to turn brighter and brighter, glowing red, this ember--

ANJALI: Oh god, no! Fire booger!

MATT: -- that just arcs over into the dark corner then-- (explosions) I was going to hold off on that, but I figured the Thunderwave made enough noise that shit's going to be-- If anyone can hear anything, they've heard it now, so I'm like, all right. Explodes in the far corner.

AABRIA: Yes, incredible.

ANJALI: Fire booger.

AABRIA: Okay.

AIMEE: Fire booger for the win.

AABRIA: The best part is they don't get to see it coming. Let's make our dex saves with disadvantage.

MATT: This is bad already.

AABRIA: Does a 13 make it?

MATT: Nope.

AABRIA: I will take all of those. Do you need extra d6s, Matthew? Do you have enough?

MATT: I have enough.

AABRIA: Okay.

MATT: That is--

AABRIA: How much damage?

MATT: (laughs) 35 points of fire damage. (yelling)

AIMEE: Bye.

ANJALI: (air horn) That's our little death dwarf!

ANJALI and AIMEE: (air horn)

AABRIA: I know you already started, but you fully merc the three of them in one go. So how do you want to do this?

ALL: Whoa! (clapping, cheering)

ERICA: Oh my god.

MATT: As it detonates in the corner, the spattering of black and flame consuming the doorway as it slowly subsides and their charred husks are on the ground left behind and the door is just blackened and cindering, about to fall off the hinges.

AABRIA: Yeah.

MATT: I-- Look back over at you and be like, all right. Double checking, they weren't your friends, right?

ERICA: No!

MATT: Okay, good.

ERICA: No, they weren't.

MATT: Okay, good. That guy, also probably not a friend?

ERICA: No. None of them! None.

AABRIA: As you point, he looks over, he's like, "Thanks, though?"

MATT: I'm confused. That's my turn.

AABRIA: You guys did a murder to those guys.

MATT: Wait, no, that's not my turn. Because that's my action. I'm going to spend another--

AABRIA: Let's go!

MATT: Another sorcery point--

ANJALI: Come on, baby.

ROBBIE: Let's go!

MATT: -- to quicken spell once again. I'm going to cast a Sacred Flame at the dude I was just pointing over there. He's like: Not your friend? Cool. I snap my fingers and this blast of radiant energy just-- circles around him briefly.

AABRIA: What's my save?

MATT: 15 dex.

AABRIA: Doesn't make it.

MATT: All righty.

ANJALI: Oh, buddy.

ERICA: Where was this?

MATT: 11 points of radiant damage to him.

AABRIA: Ow! Matt.

ERICA: Where was all this?

MATT: Drunk in a game of chance! But you see when we get moving, we're not too bad, right?

ERICA: Yeah, absolutely.

MATT: Not very quiet.

ERICA: No.

MATT: But definitely not very quiet, but we get the job done.

ERICA: Yes, I can see that.

AABRIA: Incredible. Okay. (yells) Are you done now?

AIMEE: (giggles)

MATT: What? (laughs) (laughter)

ROBBIE: You asked.

AABRIA: I did.

MATT: Yeah, you know what? I'm feeling pretty confident watching him get burned a bit.

AABRIA: Yeah.

MATT: I'm going to put my spear under my arm.

AIMEE: Oh, sorry.

MATT: I had it coming. Under my arm, I'm going to, while still looking at you, I'm going to rotate around and move up to get to the front of that dude--

AABRIA: Yes, do you want to come off the sex pedestal?

MATT: Yes, I do. I'm going to step off the sex pedal to get right in his face.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ANJALI: Do it!

AABRIA: Incredible.

MATT: That's my turn.

AABRIA: Love it, okay, we're back up to the top. Dorian, you're up.

ANJALI: Jesus Christ.

ROBBIE: Blown away by what I've seen. (laughter)

ROBBIE: Back to back with my friends on the sexy pedestal. I'm feeling like the tides have shifted and at the top of my lungs, I begin a soliloquy.

ANJALI: Yes! (laughter)

ROBBIE: I say: Look at what our friend has accomplished! Together we can do anything! We are the Crown Keepers and we shall not be defeated! This is my horrible attempt at Motivational Speech. I am doing my best to inspire. I'll choose all four of my homies. (awwing)

ROBBIE: You guys will all get five temporary hit points.

AIMEE: Wow!

ROBBIE: For an hour. This spell will stick with you until you lose those hit points. If you get tagged, you'll get advantage on your next attack roll. So if you take an attack, you get advantage on your next attack roll.

AIMEE: Wow.

ROBBIE: That's how that works.

ANJALI: Wait, if we take an attack--

ROBBIE: If you take damage--

AIMEE: We get hit.

ROBBIE: -- by an attack, on your next turn, you get advantage on your roll.

ANJALI: Nice.

MATT: That's great.

ROBBIE: You all got five temporary hit points. Ha!

AIMEE: Thanks, Dorian.

ROBBIE: You feel it? Does everyone feel it?

AIMEE: I feel it!

MATT: I feel it!

ROBBIE: Yes, yes!

MATT: I feel it!

ROBBIE: I'm going to break back around and I'll stand side by side with Dariax.

AABRIA: Oh, buddies! Okay, we just, use my brain. Use your brain to pretend that you're--

ROBBIE: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

AABRIA: -- in cool spots.

ROBBIE: We're there.

AABRIA: Amazing, all right. That was beautiful and glorious, and now my bad boys are up. You've absolutely devastated what was supposed to be a wipe. So now I got to go and try harder. First guy is going to run past you, Fy'ra Rai. Try to go for Opal, so give me an attack, actually--

ANJALI: Can I get--

AABRIA: Yeah, I'll say because I put you at a jaunty angle, this would trigger an attack of opportunity.

