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List of Transcripts

Pre-ShowEdit

MATT: So first and foremost, we’ll get our announcements out of the way as fast as possible. First thing I want to announce, with a little help from our resident gnome bard here today: Scanlan’s playlist on Spotify went up on the website. Do you want to talk a little bit about that?

SAM: Go log on to GeekandSundry.com, slash “find it on that site somewhere.”

MARISHA: It’s on the front page right now.

SAM: And you can find it on Spotify. There’s some cool songs on there.

TRAVIS: That’s baby-making music right there, baby.

SAM: Yeah. There’s some panty peelers in there, too.

LAURA: Oh god.

MATT: That’s a terrible term.

SAM: I wrote it in the song description. Somebody edited it out.

(laughter)

MARISHA: Oh no.

TALIESIN: Well.

MATT: Go check that out, guys.

LAURA: Go check that out, guys.

MATT: Exactly. It’s actually a pretty great playlist; I’ve been listening to it all afternoon while prepping for this. By the way, it’s really interesting to write stuff for the current scenario in Whitestone with some Marvin Gaye in the background.

TALIESIN: Are we going to feel that influence in tonight’s game?

MATT: I certainly hope not. Also, next cool announcement: our first Critical Role comic came out today. Our four glorious first panels starting off the past adventure of the party in Westruun for their first Winter’s Crest Festival. So yeah, there will be one four-panel comic coming out each week to go through the six week run of this storyline, written by our fantastic Taliesin Jaffe and Marisha Ray over here, and drawn by the incredible–

SAM: Sam Riegel.

MATT: No. (laughs) @WendyDoodles on Twitter. You guys know her as Wendy. She’s one of our official artists. She’s absolutely amazing. She’s our artist for this run. So show her some love.

LIAM: Endlessly charming.

LAURA: Yes, she is.

MATT: Very much so.

ZAC: Really quick announcement that I forgot to put on the document. Hey, guys. We are still in sub-only chat tonight, but we will be doing a giveaway at the half if we reach the sub goal, which is every 100, and I think we’re 93 away from the next one. So if we hit 11,500 before the half, there will be a giveaway, and we will open that up to everyone watching, not just subscribers only. So anyone watching, don’t fret. You still have a chance to win stuff.

MATT: And what is in the giveaway?

ZAC: Tons of shit. Signed posters, D&D stuff. It’s just a box of awesome shit.

TALIESIN: www.TonsOfShit.com

MARISHA: Don’t look that up.

TALIESIN: Don’t look that up. It’s just going to make you unhappy.

LIAM: We got a big fat care package from Kurtis Wiebe, who is the writer of Rat Queens, so we have collected volumes. I think the first volume or two of Rat Queens. There’s some t-shirts, so some of that will probably be finding its way in. Obviously, we love Rat Queens.

LAURA: Obviously.

MATT: We like to fill your care packages with tons of cool shit. We throw random things in there for you guys, as well. Cool random things, not just random things.

MARISHA: It’s like Critical Role’s favorite things.

MATT and LAURA: Yeah.

TALIESIN: We’ll be putting out a catalog.

MARISHA: Yes.

TALIESIN: Critical Role’s most favorite things.

MATT: Cool, so check out the comic strip.

ZAC: There is a fucking broom behind you.

MATT: There is a broom. Get that out of there. There you go.

TRAVIS: It’s because we’re going to sweep these Briarwoods under the carpet!

ALL: Whoa!

SAM: That was quick. Love that one.

MARISHA: So good.

MATT: Are you?

(laughter)

TALIESIN: I’ve got another character ready to roll when this all goes down.

MARISHA: No! You can’t have a plan B already.

LAURA: I don’t have a plan B.

TALIESIN: Much like my parents, I have no plan B.

MATT: Laura, if you want to take this away, we have some new merch, apparently, that just went up in the store.

LAURA: Oh my goodness gracious! So yeah, starting today, there will be a couple of Critmas hoodies available in the Geek and Sundry store, so Marisha, if you want to hold up one?

MARISHA: Ready?

LAURA: There’s black and green. You guys should go on the website and check it out, because all the little details are freaking amazing.

TRAVIS: There’s ugly Critmas sweaters.

LAURA: And these are designed by Kenneth.

TALIESIN: Yule poop! There’s yule poop here.

SAM: Aw, there is, and it’s singing!

LAURA: There’s a little Trinket and there’s Minxie. And there’s a Pepperbox shooting bullets

TALIESIN: And then there’s arrows.

LAURA: And there’s “dagger, dagger, dagger.”

MARISHA: It’s a Critmas sweater.

LIAM: I just tweeted out links to the store from the @criticalrole twitter handle.

LAURA: So they’re the coolest, and then I know everybody was talking about how the “How Do You Want to Do This?” shirts were sold out. Those will be coming back very soon, and there is also “How Do You Want to Do This?” mouse pads for those people that don’t want to wear anything and just want to surf the web.

TRAVIS: Watch us, au naturel.

TALIESIN: I’m now wondering how much of our audience is currently– no, never mind.

SAM: Just wearing a mouse pad?

(laughter)

MATT: For those who don’t know, I don’t wear pants during this show.

LAURA: We’re like newscasters.

MATT: Exactly.

TALIESIN: He’s so hairy, we hardly notice.

MATT: It’s true, I’m like a satyr.

(laughter)

MARISHA: This is escalating quickly.

TALIESIN: I’ve got plastic on my character.

TRAVIS: A satyr! Draw that shit first.

(laughter)

MATT: No, damn it. Oh man. Yeah, we had a lot of great feedback from people saying that shirts were great, but we want to expand into other parts of merchandise people were requesting, so we’re starting to do that.

LAURA: Yeah, there’s some other cool things coming up, too, but that’s what’s available now.

MATT: We’ve been trying to be creative to make sure you guys have stuff if you want it, especially for this season.

TALIESIN: Oh, and just to do it again since we haven’t done it enough, please do check out the Spotify links and the comics. Go to the actual Geek and Sundry website because the more traffic the Geek and Sundry website gets for you guys going there to look at our stuff, the more excited they are to do cool stuff for us, so if you want more of this, definitely go there.

LAURA: Well, also if you go to the website, then you can see the blurbs that we wrote about each of the songs and the explanations about why we chose them.

MARISHA: We each picked fanart.

SAM: What I do is I favorite the geekandsundry.com website. I check it every morning when I wake up. That’s what I do. It’s my news in the morning.

TRAVIS: I think I’ll do that tomorrow morning. That’s a great idea. That’s imitatable.

TALIESIN: We have so much stuff we want to do for you guys. We have grand plans.

LAURA: Grand slam plans.

TALIESIN: Thank you, ma'am.

MARISHA: Thanks, Denny’s.

MATT: All right, cool. Next up, just to remind you guys, most of our actual show announcements and stuff go up on our @criticalrole twitter handle, and we have all our personal ones, but that’s our central place for all Critical Role-related business and announcements, so if you don’t already follow that, you should because all our cool stuff goes up on that. Also, today’s donations and our donations for a while are going to be going towards a new charity, pushing towards Doctors Without Borders, to help support people in crisis around the world. It’s a wonderful organization. We’re going to play a video with information about it during the break today, but in a world that is filled with a lot of positivity, there are dark places and there are dark things and people need aid, so we’re hoping to do what we can to try and give to those circumstances, so check it out at the break and if anyone who is able to help give to that, please do so.

TRAVIS: Solid.

MATT: Let’s see, a couple other announcements. We will be off next week for Thanksgiving because all of us have families to see, so there will be no Critical Role next week, unfortunately. I think we’ll be doing– are we doing a rebroadcast of something?

ZAC: We’ll probably do a rebroadcast of all the episodes.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: Like a marathon?

ZAC: Sure, why not.

MATT: Or just 24 hours of a close-up of a turkey. A turkey I cooked, so undercooked. But yeah, so we won’t be here next Thursday, but we’ll be thinking of you lovingly in the process, and we’ll be returning the Thursday after that to continue the story.

TALIESIN: You’ll be DMing a game for your family, I would assume.

(laughter)

MATT: No, it never ends. No, I’ll be eating copious amounts of pumpkin pie, probably.

LIAM: You are now Homer Simpson in hell with donuts just going in.

(laughter)

MATT: More, more! Yeah, so there’s that. Other cool announcement, this week saw a video game release of Star Wars: Battlefront.

TRAVIS: It’s so good.

MATT: I haven’t had a chance to play it yet, because Fallout.

LAURA and MARISHA: Because Fallout.

MATT: But that’s next on the list. But you can hear both me and Marisha in Star Wars: Battlefront as stormtroopers.

(cheering)

MATT: Both to kill you if you’re rebels or to do better if you’re with the Empire.

MARISHA: This is the first time they’re really focusing on female stormtroopers, so it’s pretty cool.

MATT: I think it’s rad. So apologies for being yelled at by us. Anything else you want to go over?

TRAVIS: Yeah. Sam. Put your hand up by your face. Now high five me while I high five down on the count of three. One.

SAM: Wait, do I go up or down?

TRAVIS: You’re going straight down, straight up. One, two, three (impact noise). Did it work?

SAM: Did it work?

TRAVIS: I’ve got to go lower. One, two, three (impact noise).

SAM: Ah! So strong!

(laughter)

LAURA: I want to see if it works.

TRAVIS: You’ve got to wait 20 seconds.

(laughter)

LIAM: Switched over to PayPal. While he looks at that, one last thing. We are, as always, friends with Wyrmwood Gaming. If you want beautiful wooden boxes in all kinds of colors and patterns, go to Wyrmwood Gaming, and if you use the code CritRole, you will get free shipping.

LAURA: Say it again. CritRole.

LIAM: You’ll get free shipping. Hey, one nerd helping out another.

TRAVIS: They are so sexy.

LAURA: They are very sexy. And they have magnets in them to keep your dice protected when they’re in your other bags. Your Bag of Holding.

MARISHA: Christmas is just around the corner.

MATT: It keeps my Critmas bronze? Thank you.

TALIESIN: Oh yeah, you’ve got your little mini.

MATT: I know I’m so excited I have a mini! I’m not even in the game, really, but I am.

LAURA: That’s Gilmore’s mini. Any time Gilmore talks, can he have that mini?

MATT: No. I’m going to one day do a Gilmore mini in private. It’ll be fun. All right.

LIAM: I brought this for good luck today.

(laughter)

LIAM: It’s going to be my woobie.

TALIESIN: Hey, now. Not cool. Not cool. We do not use the W word around here.

SAM: Does he even know what he’s saying?

TALIESIN: Yeah, he knows.

LIAM: We’re off the rails again.

SAM: All right, let’s go.

TALIESIN: Sorry.

MARISHA: Fucking vampires.

MATT: Did you use woobie intentionally?

LIAM: Yes.

TALIESIN: Goddamn it.

LIAM: He’s in Mr. Mom!

TALIESIN: They don’t know where you’re pointing.

LAURA: Point down!

LIAM: He’s in Mr. Mom. This guy right here.

Part IEdit

MATT: Anyway! Let’s get kicking into this evening’s episode of Critical Role. So. To get all of you up to speed. The party has traveled to Whitestone, partially to free their name of some negative political ramifications back in their home city of Emon, and to aid Percy in possibly freeing his hometown of Whitestone from the oppression of Lord and Lady Briarwood, a couple who have risen to power over the past five years after slaughtering his family and taking it over and keeping it all this time. After arriving, they found a very heavy undead presence in the town, with giant zombies roaming the streets as sentinels. Most of the townsfolk kept under perpetual watch in this slowly will-crushing atmosphere. But as Vox Machina arrived, they began to instill the thoughts of rebellion. Stoking those flames once again with the return of the surviving de Rolo, they began to sway the people’s minds to make a final stand. During that time, they also discovered that Percy’s sister Cassandra is also a surviving de Rolo and exists somewhere in Castle Whitestone, seemingly under lock and key. The party began to systematically take out members of the new nobles who worked underneath the Briarwoods, setting many buildings on fire, leaving emblems of the de Rolo crest across the town and written in the sky, and after an extensive battle, began to make their way toward Castle Whitestone itself. Burrowing into a partially collapsed but long-remembered secret passage underneath the castle, the party rested for the evening with the help of their recently arrived cleric Pike, who had managed to project herself through the will of Sarenrae as a spiritual body given temporary physical form. While they were searching this tunnel, it led to the dungeons, the prison cells beneath the Castle Whitestone where Percy once woke up five years before, before Cassandra helped him escape. While they were walking through those cells, they discovered an old woman currently locked down below there who is asking for the party’s aid in freeing her from her imprisonment. And last time we left off, you were helping with–

LAURA: Fake helping.

MATT: Fake helping with the lock, much to her chagrin.

LAURA: Yeah, and I had just snapped it off into the locks so that it’s jammed it.

MATT: Yeah, you’re a terrible person. All right, so as you snap off the lock and pull away from it, having the strange physical interaction in the darkness around here, Trinket behind you just breathing over your shoulder, keeping close to you just in case anything’s wrong. She pulls her hands away. “Fine. (huff) Do as you wish, leave me to rot.”

LAURA: Oh, we’ll be back. Don’t worry.

MATT: She backs up and sits in the far corner of the prison cell and (huffs).

LAURA: I look around. Has everyone left me?

TRAVIS: The only people that are in the light–

LAURA: All right then I follow to where everybody else is going.

MATT: All right.

TRAVIS: She only saw me and–

LAURA: Me and Scanlan.

MATT: And Scanlan, yeah. You all stepped out into the light. The rest of you stayed in the shadows.

LAURA: Okay.

MATT: All right, so there are the rest of the cells which Vax has gone through and taken some time to inspect, where you found what appear to be the remnants of individuals who were imprisoned here and then left to die, long rotted, their corpses picked apart by various resident rodents and other creatures. After doing your passes, the conversation has happened, you see no other signs of life down here. This being the sole prisoner currently within the cells below.

LAURA: I go and I find Scanlan.

SAM: Oi.

LAURA: So, question.

SAM: Yes?

LAURA: When you cast Seeming on us, our visual– if you made me look like a cow, would I seem like a cow when I bumped into you, or would I seem like a human?

SAM: Are you asking me to make you into a cow right now?

LAURA: No, I’m saying that if something was different–

SAM: Because I think this is not the right time.

LAURA: I think that old woman was doing something weird.

SAM: Why do you think that?

LAURA: Because she looked like she had full handses, but–

SAM: Four hands?

LAURA: Full.

SAM: Oh, full hands. Okay.

LAURA: Normal sort of hands, but I didn’t feel them.

SAM: You didn’t feel them? You touched her hand and it just passed right through?

LAURA: Her hand touched me, but it didn’t–

SAM: That’s an illusion of some sort, yeah.

LAURA: So she was doing some sort of–

SAM: I don’t know what, but yes. If I were to cast Seeming on us, or some other sort of magic, it would make us look one way but not feel that way.

LAURA: I guess it’s good that we left her, then.

SAM: She’s a caster of some sort?

LAURA: I don’t know.

TRAVIS: Can you dispel Seeming?

SAM: Should we go find out?

LAURA: I don’t know.

TRAVIS: How would we do that?

LAURA: Can you dispel Seeming?

SAM: I don’t know. (laughing) Let’s go find out.

MARISHA: Do you have a Dispel Magic on you right now?

SAM: I have– No.

MARISHA: Oh my god, I do!

SAM: Well.

MARISHA: I learned it.

SAM: Oh, Keyleth?

TALIESIN: Are we calling everyone over for this conversation?

SAM: I think we should.

TRAVIS: Away from her.

LAURA: Yeah, I’m far away from her now.

SAM: That prisoner over there is casting magic of some sort.

LAURA: I think she had Seeming cast on her. I don’t know if she did it herself or if– well, I don’t think she was what she appeared to be.

TALIESIN: Do we want to waste power on somebody who’s…

SAM: What if she’s–

TRAVIS: An early warning system?

SAM: Yeah, what if she’s a guard?

MARISHA: What if she’s Lady Briarwood? Like what we were saying? That’s what I’m most afraid of.

SAM: Well, then we should find out now and kill the shit out of her.

TRAVIS: I vote for that.

MARISHA: Well, before we do that, let’s see who she is. I did come prepared, though, to dispel magic.

LAURA: So you can do Dispel Magic?

MARISHA: I learned it. I did.

LAURA: Stay in the shadows, Keyleth, and cast it on her.

TRAVIS: Percy, you’re wearing what?

TALIESIN: I’m wearing a hat of disguise so that I’m not immediately identifiable.

TRAVIS: What are you in disguise as?

LAURA: A dude in a hat.

TALIESIN: Link from the Legend of Zelda. I don’t know.

SAM: Well, you’ve got to figure it out right now.

TALIESIN: I’m going to figure it out right now. Just as a reasonable Whitestone peasant.

MATT: Okay.

LIAM: Terrible teeth.

TALIESIN: Trying to blend in.

MATT: By comparison to this troop, you’re some poor sap who got pulled along, but yeah. You are that one quest-giver in Warcraft that walks way too slow and the party is like, “Come on, move!” That’s who you look like right now.

TRAVIS: Before we dispel magic on her, should we have someone put her in their sights in case she gets a little funky monkey?

MARISHA: She will be able to feel it.

LAURA: Well, yeah. She’ll look like she’s not herself.

TALIESIN: We could also just ask her to drop it.

TRAVIS: We asked her who she was. She lied. A lot.

TALIESIN: Well, we could ask her to drop the Seeming.

MARISHA: She lied pretty well, too.

TALIESIN: She did.

SAM: I could go talk to her, and meanwhile she could be fiddling with her magic behind me.

LAURA: Do it.

MARISHA: You go talk to her. I’ll be prepared.

LAURA: I’ll stay in the shadows with my arrow notched.

TRAVIS: I’ll stay with Scanlan in case things go wrong.

MARISHA: I stay next to Vex.

TALIESIN: I stay in the shadows.

LIAM: How close together are the bars to this cell?

MATT: The bars are about four inches apart.

LIAM: Four inches.

LAURA: So my arrow will do much better than your dagger.

LIAM: Well, no. I’m not saying for you not to, but would I be able to comfortably throw through?

MATT: Yeah!

LIAM: Yeah? All right. I’m not telling you not to.

LAURA: No, it’s fine.

MATT: She’d have a little bit of cover.

LAURA: Shoot your arrow, too. Shoot your dagger. Whatever.

MARISHA: Shoot your dagger?

SAM: He doesn’t shoot daggers

LIAM: Passive-aggressive much?

SAM: All right, so I stroll over back to the cell.

TRAVIS: With Scanlan, also.

SAM: Oh, flanked by Grog. Yes.

MATT: Okay.

TRAVIS: Not looking friendly, neither.

MATT: Okay, and there is the one torch that’s a little off to the side that gives a little bit of light into this one portion of the dungeon below here. She’s sat out, into the shadows of the far corner, arms crossed. You can see a little bit of the light framing her form. You make out okay in the darkness this close as a gnome, but you can see that she’s just hunched in the corner, huffing in frustration.

SAM: Oi. Old lady. Listen. We said we were going to come back for you and release you when all was said and done, but we cannot make that promise if you don’t tell us the complete truth. Now, we know that you’re using magic of some sort. Tell us who you really are.

MATT: “I’m sorry, what?”

SAM: We are smart little people. And big people.

TRAVIS: Thank you.

SAM: And we can sense that you are casting magic of some sort on yourself to disguise yourself. Now, I have some familiarity with this, so I make no judgment as to why, but please reveal your true self to us or else we cannot trust you and we will leave you here to rot and possibly die.

TRAVIS: (whispered) Now.

MARISHA: Now! I do it now!

(laughter)

SAM: “Now, I do it now?”

TRAVIS: Hopefully quieter than that.

MATT: As Keyleth, partially in the shadows– the form of Scanlan small enough to not really obscure her presence– but she nevertheless gestures in the air, recites beneath her words the forbidden druidic languages that coalesce the powers of nature around. At which point, there’s a dull flash of energy within the cell. Some of the nearby straw on the ground gets blown away from her form from the general push of air the spell disperses and the impact.

MARISHA: Sorry, got a little squirrely on that one.

MATT: The grey hair, the tattered clothes all vanish, revealing beneath it a woman in her early mid-forties or so. Jet black hair pulled into a tight ponytail, but strings of it in front of her face. Still in disarray but nowhere near as wrecked as the previous visage you were presented with. She’s wearing nice travel clothes with what looks like some sort of a long duster-like coat that is a little ragged. You can see there’s a little stain from being down here for a while. As soon as this moment hits, she pushes back even further, pressing herself against the wall, arms to the side.

TRAVIS: There you are.

SAM: I must say, you look way better like this.

MATT: “Happy?”

SAM: Extremely.

TRAVIS: Yes, I’d say so.

SAM: Yes, so who are you for real?

MATT: “My name is Anna, and I would like to be set free, if you don’t mind. I can be of assistance to you. I happen to know a lot of information about the people that currently reside within this castle.”

SAM: How would you know anything about them?

MATT: “Release me and I’ll tell you.”

TRAVIS: You want to be set free?

LAURA: Tell us and we’ll release you.

MATT: “You’ve been so forthright in your interest in helping such an old and frail woman. How can I have any sort of guarantee of my safety should I give you the information you seek? You could very well slay me in this cell.”

TRAVIS: That might happen if you’re not careful.

MARISHA: What’s Percy doing right now? Where’s Percy?

LAURA: Do you recognize her, Percy?

TALIESIN: Yes.

MATT: You very much recognize her. You do notice, by the way, her right hand? The sleeve ends. There is no hand there. It is just a missing hand, and the left hand is visible.

TRAVIS: As far as we can see, unarmed? Right?

MATT: Yeah.

TALIESIN: Anna?

MATT: “Yes?”

TALIESIN: Let’s be frank with each other. You have two options: either you are going to die in this cell– and I promise you, you will die in this cell– or you are going to convince us why you shouldn’t. So I would start talking right now or I swear we will not leave this dungeon before you’re dead.

MATT: Roll an intimidation check.

MARISHA: It’s pretty good.

TALIESIN: 16.

MATT: 16, okay.

LIAM: And just as he finishes talking, I throw a dagger a foot away from her head in the wall.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: You gave her a fucking dagger? And then it flashes back to you, right?

(laughter)

MATT: So the dagger which is thrown (whoosh) hits the stone wall next to her and jams itself between two of the stone bricks and gets wedged there for a second. She looks over for a second, reaches up for it and grabs the hilt as it vanishes in a puff of smoke.

LAURA: You are so fucking lucky it did that.

(laughter)

MATT: She leans forward and stands up and steps into the light, and you have a better look of her now, and her face is a little weathered from travel. You can see she definitely doesn’t appear to be nobleborn, at least. She’s by no means a homely looking individual, but you can see she’s seen the world, or elements of it, to have those dark lines at the sides of her face, whether it be from smiles or frowning. She steps into the light and looks to you, this peasant individual making these threats, and seems partially shaken but keeping her composure in the face of such threats. She says, “Well, for one thing, I’ve been here with them for the past five years. I helped them reestablish their current social control of this city when they left it a pile of flames and rubble. And their little experiment beneath the castle? I was one of their chief scientific designers.”

TALIESIN: Tell us about the experiments beneath the castle.

MATT: (chuckles) “You’ll have to ask Sylas or Delilah for that. I don’t have all the details or the reasons behind it, other than the process I was brought in to construct.”

MARISHA: Can I see if she’s lying?

MATT: You can. Make an insight check.

MARISHA: Not great.

TALIESIN: That’s a number.

MARISHA: It is a number. 16.

MATT: 16? Okay. You get the sense that she’s telling the truth. You’re not quite sure how far off the truth, but there doesn’t seem to be any sort of bald-faced deception in her voice, at this point. She speaks with a confidence and a brusqueness of a person who is frustrated by the circumstance and has no other choice. "I wasn’t interested in their zealotry or the whispered dealings, just the challenge behind the construction. I enjoy challenge. Challenge that pays, well, (chuckles) I enjoy that even more.”

TALIESIN: Question two: What are you doing down here, really?

MATT: “I’m down here because my work is done and I wish not to linger with an impending battle. I don’t choose sides; I merely let them fight while I live another day far, far away. I wouldn’t have gotten this far dealing with the people I’ve dealt with in the past if I had chosen to stick around under such circumstances, so I tried to leave. It appears Anders saw me packing and decided to gain a little favor by turning me in, so they threw me down here, told me to wait out the rest of the experiment, at least until the ziggurat was complete. So here I am, living amongst rats in a cell for over a week. That’s my reward.”

LAURA: How did you lose the hand?

MATT: “Experiments can be dangerous, sometimes. I dabble with chemicals and alchemical reagents that can be miscalculated, and I paid a price that will be an ever-present reminder until I can find a way to fix it. And there are ways.”

TRAVIS: Are you looking for ways to get back at the Briarwoods?

MATT: “Based on the way they’ve treated me here and their possible intent to not even keep up their end of the bargain now that I’m free to walk away? Perhaps.”

TALIESIN: Can you lead us to Cassandra de Rolo?

MATT: She turns her head with a curious look. “I could, yes. Why do you ask?” She looks at you very intently.

TALIESIN: That may be what your life is worth.

MATT: “So. What else do you wish to know? What else do you need, even, to get me out from behind these bars? Because I’m growing very uncomfortable and cold here in this cellar.”

TALIESIN: I pull forward, I look her very deeply in the eye, and I say, you should know who your friends are here. Do you know that we’re friends? And I’m going to become friends. I’m casting Friends.

MATT: Okay.

TRAVIS and LAURA: What?

TRAVIS: Is good Percy casting Friends or shadow monster casting Friends?

SAM: We’ll never know until he and Ripley kill us all.

TALIESIN: I’m getting creepy. Just for flavor. There is definitely some creepy happening.

MATT: Okay. You stare at her at this point, intent pushing yourself toward the bars, and she’s still looking you over like she’s searching for some sort of an inclination as to why you’re so interested in these particular questions.

TALIESIN: You’ve been truthful with us so far, correct? You haven’t been fudging around or playing games with us, really, have you?

MATT: “I’ve no reason to lie. Worst comes to worst, you kill me where I stand or leave me here to rot. What do I have to gain by lying at this point? Besides, you’ve already proven you can see through quite a few ruses. Apparently.”

TALIESIN: So you’d be happy to help us find Cassandra de Rolo, wouldn’t you?

MATT: “If it gets me out of here and gets me free to do my own business, then yes. I’ll have to get a few things from my room, but I would be more than happy to be free of this desolate landscape. This whole town is a ruin of misery, and it has no color. It has no culture. I’ve grown bored of it.”

LAURA: You say you’re a scientist.

MATT: “Yes.”

LAURA: Do you use magic?

MATT: “I’ve no interest in paltry magics. I’m more of one who embraces the sciences as a means of understanding mystery. My whole purpose here was one giant chemical experiment.”

LAURA: Then who cast Seeming on you?

MATT: “Oh, that isn’t to say I have don’t have my tricks.”

TALIESIN: Anna. You will take us to Cassandra de Rolo. You will tell us what you know about what’s in the basement. You will tell us where to find Lord and Lady Briarwood, and you will tell us where to find professor Anders. And for this, we may let you go.

MATT: “Hmm, may. That word, ‘may.’”

TALIESIN: I’ll let you leave the castle.

MATT: “And if I agree to these terms, you’ll release me at this moment? Keep me safe until it is time for me to take my leave?”

SAM: We may chain you to a bear, but yes.

LAURA: This is Clarota all fucking over again.

TALIESIN: You are, at the moment, the luckiest person in Whitestone. Do you know why? Because you’re at the bottom of my list.

(laughter)

TALIESIN: And I take off the hat.

LAURA and MARISHA: Oh shit!

MATT: As the peasant image fades, for her, there’s an intensity to her eyes, a widening of realization as she steps back instinctually with a gasp. And there is definite fear in her voice and her eyes, but there’s an uncontrollable smile on her face which catches you off guard. “Percival.” (laughs)

MARISHA: She’s a nervous laugher.

MATT: “Well, then. This certainly explains a lot. I have many questions. I found your recent work very fascinating.”

TALIESIN: I will be happy to give you an up close and very personal demonstration. Unless, of course, you would rather have conversations about other topics.

MATT: “We’ll start with the other topics.” She adjusts her coat, regains her composure, and steps up to the bars expectantly.

SAM: Vax?

LIAM: All right. I come out of the shadows.

LAURA: Oh god, are we really letting her out?

SAM: Get a chain ready, or a noose of some sort.

TRAVIS: No, we have manacles.

LAURA: She’s got one hand. How’s that going to be useful?

MARISHA: One hand and then one on the bear, right?

TALIESIN: It means there’s only one to shoot off to make sure she won’t be a problem.

LIAM: I pull out a pick and I walk up to the gate and I say, he’s a very good shot. She’s a very good shot.

LAURA: He poops on things.

LIAM: This guy, I’ve watched turn things into the Jelly of the Month, so I would tread very carefully.

MARISHA: And then I peek out of the shadows and go, hi. (giggles)

LIAM: She’s a nervous laugher.

(laughter)

MATT: Go ahead and make a check lock pick. This will be more difficult than normal because–

LAURA: I snapped off a thing in there. Sorry about that.

LIAM: All right, I’m going to use Luck.

LAURA: You’re going to use Luck now?!

SAM: Shall I inspire you?

TALIESIN: Don’t use Luck yet

LIAM: It’s not that bad. That’s a 20.

MATT: That’s a 20 baseline?

LIAM: Yeah, because of my–

MATT: Expertise? All right. 20 is exactly what you needed.

LIAM: Skadoosh.

MATT: That was the next one. So you take a moment you walk up all slick and (click).

LIAM: Wait. One sec. This never happens.

(laughter)

MATT: You have to get down and you spend the next 30 seconds actually managing to get the pin that she has stuck in there out without actually breaking the spring inside.

LAURA: Sorry about that.

SAM: Fucking doors!

LIAM: Shut up!

LAURA: It never ends!

MATT: About a minute and a half of awkward quiet as the sound of scraping metal and jimmying thieves’ tools, eventually (click).

LIAM: We’re still very tough.

(laughter)

MATT: And with that, (ting) the lock comes loose and the bars (creak) open a little bit.

LAURA: Trinket, watch her.

MATT: (grunts) The bear, which at this point has been barely visible, steps out of the shadows, as well–

SAM: Bear-ly?

(groaning)

MATT: It would be you.

LIAM: Kill him!

MATT: Steps out and presents a very puffed-up Trinket made to look intimidating. (growl) Towards Dr. Anna Ripley.

TALIESIN: Here’s the deal, Anna. You do what we ask, you do not betray us, you do not make our life difficult in any way, and you have my word that you will leave Whitestone unmolested by us. If I sense the slightest hint, if I have a moment where I think that you might make a run for it, if I have a moment where I think you may cough inappropriately, I would ask you to think about everything you did to me, and I would like you to know that I have learned so much more than what you taught me that day, and I cannot wait to show you. And I will. But not until I find you again.

MATT: “Understood, Percival. Well, then. Shall we?” She steps out of the cell, pushes the bar aside, saunters up past you, steps over, still facing you underneath the torch light.

SAM: Should we shackle her?

TALIESIN: No.

SAM: Oh? All right.

TALIESIN: It’ll arouse suspicion.

MATT: “I’d like to gather my things.”

SAM: Things? They let you have things in a prison cell?

MATT: “Well, I don’t have them here in the cell. They’re in my room.”

SAM: We have to go to your room?

MATT: “I would like to.”

LAURA: Tell us what you need and we’ll get it for you, dear.

MATT: “Very well. Come.” And she begins to step up the stairway that leads out of the dungeon.

LAURA: Can you walk quietly? Please?

MATT: You can hear the slight chuckle in the darkness. She goes, “I haven’t lived this long without learning to step a little gingerly.”

SAM: Oh boy.

LIAM: Let’s go parading through the castle.

TALIESIN: I’ll follow her.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: Let’s all follow her, right?

TRAVIS: We should check any of the other cells?

LAURA: We did. We already checked them all

MATT: As you’re walking up the stairs, she’s talking to you a bit out loud and she’s just saying, “This whole entire endeavor– while it did pay well at the get-go and did pique some of my curiosity, I’m very happy to see it out of my life after this.” You guys get to the top of the stairs and there is a closed wooden door there. She comes to the door and listens to it for a second. (creak) Opens it up and looks out. “Huh. Empty.” Holds the door open and says, “Who would like to enter?”

SAM: You would like to enter.

MATT: “All right, just giving the offer.” And she steps into the room. This is the end of a long hallway that leads to a series of doors on the right and left side, and it opens into a large central entrance chamber to what would be the castle. So she steps in. She’s not going too far ahead. She’s being very conscious that based on the fact that she has nothing on her and you are very well armed, it would not behoove her to attempt to make a run for it.

LAURA: Do we see anything in the room?

TALIESIN: Perception is passive as hell right now. I am keeping very sharp eye on–

MATT: No, I understand. Looking around. She’s taking her steps slowly, and she’s looking around corners as you guys progress. The doors that are there– everyone’s being very quiet, just the very gentle sounds of careful footsteps against the smooth stone floor. (footsteps) She turns around, looking at the rest of you a little confused, and goes, “Huh. Usually there are a lot more individuals frequenting this castle.”

SAM: Maybe they’ve been drawn out by the thing that we incited outside that’s been going on for like 45 minutes now?

MARISHA: Feels like a trap.

LAURA: No, but there is fighting. Can we hear fighting?

MATT: You’re inside the castle right now. You could go and if you want to try and enter one of the rooms to the right or left, you can see if there’s a window.

SAM: Are there any open doors?

MATT: All the doors are currently closed.

LIAM: I just want to see if I sense anything around.

MATT: Okay.

LIAM: 23.

MATT: Perception?

LIAM: Perception, yeah.

MATT: Okay. You take a moment and listen around. Silent. Still. It’s unnerving.

SAM: Does she have a window in her room?

MATT: You asking?

SAM: We’re at her doorway, aren’t we?

MATT: No, you’ve just stepped up to the base floor of the castle. You’re on the base floor, on the side of it. You’re not even quite sure which way is north.

TRAVIS: Nobody we’re looking for is going to be above us, right? They’re going to be below the castle.

SAM: For sure.

TRAVIS: So we don’t want her to get her shit in her room. We need to be asking how to get below the castle.

TALIESIN: We’ll get there.

SAM: What are you getting?

MARISHA: She wants her weapons.

TALIESIN: And I want to see what she’s built, anyway.

SAM: Why would we let her have a weapon?

TRAVIS: We’re not going to.

LAURA: Can’t we look at what she’s built after we fight them?

SAM: It could be useful.

TALIESIN: As we’re walking, I just want to very gently take my gun–

SAM: And shoot her with it.

(laughter)

TALIESIN: And just put it gently at her back, going, nothing personal. I’m just feeling a bit nervous.

MATT: “Understood.” She straightens up a little more and continues walking ever so carefully. Not quite leaning her head or making too many large movements, but definitely still keeping a seemingly nervous eye on how quiet the atmosphere is.

LAURA: I creep over to one of the doors in the room and see if I can hear anything on the other side.

MATT: You don’t hear anything inside the room. Roll a perception check.

LAURA: (groans) 14.

MATT: You hear some slight, muffled, dull thud noise, but you can’t really tell how close it is. It’s very, very faint.

LAURA: Can I see if the door handle is–

MATT: (click) It’s open.

LAURA: I step to the side and push it open.

MATT: Push it open (creak) The door opens. Everyone before you whips around, hearing the noise in the silence. Looking inside, it appears to be a long-untouched music room, a space for hosting individuals where you would have small performances, and there is a very cold fireplace in the far corner. There is a small, circular window that is placed in the center of the room that has a very thick glass pane with cross bar on it that seems to look out. And this is your first view– for you, especially, since you woke up in the tunnel– your first view of the outside.

LAURA: And?

MATT: Do you go up to the window and look?

LAURA: Sure.

LIAM: I’m following my sister in, doing the buddy cop thing.