ANJALI: Great.

AABRIA: As he walks by.

ANJALI: Oh, sorry. I get what a d4 looks like?

ANJALI: Well, mine look like little swords now. These fancy ones with roses in them. Sorry.

AABRIA: They're so cute.

ANJALI: I distract myself.

AABRIA: No, you're good.

AIMEE: I distract.

ANJALI: Plus four, 10 plus eight. 18. Does not hit.

AABRIA: 18 does not hit. As he smobs past you and is going to attempt a two-- A two-weapon beat down on... Opal, does a 15 and a 19 hit you?

AIMEE: The 19 hits, not the 15.

AABRIA: Okay. All right. Then he's going to come and shield bash you off of the bed for seven points of bludgeoning damage. Give me a strength saving throw. Let's see if you go a-tumblin'.

AIMEE: Okay. Is this the right one, no, this one. You said what, a strength?

AABRIA: Yeah.

AIMEE: Oh, for fuck's sake, a four!

AABRIA: You go off and get knocked prone onto the ground.

AIMEE: Okay, so what does that mean if I'm prone, I have to--

AABRIA: You're going to use half of your movement to stand up.

AIMEE: Okay, thank you.

AABRIA: But no other deleterious effect.

ANJALI: What, to de-prone?

AIMEE: Yes.

ANJALI: Is that what you said? Un-prone myself?

AIMEE: De-prone.

ANJALI: To un-prone myself.

AABRIA: Okay, let's--

ANJALI: I like that.

AABRIA: We're going to have this guy come up and--

AIMEE: She said seven, right?

AABRIA: He's going to come up here.

ANJALI: Correct.

AABRIA: And attempt to fight you.

AIMEE: Do I get to attack him with attack of opportunity as well?

AABRIA: So you only get one because you get a reaction.

ANJALI: Like I said, I don't get an attack of opportunity--

AABRIA: Right, but he also is staying in melee with you because the point is he's here to attack you.

ANJALI: Yes, that's fine.

AABRIA: Okay, the first one is a 17 to hit.

ANJALI: I have dodge, so--

AABRIA: And 19 on the die for much higher.

ANJALI: Both of them hit, but I have dodge. Does that do anything for me?

AABRIA: That's right. You took the dodge action.

ANJALI: I took the dodge action.

AABRIA: Yep, okay. First attack is going to miss instead. Second attack still hits.

ANJALI: Okay. Sweet.

AABRIA: So this is another warhammer carrying mofo and you take 10 points of bludgeoning damage. Straight across the face.

ANJALI: That's okay because I got those five extra hit points and I'm me, I'm a little--

AIMEE: And I'm me.

ANJALI: And I'm me. I'm just angry now!

AABRIA: You know what? We're going to put a smite on it.

ANJALI: Fuck me, I shouldn't have said that out loud.

ROBBIE: I have a question. If she has five hit points, the temporary ones, should she lose those first?

AABRIA: Yeah, you always take off the temporary hit points first--

AIMEE: Then it cuts in.

ROBBIE: Actual health, so you really took five off your max, but the spell drops for mine, I think, yeah.

AABRIA: For now.

ROBBIE: Everybody else still has it, but the spell is over for you.

ANJALI: I will get advantage on my next attack.

AABRIA: You're going to take another six points of radiant damage.

ANJALI: But when that happens.

AABRIA: Mm-hmm. My-- as, as-- Where does he hit me?

AABRIA: He was going right across your face again.

ANJALI: As he does, the tattoos on my face flare a bright white, and I cut that damage in half.

AABRIA: All right, here's the thing.

ANJALI: Oh, but that was a reaction. Fuck me. All right, that's fine.

AABRIA: But I like it. So I'm going to allow it.

ANJALI: Oh, okay.

AABRIA: All right.

ANJALI: So what was the damage, originally?

AABRIA: Oh, it was six points of radiant damage.

ANJALI: So it's now--

AABRIA: Cut it in half and store the other half. Do you want to tell me... Okay, so your tattoos flare white.

ANJALI: It flares--

AABRIA: What do they normally look like? What is the pattern?

ANJALI: They're normally gold. They're normally, like--

AABRIA: Well, what's the pattern?

ANJALI: The pattern looks like glyphs and sigils, like writing.

AABRIA: Nice.

ANJALI: This particular one, as it flares up, the words start to look like they change a little bit and then they go back to normal after.

AABRIA: The configuration on your face changes as those general sigils and signs align to something that calls radiant damage to it and keeps it and they flare and they go back to gold, but they still seem to hold a little bit of that sparkling radiant light, as your upgraded tattoo is activated. My last boy in the corner, where can he get to? Nowhere else interesting, so he's got to go for you.

ANJALI: Yeah, that's fine.

AABRIA: He's going to run up and he's also going to try to hit you.

AIMEE: Oh god.

AABRIA: Do 14s hit?

ANJALI: No!

AIMEE: Yeah, baby.

AABRIA: Oh, and I was still, you're still taking dodges ♪ so it would be lower, except those were ♪ natural 20s and I wish I hadn't seen it. ♪ Hate. Tilted. The other guy runs up and just whoosh, whoosh, fully misses you as he's just-- He got his bell rung from getting smacked against the wall, and he's seeing two of you right now. You know, like if your twin sister was here.

ANJALI: It happens.

AABRIA: Incredible. All right, that's the end of their turn. Now we've got, oh my god, the assassins are fully dead. Mor, you're up.

AIMEE: Yes.

ERICA: Okay, cool. I'm going to give myself advantage. I'm going to use sneak attack and give myself-- Wait, no, that's not correct. That's not correct, it's another S thing, Steady Aim--

AABRIA: Okay.

ERICA: -- to give myself advantage and I'm going to-- Wait, so, sorry--

AABRIA: Now, for what it's worth, you can also trigger Sneak Attack when your allies are in melee with someone, because they're distracted, having a fight. So you don't have to Steady Aim, you can just run up and do a hit.

ERICA: Oh, wait, you're right.

AABRIA: And not kill your movement.

ERICA: Yes, if I hit, though, you know what I mean?

AABRIA: That's always how it works.

ERICA: Yeah.

AABRIA: If you hit, baby.

ERICA: If you hit, baby.

MATT: Now, if you want to, if you were running the flank rules at all--

AABRIA: Yeah, let's run them. I love it.

MATT: If you want to get behind the guy and we're both on each side, that can give you advantage on your attacks, as well.

ERICA: You-- oh cool, yeah, I'll do that.

AABRIA: I love flanking rules.

ERICA: Sounds like a plan. I'm going to go at him with my rapier.

AABRIA: Let's go. Make your attacks with advantage.

ERICA: A 14.

AABRIA: Don't forget Bless.

MATT: Get that d4.

AABRIA: Fucking Bless!

ERICA: Ooh, well, I think I've-- because 14, 15 (counting) that's 21 without the d4. Can I save the d4 or does it automatically--

AABRIA: It just happens every time. Until I can knock the Bless off of him, you get it.

ERICA: Okay, great, so that's just really-- I forgot the number that I said?

MATT: 21.

AABRIA: Oh, I didn't attack with my other guy.

ERICA: That's 22.

AABRIA: I'll do that. Huh?

ERICA: 22.

AABRIA: 22 damage?

ERICA: No, 22 to hit.

AABRIA: Yeah, okay, to hit (laughs).

ERICA: Okay, great.

AIMEE: You're like what?

AABRIA: Like, excuse me?

ERICA: Yeah.

AABRIA: Don't kill him, I forgot to make him fight.

ERICA: Yeah, because that's going to be-- That equals four. That's a six, seven, eight, nine, 10, and get to add 3d6.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ERICA: Yeah.

MATT: Hell yeah.

ERICA: So that's a two, and a three, and a one.

AABRIA: Oh no!

ERICA: So cool, 16.

AABRIA: Nice.

ERICA: Cutting damage.

MATT: Hell yeah.

ANJALI: Cutting damage.

AABRIA: Yeah, this guy is looking extremely rough.

ERICA: Yeah.

AABRIA: He's still up and I'm going to retroactively give him his turn. You came up.

MATT: Yeah, yeah.

AABRIA: With your cute little, your little spear thing, so he's going to go for you.

MATT: What of it?

AABRIA: Two attacks.

MATT: Bring it on.

AABRIA: That's twin 13s plus four, 17 to hit.

MATT: Yeah, boy-- that hits.

AABRIA: Okay.

ROBBIE: (laughs)

MATT: Yeah, yeah, I said bring it on, I invited it in. I only have myself to blame.

ANJALI: Very chivalrous.

MATT: I try, you know, I'm a giver.

AABRIA: 18 points.

AIMEE: Ooh.

MATT: 18 points of damage?

AABRIA: Of slashing.

MATT: On one hit, or--?

AABRIA: Oh, it's across both of them. So it would be six and 12, yeah, all right, go ahead.

MATT: All right, so--

AABRIA: Make your concentration checks.

MATT: So that was a natural one, but thankfully, I have advantage because I took War Caster feat at 4th level.

AABRIA: Dammit!

ANJALI: Yes!

MATT: That puts me at--

AABRIA: It's the best feat.

MATT: 15, 18 for one.

AABRIA: Perfect.

MATT: The other one is-- Yeah, we're good.

AABRIA: You're fine.

MATT: We're good.

AABRIA: Cool, cool, cool. Just take your damage and go, Matthew. (laughter)

MATT: Okay.

AIMEE: Pack it up.

MATT: 18 total you said, right?

AABRIA: Yes, 18 total. War Caster, never leave home without it. Your stupid Bless that I can't get rid of. All right, he's on his last legs. They are done, Mor just went. Fy'ra Rai, you are up. Opal, you're on deck.

ANJALI: Who looks the worst for wear of these three men?

AABRIA: The three in between you?

ANJALI: Yeah.

AABRIA: I'm going to say the original guy right here, Shield Bash McGee.

ANJALI: Actually, I could do one more thing. No, I'm going in. So I'm going to go to Shield Bash McGee, I'm going to just attack him.

AABRIA: Let's go.

ANJALI: Attack number one. 18 plus a gazillion hits.

AABRIA: A million, yeah, hits.

ANJALI: I'm going to go-- Nine plus eight, 17 plus four, 21.

AABRIA: Amazing.

ANJALI: And two unarmed-- Actually, do I have to say who I'm unarmed strike-- can I see if I knock him out with those first damages?

AABRIA: He's still up, but barely. So do you want to finish him off with unarmed strike?

ANJALI: Yeah, I haven't hit-- I haven't given damage yet.

AABRIA: Oh, sorry.

ANJALI: I just hit those two.

AABRIA: Never mind, I thought that was damage.

ANJALI: Can we see what the damage is?

AABRIA: Yeah.

ANJALI: What's your damage?

MATT: (laughs)

ANJALI: Stop it, what is your damage? What is my damage?

AABRIA: I love hearing a number and you're like, "Is that damage? I don't know, I'm just going to write it down."

ANJALI: What's my damage? Oh my god, you guys, why won't this close?

AIMEE: I'm going to ask my therapist that next session, "What's my damage?"