MATT: Okay. You two coast up to the glass and look out, and another cloud-covered, slightly drizzly morning has taken the caldera between the mountains that houses Whitestone in this forest. You can see the entire city of Whitestone down below this elevated part of topography. What you do see, one, are large plumes of smoke, about six or seven of them, all gathered towards what you can tell now is the north side of the city, which is the closest to you. You guys are on the southwest side of the castle, based on the spatial awareness you’ve now made.

MARISHA: Where the more upper-class folk would live, I’m assuming?

MATT: Go ahead and roll perception check, while you’re glancing out.

MARISHA: Sure.

LIAM: So close.

LAURA: That could’ve been so bad. 20.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: It was like whee– oh.

MATT: (laughing) Love those little (gasps) moments. Taking a moment, you pull your brother in to point out where you’re looking. It looks like the gates to the castle are wide open. There are tracks through the mud that lead down the pathway to the bottom, and right where the path from the castle intersects with the outer wall of Whitestone, there is a fray going on right now. It looks like the remnants of whatever sort of undead army that wasn’t destroyed by you guys, combined with what may have been a number of the individuals who normally guard the castle, have all been momentarily distracted by the rebellion you guys have started, and for the time being, at least, have left elements of this castle unguarded.

LAURA: Nice. I would loot, but it’s Percival’s home. Do we see anything that looks like it could be a doorway leading down, or anything?

SAM: We’ve gone up, right?

LAURA: We’re on the main level.

TALIESIN: We’re going to try to get my sister first.

LAURA: Do you know, Percival, how to go under?

TALIESIN: Yes. Unless there’s something new, then yes. I was born here.

LIAM: Before my sister leaves, I grab her by the arm and say, “Listen to me–”

(creaking)

LIAM: What is that? Pizza. Forget I said that. "Listen to me, I do not have a good feeling about this." And I start to undo the cloak that’s on me, "And I want you to wear this." And I tie an elven cloak. "Shut up, please. I don’t need it. You will wear this. You will stay hidden when it is needed. You almost lost me. I almost lost you. You will wear this as needed."

LAURA: I will wear it. Thank you.

LIAM: I walk out ahead of her.

MATT: Pull the hood up. So you get advantage on stealth checks. As you guys step into the hallway and move forward, Pike’s physical form is drifting along you guys as she takes each step. You can see she’s stopped a little bit and she’s lost in thought for a moment. And she looks at the rest of you and says, “There is a great evil here. It’s–” And you can see part of her form flicker and shake and almost blink for a moment, and then she reaches forward and says, “Something’s willing me away. I ca–” And with that, her form just vanishes.

LAURA: Oh no!

TALIESIN: Damn.

MATT: As you feel this warmth on your hand, Vax, and the symbol of Sarenrae that you have embedded in your glove. You look down, and it has a slight glow to it, similar to the color that her divine energy form had taken. And you see it just slowly fade, but not entirely. The symbol seems to just have this general very faint radiation. A reminder, or at least what small semblance of a connection to her in this dark, dark place.

LIAM: (whispering) Goodbye, Pike.

TRAVIS: Before we move on from that foyer, can we see the front door from where we’re at?

MATT: If you go another 20, 30 feet ahead to the end of this hallway, it should open up into the main entrance chamber and you would be able to see the doors.

TRAVIS: So we’re not there yet, okay.

TALIESIN: I’m going to take a moment and I have an epiphany, and I’m going to shift my form into a castle guard.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: Vex, what you saw through the window, should we move through the castle quickly because it’s unguarded?

LAURA: I guess. There’s fighting going on now. I don’t want to eat right now.

TALIESIN: We’ll get it on the break.

LAURA: I saw fighting, lots of fighting. I feel like if we’re going to move, we need to do it quickly.

TRAVIS: Yeah, we’re on a clock.

SAM: Okay, let’s go.

TALIESIN: Anna. I lower the gun and let her move forward.

TRAVIS: You don’t need to lower it.

MATT: She continues forward, heads towards the rest of the hallway into the main entrance chamber of the castle, very carefully looking about. She gestures to the rest of you to follow. And as you follow along beside her, you can see the two large front doors that situate the entrance, the main entrance to Whitestone–

SAM: Are they open?

MATT: No, they are closed.

TRAVIS: I have 20 caltrops. Can I throw ten of them in front of the door?

MATT: Yeah, if you’d like to.

(laughter)

MATT: They scatter and clink against the ground, scraping against the stone and eventually coming to a stop loosely around the two doors, which are about eight feet wide each, so 16 feet of it, so you’re scattering about one every foot and a half.

LIAM: I watched him do that, and I shrug and I reach into my pack, and I throw 30 more of them.

MATT: Okay. The area has a little more coverage on there, but nevertheless there is a nice cluster of nasty spiked caltrops now.

LAURA: That was a good idea. Very smart there.

TRAVIS: Yeah. Thank you.

SAM: Grog, using your noggin.

TRAVIS: One a day.

(laughter)

TALIESIN: Was that a thought for the day, then? Don’t sprain yourself. We need you later.

TRAVIS: I’m back.

(laughter)

MATT: Ripley starts making her way up the stairs, and the staircase ascends for a good 15 feet up before it splits into two curved stairways that come around to a second landing to the second floor.

MARISHA: So hang on one second, real quick, he’s dressed as a guard?

TALIESIN: Yes.

MARISHA: I’m going to go ahead and cast Enhance Ability on you. For charisma.

TALIESIN: I don’t need it.

MATT: Well, you do now.

TALIESIN: Has it worn off?

MATT: It lasts for a minute, so yeah, it’s worn off.

MARISHA: Oh, it only lasts for a minute?

MATT: Friends only lasts for a minute.

TALIESIN: I had enhance charisma on for a while, but now it’s gone, so if you do it, what I had is gone–

TRAVIS: Pour some sugar on, Keyleth.

MARISHA: I’ll do it. I’m going to enhance. In case we get busted. So you’ll have advantage on persuasion rolls.

MATT: Okay, so you have advantage on all charisma-based ability checks.

TALIESIN: All right, putting that down.

MARISHA: Also, no one forget that we have Heroes’ Feast.

LAURA: Wait, if I put the holy oil on things, it lasts for a few hours, right? It lasts for half a day or something?

MATT: I’d say it lasts for about an hour after application.

TALIESIN: Wait until we’re in the thick of it.

MATT: The oil will eventually just drift off, as it is an oil.

LAURA: It dries and stuff.

MATT: Yeah, it dries and gets rubbed off. It lasts about an hour after application.

TALIESIN: Let’s head to her room.

MATT: Okay. You head up the stairs. She’s being very quiet about it. She comes up to the landing, heads to the first major hallway that opens up into a long set that goes all the way to the eastern side of the castle. You recognize this area. This is where a number of smaller guest rooms were arranged. There’s also a reading room. Around the corner and down the way is where your father’s study is. And around the back is where Professor Anders’s study was. She continues forward and eventually stops at a door halfway down the hall. Motions to all of you. “Do you mind?”

LAURA: What do you want? What’s in there?

MATT: “My belongings.”

TALIESIN: I want to see what you’ve been working on.

MATT: “All right.” She opens the door. (creak)

MARISHA: I’ll wait outside and stand watch.

LAURA: I walk in with her.

TRAVIS: I stay right next to her.

MATT: So in her room, it’s very plainly decorated. You know these rooms are generally very well decorated, just in case. Decorations have been taken off. This room looks very minimalistic and for the most part more for function than anything else. You see there is plain sheets on the bed, most of the room’s open space is taken by a long table that’s been put here that has a series of alchemical glassware, and you can see what looks to be small containers that contain different materials and powders and seems like she does her own work here. There are two open drums on the side, and there is this very caustic smell to the air. There is an acerbic tinge to the nose as soon as the room enters. There’s just this ever-present, very heavy fresh rust smell to the room. She walks to the far end. Underneath the desk that contains this alchemical setup, she pulls a small chest out–

TALIESIN: I watch very carefully.

MATT: She brings the chest to the top. She opens it up, and on the inside you can see just some folded clothing. She moves the clothing off to the side and she pulls out what looks like relatively simple leather armor. “May I?”

TRAVIS: Very, very slowly.

LAURA: Don’t be creepy, Grog.

(laughter)

TRAVIS: Creepy? I’m going to put her through the wall if she moves in the wrong way.

TALIESIN: You know, I almost killed you in Stillben.

MATT: “Really?”

TALIESIN: Do you remember?

MATT: “Huh. I didn’t know that was you.”

TALIESIN: I was kind of curious if you had figured it out or not.

MATT: “No.”

LAURA: Tell you what, I’ll hold onto that armor for the time being.

MATT: She’s partway into it.

LAURA: Yeah, you can take it off. We’ll put it in the Bag of Holding. You can put it on after we’re done.

MATT: (heavy sigh) She folds the tunic portion over the chest piece and hands it to you, pulls out some of the arm braces and leg guards and hands those over as well.

TALIESIN: Show me your work.

MATT: She goes underneath the chest and she pulls out two small glass vials and sets them on the side. She then reaches underneath and pulls up what looks to be a false bottom of the chest. Places it. At which point she reaches in and pulls out a metallic construction that you all see looks not unlike in shape and purpose as the Pepperbox that you’ve seen Percy use all this time, though it has only a single barrel and has a small rotating four-part chamber to it. It’s a little more refined than his construction, and you can see now part of the alchemical setup she has in here actually is, and you recognize this as you get close, part of it is designed in the creation of ammunition and refining the powder that is used by this process. You see a series of notes that are off to the side that have sketches outlined of your Pepperbox, though not really accurate. Almost like they were recalled from various individuals that had seen it in person and given accounts of it. She’s been keeping a very close log of eyewitness accounts of your weaponry, apparently, for some time.

SAM: She’s a fangirl.

MARISHA: Yeah, she is.

TALIESIN: I’m disappointed. I was expecting something more imaginative.

MATT: (laughs) “You’ve seen my room, have you not? I prefer function.”

TALIESIN: (scoffs) Hack.

MATT: She reaches down and–

TRAVIS: Keep your hands away and step back.

TALIESIN: We’ll give those to you when it’s time to leave.

MATT: “How am I to defend myself should things go, and pardon my term, ass-up?”

LAURA: Are you planning on fighting with us? Helping us?

MATT: “You say you won’t release me until you’ve finished what you’re doing here. I assume that what you’re doing here is ending the current reign of those who rule this town. I can’t assume that’s going to end with a conversation.”

LIAM: I lean my head in and say, the goliath could turn your head into paste now, if you like.

LAURA: Tell you what, we’ll take the weapons and give it to you if we need your help.

TALIESIN: Let her have the armor. As a sign of good faith.

TRAVIS: What if it’s enchanted armor?

TALIESIN: And give me your ammunition. And when it’s time, I will hand some to you.

SAM: So you’re leaving her the weapons but no ammo?

LAURA: No, I’m taking the weapon.

TALIESIN: The weapon’s useless.

LAURA: I don’t care.

MATT: She gives you the weapon begrudgingly. Hands you a pouch about this big that’s pretty heavy, containing a series of iron balls inside. You can see there’s the various instruments she uses for forging them and crafting them there across the table. She puts her hand out towards you for the armor. She puts it on, a little quicker this time, because she feels like she had a little victory. She takes a little vial, puts it in her pocket. She reaches over and grabs a little pouch inside the side with change. Puts a little bit of money to the side there.

TRAVIS: What are in those vials?

MATT: She reaches in, pulls them out, shows them to you. And you recognize the color. She goes, “What, you think you’re the only one who doesn’t occasionally suffer a wound? I have to look after myself, as well.” It’s a greater healing potion.

TRAVIS: One of them is? Or they both are?

MATT: The one she pulled out and showed you.

TRAVIS: What about the other one?

(laughter)

MATT: “Really?”

TRAVIS: Really. Lest your brains leak out your ears.

MATT: She pulls out the other one. “This is in case things go really poorly and I need to uphold my sense of self-preservation.”

LAURA: What does that mean?

TRAVIS: Yeah, what does that mean?

MATT: (sighs angrily)

TALIESIN: Convince us to let you keep it.

MATT: “It allows me to make a fleeting escape on the air as opposed to by foot.”

LAURA: Oh. Well, then give it to me.

TRAVIS: Axe.

(laughter)

MATT: And with that, the glass almost shatters with the amount of frustrating force she slams it into your hand.

LAURA: Careful. That’s made of glass, darling.

TRAVIS: I was only stretching. No need to get testy.

MATT: So you have a Potion of Flying in your inventory right now.

TALIESIN: And god forbid you’ll see how gracious we’re feeling when we find Cassandra De Rolo unhurt.

SAM: Yeah, Grog! Grog with the steal.

LAURA: Ooh, I get a piece of paper!

TRAVIS: Shit, Potion of Flying.

LAURA: This is awesome.

SAM: All right, do you have your shit? Can we get out of here?

MATT: “Yes. Everything else here is of no interest to me.” She kicks one of the drums on the way out. Slips back into the hallway.

SAM: Anything you could use, Percival?

TALIESIN: Was there any more black powder? I’ve taken all of her ammunition and black powder, I suppose. Anything else that looks useful to me?

MATT: Make an investigation check.

TALIESIN: That’s intelligence.

MATT: Yeah.

TALIESIN: Oh. Well, hell. Eight.

MATT: Eight? You give a quick once-over of the room. The place is pretty barren. Other than the large drums of what seems like three inches of some weird caustic substance at the bottom.

TALIESIN: I hate what you’ve done with the place.

MATT: It’s a recurring substance. A lot of the vials are based around it. There’s a recurring theme of this caustic liquid throughout all of her instruments.

TALIESIN: We’ll have a conversation about what she was trying to do off-camera so I can have a better understanding of it.

MATT: In what way?

TALIESIN: I figure I may poke you later to get a better understanding, just so we don’t have to bore other people with her technical accoutrements, but I would like, at some point, an out-of-character understanding of what I’m looking at. Of what I could discern about what I’m looking at.

MATT: Or we could have it on camera.

TALIESIN: All right. No, I just figured it’d be, I don’t want to–

(laughter)

TALIESIN: I want to kill something tonight.

LAURA: Yeah! We were also running out of time.

TALIESIN: Exactly.

LAURA: There are people fighting right now.

TALIESIN: Committed as much to memory as possible. Let’s go.

LAURA: When we defeat the Briarwoods, you can come back and explore this room to your heart’s content.

TALIESIN: Touche.

MARISHA: It’d still be your place.

MATT: “Now, to your sister, is it?”

SAM: Up or down?

MATT: “This would be on the other side of this floor.”

TALIESIN: Which room?

MATT: “I think you know the room.” And you know that you’re not too far from your sister’s room.

MARISHA: They let her keep her room.

LIAM: See you later. I go stealth. 20. No, 23.

MATT: As you guys make your way across the other side of the hallway, back toward the western side of the castle, eventually finding where, not far from where your room was, as well as the rooms of your brother and Cassandra. They’re all localized in this one area of the castle, so you were all nearby. She goes straight to Cassandra’s room. Goes to the door and doesn’t touch it yet.

TALIESIN: A quick question before I open this door. Am I going to have a violent reaction towards you when I open it?

MATT: “I certainly hope not.”

TALIESIN: Good. (sighs)

TRAVIS: I stand right behind her.

TALIESIN: I motion to everyone, stay back, open the door, and I push Dr. Ripley into the room, with me behind her.

MATT: Okay. As you pull the door open, (creak) you push her in. The room is dark. There is no light. hat little bit of light that peeks in from the hallways in the poorly-lit interior of the castle for this time of day. You can see there is her canopy bed. You can see there is her cabinet in the corner, but the room appears to be dark and empty.

TALIESIN: Torch.

MARISHA: Are there any wall sconces around? Torch wall sconces on the outside?

MATT: There are a few along the walls that are currently burnt out at this point.

TRAVIS: I take a torch out of the Bag of Holding and I take the Firebrand War Hammer, ignite it, and hand the torch to Percy.

MATT: Okay. You glance about the room. It’s lived in. The actual bed covers themselves are pulled off. You can see she has a vanity mirror cabinet in the far corner. It’s all put away. The chair’s open a little, like it was stepped out of. The room is absent of anyone.

TALIESIN: I walk over to the closet. I open it.

MATT: Okay. You open the closet. She has outfits there. Many of them don’t appear to have been worn in a while.

TALIESIN: Looking for signs of life with the paper on the desk.

MATT: You search her desk?

TALIESIN: Yes.

MATT: Make an investigation check.

TALIESIN: Let’s have a real roll. That will do.

MARISHA: That’s a really good roll.

TALIESIN: That’s a natural 20.

TRAVIS: It is?

MARISHA: Yeah.

SAM: Classic Percy.

MATT: All right.

TALIESIN: It was doing this on Group Hug, man.

MATT: You go through her vanity cabinet, and you find there’s small gems there. Just little keepsakes of hers. Things from her childhood. You do find there is a tattered portrait of her and your brothers and you that appears to be partially burned on one side that is kept on its own at the bottom of the top shelf. You can see currently it just shows half of your face, her next to you, and your other three brothers to the side. The rest of the family is burned off at the top point, but this was once a portrait that was in one of the hallways that apparently was destroyed in the initial attack or since then. And she’s kept this scrap as some sort of memory and hid it within her cabinet. You also do find a stack of paper, a series of partially-written notes and ink and quill that are false stops. Letters that were partially written and then crossed off, or mistakes were made or they never got finished that are all written to Archibald. And they talk about the general unrest in the city. Preparation for a possible coming rebellion. Discussing past failures but the intent to try again. There’s a theme through a lot of these notes that this appears to be one of the methods she was using to communicate in the outside of the castle, and was her role in previous attempts at freeing the people of Whitestone.

TALIESIN: She’s not here.

MATT: You see Ripley’s also like, “Well, if she’s not here, she’s somewhere else in the castle. I assume.”

TALIESIN: Where would she be?

MATT: “I don’t spend my time wondering or curious about her well-being! I just know that she is usually here.”

TALIESIN: Anna. I’m going to take a leap of faith and believe, contrary to all evidence, that you are a smart woman. I pull out the gun, and I put it to her head. Now. If you were the Briarwoods, where would you put my sister?

LAURA: An important question here, Percy. Are they keeping her, or is she here of her own volition?

TALIESIN: I don’t know. And if you don’t know, make me believe it.

MATT: “I know she’s not allowed anywhere near the ziggurat or near our distillery.”

TALIESIN: Distillery? I pull the gun away.

MATT: She breathes a sigh of relief. “That’s been largely my project as part of this entire endeavor. All right, so when I was brought in here, I was tasked to experiment with the design and create large amounts of a very, very delicately prepared acidic compound, one that could dissolve the stone of your whitestone and distill it down into pure residuum. This would allow the bulk creation of a very powerful magical essence for use in construction materials that we could instill and use apparently for this ziggurat, as well as other such things. Thus, that was my main reason for being here. We were ahead of schedule, and I completed the bulk of our development weeks ago, and I no longer had much of a purpose here.”

MARISHA: Ahead of schedule? I’m sorry. Hi. By the way, I’m Keyleth. We haven’t really talked yet. What schedule were you trying to keep? What was the deadline?

MATT: “We were trying to create enough continuous acid to develop enough residuum to be used in the reconstruction of the ziggurat. Once I had developed enough of the compound to where we no longer had to create more, my purpose was complete. I had no interest beyond that. The rest is gibberish to me.”

TALIESIN: So you’re telling me that somewhere in this castle there is a storage facility full of caustic acid that dissolves the very stones of this castle?

MATT: “Yes.”

SAM: I reach out and I take out my potion of acid resistance and I drink it.

(laughter)

MATT: Okay. Mark that. She looks at you, goes, “Yes. If you’ve seen the vents of greenish fume billowing out in the garden, that is where the distillery exhausts to.”

TALIESIN: Well, this is interesting.

LAURA: Ziggurat? What’s it for?

MARISHA: What exactly does it do?

SAM: Hurry up. Time is of the essence.

MATT: “I don’t know. It has something to do with the Briarwoods’ interest in some third party. Someone they’ve been working with. Someone I’ve not met, someone who I have no interest in inquiring within.”

MARISHA: A name. Give us a name, girl.

MATT: “I was not given a name. They don’t speak of this individual’s name. They are very secretive about it. They paid well, they gave me land, they gave me a title, and when things were done, I was to go free. Which is why I was not happy in which the predicament you found me, made me.”

TRAVIS: Where can we find this ziggurat?

MATT: Her eyes trail down to the floor. “The ziggurat itself is, well, based on the tunneling structure, the distillery’s direction? Right beneath the city of Whitestone.”

TRAVIS: The city or this castle?

MARISHA: They’re going to destroy this fucking city.

LAURA: Is it underneath the Sun Tree?

MATT: “No, not the distillery. The ziggurat might be.”

SAM: Wait, what?

TALIESIN: Oh dear.

MARISHA: They’re going to– yeah.

TALIESIN: Are they still melting down the whitestone for magical energy?

MATT: “No, I don’t believe so, not for weeks. We finished that process for quite a bit now.”

MARISHA: So you’re done melting the whitestone, but you still have a whole bunch of this acidic compound kicking it in a warehouse somewhere?

MATT: “Well, not in a warehouse. That’s all kept stored underneath the garden of the castle.”

TRAVIS: We need to finish clearing this house now. I don’t know if they’re even here.

TALIESIN: We’d better move.

SAM: Downstairs.

TALIESIN: Downstairs.

MATT: “You were asking about Anders, though. Do you wish to pay him a visit?”

TALIESIN: (growls)

MATT: You can see a smile on her face. She does not like Anders.

MARISHA: She’s trying– Percy? Percy, she’s trying to bait you. She’s trying to waste time right now. Come on.

MATT: “He was your sister’s keeper.”

MARISHA: She’s trying to– Percy, la la la. Percy, come on.

LAURA: He’s probably with the Briarwoods.

MARISHA: Come on, he’s not there.

LIAM: I’m off sitting in the shadows, but I say, Percival, we need to cut off the head.

TALIESIN: Is it possible that my sister would be with him?

MATT: “It’s very possible if she’s not here.”

LAURA: Anna, shut. Up.

MATT: “Very well.”

LAURA: Percival.

MATT: “I only say because my whole–”

LAURA: “Anna!” And I notch an arrow and aim it right at her throat. “Shut. Up.”

MARISHA: Percy?

SAM: Where would this professor be?

MATT: “I imagine his study. It’s around the corner.”

TALIESIN: We’ll check his study, and then we’ll go.

MARISHA: No!

TALIESIN: Just his study, then we’ll go.

MARISHA: Percy!

TALIESIN: Even if he’s there, if she’s not there, we’ll leave.

TRAVIS: Go. Lead the way.

MARISHA: We’re running out of time.

LAURA: Brother, run and check the study.

LIAM: I start running towards the direction that was described.

LAURA: Let’s go towards the under–

TALIESIN: Very well.

LAURA: Lead the way down.

MATT: “Very well.”

LAURA: No talking.

SAM: Wait, we’re going down?

TRAVIS: Yeah, we’re not leaving Vax.

LAURA: We’re heading down. He’s going to catch up.

MATT: She begins making her way towards the landing that leads to the stairway down, whereas you stealth off in that direction. You find your way around that corner. Go ahead and roll perception.

LIAM: As I’m moving, by the way, it’s minor, but I take out Clarota’s (sniffs, groans) metallic cap and put it on, and I also whip out this other cloak that I’ve been looking at and whip it around. You’re not here. And now continue on.

MATT: All right. So both will attune to you at your next short rest.

LIAM: Yes, all right, excellent. It’s fine.

LAURA: Well, you’ve worn Clarota’s thing before.

LIAM: There’s two things. Moving forward.

MATT: All right, make a perception check.

LIAM: That is 22.

MATT: All right, as you make your way down the hallway, you hear what sounds like a muffled female voice from behind a distant doorway. Like a small cry in pain or worry.

LIAM: Do I need to stealth again, or am I already stealthed?

MATT: You rolled stealth before this.

LIAM: Yeah. It was like 23 before.

MATT: Yeah.

LIAM: So I’m going to move toward that sound. Carefully.

MATT: Okay. It leads down. There are three doorways on this side of the hallway. The central door there is where you hear the noise coming from.

LIAM: Okay, I’m sticking my ear to the door, and I’m going to listen for a full minute to see what I hear.

MATT: You hear a little bit of quiet and a light sobbing. Then you hear another voice, a male voice, an older voice, just say quickly, “Shh! You be quiet until you’re told to speak. They should be close.”

LIAM: I want to gently try the door handle.

MATT: Okay. It is not locked. It does turn.

LIAM: I want to push it like one inch in and try to peek in.

SAM: Just the tip.

LAURA: Don’t.

MARISHA: I’m having deja vu.

LAURA: I know. We’ve been here before.

MATT: You glance inside the room, and it’s a nice study, and there is a fireplace on one side that is part of a continuation of a two-story fireplace column that goes up through the castle on this side. There are shelves of books, there is a desk in the far corner, there’s a couple of chairs laying around. From this side, from what you can see, in the center to the back of the room is an older gentleman wearing a breastplate. You can see his very short gray hair, a little bit of facial hair that’s grown in but not to a full beard. It looks like it’s been left to go on its own for a little while. And he’s currently holding a young woman, roughly early twenties or so with dark brown hair with a couple streaks of white through the sides of the temple. Holding her by her hair with a dagger to her throat, saying, “Shh! Now. When I tell you, you’ll say what I told you to say. Got it?” And you can see she has tears streaking down her face she’s like (gasping).

LIAM: I back up about five steps and very quietly say, Jenga.

(laughter)

LIAM: And I run at the door and I kick it open and throw at him.

SAM: Yeah!

TALIESIN: Well, that happened.

SAM: Yeah.

MATT: All righty.

LAURA: So we take off running towards him.

MARISHA: Here we go. Jenga. Fucking asshole.

(laughter)

TALIESIN: Dick!

MARISHA: It’s a trap. It’s such a trap.

SAM: Of course.

MATT: All right. (laughs) So you have a surprise round.

LIAM: Yeah.

MARISHA: Come on, Sneak Attack.

MATT: Both those individuals right there. Go ahead and make your attack.

LIAM: What am I looking at?

MATT: Okay, so as you burst in. You can see the man’s holding, there’s the desk behind him, right there. Papers and stuff scattered on there. There’s some tables around with some chairs. There are these large bookshelves that hold this side and there’s the fireplace in the far corner right there. Flames. Warming the room. There’s a small chandelier on the ceiling that has magical light emanating from it that gives the room this warm glow. You don’t care right now because you’re throwing a fucking dagger.

LIAM: Right. But he’s behind her a bit, right?

MATT: Yeah, he’s holding her right there with a dagger to her throat.

LIAM: Well, I recently added the sharpshooter feat, so three-quarter and half cover means nothing to me. So I’m going to aim for his eye that’s peeking out the side. All three are going right in his eye.

MATT: Okay.

LIAM: So here’s the first. The first is 24.

MATT: That’ll hit.

LIAM: Okay, the second is 26. As you can tell, I’ve been screaming monster sounds. My voice is a little ragged. 26 on the second.

MATT: Hits.

LIAM: And 16 on the third.

MATT: 16 misses. But the first two strike true.

LIAM: The first, it’s three plus seven is ten. Plus 14, 20, 26, 29, 33, 39. That’s the first one. And then the second one does four plus six is ten. Oh! But it’s surprise, so the first one is doubled because it’s automatically a crit.

MATT: All right, so what’s that now?

LIAM: Well, it was 39, so now it’s 60, 78. For the first one. Ten for the second.

TALIESIN: I love you.

MATT: Okay. So 88 points of damage. You just went 80 miles per hour on your first turn. As you kick the doors open. (whoosh) The first dagger, he sees it coming towards him for a second and attempts to dodge out of the way, and as he moves this eye out of the way, the dagger (impact noise) right into this one, he screams out (screaming) in pain as it just plunges into his eye socket. Not deep enough to actually hit any brain, but enough to definitely take that eye out as any sort of viable method. The second one just hits him in the shoulder and a reaction to that, Cassandra screams out, “No, run! It’s a trap!” At which point, he takes his dagger and just runs it across her throat.

LAURA: (softly) I don’t think it’s her. It’s not her.

MATT: You see crimson start to pour down the front as she (choking). Go ahead and roll initiative.

LIAM: All right. I’m going to do luck. Yeah. That’s a 22.

TALIESIN: Why would she be saying it’s a trap if it’s not her?

LAURA: Could be a peasant.

MATT: All right. Okay. So you’re going first. Also, at this point as you throw the dagger, you’re still at the doorway and you hear what sounds like two sources of metal clanking together. You can’t really see a source, but you hear other sounds in the room. What are you doing with your action?

LIAM: I am running at him and stabbing the shit out of him.

MATT: Okay, as you cross this boundary, I need you to go ahead and immediately make a constitution saving throw.

LIAM: I’ll use luck again. Yeah.

SAM: That’s two lucks.

LIAM: That’s 17 for constitution saving throw.

MATT: Great. All right, so as you step across the threshold of the room, the tile in front of you all of a sudden bursts in a flash of blue, painfully cold energy, like there’s a concentrated moment of shredding ice.

LIAM: Am I able to use evasion for that?

MATT: You can, technically.

LIAM: So if I succeed, I take no damage.

MATT: Correct. Okay, so you take no damage. You dart across, just managing to use that momentum and your intensity toward this horrible moment that just happened before you. And you feel the explosion happen behind you. You just manage to pass beyond it. You rush forward to him. All right. And he’s dropped her to the ground now. She’s fallen onto her hands and knees.

LIAM: I’m going into his guts.

MATT: Okay.

LIAM: So first attack is a 25, second attack is a 20, and the third attack is a 26. One, two, three?

MATT: One, two, three.

LIAM: Oh, and I’m going to turn the poison on for the poison dagger, which I’m going to use for the second.

LAURA: Just flip the little switch.

LIAM: Well, it just drips. So nine for the first, eight for the second, plus the poison is– shit, I didn’t copy it down here. I think it’s 1d12. Let’s say it’s 1d12, because I can’t remember. If anyone wants to correct me, they can. Five points of poison added to the five is 13. And then the last dagger is nine.

MATT: Okay. So as you rush up to him and shank him repeatedly in the side, the breastplates deflecting part of the blow, but you’re managing to find openings in the side, and you go for a shoulder and jam it underneath his arm, through his ribcage, and he screams out (yelps) in pain, and you can see there’s blood pouring out the side of his mouth. And the dagger’s returned by now, but there’s this giant gaping, bleeding wound on the side of his face where one of his eyes is completely ruined. He looks both surprised, angered, and very, very confused about the way things suddenly happened.

LIAM: Hello.

MATT: All right so that’s your turn.

LIAM: That’s it, I’m out.

MATT: Okay, he’s going to go.

TALIESIN: Goddamn it.

LIAM: We’re six seconds in, Taliesin.

MATT: First off, there were two sets of decorative armor on the sides of the wall that suddenly have filled with some sort of reddish arcane energy that gives them a solid physical form, and they both step off their pedestals and begin (heavy impact) making their way towards you. But before all that happens, Professor Anders in front of you, wounded and not looking terribly happy at the moment, is going to use his action to attempt to cast Confusion on you. So he goes to step back, and (grunting) just releases his hand in front of you as one functioning eye bores into you as he screams out. You can feel the pressure towards your head. Go ahead and make a wisdom saving throw.

LIAM: Wisdom, which I have advantage.

MATT: Well, wisdom saving throw because of that anyway, so.

LIAM: That is a 20.

MATT: A 20? The effect shrugs off. Nothing on you. He is going to attempt to step back–

LIAM: Oh, attack him.

MATT: So you get attack of opportunity on him.

LIAM: Yeah, it’s a 22.

MATT: 22? Okay, that does hit.

LIAM: Eight.

MATT: Okay. He will use his bonus action and he– let me look up the definition of it real fast. Okay, takes a bonus action as he steps back, “(grunts) Come. Take this inspiration to defeat my foe!” And he lends an inspiration dice to one of the armored creatures stepping forward towards you. Now it’s their turn. Both these armored creatures pull out swords, and they lift up the shields that they had to their sides, and they rush into you from two sides right there. You see this as they rush up to you: they’re not really touching the ground, they’re gliding across it. So the first one is going to attempt to strike you with two attacks of its longsword. That is a 14?

LIAM: No.

MATT: Second one is a 17.

LIAM: No.

MATT: All right. The second one now is going to go ahead and take two swings at you. That is an 18.

LIAM: Yeah, but I’ll use uncanny dodge.

MATT: To reduce the damage by half?

LIAM: Yeah.

MATT: Okay, so the first strike hits you for 13 points of slashing damage.

LIAM: So, half that or all of that?

MATT: That’ll be half that.

LIAM: Half that. Okay, so seven.

MATT: There you go. And then that’s going to be a 24 to hit.

LIAM: That hits, yeah.

MATT: And this is not halved. Okay, that’s 12 points of slashing damage.

LIAM: All right.

MATT: Okay, now to Cassandra’s turn. She is on the ground just spilling out her life essence onto the ground. She’s clutching at her throat and is like (gasping). You hear that horrible sucking sound of her feeling her life drain from her. She’s not unconscious, but she doesn’t have long for this world. All right, that brings us to the top of the round. The rest of you guys are now rushing, I assume, dash motion, making your way as fast as you can to that side. Due to distance, you would all get to the end of this hallway, about there.

TALIESIN: Is that including sprint?

MATT: Well, the dash action, yeah.

TALIESIN: That’s full dash?

MATT: This is your movement and then dash action, you guys, because you guys were down in this area, heading down the stairs. You just made it up and over. And this is Ripley. We’ll use that for Ripley for now. Everyone else roll initiative. We’re in a new combat round.

TALIESIN: What the hell!?

MARISHA: Oh! Percy’s pissed.

TALIESIN: I Percy’d again.

MARISHA: He Percy’d.

MATT: Who got him that dice?

(laughter)

TRAVIS: The golden snitch is powerful.

TALIESIN: No, I was on Group Hug last week with somebody else’s dice, and it was comedy.

LAURA: It’s just you, Taliesin.

TALIESIN: Thank you.

MATT: You are the anti-Wheaton.

TALIESIN: I’m the anti-Wheaton.

MATT: If you guys were to play in the same group, all RPGs would fold into themselves and no longer exist. It’s like the end of Timecop. It’ll be terrible. Okay, so initiatives. We have 25 to 20?

TALIESIN: 28.

MATT: 28.

TRAVIS: 21.

MATT: 21. Remember your advantage, by the way.

TRAVIS: That’s the second roll.

MATT: All right, so Percy at the top.

TRAVIS: Feral instinct.

MATT: All right, and you were at– I think your initiative was 20?

LIAM: I don’t remember. It was early 20s.

MATT: Early 20s, yeah, so it’d be Percy, Vax. 20 to 15?

MARISHA: 13.

SAM: 19.

MATT: 19.

MARISHA: Oh wait, sorry. Might have jumped the gun a bit there. I’m excited. Sorry. I’m bringing up the ranks anyway, I think. It’s fine.

MATT: Keyleth, all right. Vex, what’d you get?

LAURA: 11.

MATT: 11.

LIAM: I’m Vax.

MATT: I know, I said Vex! I got it right this time!

LIAM: Oh, you’re from California.

LAURA: Yeah. (laughing)

MATT: Technically, I’m from Florida. All right, so Percy, you’re up first.

TALIESIN: Can I drag Ripley with me?

MATT: You can, but you’ll be moving half movement.

TALIESIN: Fuck.

TRAVIS: Leave her. Somebody else–

TALIESIN: So as my bonus action before anything happens I’m going to tell her, she lives, you show us where the entrance to the caverns are, you walk with your things. And run.

LAURA: She was trying to set us up in this trap. You do understand that?

MARISHA: Oh yeah, she’s all about this fucking shit.

MATT: Full movement?

TALIESIN: Full movement.

MATT: Okay, that’s your full turn there. All right, that ends your turn, Percy.

LIAM: I have one healing potion left, and I’m going to take it and stick it into this girl’s mouth and empty it and maybe drip a little on her neck as well.

MATT: Okay, go for it.

MARISHA: Maybe hold her neck. Make sure it goes down.

MATT: Well, you have to roll to heal. You pull back, and it’s a really unsettling thing as you pull up her head to try and feed her the potion.

LIAM: It’s 2d4?