ANJALI: 1d6 plus five. Does Bless do damage or only saving throws?

MATT: Just to attack and saving throws.

ANJALI: 1d8, why are there two numbers here? Six and 13, so 19.

AABRIA: 19. Oh! Is there anything else you can do? He's swaying, but still standing.

ANJALI: I mean, I can unarmed strike him-- oh! (gibberish) (laughs) Yeah, I'm just going to unarmed strike him.

AABRIA: Go ahead. Finish him.

AIMEE: Finish.

ANJALI: Sweep the leg, fuck. Plus eight, plus-- No, that won't make, they're physically impossible, and then my second unarmed strike.

MATT: Did you add the d4?

ANJALI: I did, I added the d4 and my eight and it was 19 altogether. Math is hard. Fuck, no! (groaning)

AIMEE: Ay yi yi.

AABRIA: This guy is swaying, but still standing.

ANJALI: That is so sad.

MATT: Yep.

AABRIA: How much do you have stored in your tattoo right now?

ANJALI: Oh shit! I had three.

AABRIA: You did hit.

ANJALI: I did have three. You did ask if I had anything else and I do have three stored.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ANJALI: I would like to use my three on that 19.

AABRIA: Then go ahead and tell me, how do you want to do this as you finish him off?

ANJALI: Okay, so, thank god, so the first swipe cracks him in the neck.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ANJALI: The second one comes around to crack him in the other side of the neck, and as it does a bolt of radiant damage cuts through to his heart and he goes down.

AIMEE: That's my bitch.

AABRIA: Beautiful. He hits the ground and twitches, he just stops moving.

ANJALI: And I still have movement.

AABRIA: You do.

ANJALI: But I don't think I want to move. Can I just move so I am between, not disengaging, but move so I am, essentially, closer to them?

AABRIA: You can scooch back--

ANJALI: Yeah, exactly.

AABRIA: But you'll still be, yeah.

ANJALI: I want to prevent them from trying to go after anyone but me.

AABRIA: Okay, okay. I love that. Incredible. Opal, you're up.

AIMEE: I'm going to use half my movement to get the fuck up.

AABRIA: You get the fuck up!

AIMEE: There is-- is there a bad guy right there?

AABRIA: There's one right here.

AIMEE: Okay.

AABRIA: And two right here.

AIMEE: There's two right there. Okay, so I'm going to do my old favorite Eldritch Blast that first guy.

AABRIA: I love that for a warlock.

AABRIA: Which first guy?

AIMEE: That guy there. Do I have to pick my second one right away or can I wait to see if it hit?

AABRIA: You can wait to see.

AIMEE: Okay.

AABRIA: I love that for you.

AIMEE: Let's, oh my god, it got stuck in my shirt.

ANJALI: That was impressive.

AIMEE: Not good!

AABRIA: That was amazing.

AIMEE: (groans) I hate it here! That's an eight, right? Because I add the seven, so that's a one.

AABRIA: Don't forget to add your Bless. I understand that you rolled very badly, but just, generally speaking, don't forget your Bless.

AIMEE: I've already used my Bless, is it just the one?

AABRIA: It keeps going.

ROBBIE: It's there forever.

AABRIA: Until I can...

MATT: So that natural one could-- no.

AIMEE: A natural one could have done nothing. Okay, so no, it still doesn't do anything, right?

AABRIA: Yeah, I just need you to have the practice of--

AIMEE: Have it, ready to do it. I'm going to use another one.

AABRIA: First blast misses because you're scared of hitting your friends.

AIMEE: Here we go, here we go, here we go.

AABRIA: Second blast going to hit, I feel it in my heart.

ANJALI: Come on, no whammies, no whammies, no whammies.

AIMEE: Second blast, here we go.

ANJALI: Let's go!

ROBBIE: Power!

AIMEE: Okay, and then I add this?

ANJALI: Yeah.

AIMEE: Wait, but plus seven, yes?

AABRIA and ANJALI: Yeah.

AIMEE: Okay, so that's a 20 plus this bitch is a 23.

AABRIA: 23 hits. (cheering)

AABRIA: Roll your d10 plus four.

AIMEE: Yep, yep, yep, yep. That is a nine damage, right? That's what it says here?

AABRIA: Why are you pointing at me? I don't know.

AIMEE: That's a nine.

MATT: Yeah, it's a nine.

AABRIA: Yeah.

AIMEE: That's too low.

AABRIA: No, it's not. I said he was already on the ropes. How do you want to do this? (cheering)

AIMEE: Okay, so maybe the Eldritch Blast over the year has changed.

AABRIA: Ooh.

AIMEE: It used to be a mauve.

AABRIA: (laughs)

AIMEE: Well, it was a pink, then it was a mauve.

AABRIA: It was goth pink, I forgot, I forgot, yes.

AIMEE: It was a goth pink, but now it is just straight up, like-- It's black, but it has a little hint of a pink glitter. She hasn't gone all the way.

AABRIA: That's cute, though.

ERICA: Glittery Eldritch Blast.

AIMEE: Yeah.

AABRIA: I love it.

AIMEE: I feel like now she could do it with a flick of a finger.

AABRIA: Of course she can.

AIMEE: So she points at him, she flicks her finger and then that happens and then you can finish it off because you're better at that-- (laughter)

ANJALI: Aww.

AIMEE: -- than I am.

AABRIA: Aw, thanks. Yeah, you send off that pink glittery blast and first the blackness hits. Then, as almost lit from within, the glitter takes over and spreads across his chest. Again, in your ear, you hear this mixture. It's not just a triumphant cackle from the Spider Queen, but Ted, your warlock patron, the source of your power. They're reveling together in this united force of destruction.

ANJALI: Ooh.

AABRIA: Basically, it's just very nice girl's night.

AIMEE: Oh my god.

AABRIA: She got it.

AIMEE: Oh my god, besties.

AABRIA: So this very dark, spooky thing without, but inside they're like, "Get it, get it, get it, get it!" So you know, a little bit of dissonance.

AIMEE: Thanks, besties.

AABRIA: As he falls down and curls in on himself, going fetal immediately as he dies.

AIMEE: I guess, can I use the rest of my movement to get to where that fake stone is?

AABRIA: Do you know it's fake stone?

AIMEE: I guess not.

AABRIA: Do you want to head to the real-looking stone?

AIMEE: I would like to head to the real-looking stone.

AABRIA: Sure.

AIMEE: I just want to make sure he's dead.

AABRIA: All right, metagame. (laughter)

AIMEE: I just want to be like: Are you sure you're dead? Okay, he's dead.

AABRIA: Okay, and you walk past you're like, "Excuse me, excuse me."

ANJALI: I love this bear rug.

AABRIA: Perfect. Amazing. Next up is Dariax.

MATT: It's my turn already, all right, damn.

AABRIA: "Already," shut up. (laughter)

MATT: All right, as I watch this gentleman in front of me be disintegrated by black and pink glitter.

AABRIA: It's so pretty.

MATT: He's like: That was legitimately horrifying and gorgeous.

AIMEE: Thanks.

MATT: All right. Then I'll look across from you. We want to go finish these other guys?

ERICA: Sure, yeah.

MATT: All right, let's do it! I'm going to rush up onto the platform, spear out in front of me, and charge. (screams)

AABRIA: You want this guy or this guy?

MATT: That guy right there, where I hop up next to him. I'm going to take an attack against him.

AABRIA: Get him, get him, get him.

MATT: Natural one. (groaning)

AIMEE: No.

AABRIA: Honestly--

ROBBIE: The battle cry, did you do it? (groaning, laughter)

AIMEE: You awake?

MATT: I'm going to shake awake here for a second.

AABRIA: He's just a little tired.

MATT: A little bit, a little bit. (laughs) I just keep going past him (laughter)

MATT: For an additional five feet, like: Ha! Okay.

AABRIA: You go through on the other side.

ANJALI: Oh no.

MATT: Do better than me!

ANJALI: Baby boy.

ERICA: I'll try!

AABRIA: Amazing.

MATT: You know what, that's my turn.

AABRIA: Nothing else?

MATT: I'm going to save it.

AABRIA: Come on.

ANJALI: Gosh, what are we doing?

MATT: No, okay, fine. (cheering)

MATT: You convinced me.

AABRIA: Let's go.

MATT: He's going to spend a sorcery point. I'm going to--

AABRIA: Get it, get it, get it.

MATT: As I go past him, like: (panting) All right, fine. (poofs) Release a Sacred Flame as a bonus action into his face over my shoulder. Not even quite looking at him, just pah!

AABRIA: Incredible. What can you do with an eight?

MATT: I can do 15 points of radiant damage. (cheering)

AABRIA: I'm not even going to give-- No, I got to. How do you want to do this? (cheering)

AIMEE: Is that your third one today?

MATT: I think it's my second.

AIMEE: All right.

AABRIA: Incredible, my guys were so beefy. They were hard to hit and then you hit them good.

MATT: He's running past with the spear, it's like (whoosh). Believe in the cat statue. (poofs) I'm pretty sure it didn't work. So I turn around to take a weapon to the face and he's-- It's not even a cool "How do you want to do this?" He's on the ground. I'm like: Oh, it worked, hah! Hey, other guy, other guy then.

ERICA: Yeah!

AIMEE: Good job.

MATT: That's my turn.

AABRIA: Amazing. We're back up to the top. Dorian, you're up.

ROBBIE: Ah! So much has happened since I went to go pee. But not me, Dorian. I did, we did, too. (laughter) Maybe both. He might have, he might have.

AIMEE: Just a little bit.

AIMEE: Just a little bit in the pants.

AABRIA: Just a little bit.

ROBBIE: We only got one baddie left?

AABRIA: Yeah.

ANJALI: Come to our aid.

ROBBIE: Okay. I'll use-- (sighs) There's no threats. I'll use my movement to go up the stairs behind the bed and I'll use my action. As I go up, can I look at this guy? How's he look, how's he looking?

AABRIA: He's actually not that bad. His bell was rung a little bit, but he's still above half.

ROBBIE: Oh, okay. If I use all my distance how close can I get to him?

AABRIA: What's your full movement?

ROBBIE: 30.

AABRIA: Do you have anything that gives you extra movement?

ROBBIE: Nope.

ANJALI: Don't you have your--

AABRIA: That's not true.

ANJALI: -- dash, or?

ROBBIE: Do I not? I don't think I do, my feeties, I don't think they give me extra. Yeah, I think my flight speed's the same as--

AABRIA: I do think your feeties give you extra but don't you have a flourish that gives you extra movement?

ROBBIE: (sighs) Would I have to attack first?

ERICA: He's right there, right?

MATT: Yeah, he's on that space.

ROBBIE: You know what, I know what I'm going to do. I'll make my way up the stairs and I'll do a--

ALL: ♪ Makin' my way ♪

ROBBIE: (laughs) You.

AABRIA: Everyone calm down.

ROBBIE: Every single--

AABRIA: We're going to get YMCA-ed.

ROBBIE: This feels on-brand. I'm going to do a little tuck and roll. I'm going to pop up from behind the bed and I'm going to throw my handaxe at his dome.