MATT: It’s just a regular healing potion?

LIAM: Yeah, regular. It’s the lowest of the rung. Moderate? I think it’s called moderate?

MATT: Sorry, got it right here. That’s 2d4 plus two.

LIAM: So four. Six. And then I want to step in front of her, between her and that one, and then stab the one.

MATT: Okay, as you take the potion, it’s a messy process. You get most of it in her, but some of it drips on the ground, but the wound seems to close. All the blood goes away on the ground around her neck from the splashing of the potion, which has vanished entirely, and you can see she’s (gasping).

LAURA: That’s good.

MATT: She’s right on the edge, but she’s looking pretty rough.

LIAM: So is that the bonus action, or is that the action?

MATT: That was your action.

LIAM: Action, okay. By the way, I’m realizing I didn’t click my boots, so I did one two three before, and the third one missed, so luckily that worked out, but I’m not clicking those.

MATT: Thank you for the reminder. So used to dagger, dagger, dagger. I’m like, “Wait, no.”

LIAM: So I just step between them, and that’s all I can do, yeah?

MATT: Okay, so you move into there, great. That’s your turn.

LIAM: No, I mean between her and the closest one to her.

TALIESIN: Oh yeah, we’ve got this new thing now. That’s so much better.

MATT: For those who don’t know, we have a top-down camera for the players, which is really helpful for them to know–

LAURA: What’s going on.

MATT: So you move.

LIAM: I was hoping to stand in front of her, yeah. Like that.

MATT: So you push her aside and get in between the two, okay. Cool, that ends your turn. Grog, you’re up.

TRAVIS: Dead sprint after Percy.

MATT: Okay, and your speed is?

TRAVIS: 50.

LIAM and TALIESIN: (heavy footsteps)

TALIESIN: Yeah!

MARISHA: What’s up, Grog?

MATT: You can get all the way up into here, but that’s all you can do this turn. Yeah, so you’re (heavy footsteps) bounding down the hall. You push past Percy and rush into the room, and you see a young girl on the ground, doubled over, barely conscious. You see Vax stepping in front of these weird, glowing armored creatures, and at the back of the room, there’s a man with bleeding, gaping eye socket.

TRAVIS: What the fuck did you do?

LIAM: Welcome to the party.

MATT: All right. Scanlan, you’re up.

SAM: I’m up? I run as fast as my little legs will take me. 25.

MATT: There you go.

SAM: I can’t see them, so I’ll just inspire– Who’s going to get in there next? Who’s behind me? Can I inspire people that I can’t see?

MATT: I think they have to be in your sight.

TALIESIN: You can see me, though whether or not you want to inspire me at this point is definitely debatable.

MATT: You can inspire somebody else in the hallway, if you’d like.

SAM: All right. They can’t even make it in the next turn, right?

MARISHA: No, but we’ll keep it.

SAM: Sure. I will inspire Vex, behind me, and I’ll say, (sings) Arrows and bows, they fire at our foes and kill them, and they make them ghosts. They won’t let go.

SAM and LAURA: (sing) Arrows and bows!

MATT: As the beat hits you, you feel yourself a little more sure shot with any arrows. Take your d10 inspiration die.

LIAM: Forearms go (explosion noises).

(laughter)

MATT: All righty. So, that brings us to– all right. Professor Anders, now, is taking his turn.

MARISHA: Professor Anders.

SAM: Professor Anders.

MARISHA: Professor Anders.

LIAM: Mr. Anderson.

MATT: He sees this giant creature in the room looming and he reaches up and closes up one eye and goes, “You. Do this for me.” And as he looks at you for a second, he releases another spell and you feel a familiar arcane grasp begin to curl over the back of your mind. Go ahead and roll a wisdom saving throw with advantage because of your Heroes’ Feast.

TRAVIS: All right, okay.

LIAM: Come on, baby. One more time.

TRAVIS: 14.

MATT: 14. Your brain, not tempered against these types of magics and having previously failed you before. You feel your will no longer become your own as now you are an instrument of destruction controlled by Professor Anders. You’ve been Dominated.

TALIESIN: Damn it!

LAURA: Fuck!

SAM: Oh no. Dominate goliath.

LAURA: We’ve got to kill that motherfucker!

MATT: Okay. I mean, he looks to you and goes, “Kill that one!” And points to Vax, and you look down at Vax with a grin as the blood-letting you’ve wanted so bad, your target lies before you.

SAM: Hulk versus Wolverine!

(laughter)

MATT: Ending Anders’s turn–

TALIESIN: Remember what he did to your beard.

TRAVIS: I know, is it me grinning, or is it dominated Grog?

(laughter)

MATT: Moves to here.

TALIESIN: Hulk versus Wolverine, man. I’m excited by that.

MATT: Both of these horrors move and shift around now at this moment to get on each sides of you, giving them both a flanking bonus. Now it’s four strikes, longsword against you, with advantage. Double eights. Can’t roll shit!

LIAM: Why advantage? I’m just curious. Give it to me, but what’s the advantage from?

MATT: They have advantage against you because they moved into flanking position.

LIAM: Because they’re in flanking. Got it.

MATT: Which, for those who’re curious about it, it is an optional rule in the DMG. It exists. Second attack. Three and a four. I can’t roll!

TALIESIN: (sucking sounds)

MATT: So this guy just whiffs with both of his weapon strikes.

MARISHA: You’re sucking his energy?

TALIESIN: (raspy) I have your power.

MATT: Natural 20 on the next strike.

LAURA and MARISHA: Spoke too soon.

MATT: Two natural 20s.

TALIESIN: Damn it!

MATT: It was a miss and a natural 20 on the first attack, and then a natural 20 on the first roll of the second attack.

TALIESIN: Goddamn it. I’m sorry.

MARISHA: Spoke too soon.

MATT: So you take on the first hit–

MARISHA: You mock fate, fate punches you in the mouth.

MATT: That would be 16 points of slashing damage, and 20 points of slashing damage with the second strike, so a total of 36 points of slashing damage. And you can feel this strange, angry vibrating growl coming from within this unhallowed armor that floats before you. That ends their go. Keyleth, you’re up.

MARISHA: I’m running like hell. Running, running, running. Can I see? Can I peek around the corner just to see?

MATT: You can just peek around the corner and see the circumstance.

MARISHA: Can I see Cassandra?

MATT: You do, yes.

MARISHA: Healing Word.

MATT: Okay, go ahead and roll.

SAM: Do you know it’s her?

TALIESIN: Yeah.

LAURA: Either way. Whoever it is.

SAM: Do you know what she looks like?

TRAVIS: Just do what you’re going to do.

LAURA: Just do it.

SAM: Okay.

MARISHA: Healing Word.

TALIESIN: Family resemblance.

MARISHA: Family resemblance.

MATT: I’d say given the circumstances, you have an inkling that someone’s in danger there. And the calling of Jenga. So go for it.

MARISHA: I’ll cast it– no, I’m just going to keep it at 1st level for now. I’m going to save my higher-level ones for Cure Wounds, so I’m going to cast it at 1st level, so that’s 1d4 plus my spellcaster. Three. That’s not too bad. No, sorry. 16? No, 13.

MATT: 13? Okay, good to know. All righty. That’s your turn. Vex, you’re up.

LAURA: So I’m with Anna. Trinket– I tell him to hold onto her and drag her along with us.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: So he clamps down on her arm.

MATT: So one, two. He’s going to attempt to grapple her. Go ahead and roll an athletics check with advantage because she’s not expecting it.

LAURA: 16?

MATT: Okay. Trinket grabs onto the scruff of her coat and begins pushing forward. They both get the rest of half of his movement because he’s forcing her forward. That’s as far as he can get.

LAURA: But I can keep running? I can run all the way up?

MATT: What’s your speed? Is it 30?

LAURA: 30.

MATT: You get about there, right at the edge.

LAURA: So I can shoot an arrow?

MATT: No, that’s your movement and then your dash action to get there.

LAURA: Okay, cool.

MATT: All right. Ripley is just going to stay put for the time being. She’s held by a bear and being pushed along. She’s just “Ugh.”

TALIESIN: With no weapons and no armor.

MATT: Leather armor, basically.

TALIESIN: Leather armor, yeah.

MATT: Percy, you’re up.

TALIESIN: I’m going to run in. I can move six, right?

MATT: You can move six squares, yes.

TALIESIN: One, two. Can I get a good view of Professor Anders and maybe get a little cover from the dining room table?

MATT: You can a little bit, yeah.

TALIESIN: All right, I’ll take my cover. I’m going to pull out–

MATT: As you walk in, around the corner you can see these armor attacking Grog, his axe forward at these two armored entities floating in the air. You see Anders in the corner, clutching a hand over one eye with blood streaking down the face, a number of wounds bleeding out from the armor. Already been a rough day for him, and your eye slips down, and for the first time in a long time, you see on the ground before you, clutching her throat, no wound or blood splatter but clutching her throat and breathing heavily, your sister Cassandra. And you look back up at Anders and you feel the burning rage begin to billow up inside you, and as you walk in the room towards the center of the table, you guys who are able to see the room, you see now, from outside of his sleeves, outside from under his coat, there’s blackish purple smoke beginning to (whoosh) billow out from behind.

MARISHA: Does it seem more extreme than it has been in the past?

MATT: It seemed pretty extreme in the past. It just started; you don’t know. Go for it.

TALIESIN: Bonus, I pull off my hat of disguise, drop it on the floor. And I’m going to just unload at that motherfucker.

MATT: As you pull off the hat, your image shifts fully to Percy, at which point Anders looks back and sees this source of smoke and glances over. His hand falls away at a moment of realization, eye goes wide. “Percy…”

TALIESIN: Shot one.

MATT: All right.

TALIESIN: Oh, for the love of god!

MARISHA: Oh, when it counts.

SAM and MARISHA: (ricochet noise)

MATT: In the frustration, the rage and such, you pull up your gun and as you go to fire, the bullet gets caught in the chamber and it almost ejects the entire barrel from the front of it. It’s not too difficult to repair, but it definitely upsets the current flow.

TALIESIN: I’m going to attempt to repair it really quickly. Trying to remember how to do that because I hate it. (mumbling)

MATT: Is it an action or is it an attack to do? Should say under the–

TALIESIN: Action, shit.

MATT: Yeah, so you have to use your next turn to try and repair it.

TALIESIN: (sighs) So I’m just going to sit and scream a little bit. (shouting)

MATT: Okay, you can see that this whole moment here, as the smoke pours out from the front of the gun, you yell out angrily and there is this unnatural bassy reverb from your scream that shakes the room. Anders actually takes a step back from this and is looking about the room, and finds himself basically trapped in the far corner of his study.

MARISHA: Oh, you better not!

MATT: That ends your turn.

TALIESIN: That’s my turn.

MATT: Vax.

LIAM: I’m going to use disengage, and I’m going to hop over Cassandra towards Anders and stab him in the other eye.

MATT: Okay.

LIAM: First attack is 21.

MATT: That hits.

LIAM: Second attack is 17.

MATT: That hits.

LIAM: Okay, ten on the first, ten on the second.

MATT: Okay. Needs to make concentration checks to see if he can maintain his Dominate. Against ten damage? That succeeds, and yeah, that succeeds. So he maintains concentration of his spell, but both daggers, you just run up and stab him. This angry grunt under your breath with each stab and you can feel the armor itself is now warm with the pooling blood from the wounds that you gave him before. He’s looking pretty rough.

LIAM: So, question? I asked if I could hit the eye. Did I hit the eye?

MATT: Unfortunately, no. It’s one of those things where a Sneak Attack would be an eye shot for this one. You go and try and stab towards the eye, and he pulls away; he knows what’s coming and uses that inertia to jam it into his side and stab a second time in there. So yeah, no purchase in the eye, unfortunately.

LIAM: Okay. And I’m squared off right in front of him.

MATT: Yeah, just right in front of him. That ends your turn. Grog.

TRAVIS: So when you’re dominated, does that mean charmed?

MATT: Essentially, you have to follow his orders. He’s not directly, specifically controlling you right now, but he told you, “Attack him,” so you have to use all the things at your disposal to now attack him.

TRAVIS: Okay. I can’t try and break the domination? Or rage?

MATT: Nope. You get a saving throw at the end of your turn.

TRAVIS: I’m not raging.

MATT: You’re not raging.

TRAVIS: So I only get two.

MATT: One. You step over Cassandra, (impact noise) stepping on the back of her leg, and find your way right there, which is flanking him between Anders, so you have advantage on both your attacks.

LAURA: Shit.

TRAVIS: It’s a three.

LAURA: That’s good.

TRAVIS: 21.

LIAM: Yeah.

MATT: Second attack.

TRAVIS: 26.

MATT: Both hit. Go ahead and roll damage.

TRAVIS: Really trying not to enjoy this.

MATT: (laughs) With your flaming war hammer.

TRAVIS: 18 for the first one.

MATT: 18 points of slashing damage. No, sorry, bludgeoning damage.

TRAVIS: Bludgeoning, yeah. And fire. 20, 21.

MATT: 21 points of bludgeoning and fire damage with the second strike.

LIAM: I am on my feet, but I am swaying back and forth.

MATT: Unexpectedly, these two titanic slams hit you from behind. The first one throws you into Anders for a second. Anders then pushes you away, and as you are still reeling from the impact, you look up and see the hammer come down, and (whack) you move your head out in time, preventing you from being squished, but the impact hits your shoulder and the side of your neck, and your whole body crumples into itself. You cry out in pain instinctively, just (screams) from the hit. And your whole world blurs for a second as you’re barely keeping yourself on your feet. Grog, that ends your turn. You can make another saving throw with advantage to try and shrug the effect.

TRAVIS: Yeah. Add wisdom right?

MATT: Yes.

TRAVIS: 19?

MATT: 19. With that, the momentary controlled bloodshed fades. Your mind becomes your own, and what little bit of remorse you may feel for the battered Vax in front of you, you can’t help but laugh a little bit. But then you turn your attention to the one who bent your will, and your rage begins to swell up inside you. So that ends your turn. Scanlan, you’re up.

SAM: I continue my long journey into the room.

MATT: You just get past there, and you can see into the room. You have visual on, yeah, pretty much everything in the room from there.

SAM: So I have to make a ranged shot if I’m to do anything.

MATT: Correct, yeah.

SAM: What do I see? Can I see how rough Vax is?

MATT: At a glance, it’s hard to tell.

LIAM: I’m bleeding out my mouth.

MATT: He’s also facing away from you.

SAM: Looks normal to me.

MATT: You see Grog and Vax facing off the guy in the corner. You see two of these large armored entities.

SAM: Okay, I’ll go for them.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: Wand of Magic Missiles. And I’ll shoot three at the one at the left. That’s the first charge, and then use three additional charges on the one on the right.

MATT: Okay. How many charges were restored in the wand from your last long rest?

SAM: I roll every day, and I restored five and I had used five, so it’s back to normal. I have seven total.

MATT: So you’re casting three on one and then–

SAM: An additional three on the other.

MATT: Okay, go for it. So that’s 3d4 plus three to each one. Go for it.

SAM: Right, 3d4. Okay.

MATT: (magical sound effects) Releasing the wand on both flicks of your wrist, you can see these bursts of arcane energy swirl around and slam into each one of these creatures.

SAM: 3d4 plus three? Is that right? Is that how it works, Matt?

MATT: Yes.

SAM: Okay, so five (mumbles), eight. Lame. And (mumbles) nine, no wait. Yes, nine.

MATT: Okay. All right. (explosion noise) The impact hits. You see the armor shake for a second and look angered and frustrated for what a faceless arcane entity in armor could, and both heads just go (shhhh) and look in your direction simultaneously. That ends your turn.

SAM: Oh, and I will inspire Grog. (sings) This is the dawning of the age of a-Grog-ius. Age of a-Grog-ius. A-Grog-ius!

(laughter)

TRAVIS: d10?

MATT: The words are lost on you, but it’s a nice theme. You take a d10, yeah.

TRAVIS: Not quite my jam, but I’ll still take it.

MATT: All right, that ends your turn. Anders, frustrated by the whole circumstance and on the cusp of a really bad circumstance, is going to attempt to cast Dimension Door.

MARISHA: I knew it. I knew he was going to do that.

LIAM: Do I get an attack? A reaction attack?

MATT: Not unless you have– there’s a feat that lets you do that.

LIAM: No.

MATT: Yeah, I think it’s mage slayer.

LIAM: I don’t have that.

MATT: Okay, all right.

SAM: Do I see him?

MATT: Yeah, you see him.

SAM: I take out my broken shawm and I (piercing whistle). And I cast Counterspell on him.

MATT: Right, because you took that when you leveled up.

(cheering)

MATT: All right. Oh lord bards. Shit.

TRAVIS: (laughs) Shit.

SAM: Wait, I have to tell a level, don’t I?

MATT: Yeah, you can tell me what level.

SAM: Do I know, because he’s a bard, what he's doing?

MATT: You are very familiar with the spell. It is a 4th-level spell.

SAM: Then I cast it at fourth level.

MATT: Okay. Then there is no roll. With that, he takes a moment to finish casting. You see there’s a moment where this bit of purple arcane energy, familiar to most of you as Scanlan’s escapes, begins to sparkle behind him and as he goes to step into it, the shawm shrieks out into the room, he (groans) reaches up and covers his eye as it almost seems to be shrill to his head and cause the pain to pulse and the doorway just slams behind him. (panting)

SAM: Uh-uh, that door is locked, motherfucker!

(laughter)

SAM: Get used to it, because I am!

(laughter)

MATT: Yeah, that’s his turn. That was his action. He’s going to use his bonus action to say, “Come to my aid! Quickly!” He’s going to put another inspiration die to the other armor. And that’s going to end his turn. It’s now their turn. They are both going to come around. This one is just going to move around Grog; no attack of opportunity because it’s still in your melee. This one is going to step into range from over here. This one is going to turn and go for Percy. Sees this billowing as you’re stuck there trying to fix the gun, and just rushing towards you with its shield forward, its horrible, jagged longsword in the air arcing towards you. Two strikes versus you. That’ll be a 19?

LIAM: That hits.

MATT: Okay, first strike, you take nine points of slashing damage.

LIAM: I’m down.