MATT: Hell yeah. (cheering)

AABRIA: Amazing. Also, your Blade Flourish, whenever you take the action on your turn, your walking speed increases by 10 feet until the end of your next turn, which would catch this because you attacked on your-- No, you gave a speech.

ROBBIE: Yeah, I gave a speech. Yeah, I know, I know. All right.

AABRIA: Sorry, I tried. You threw it, you threw it, you threw it.

ROBBIE: I'm going to throw my axe.

AABRIA: Yeah, throw it. You know, it's going to take 20 to do it.

ROBBIE: I'll actually take it.

AABRIA: Ooh!

ROBBIE: That would be a 19 plus-- it's something good.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ROBBIE: Yeah, it's going to hit, yeah. Plus six, yeah. 25.

AABRIA: Absolutely hits, roll your damage.

ROBBIE: Through the air, six plus three. Be good. Not, it is not. It's a five.

AABRIA: Where do you aim?

ROBBIE: For his noggin.

AABRIA: Okay.

ROBBIE: Try.

AABRIA: I'm going to give it to you. He's still up, but your axe is stuck behind his ear.

ROBBIE: Yeah!

AABRIA: His ear is mostly off, but that tendon is keeping a little sandwich situation going. Yeah, it's gross. You said noggin, could've been somewhere normal.

ROBBIE: Nope, nope, I aimed for his head.

AABRIA: That's for you.

ROBBIE: And that's it.

MATT: That's some meat cutting over there.

AABRIA: So don't forget--

AIMEE: I like the thick sliced.

AABRIA: For your next round, you have 10 extra feet of movement.

ROBBIE: Got it, okay. And then I turn and lean back and I was like: Hey, new girl!

ERICA: Yeah?

ROBBIE: Want to try and finish him off?

ERICA: I mean, I can try?

ROBBIE: Ah, you could do it.

ERICA: Great.

AABRIA: Sweet.

AIMEE: Believe in yourself!

AABRIA: Before you go--

ERICA: Thank you.

AABRIA: -- he's going to swing.

ROBBIE: Oh shit. (laughs)

AIMEE: He's going to swing and--

AABRIA: He's got an attack for each of you.

AIMEE: What?

ERICA: Oh my god.

ANJALI: All right, that's okay.

AABRIA: 14 to hit you?

ANJALI: Nope.

AABRIA: 16 to hit you?

ERICA: No.

AABRIA: Misses twice, he's distracted because he has an axe in his head a little bit!

MATT: That'll do it, yeah.

AABRIA: Ah! And yeah, he's going to push past you both. He's going to attempt to run away.

ROBBIE: Oh!

ANJALI: So.

AABRIA: So, you both get attacks of opportunity on him as he turns, and tries to flee.

AIMEE: We still got that sticky-icky, right in the corner?

AABRIA: Is it still there?

AIMEE: I don't know.

AABRIA: Christ.

MATT: All right, well...

AABRIA: Yeah, does it go away? How long does your sticky-icky last?

AIMEE: I'll tell you right now. (hums) It doesn't really say any-- well, it must, right?

AABRIA: It probably does.

AIMEE: Concentration up to one minute, fuck.

AABRIA: Okay. I need you to roll a couple concentration checks for me because you've taken damage.

AIMEE: Okay, concentration checks.

MATT: Add a d20, add your constitution.

AIMEE: Oh, constitution, which is zero! (sarcastic laugh) 13.

AABRIA: Stays up, give me one more.

AIMEE: 11.

AABRIA: Stays up. He's going to attempt to run for it. You guys roll your attacks, you two.

MATT: All right.

ANJALI: 13 plus eight, 21.

AABRIA: 21 hits.

ANJALI: Eight.

AABRIA: He is not looking great.

MATT: War Caster feat, I'm going to Sacred Flame him as he runs past, so he has to make a dexterity save.

AABRIA: 14.

MATT: 14 does not make it. He takes 10 points of radiant damage.

ERICA: Oh my god. (oohing)

ANJALI: Bye!

AIMEE: Please tell me that's your third!

ANJALI: Okay, bye! (laughter)

AABRIA: That's your third.

AIMEE: (gasps) (cheering)

ROBBIE: Cleaning house!

AABRIA: Finish it off, Matt! How do you kill the last guy?

MATT: All right. As he goes running past, I see him charging in slow motion. I look towards you and be, tuh-shoo, dur, oh! (laughter)

MATT: I'm going to put my hand in the air, so Sacred Flames burn up the leg, trying to stop him in his tracks to spin, and expose his torso in your direction. (oohing)

ERICA: I'll take my shortbow--

AABRIA: Sure!

ERICA: I'll take my shortbow, take a knee, and shoot him.

AABRIA: Go ahead, I'm not going to make you-- You don't have to roll to hit. It's fine. Just describe-- this is a team effort.

ERICA: Oh, great, I think Morrighan's very confused, because she's never worked with anyone before, ever. She's always been by herself. So she's doesn't know what it's like to have other people helping or anything like that. She's never had friends, really. So she's just, oh, okay! So, yeah, she takes a knee and just--

AABRIA: Is it a crossbow or a shortbow?

ERICA: Oh, god, sorry, it's a shortbow. Yeah, she has her shortbow, yeah, yeah.

AABRIA: So, you pull back and loose, and everything seems to slow down in bullet time, and the fletching on your arrow seems to distend and stretch out, and you can't tell if it's the way the light works, or if there's streaming jet black feathers coming off of the back of your arrow.

ANJALI: (excited humming)

AABRIA: You hear the true song of your bird. Whereas normally you hear that sweet melody, and it gives you an instinctual thought or feeling, these are words. You hear, "They're the ones that will get you out alive. Get the blueprints and get out." Everything speeds up again as your arrow finds its mark in the last man's heart, and he crumples to the ground in the pile of yuck.

AIMEE: Sticky icky.

AABRIA: That sticky icky icky.

MATT: Yeah!

AABRIA: You have solved my penthouse puzzle. (cheering)

ERICA: I was amazed, I was, this is where I came, and this is where I will die.

AABRIA: Yay. You guys, that went from so scary to not at all scary.

MATT: ♪ That's fucking team work ♪

ANJALI: Exactly!

ROBBIE: It is not teamwork! You QB'd that entire-- You murdered everybody!

MATT: Nah, nah, nah, nah, nah.

ROBBIE: You murdered everyone!

MATT: No.

AABRIA: You good?

MATT: We got the last one together.

AIMEE: I was going to say, very valuable player.

ERICA: Yes, we. We got it.

ROBBIE: Yeah, we got it!

ERICA: Hey, new girl, you want to do something? Yeah! Yeah!

ANJALI: That's amazing.

AIMEE: Toast.

ERICA: I literally--

AIMEE: Oh boy.

AABRIA: Do you smell toast right now? Yes.

AIMEE: Yes! Wait, can we still figure out what's under that?

AABRIA: You need to!

AIMEE: Okay!

ANJALI: Yeah! But do we know--

AIMEE: Can we-- I'd like to feel around to see if there's an opening.

AABRIA: So, you go and interact with it. Give me an investigation check. If someone wants to help you, you can have advantage.

ANJALI: I'll help.

AIMEE: Okay.

ERICA: Yeah, well, I knew of it, so, yeah.

ROBBIE: I'm going to go peek in the cupboard.

AIMEE: 15.

AABRIA: Yeah!

ERICA: Uh-oh, investigation, you said?

AABRIA: Yeah. (laughter)

AIMEE: No?

AABRIA: To 15.

ERICA: Ooh, a natty twen, actually.

AABRIA: Amazing.

ANJALI: Boom.

AABRIA: So, you walk over and you see Opal tapping on the edges of this.

AIMEE: Maybe using my dagger to--

AABRIA: Ooh, to start prying at the corners. And you know that this is just very thick terracotta.

ERICA: Oh.

AABRIA: That's weathered to look like stone. The weakest points on it would be where the most of those inlaid lines cross. So, she's fussing with the edges, which is reasonably the thickest part of it, but if you do some direct damage to the very center of the pattern, you'll probably shatter it inward.

ERICA: I would say I'm in a little bit of a trance from--

AABRIA: Yeah.

ERICA: But I walk up to it and I say: Step back for a second.

AIMEE: Okay.

ERICA: I want to-- I have big, big old rabbit feet.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ERICA: I want to hit it with my foot, yeah.

AABRIA: Give me an athletics check with advantage.

ERICA: Oh no, my athletics is so bad.

AABRIA: You're still Blessed.

ERICA: Oh yeah. Yeah, we'll see. That is a nine, ooh. Okay, so that's an 18.

AABRIA: Love it.

ERICA: Then--

ANJALI: Plus your d4.

MATT: Well, technically Bless is attack rolls and saving throws.

AABRIA: Well, this is sort of a mixture of an attack roll.

MATT: Okay, fair enough.

AABRIA: Yeah.

ERICA: That's an 18 and that's a two. So, or a one. Well, not a natural one.

AABRIA: Did you roll your Bless?

ERICA: Oh, I thought-- Wait, does it?

MATT: You add d4 to--

ERICA: Oh, awesome.

AABRIA: Yeah, this is still an attack, you're--

ERICA: So, it would be 19 for the highest one, yeah.

AABRIA: It's going to take a couple jumps, but you can feel it give way after the second, and it begins to crack along the lines of that, and after I would say jump three, you feel that little pop, as this collapses in on itself. Not enough to send you falling down into it--

ERICA: Yeah.

AABRIA: -- but it is broken.

ERICA: Cool.

AABRIA: What are the rest of you doing?

ANJALI: I'm going to run over to her, and steady her so that she doesn't fall in. So the thing has just barely popped?

AABRIA: Yeah, it's like if you shattered a piece of pottery, and it's that little indent in, but it hasn't completely collapsed in on itself.

ANJALI: Got you. I steady her, and then I'm going to hammer down on it with, with my staff.

AABRIA: Go for it. Give me an attack roll.

ANJALI: 25.

AABRIA: Yeah, that'll do. (silly voice) And the Bless, add your Bless. Yeah, you immediately flourish with your quarterstaff, and pop it right where-- across that seam that she created for you. It collapses inward, and what you see, very much like the cabinet that you were looking in for, is preternaturally magically dark darkness in a 10-by-10-foot little cube. You have no idea how deep it is, and you can't see.

ANJALI: If I--

AABRIA: You want to stir in that pot?

ANJALI: I will be--

AABRIA: Stir the noodles?

ANJALI: I don't know what's in it either, and I really love my staff, so I am going to pull out my dagger instead, and poke around in the black, and see, does anything happen to my dagger?

AABRIA: How far do you lean into the hole?

AIMEE: Fuck me.

AABRIA: You pulled out a thing that's shorter.

ROBBIE: Whuh-oh.

ANJALI: I did. Instead-- (silly laugh) ♪ What has she got in here ♪

AIMEE: Is it magical darkness?

AABRIA: It is magical darkness.

ANJALI: I have a shortsword in here, that's a little longer. I'll take the shortsword and not lean too far in.

AABRIA: Okay.

ANJALI: And stir around.