MATT: So you go down. Second strike, because it’s still going for you, hits automatically. It’s an auto critical. You fail two death saving throws.

LIAM: That’s it?

MATT: That ends its turn. This one is now going for you, Percy. First strike. That would be a nine.

TALIESIN: No.

MATT: It’s going to use its inspiration die. Add nine to that, so 18.

TALIESIN: 18? That’s my armor class.

MATT: (evil laugh) Bards! I’m sorry. I don’t get to use them very often. So that is 11 points of slashing damage. And the other strike– oh, that’s a natural 18, so yeah, that will be… cocked. Oh, only eight points of slashing damage.

TALIESIN: So 19 points of slashing damage, total?

MATT: Correct. (whooshing) And it’s painful, but not a huge thing at this point. You’re so focused right now on the weapon. All right. That ends their turn. Keyleth, you’re up.

MARISHA: Okay, can I see Vax down? Which one is he on the ground?

MATT: Vax is right there. You see him get slashed from behind, fall to the ground, and you see it raise a blade again and jam it into his torso, pull it out, and there’s a streak of blood that just spatters across the ceiling from the force of the arc.

TALIESIN: Yeah, I think you saw that.

MARISHA: Okay. So I’m going to move around, tuck in the door a bit.

MATT: Okay, so you move in and you see this. As you rush into the room, you see this arc happening.

MARISHA: Can I tuck right here? God, I’m shaking. Yeah, right behind that door.

MATT: Right there, yeah. That’ll be pretty much your movement to get there.

MARISHA: Okay, I’m going to duck down, crouch on the floor. I’m going to cast– first I’m going to– god I’m so nervous– I’m going to use Healing Word on Vax, and heal that motherfucker.

MATT: At what level?

MARISHA: You’re like down down, right?

LAURA: He’s unconscious.

LIAM: And I– there wasn’t even any rolls for that, right?

LAURA: No.

MATT: If you’re unconscious and a creature hits you, you automatically fail a death saving throw and if it’s a critical hit, which if you’re unconscious a hit is an automatic critical, it’s technically two death saving throws.

LIAM: Yeah, and just to understand the whole breakdown, but where do the three rolls come in?

LAURA: If nobody hits you–

LIAM: Oh, if nobody hits, got it.

MATT: Yeah, if nobody hits you and it’s your turn, you roll to see if you– but if something keeps hitting you while you’re down? Can kill you pretty quick.

LIAM: Got it.

MATT: Like two hits.

MARISHA: But he just hit zero hit points, so whatever I bring will bring him over, correct?

MATT: Yeah, and your death saves go away. It’s per turn. Per time you go down.

MARISHA: Okay, I’m just going to do a– I’m sorry, a level one Healing Word for right now.

MATT: Okay.

MARISHA: Yes, which gives you 12 hit points. And then I’m going to use my bonus action to cast Grasping Vine, and I’m going to take the vine and I’m going to wrap it around–

MATT: Your source?

MARISHA: Huh?

MATT: Which source?

MARISHA: Next to me.

MATT: Okay. So right here?

MARISHA: I guess, yes.

MATT: Okay so, out of the wood, a vine– or it’s not wood, actually. This would be a stone wall. So out of a crack in the wall, little bit of material begins to form into a giant vine that forms next to you. What are you doing with it?

MARISHA: I want to wrap it around Cassandra’s feet, her ankle, and I want to pull her toward me.

MATT: You pull her over to the side and she gets pulled across the ground, and she’s on her back now looking up. Her eyes are a little starry-eyed, but she’s (panting). Looks very confused, and her eyes are still adjusting to the whole circumstance.

MARISHA: And I say, “Hi! Just hang on.” And that’s my turn.

MATT: Yep. All right. Vex, you’re up.

LAURA: Okay. So I saw him go down.

MATT: Yes.

LAURA: Does it look like he’s awake now to me? I’m mean, it was all happening very quickly.

MATT: You have no idea. This all happens very quickly. You just saw your brother take a huge–

LAURA: I scream and I run towards him.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: I slide down on my knees and slide across the room and try to cast Healing Word the minute– or cast Cure Wounds the minute I get to him.

MATT: You won’t get close enough to do it, unfortunately.

LAURA: If I slide down and slide?

MATT: Make an acrobatics check. For this circumstance, due to the circumstances with your brother being on the ground, I’ll let this be a little more intense.

SAM: With inspiration.

LAURA: With inspiration. That is– wait, hold on.

LIAM: Acrobatics.

LAURA: Acrobatics?

MATT: Yeah.

LAURA: Oh, that’s good. 17?

MATT: 17, all right. With that, you rush forward, just seeing this tunnel vision image of Vax on the ground, blood pooling under his form. You dart forward, slam on your knees and begin preparing the spell as you skid across the stone floor of the study. You reach out and your hands meet his form, stopping you in the process just as the surge of healing energy jolts through his body. So you can go ahead and cast it on him.

LAURA: Okay, so I’m going to cast that at 3rd level. So that’s 3d8. Where are my d8s? That was the worst roll! Nine!

MATT: So you heal nine hit points.

LIAM: That’s good.

LAURA: That’s okay, because I slid to you.

LIAM: It was amazing. I’ll never forget it.

MATT: (laughs) Okay, that’s your turn.

LAURA: Yeah, and Trinket keeps dragging her.

MATT: Forward? Okay. That ends your turn. All right, go ahead and roll an athletics check for Trinket.

LAURA: Right, okay. It’s going to count even though it slipped out of my hand. It’s eight.

MATT: Eight? Okay. Trinket, holding onto the scruff of Ripley’s neck. Ripley then tugs away from the grip. Reaches into the pouch she had earlier. As a bonus action throws down a small rock that (explosion noise) fills this entire tunnel here with a 20 by 20 fog cloud, apparently. And now that she’s disengaged, she’s going to…

MARISHA: She smoke-bombed out.

LAURA: She ain’t got no weapons.

MATT: Nope. Trinket does get an attack of opportunity on her as she runs past.

SAM: Yeah, Trinket does. Come on, Trinket.

LAURA: All right, he’s going to bite her. Can he cannonball her as an attack of opportunity?

MATT: No, unfortunately.

LAURA: No? Not so much?

MATT: No, sorry.

LAURA: Nine.

MATT: Nine. All right

LAURA: Oh wait! Oh, no. I’ve got to roll for attack first, huh?

MATT: Yeah.

LAURA: That was not what I was doing. So that’s 21.

MATT: That hits, yeah.

LAURA: Okay, good. That’s way better.

MATT: She has no armor.

LAURA: Oh, I don’t know what I’m doing. What is going on? I never attack with Trinket. 13.

MATT: Okay, got it.

TALIESIN: Cautionary tale in there somewhere.

MATT: She runs past. The whole area is obscured for Trinket. Trinket for the moment really has no idea really where she went as she rushed past, and bit out and is now giving out this (bear growl) notification growl sound, but in the chaos right now, it’s not catching your attention as your brother nearly died before you.

LAURA: Right.

MATT: All right, that ends her turn. Percy, you’re up.

TALIESIN: I’m going to break– first off, I’m going to fix my gun.

MATT: Okay, go ahead and make your roll.

TALIESIN: I’m going to make my roll. Come on. What do I have to roll? (muttering) I hit the difficulty. Does that–

MATT: You hit it, then yeah. With the creature looming there, you manage to bend it back into place. You get it aligned as best as you can. That’s your action, though.

TALIESIN: If that had been a slightly bigger fuck-up, that would have been– oh god! Okay.

MATT: So your gun’s functional, but that’s your action.

TALIESIN: I’m going to use an action surge anyway, so it doesn’t matter.

MATT: Yes, you are. Okay.

TALIESIN: I’m going to break off from this guy, and I’m going to rush towards Professor.

MATT: Okay, gets an attack of opportunity on you.

TALIESIN: Go ahead. Don’t care.

MATT: Guy rolls a 14.

TALIESIN: Yeah.

MATT: So you just (whoosh) duck under it instinctually. It comes toward you. Eyes forward, you duck underneath the blade.

TALIESIN: I push him in the face. I don’t care.

MATT: Okay, you get right up to there, and you can see Anders backing away as you approach.

TALIESIN: I’m going to unload in him.

MATT: Go for it.

TALIESIN: That’s 21 to hit.

MATT: That hits.

TALIESIN: That’s 25 to hit.

MATT: That hits.

TALIESIN: That’s a natural 20.

MARISHA: There is Percy!

TRAVIS: What the fuck?

MATT: Anti-Wheaton.

TALIESIN: Okay, let’s see, that’s 11.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: 14.

MATT: All righty. This is the critical.

TALIESIN: Yep, this is the critical which is seven, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 20 with fire damage.

MATT: Okay. How do you want to do this?

(cheering)

TALIESIN: How close to him do I get? And this was without smoke damage, I might add.

MATT: You can get one more step up there. You can take the shots as you’re stepping towards him, unloading.

TALIESIN: Yeah, I’m unloading as I walk towards him.

MATT: So the first one (gunshot) blasts out the shoulder. You can see the bone exposed, the metal breastplate sundered by the bullet, as he backs up (gasping) As you’re walking towards him, he begins shouting, “Percival, you disappoint us all. All you had to do was die like a good de Rolo.”

TALIESIN: Traitor! And I’ve got two more shots. Next shot.

MATT: This one (gunshot) into his chest, and you can see the actual breastplate bends inward to the wound and he’s (choking noise) spitting out blood from his mouth as he bends forward. “This land has a greater destiny. You and that fool Ripley, you place your faith in toys and dust. You seek the transient truths.”

TALIESIN: How close am I to him at this point?

MATT: You’re stepping up to him.

TALIESIN: Perfect.

MATT: And as you’re doing this, as you’re pull the mask down, he says, “I die to rise again. We are his blood.”

TALIESIN: I put my gun in his mouth to shut him the fuck up. “You’re the face I saw when murder entered my heart. This is your doing.” And I pull the trigger.

MATT: With that, a resounding blast (explosion noise) echoes through the room. The back of his head just scatters across the wall behind him. The top of his head folds in a little bit from the lack of a substantial base, and he tumbles backwards, releasing the gun with a limp (splat) onto the ground behind. You’re still holding the Pepperbox in front of you, hands shaking. As you hold it there, looking at it, you can see there’s a flash of purple energy across the barrel that has Anders’s name across it and (fluttering noise) the name burns away, leaving the barrel blank.

TALIESIN: (heavy breathing)

MATT: Smoke begins to subside a little bit. It’s still there, but it seems like at the moment, it has this release aspect to it.

TALIESIN: That’s my turn.

MATT: Yeah, that is your turn. Vax you’re up.

LIAM: How close are the suits of armor to me? I can’t tell.

MATT: There’s one over here, and there’s one– technically it’s right next to you.

LIAM: Right next to me? And am I still prone?

MATT: You’re still prone.

LIAM: So how much movement does it take to–

MATT: Half your movement.

LIAM: Half my movement.

SAM: Don’t give him an attack of opportunity.

LIAM: No, I’m going to get up, and I’m going to use disengage.

MATT: As a bonus action, okay.

LIAM: Yeah, and I’m going to skip back into the corner, and at this point I can throw one dagger at that suit of armor, so I’m going to do that.

MATT: Yes, you can.

LIAM: That is 19.

MATT: That hits.

LIAM: I have no voice left. That is an 11.

MATT: 11 points of damage, all righty. Great, okay. Let’s see here now. That ends your turn. I had the list down here. All right. Grog, you’re up.

TRAVIS: Am I flanked by two suits of armor or just one?

MATT: Nope, there’s just one right next to you.

TRAVIS: I’ll turn to him and rage.

MATT: Okay. Regular rage.

TRAVIS: Regular rage, and swing away.

LIAM: Classic rage, we call it.

TRAVIS: Classic rage.

LAURA: Good old classic rage.

TRAVIS: 14?

MATT: 14 hits.

TRAVIS: Nice. And 25.

MATT: Both hit, yeah.

LAURA: You get three hits.

TRAVIS: Nah, just two.

LAURA: I thought rage– oh.

TRAVIS: Believe me, I know. 17 with the fire damage. First one.

MATT: Okay.

TRAVIS: 18 on the second one.

MATT: Okay, cool. So as you slam your hammer twice into it, the armor dents. You can see now, the energy that’s holding it together is flickering, almost like the arcane entity that resides within it is having a hard time keeping itself in physical form. All right. That end your turn, unless you want to move or do anything else.

TRAVIS: Nope.

SAM: Did you hit?

MATT: Scanlan. You’re up.

TRAVIS: Yeah, twice.

SAM: Okay. Oh, me? Oh man, I can’t do anything against these fuckers.

MARISHA: Yes, you can.

LIAM: You’re Scanlan Shorthalt.

MARISHA: Believe!

SAM: All right. I’ll enter the room, I suppose. Just a little. Right there.

MARISHA: Just the tip.

SAM: Just the tip, and shit. I don’t want to waste anything on these fuckers. Okay, let’s see here. I’ll just do– 2d8. All right, I’ll run up. Actually, a little bit closer to the guy closest to me.

MATT: Okay. You’ll get into melee with him if you do.

SAM: What does that mean?

MATT: Means if you want to do any ranged attack or spell attack roll, you would have disadvantage on it, but otherwise it has no effect.

LAURA: He can attack you, though, because he’s right next to you.

SAM: He won’t be for long.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: So I get up close in, like five feet away, and then I’ll just Thunderwave him.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: I do that thing where frat boys do the chest bump.

MARISHA: Like, “Come at me, bro?”

SAM: Yeah. (grunts)

MARISHA: That’s awesome.

TRAVIS: (quietly) We did do that.

MATT: All righty.

SAM: That’s just like 2d8.

MATT: Yeah, okay.

LIAM: Roll two d8s.

MATT: Is this the 1st-level Thunderwave?

SAM: I believe it is, yes.

MATT: Okay, so makes a constitution saving throw. No, he rolled a natural four, so it takes 2d8 thunder damage and he is pushed over the table, and then would fall over if it wasn’t now drifting above the ground a few inches. Rights itself, but it did push it away from you. Roll 2d8 damage.

SAM: I did. It’s only nine points of damage.

MATT: Nine points of thunder damage against that helmed creature. All right, that brings us to their turn. This creature you just slammed into is going to rush back towards you. This one’s going to turn and attack you, Grog. Two strikes against you. That is a 15.

TRAVIS: Misses.

MATT: Sorry. 25. Rolled an 18 naturally.

TRAVIS: Hits.

MATT: And that is a 21.

TRAVIS: Both hit.

MATT: Okay, so you take six points of slashing damage, halved to three, and nine points slashing damage, halved to five. So eight points of slashing damage total. Two strikes against you, Scanlan. That is an 18.

SAM: Oh, yes. That hits.

MATT: Okay, and then a 12.

SAM: Hey, that misses!

MATT: So you take– that’s seven plus 11 points of slashing damage. (whoosh) As it goes to strike a second time, you see the second blow coming and just duck out of the way. That ends their go. Next up is Keyleth.

MARISHA: So there are two guys alive right now?

MATT: Correct, yes.

MARISHA: One’s on Scanlan.

MATT: One’s on Grog. The one on Grog is looking a little rough. The one near Scanlan’s doing okay.

MARISHA: How’s Cassandra looking next to me?

MATT: She’s fine. There’s no blood. There’s nothing; the wound is gone entirely. But other than that, she looks fine.

MARISHA: Looks fine. Okay, I’ve got my Grasping Vine still up. I’m going to wrap it around the guy that’s close to Scanlan and just yank him off of Scanlan.

MATT: Okay. This pulls him over Scanlan’s form and slams him right next to Cassandra.

MARISHA: Okay, and then I will just go, oh! And pop him with my staff.

MATT: Go for it.

SAM: You can hit things?

MARISHA: Yeah, I got a big old staff, yo! I’m not great at it, but I can do it. Oh, that’s not bad. 16.

MATT: 16 does not hit, unfortunately.

MARISHA: Aw. (ping)

SAM: He’s got armor.

MARISHA: It sounded nice, though.

SAM: It did.

MARISHA: Kind of resonated a little.

MATT: Shakes off of it for a second. All right, so that ends your turn?

MARISHA: Yep.

MATT: All righty. That brings us to Vex.

LAURA: So I’m still down on my knees.

MATT: You’re still down on your knees. Your brother got up and rushed off, he seems okay, (panting) taking a breath for himself.

LAURA: I look up at Percy who is covered in smoke, and I grab his hand and I say, “Percival, how are you?”

MATT: His head slowly turns towards you, the mask still on. You can see his eyes just barely through the glistening circular glass slots where he looks through. The smoke still billowing up from underneath, the head slowly turns towards you.

TALIESIN: Fine.

LAURA: “Darling, take the mask off,” and I–

TALIESIN: I don’t have a turn yet.

MATT: No.

LAURA: And I shoot at the guy that’s attacking Grog.

MATT: Okay. He is technically in melee with you, so you get disadvantage on these strikes unless you want to move away.

LAURA: Does he get an attack of opportunity, though, if I scooch back?

MATT: He would, unless– he didn’t take one against you when you ran back because you disengaged, so yes, he would.

LAURA: Okay, yeah.

MATT: Okay, so you move back a step. That is a 21.

LAURA: Hits.

MATT: Okay, you take nine points of slashing damage as you reach back. The creature (whoosh) arcs with its sword and manages to strike you.

LAURA: Bastard!

MATT: Roll for your attacks.

LAURA: Okay, that is a 26 and a 23.

MATT: Both hit.

LAURA: I didn’t Hunter’s Mark him, because I’m brilliant. Yes! 15, 30, 34 points.

MATT: 34 points of damage for both?

LAURA: Yeah, two eights. Plus 14. Plus my bracers.

MATT: Right. You pull the arrows out and launch them both simultaneously, two arrows in one notch; release them both. One slams into the armor. That one goes underneath the helmet, and as it strikes you hear this horrible echoing (screeching) screech that echoes as the armor (thud) falls to the ground.

TRAVIS: Yeah!

MATT: You can take the rest of your movement, if you like.

LAURA: I stand up.

MATT: Well, you were standing up to move back.

LAURA: I scooched back, right?