AABRIA: You can feel it hit stuff, but you notice that you're hitting something that clearly is hard, but you're not hearing the sound of impacts, that this is a magically dampened--

ANJALI: Does it feel like a floor, or does it feel like a-- What does it?

AABRIA: You're not reaching a floor, but you're definitely hitting stuff--

ANJALI: Okay.

AABRIA: -- in there.

AIMEE: Hmm.

AABRIA: But nothing's grabbing your sword.

ANJALI: Screw it, I'm going to reach my hand in and mess around.

AABRIA: You reach in and you feel your hand scrape against this very tall vase that feels like it's made of slick porcelain glass. You can't tell, but it feels fairly tall, and fairly heavy as you try to grab the top, and you're, ooh, got to get a different angle to grab it all the way. You feel a lot of rolled up tubes of paper.

ANJALI: That's what I want. I want to pull those out.

AABRIA: Okay. Forgoing the vase, you go and pull up the tube, and the first one you pull out, you see on the very inside of it is blue, and you found it.

AABRIA: It's the blueprints.

AIMEE: Got the blueprints.

AABRIA: The master blueprints for the casino.

ANJALI: This will do. There's a vase in there, too, and now I don't know whether to be greedy. I hand off the papers to Morrighan and I feel around on that vase again. Is there anything distinctive about the vase?

AABRIA: Just that it's sealed and it feels like, you can get a sense, I'm not going to make you roll to divine the size of the vase or the shape of it, you have a feeling that it's probably a foot and a half tall.

ANJALI: Yeah, I'm taking it out.

AABRIA: Okay. You go and lift this massive, what you now are holding, and see is this dark red glass... urn?

AIMEE: Uh-oh.

AABRIA: For the lack of a better term. You're holding onto that.

ANJALI: Coming from the background that I come from, I know of djinn and efreets, and I am aware that this could be very dangerous. At the same time, as we keep a lid on it, who knows? We've had dangerous things before.

AIMEE: That turned out well.

MATT: Wait, you found gin?

ANJALI: No, that was me talking, thinking out loud. I think we should get out of here.

ERICA: I agree.

MATT and ERICA: We made a lot of noise.

ANJALI: Is there any kind of a back entrance? I see this balcony.

MATT: Is that a closet?

AIMEE: Yeah. Narnia.

AABRIA: If you go through the door, yeah, it leads, I'm not going to open the door because I'll knock everything over, and it will be ruined and terrible. It lets out onto a balcony, and you see that you're at one of two parapets at the top of this tower. Across from it, you see this beautiful glass bottom outdoor bar, that Mor, you know to be the sky deck here. It's a very rickety-looking-- it doesn't look like it should be able to hover, and jut out over the ground, the architecture. You don't have to be an architecture student to know that shouldn't be standing. It looks crazy, but it's there, and it's standing, and you see very well-dressed people, sitting sort of casually on it, enjoying nice drinks. I will say, if you would allow, Mor, you are opening your blueprints at roughly this time.

ERICA: Mm-hmm.

AABRIA: As your new allies mention the balcony, and the bar that they're staring at across, you look and see, and you see the design behind it, and you finally understand that little bit of blue stone that allows it to hover, that keeps it from falling down. The support strut for sky bar is brumestone. Incredibly rare, incredibly valuable. You have one little thought, and if you play your cards right, you all have an escape route. And that's where we're going to end tonight.

ERICA: Woo! (applause)

ANJALI: Pew, pew!

ROBBIE: Woo!

AABRIA: Woo! Yay!

ANJALI: You guys, we rolled so well.

AABRIA: Oh my god, that's-- (laughter)

ROBBIE: When it counted.

AABRIA: Felt so bad.

ROBBIE: Oof.

AABRIA: That hurted my feelings.

MATT: Oh man.

AABRIA: Is everyone okay?

MATT: Yeah, yeah!

ANJALI: I mean, thanks to our death dwarf.

AIMEE: Yeah.

ANJALI: Our radiant death dwarf.

MATT: I'm just here for support, guys. I'm--

AIMEE: Uh-huh?

ROBBIE: MVP.

AIMEE: MVIP! (laughter)

ANJALI: MVIP!

AIMEE: VVP! VMP!

ANJALI: OPP!

ROBBIE: Now we're all a little--

AABRIA: Yeah, you know me!

ANJALI: You know me.

ERICA: That was the cost of his good rolls, is we can't speak proper words. We can't speak words good now.

AABRIA: He stole words from our faces!

MATT: I discovered, it's the d20 that I can't roll well. The damage dice, I can do okay.

AABRIA: Yo.

AIMEE: Yeah.

ERICA: That's why you went to the hit points.

AIMEE: Correct.

MATT: Yep, yep.

ANJALI: Pretty much.

ERICA: Now it's just decimated.

AABRIA: A worthy trade.

AABRIA: Incredible.

AIMEE: Right on.

ANJALI: Okay.

ROBBIE: Steal some stuff.

MATT: Man, all right.

AABRIA: All right, y'all. Okay, so I'm looking at the t-- Hey, quick question. Can we-- I don't want to wait a week. Can we just come back tomorrow?

PRODUCER: (faintly) Yeah!

AABRIA: Tight. So join us tomorrow--

MATT: Yeah!

AABRIA: -- April 1st, for part two of Exandria Unlimited. (cheering)

AABRIA: Come along. We will see you then. (drumming tables) Until then, be good, be best. I don't know.

AIMEE: Be best?

MATT: Be best!

AIMEE: Be best!

MATT: Hashtag, be best.

ERICA: Don't do a murder.

AABRIA: Don't do a murder. Unless do it really good. Do a poodle, not a murder. Until then, is it Friday yet?

ALL: Oh!

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