MATT: Unless you wanted to be like–

LAURA: Yeah I wanted to be like–

MATT: Okay, so you pulled back while on the ground. Release the arrows.

LAURA: Yeah, like up into them.

MATT: There you go. All right. Stand up, brush yourself off. That ends your go.

LAURA: And Trinket isn’t allowed to move any at all?

MATT: Trinket can, if you want.

LAURA: Can he run after her?

MATT: Yep. Rushes out. Will get there. Rushes through the fog and looks over and sees her right there. Okay. That ends your turn, and now it’s her turn. She goes into a full dash and takes off.

TALIESIN: Does Trinket get an attack of opportunity for that?

MATT: Trinket does get attack of opportunity.

LAURA: Okay.

MARISHA: Come on, Trinket.

TRAVIS: Scratch her up.

LAURA: That’s in the corner. I can’t really say.

TRAVIS: Oh, you piece of shit

LIAM: (clicks his teeth together)

LAURA: Don’t do that. I hate that sound.

(laughter)

MATT: So what did you roll?

LAURA: That’s a 12.

LIAM: Good to know.

MATT: 12?

LAURA: Yeah.

MATT: 12 does not hit, unfortunately.

LAURA: No, it doesn’t.

MATT: Even with no armor, she’s a pretty quick one. She ducks below and bolts down the hallway and around the corner.

TRAVIS: Why did we let her have anything?

MATT: All right.

LAURA: You’re out.

MATT: So that ends your turn, her turn. Percy, you’re up.

TALIESIN: I’m going to pull off the mask and walk forward a bit, about there, and take three shots at the armor.

MATT: Okay, regular shots?

TALIESIN: Sharpshooter shots.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: With one ice, so 14.

MATT: 14 misses. Deflects it with the shield.

TALIESIN: Make sure I’m doing this right. Yeah. Goddamn it. 17.

MATT: Deflects the second one with the shield.

LAURA: Damn it!

MATT: Heavy armor on this one.

TALIESIN: Dropping sharpshooter for the third one.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: Not that it helped. 16.

MATT: This one actually manages to duck out of the way and splinters across the wall behind it.

SAM: They’re tough.

TALIESIN: That’s my turn.

MATT: All righty. Vax, you’re up.

MARISHA: Kill them.

LIAM: I’m just going to walk as far as I can, so 30 feet.

MATT: There.

LIAM: Am I within 40 feet?

MATT: No.

LIAM: Then I just stand.

MATT: Well, you can use the rest of your action to keep moving, if you’d like.

LIAM: All right, yeah. I’m going to move around that table and get by Scanlan. Stand right next to him.

MATT: Okay, that brings us to Grog.

TRAVIS: I would like to move to the suit of armor please.

MATT: Run towards it, jumping and putting one foot on the table; using that as momentum to rush in the air. Go ahead and roll your attack.

TRAVIS: 24?

MATT: 24 hits.

TRAVIS: And 25.

MATT: That hits.

TRAVIS: 20 with fire damage.

MATT: Nice.

TRAVIS: And 16 with fire damage.

MATT: Gotcha. (grunts) Bringing the hammer down, the helmet actually gets pushed into the armor and has to reform itself. Before it has a chance to, you bring around the hammer and hit the shield with such force that it pushes it into itself and slams it against the wall. You take the back of the hammer and slam it up under the actual helmet, hitting the creature. You see the flames burn across the side of its arcane form, causing it to shimmer for a second. It’s looking pretty rough. Instead of using the table, though, you use Grog’s knee. You just run, jump onto his knee with one foot, leap off, blade in the air, go for the strike.

MARISHA: That’s cool!

LAURA: You can do it, Scanlan! (laughs)

SAM: What do I add?

MARISHA: Your attack bonus.

MATT: Attack bonus for your weapon.

SAM: I don’t know what that is!

(laughter)

TRAVIS: It is never used.

SAM: Okay. It’s a plus seven!

MATT: Yeah, so?

SAM: 15.

(laughter)

MATT: As you rush in the air, you hesitate for a moment, remembering the Pike thing, and you see this burning arcane rage in the face of this entity. At that moment, that hesitation was all it needed. It takes the shield and almost knocks the weapon out of your hand. You catch yourself, land on your feet– yeah, your fingers sting a little bit. (laughs) Worth a shot. All right, in retribution, it’s going to strike at you twice. That’s a 15?

SAM: That fails.

MATT: 21.

SAM: That is successful.

MATT: That is seven points of slashing damage.

SAM: Okay.

MATT: All right. Keyleth, you’re up.

MARISHA: Ugh. You guys, I thought someone was going to kill him!

SAM: I tried, but he hurt my wrist really bad!

MARISHA: I know, because I don’t want to fucking burn any spells on this asshole.

TALIESIN: Just hit him with your stick.

MARISHA: Just– ugh. God.

MATT: Roll for it.

MARISHA: Goddamn it, this hopefully works– nope.

TALIESIN: No! Wow!

MARISHA: Nope, that didn’t work. (tink)

(laughter)

MATT: Heavy armor on these guys. All right. Vex, you’re up.

LAURA: Oh gosh. I guess I shoot him. Can I see him to shoot him?

MATT: I’ll say yeah, you can see him all right. You can move over there and get a better view a little bit. Just around this corner, off the table.

LAURA: And I’m going to Hunter’s Mark him.

MATT: Hunter’s Mark him?

LAURA: And then I’m going to shoot him.

MATT: Okay, go for it.

LAURA: Oh gosh, I’m just so nervous about picking the 20. No. 19?

MATT: 19? The arrow hits the armor and shatters across the side.

LAURA: Shit.

TRAVIS: 19?

LAURA: 24.

MATT: 24 does hit.

LAURA: Okay.

TALIESIN: Yay, you hurt it.

LAURA: Well, maybe.

TRAVIS: That’s a high AC. Because of the shield, right?

MATT: Because of the shield and the armor.

LAURA: 18.

MATT: 18 points of damage? With that, the second arrow strikes into the center of its chest armor. It hits some sort of core where its arcane form is held and the reddish energy blinks out, and the armor just (impact noise) crumples to the ground.

TRAVIS: That’s two of them!

LAURA: What’s up, bitches?

TRAVIS: That was tough.

MARISHA: Okay, I immediately turn my attention to Cassandra. Can I do a medical check on her to make sure she’s okay?

MATT: Go ahead and make a medicine check, yeah.

TRAVIS: Where’s Ripley?

SAM: I start running out the hall to Ripley.

TRAVIS: Me, as well.

LAURA: Oh, Trinket is still running after her, too.

MATT: All right, make a perception check for Trinket.

LAURA: Oh. (laughs) Okay, is it his smelling?

MATT: Yeah, it’s his wisdom bonus.

LAURA: I’m rolling a big dice for Trinket! Oh, that’s good. 26!

MATT: 26, okay.

LAURA: 25.

MATT: 25, okay. Trinket is giving chase best it can.

LAURA: Except wait. Hold on, I get advantage because he’s got advantage on smell perception. Oh, it’s the same thing.

MATT: Okay, so Trinket is keeping track, but is having a hard time fully keeping up at this point unless you’re giving full attention towards him at this point in time, but is keeping a track. He is rushing as fast as he can down the stairs and is currently out of your sphere of personal influence at the moment.

LAURA: I should have Hunter’s Marked her. (sighs)

TRAVIS: I grab Scanlan, and we’re taking off after her out the door.

MARISHA: I rolled a 17 on a medicine check.

MATT: Okay, checking Cassandra, there is no sign of a wound now. She seems to be not in any danger.

MARISHA: Okay.

MATT: So, she’s on the ground, dazed.

TALIESIN: I’m going to collapse in a corner for a minute and start using my ascot to clean some of the gore off my weapon and my clothing and my mask.

MATT: It is a lot of gore. Okay.

LIAM: Are we out of combat now?

MATT: You guys are currently out of combat.

LIAM: Okay. I’m going to, clutching my bleeding belly, walk over toward Keyleth and say, that was a close one.

MARISHA: Yeah. You know, I feel like we’ve been here before– oh, right. We have been here before.

LIAM: You know I’m in love with you, right? And I kiss her.

SAM: Oh!

TALIESIN: (coughs heavily)

SAM: Persistent cough.

MATT: (laughs) And on that note, we’re going to go ahead and take a quick little break!

LAURA: What the fuck?!

MATT: (laughs) All right, quick break!

TALIESIN: I want to see what color you turned. Oh my god, yeah!

(laughter)

MATT: All right, awesome. Quick break, guys! See you guys back here in a few minutes.

TRAVIS: Dude, what?!

BreakEdit

[break]

ZAC: Couple quick things, guys, or I could just sit here and talk for a good ten minutes, make you guys wait before we come back to the bombshell that was dropped. I’m just going to keep going. We are 15 away from doing a giveaway, if we hit that 15 we will be doing that giveaway at the very end of this stream, right whenever Matt says that’s it. We will open up the chat for everyone and do that giveaway. I also want to say for all the people wondering what in the world was the No Survivors thing, Snakes on a Plane number one was this last Monday, and it’s up on the website right now if you guys are curious and want to check it out, it’s probably the funniest thing we’ve ever done on this channel, and I don’t say that lightly. But we’re doing Snakes on a Plane 2 this coming Monday, so thanks, guys.

MATT: Hell yeah.

TALIESIN: Snakes on a Plane 2: More Snakes, More Plane.

Part IIEdit

MATT: All right. So. With the chaos that has ensued through the battle in Anders’s study in the castle of Whitestone, the party looks about, Cassandra de Rolo recovered, and pulled from seemingly the brink of death. Vax pulled seemingly from the brink of death, and Percy managing to squeak in a second killshot on a member of his list. As the rest period kicks in, Vax stepped across the room, holding his wound to his side, admitting his affection for Keyleth, and reaching out and kissing her.

TRAVIS: Or attempting to kiss.

LAURA: Roll for contact there?

SAM: Roll for tongue action.

MATT: No.

LIAM: No.

MATT: So, as he breaks from the momentary, unexpected embrace, you catch yourself off guard.

LIAM: You know, the way you turn into animals and stuff is really cool.

TALIESIN: I’m going to collect some of Vex’s arrows.

MARISHA: Are you sure you’re–

LAURA: I leave the room and look for Trinket.

MARISHA: Just… let me. And I Cure Wounds him. I’ll do a 4th level. Shut up, Sam. I just can’t find my spell. Yeah, I’ll do that 4th-level Cure Wounds.

MATT: Burn all the spell slots. Go ahead and roll.

LIAM: Folks, we don’t know what we’re doing. None of us know what we’re doing.

MARISHA: I feel like in the moment I would just do it really at a– shut up.

SAM: Sure, overcompensate.

MARISHA: Right. What do I roll? Hang on. 1d8. So I’m rolling 4d8. I need d8s, goddamn it! Give me d8s.

TALIESIN: You can’t have my d8s.

MARISHA: Why can’t I have your d8s?

TALIESIN: Okay, fine, have my d8s.

MARISHA: That’s fine, give me one more.

MATT: All right.

MARISHA: Okay, 14, 18. (counting)

MATT: What are you doing?

TALIESIN: I’m collecting three or four of Vex’s arrows from the ground and getting them in my hand, and I’m staying back from all of this and letting it happen.

MATT: Okay. Collect the arrows, Vex has stepped out of the room to pursue after Trinket, Trinket is currently pursuing Ripley. Grog, you watched that happen.

TRAVIS: No, Grog and Scanlan ran out of the room after Ripley.

MATT: Okay, have you guys bolted out? Okay.

TRAVIS: We’re yelling out, Ripley!

SAM: Ripley!

TALIESIN: Vax, are you all right?

SAM: We shouldn’t yell, Grog.

TRAVIS: Fuck that. I yell anyway.

LIAM: Was there a total?

MARISHA: 33.

LIAM: Yes, I feel better. Thank you.

TALIESIN: That’s good. I’m going to now take my handful of what is now basically a switch, and I’m going to start whacking him with it really hard on the chest.

LIAM: Who?

TALIESIN: You! Don’t go into rooms by yourself, god damn it!

MARISHA: I back into a corner upon seeing this, as Percy ruins the moment.

LIAM: Percival, he had a knife to your sister’s throat. He was going to kill her.

TALIESIN: Thank you, but count to ten. And now I drop them and go over to my sister.

LIAM: I was afraid she was going to die.

MARISHA: To be fair, you did get her throat slit, but it’s okay.

MATT: As you’re saying this, you turn around, you can see she’s sat up and she sees this conversation and goes, “Percy?”

TALIESIN: Hi.

MATT: “Percy!”

TALIESIN: I’m so sorry.

MATT: And she gets up off the ground and runs up and just grabs you and embraces you tightly. You can feel all the muscles tense in her body as she just holds you with a slight shake to her body.

TALIESIN: I’m so sorry for leaving you.

MATT: “I thought you were dead.” She pulls away for a second and just looks at you, and there’s a coldness to her face. She’s happy, but even for her young age, you can see there’s lines at the corners of her eyes. She’s probably been through a lot. She smiles and looks up at you again and you can see there’s the white shocks in her hair, and she looks up and touches your hair and goes, “I see we’ve both survived quite a bit.”

TALIESIN: I wouldn’t trade.

MATT: She laughs to herself, and you see another tear curl at her eye, and then her face goes cold for a second and she, not breaking this gaze, steps back. “You shouldn’t be here. They were using me to get to you. I’m so sorry.”

TALIESIN: Are you all right? Did they do anything? Are you yourself?

MATT: She reaches up and holds her neck. “I’m good. I’m good.” And she steels herself for a second, and even more so, you see there’s an intensity to her.

TALIESIN: Perception check?

MATT: To…?

TALIESIN: Insight. I want to make sure she’s not holding anything really important back.

MATT: Okay, go for it.

TALIESIN: Insight? Do I get a bonus for that right now? It’s a wisdom– yeah!

MATT: No, because you were concentrating.

TALIESIN: This is not a saving throw, though.

MATT: Yeah, and that’s wisdom, not a saving throw.

TALIESIN: 11.

MATT: 11. Okay. Best you can tell, she seems very honest. She seems forthright. You’re used to the memory of your sister being this bright-eyed, cheerful, youngest of the bunch, and definitely a woman who sees the world with fresh eyes. These eyes are different. They’re colder. They’re hardened. In ways, you’re impressed; in ways, you’re also immediately sad to see that that memory of your sister probably is no longer there.

TALIESIN: We’re putting an end to the Briarwoods tonight. Before the sun sets. This is the end of them. It’s all going to be over, and we’re going to stop whatever it is they’re doing under the city.

MATT: “You say this. We’ve tried twice.”

TALIESIN: I know. This is it.

MATT: “That’s what the others thought. You left me, you know.”

TALIESIN: I know, and I’m so sorry.

MATT: “Good. Well, if we’re going to do this, let’s get ready.”

TALIESIN: You’re going to your room.

MATT: “Yes, I am.”

TALIESIN: To wait until this is over.

MATT: “No. No, I’m not. I’m going to my room to get my things. To get my mother’s armor.”

TALIESIN: (sputters) You’re– I don’t think that’s a very good idea.

MATT: “You’ve been fighting them for what, a few days? I’ve been fighting them for nearly three years. You have no power over me, brother. And if our goals are aligned to free this city, let’s do it together. But I don’t have to listen to you.”

TALIESIN: God, you’re irritating. Fine. Ugh!

MATT: She walks out of the room.

MARISHA: Percy!

TALIESIN: She’s so obnoxious. What?

MARISHA: You have a sister.

TALIESIN: Oh god, I do.

MATT: You guys, charging off. Trinket’s keeping trail. She’s run down the stairway, he is beginning to slowly gain on her. She reaches the front doors, does remember the caltrops. Jumps over them, grabs the door, opens it, and rushes out into the daylight. Go ahead and roll a perception check for Trinket.

MARISHA: Oh, come on, Trinket.

LAURA: He saw it happen! He’s got really good vision.

MARISHA: Come on, Trink.

TALIESIN: Yay!

LAURA: Oh yeah, that’s like 24.

MATT: Yeah, Trinket just jumps over. The door’s only slightly open so Trinket has to stop and wedge his way through.

LAURA: Can he cannonball into her? To try to catch her?

MATT: It’s the same speed as if he dashed. It would be the same speed.

LAURA: All right.

MATT: However, it takes a moment to get through. You guys now get down the stairs. As Trinket opens the door and wedges through, there’s a scent out there, but she’s nowhere in visible range. She’s either darted off the path or possibly off the actual sides, and you can see now the struggle that’s happened. You can now hear in the distance the sound of yells and fighting and there doesn’t appear to be any one side or the other pushing.

LAURA: I whistle at Trinket to get him to stop.

MATT: Okay, as you get to the landing you whistle out, and Trinket is just now pushing through the door and gets out for a bit, looking back and forth. Looks over the shoulder, and runs back to you. It appears that Ripley has scattered into Whitestone somewhere.

SAM: Damn it.

TRAVIS: We stop.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: We need to find the Briarwoods.

TALIESIN: I’m still upstairs. Are you going to come meet us again upstairs?

SAM: We’ll get Trinket and go back upstairs, wherever they are.

TALIESIN: Taking a short rest.

MARISHA: We’re taking a short rest?

TALIESIN: We’re waiting there. They followed her down; I’m waiting on Cassandra.

TRAVIS: I could stay down in that foyer.

TALIESIN: Come up.

MATT: Are you waiting in the study?

TALIESIN: Yeah, waiting in the study.

MATT: Okay, she goes off to her room. You’re there for a few minutes.

TALIESIN: Does Grog show up?

SAM: We come back and say, that Ripley is very talented. She got away. Talented Dr. Ripley.

TALIESIN: We have bigger issues than Anna at this point. Grog, do you have the Bag of Holding?

TRAVIS: I do.

TALIESIN: Can you scoop up what’s left of Professor Anders?

LAURA: Can I loot him first? I mean, just see what’s on him.

TRAVIS: Like, his head bits?

TALIESIN: I don’t want any of him sticking around.

MARISHA: Do we have to put him in the Bag of Holding, though?

TRAVIS: Why can’t we just set him on fire?

MARISHA: Yeah, stuff him in a closet or something for now.

TALIESIN: Fire will do.

TRAVIS: Is there a fireplace in the room?

TALIESIN: There is. Throw him in. Fine, we’ll throw him in the fire.

LAURA: Wait. Let me see what’s on him, first.

MATT: Okay. Make an investigation check.

TALIESIN: We don’t want him coming back.

MATT: He’s crumpled up against the desk in the corner, there’s all these papers that got pushed off the side, there were a bunch of random scrawlings.

LAURA: 24.

MATT: 24? Okay. You search his body. You find 120 gold pieces on him. Not a whole lot. He doesn’t keep his important shit on him, for the most part. You do find, however, the boots that he’s wearing are very finely crafted, and unlike the rest of his wear, have a hand-stitching in it that is exemplary in construction and doesn’t match with the rest of his ensemble. So it seems like something you’d wear more for function than for actual style. Pardon.

LAURA: I take them.

MATT: You take them.

TALIESIN: Take his shoes.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: Does anybody have magic? Can you see what these are?

SAM: Sure, I can look at them.

LAURA: Look at these, Scanlan.

SAM: I look at them.

MATT: Okay, if you’re taking a short rest, you can take the short rest to inspect the boots, get the feel for them, they are indeed enchanted. They are a pair of Boots of Levitation. Once per day, you can trigger the levitation for up to ten minutes as per the spell. You can’t actually move as part of it, you just levitate in the air, and you have to push off to get space.

TRAVIS: So like zero-G.

MATT: Zero-G.

TALIESIN: Like Willy Wonka.

MARISHA: Zero-G boots! Oh, hell yeah.

SAM: Who do they fit?

MATT: They fit anyone who wishes to put them on. Magical items alter themselves.

MARISHA: Oh, we’re playing with that later.

TRAVIS: I’ll just hang onto it. I’ll just hold onto it.

MARISHA: Can we all just try them once when we get back to Greyskull Keep?

MATT: Anything else you want to do while you’re waiting?

SAM: Anything else in the room? Can I sniff around the room and investigate?

MATT: Yeah, go ahead and make an investigation check.

TRAVIS: I drag Anders over to the fireplace.

LIAM: I’ll look with Scanlan.

SAM: 12.

TRAVIS: He doesn’t quite fit, so I have to snap some joints.

LIAM: 27.

MATT: Okay, good. As you’re looking through and finding papers, papers and ledgers and tough discussions of old classes, untouched on the side, you go through one of the bottom drawers, and there’s a lock to it.

LIAM: Well, let’s unlock that.

SAM: Vax, do you need my help to unlock it?

LIAM: No, Shorty. Hold on. Are there any traps in there?

MATT: Make a perception check.

LIAM: Oh, that is 20.

MATT: It does appear to be trapped.

SAM: It does appear to be trapped?

LIAM: So what do I roll to undo that? Dexterity? Lockpick?

MATT: Thieves’ tools, as well. So same check you did.

SAM: Oh, I can open it for you.

LIAM: That’s a natural 20, so that’s untrapped.

MATT: As part of that, you notice that this mechanism is when it opens, if there isn’t a switch underneath it held that’s hidden, it will cause a poison dart to launch out in the direction of whoever’s in front of it. You hold the button, you find it, you open it up without an issue, and you find the spring mechanism, snap it, and remove the little poison-tipped bolt, and chuck it to the side.

LAURA: No, wait. Give me that. I take it.

MATT: Okay. You have a poison-tipped bolt.

LAURA: Okay.

MATT: For a tiny little hand-crossbow is essentially what it is.

LIAM: So now I’ve got to unlock it, right?

MATT: Yeah.

LIAM: Yeah. Hey, 20.

MATT: Natural 20?

LIAM: No, not a natural 20.

MATT: Oh, okay. Easy enough to unlock at this point, you get it open, you pull it open, there’s a collection of letters.

LIAM: Percival, come here. You’re probably the best person to know what to make of these.

MATT: You glance through and inspect them, and you take the next ten minutes or so to get the gist of these letters while Cassandra’s away. Many of them talk about a slew of things that are disconcerting to you as the information hits you, and you relay this information to the group. Notes on the removal of key magical defenses during the political meeting at Emon. The discussion, as in making sure that certain individuals and safeguards that are usually made during political meetings like that were not present during that endeavor.

LAURA: Evidence is what that is!

MATT: Notes on best construction methods using the mined whitestone and repairs for the manse in the ziggurat.

MARISHA and TRAVIS: The manse?

SAM: As in a mansion?

MATT: A manse is a place or a home; it has many different meanings. They’re warning Anders, and there are multiple letters at different periods of time over the past few years that are warning Anders of an arrival of Seeker Asum’s spies.

SAM: He’s a good guy.

LAURA: Oh!

SAM: No, he’s a bad guy?

MATT: There are letters talking about plotting, diverting political attention away from Whitestone to leave it a political enigma during this period of time. There are letters talking about planting information within Wildmount that would lead their investigation team to believe the Briarwoods had been found dead.

SAM: This is a whole paper trail!

MATT: And occasionally there are mentions in a lot of these letters that speak of, “The Undying King shall return, we are his blood.”

MARISHA: Jarl? What?

MATT: The Undying King shall return.

LAURA: Where did she get Jarl from?

MATT: We are his blood.

LAURA: Oh, “we are.”

MARISHA: The Undying King…

TALIESIN: Shall return.

TALIESIN and SAM: We are his blood.

MARISHA: Which is what he said.

SAM: And then it says Jarl.

TALIESIN: Jarl. Maybe he was dictating.

MATT: The letters aren’t signed.

SAM: Okay? Are they all of the same hand?

MATT: They are all of the same handwriting. In the cluster, there is one completely unrelated letter that talks about business ledgers and construction of the bridge. It appears to be a simple discussion on the future plans to construct the bridge.

SAM: Is that in the same hand?

MATT: It is in the same handwriting.

SAM: And is it signed?

MATT: It is signed a Lord Riskel Daxio.

MARISHA: What! Who? Axio?

TRAVIS and SAM: Riskel Daxio.

MATT: Riskel Daxio.

LAURA and MARISHA: We know him!

MATT: Yep.

LAURA: Who is he?

MATT: He’s on the Council of Tal'Dorei.

LAURA: (gasps) Oh, motherfucker! He’s a spy.

MARISHA: He’s our fucking spy!

MATT: He’s technically also the one that helped designate the construction of your keep and plotted the construction stuff–

LAURA: Oh no.

SAM: He built our keep!

MARISHA: He’s the construction guy, he’s like our head builder.

LIAM: He could be spying on us around the keep.

TALIESIN: He could have a secret entrance to our Keep that he built and didn’t tell us.

LAURA: Holy moly.

SAM: As soon as I see that, I go down in a crouch and I shit-scry on our keep to see if it’s still there.

MARISHA: Oh my god, that’s right, you did that! And I put an elemental there. It’s babysitting.

MATT: Yes, you did.

MARISHA: Hopefully still there. 30 days.

MATT: 30 days. Glancing within the kitchen, there doesn’t appear to be much that catches your attention.

TALIESIN: You shat in the kitchen?

SAM: I put a mound of shit in a jar in the kitchen and I told them, don’t clean it up.

MATT: Like you do.

SAM: You know.

LAURA: Like you do.

SAM: Thursdays.

TRAVIS: I’ve got Anders in the fireplace, and I light the Firebrand War Hammer with the magic word, bacon, and I hit it and set him on fire.

MATT: There was already a fire in the fireplace, but you just stoke it a little further, and pretty soon the delicious scent of burning human flesh fills the room.

LAURA: Bacon?

TRAVIS: Yeah, bacon. Did you not know that’s what the word was?

SAM: So everything’s fine at the keep?

MATT: At the time.

SAM: At the time, okay.

MATT: At least, there’s nothing on fire, there’s no screams, there’s no movement. It just seems like the cold kitchen is untouched.

SAM: Guys, my shit saw no movement.

(laughter)

LAURA: Good to know, Scanlan.

TALIESIN: You’ve squeezed all you’re going to be able to get out of that.

TRAVIS: Percy. Can we get into the underground caverns from here?

TALIESIN: Can I think of a way? I’m assuming I know a way to where this might be.

MATT: As you have this conversation, a voice from the doorway rings out. “I can take you.” You look over, and it’s Cassandra.

TALIESIN: She’s going to take us.

SAM: Is that your sister?

TALIESIN: Apparently.

MATT: She’s currently now dressed in armor you’ve seen as ornamental before. It was armor that your mother trained in when she was young, but was unused for a long time. It seems to be serviceable; it’s been updated and such. She slides a shortsword into a sheath at her side, and her hair is pulled back and tied off, and she looks at the rest of the room. “So are we ready?”

TRAVIS: Let me see your neck.

MATT: She steps up and lifts her chin up towards you.

SAM: By the way, this is Grog.

LIAM: I’m going to insight check as he does that.

TALIESIN: These are my friends, by the way.

TRAVIS: Do I see anything on her neck?

MATT: No. It seems fine. There’s no signs of any puncture wounds. Rolling?

LIAM: It’s a 15.

MATT: Okay. She seems as determined as the rest of you.

LAURA: All right.

TALIESIN: Lead the way, sister.

MATT: She turns around and she begins walking back down the hallway.

LAURA: Can we expect any more traps that you’re aware of?

MATT: “That I’m aware of, no, but I’m certain that there may be. They know you’re coming, it seems. So be wary. Be careful. I’ll take you to the undercroft.”

LIAM: Did we just have a short rest here?

MATT: You did.

LIAM: Going to heal up.

SAM: Hey, Percival. Any chance you can load up one of Ripley’s guns for me?

TALIESIN: I don’t know if it will actually– I would have to probably train you in how to use it.

SAM: Really? I’ve seen you use it. You just pull your finger on the finger part and the big boom part goes out.

TALIESIN: It’s a little more complicated than that, actually.

SAM: Well, you have to point it at the thing you want to be boomed.

MATT: He could use it, he just wouldn’t be able to add his proficiency bonus to the attack rolls.

TALIESIN: I’ll load one for you. I’ll give him her boomstick.

MATT: Okay. You take it. You inspect it as you guys are walking along.

TALIESIN: Just making sure it functions, too.

MATT: It seems pretty functional. It’s well-constructed, it’s sleek. Your Pepperbox has a bit of flair to its design, this is your background. Hers is just streamlined, simple, much like the decor of her room when you saw it. She doesn’t mess with anything fancy or unnecessary. The ammunition she does have are made specific to size to her pistol. They will not function for the Pepperbox, unfortunately. They will only work for the pistol.

TALIESIN: Doing okay. Not doing great, but I’m doing okay.

MATT: It does act as a pistol for rules-wise, which is on your sheet here, so yes, you would have that.

LAURA: Do you want it? Just in case yours misfires?

TALIESIN: I’ll steal it back from him if I need, but it should be fine.

SAM: I’d like to make an athletics check. Athletics. See if I can spin it around and put it in my pocket.

LAURA: Wait, where did you get it? I had it in my belt.

TALIESIN: No, if you have it.

LAURA: I have it.

SAM: Okay, give it to me.

TALIESIN: Give it to him.

MARISHA: Put your eye out.

MATT: All right. Go ahead and roll dexterity, roll a d20, add your dexterity modifier.

LIAM: Don’t roll a one.

TALIESIN: This is literally how she lost her hand.

SAM: Wait, what’s this? Why does it say plus four?

LAURA: This music is awful as you’re checking.

MARISHA: Yeah, the violins plinking.

SAM: Well, it’s zero, but it says a big plus four next to it for some reason.

MATT: I don’t know. Add zero. What did you roll?

SAM: It was 14.

MATT: Okay. You manage to get it in there. Thankfully it’s not loaded, because you feel the trigger go off. But there wasn’t a bullet loaded, so it’s like (click).

TRAVIS: Yeah, we took out the ammunition.

SAM: Okay, now give me a bullet.

TRAVIS: Maybe don’t do that.

TALIESIN: I hand him the ammunition. I load four of them.

SAM: Yeah!

LAURA: Giving him a loaded gun?

SAM: I’m a big boy. Well, I’m a little boy. But I’m a little big boy.

LIAM: I would like to walk past Scanlan and grab it out of his hand.

SAM: I will prevent him from doing that!

MATT: Okay.

MARISHA: You guys are fighting over a loaded gun.

MATT: Sleight-of-hand check. Athletics check.

LIAM: You go first.

SAM: Is this a skill check?

MATT: Yeah. Add your athletics to your roll.

SAM: 17!

LIAM: Shut up. 27.

MATT: As you go to be, “No, what are you–” It’s already gone. You don’t even know where it went, you didn’t see him take it, you just all of a sudden see it in his hand as he walks past you.

LIAM: And I walk over to Cassandra. I don’t give her the gun, I just say, you’re Cassandra?

MATT: “Yes.”

LIAM: I was at the door. He had a knife to your throat. He wanted you to say something to us. What did he want you to say?

MATT: “He wanted me to shout for help. He wanted me to draw you in.”

LAURA: Can I insight check her to see if she’s telling the truth?

MATT: Yeah.

LIAM: You’ve been living here. How did it come that he had a blade to your throat today? How did it all unravel? Have you been living here?

LAURA: 24.

MATT: 24. She’s telling the truth.

LAURA: Okay. That’s good.

MATT: “Well, after the arrows felled me– I guess I should start at the beginning.” And she’s walking along with you guys as she’s leading you down the stairs and down to the bottom floor. She doesn’t look to you. She’s still looking ahead, very intent.

LAURA: I take that pistol back from you.

MATT: “After the arrows felled me, I recovered. Father Reynal found me. Brought me from the brink at the temple of Pelor outside of town. Things hadn’t fallen quite that far back then. We had more people in the city. At the time, the Briarwood rule was fresh and folks were eager to speak out against what they had wrought on this city, the fall of the de Rolos. We still thought they had fallen to plague, but through some unfortunate political business, they had come to power, but we began to question it. I knew better. I told the truth once I’d recovered. We began to build our first rebellion. Two years we built up the resistance before we made our first move. They seemed to know exactly what we were plotting. Cut us off at every angle. Couldn’t see who it was who was giving up our information, but I knew it was close. But before I had the opportunity, I was helming a group that was traveling to utilize the escape route that I took you through when they first attacked. It was just after dusk, and Lord Briarwood was there waiting for us in the forest. He slaughtered most of the men, but he recognized my face from the dinner we had the night they took the castle. They did not harm me, strangely. They treated me like a guest against my will, in my own house. I seemed to ascertain that by keeping me there, having a member of the house within their grasp, they could use that as leverage. I don’t know. Sylas, he had his charms, and there were many that worked beneath them against their own will. It did not work on me. My hatred was too strong. So instead, they tried to provide me with wealth. Power, here in Whitestone. I just took to reading and ignoring it all. I don’t know why they kept me around, but I wasn’t going to question it if it gave me a chance to possibly undermine them.” She grabs the side of her sword as you guys have now reached now down the long hallway towards the back of the castle. You know the direction she’s taking you. It leads to the cellar, to the undercroft and the de Rolo mausoleum. “Three years of reading in that library. Father’s library. Strategy. Tactics. Old lines of information, as well as the myths and history of Whitestone. I found allies within the castle. I contacted Yennen, and through him, Archibald, who helped me build the first rebellion. Archibald still lives, Percy. He’s been completely necessary for what we’ve built here.” She looks down at her armor as you guys reach the edge of the cellar, and she pulls the door open quietly. There’s wooden stairs that lead down into the cellar. She taps her armor. “This was Mother’s. It’s good to know I’m not the only tomboy in the bloodline.” Brushes the hair out of her face, and for the first time really looks at you with a smile since she first saw you.

TALIESIN: (sighs) Can we do one thing before we go down into the cellar? This is the best day of my life, and I can’t help but be suspicious.

MATT: “I completely understand.”

TALIESIN: Is there any way to check if she’s being controlled?

TRAVIS: I was thinking the same thing.

TALIESIN: Can we put your helmet on her?

MATT: The only thing you really have seen work is the Greater Restoration spell you cast on Seeker Asum when you guys were with the Council of Tal'Dorei. That did seem to remove any sort of charm effects, if that’s what you’re asking.

LAURA: We don’t have that?

MARISHA: I didn’t learn it. Not for today. I thought Pike’s magic would hold up.

TRAVIS: I can try and jog her memory.

MATT: “What can I do to make you trust me?”

SAM: Punch her in the face?

TALIESIN: I do trust you. That’s the problem.

MATT: She smiles a little. “Whatever you need.”

TALIESIN: I’ve got nothing. (sighs)

MATT: Does anyone have any creative means with which they would want to check?

TALIESIN: What would happen if we put your helmet on her?

MARISHA: If she’s already controlled–

TALIESIN: This would disrupt it, maybe.

MARISHA: We could try it. It doesn’t hurt to put a hat on.

LAURA: It has to be attuned over a short rest, though.

MARISHA: It does.

TALIESIN: Does the hat need to be attuned over a short rest?

MATT: In theory.

LIAM: I want to suggest something to you. We rest here for a half hour, and I give this to you. This came from a very strange creature. It will help you resist any control, if there is any control, and one of us– you could even choose– could strike you and try to take you out of it, and if you are not being controlled, then you are being struck across the face, and I’m sorry for that, but if you are, there’s a possibility we’d pull you out. I know that would hurt, but it would go a long way to earn our trust.

MATT: “If that’s what it takes.” She takes it from your hand and inspects it for a second. “Shoddy craftsmanship.” Places it on her head, and it’s a little big at first, then it conforms to her head.

LIAM: Your choice.

MATT: She sits down a couple of steps deeper into the cellar. Curls around a corner; ushers you all over into the shadows.

MARISHA: Can I see, before we leave, are we near any windows?

MATT: From this location? No. All the windows that would be here would face out into the north side of Whitestone, which is forested.

MARISHA: Backyard?

MATT: You guys are on the north side of the castle now. The city is south from you.

MARISHA: All right.

MATT: So you take a moment and sit. While you guys are waiting, she takes a moment. She’s adjusting it and feeling it and inspecting her hands. (sighs) “I don’t feel any different. While we wait–”

LIAM: What if the little one struck you?

SAM: Struck her?

LAURA: Give it some time.

MATT: She gives a wry grin. “Whatever you choose.”

SAM: I could try to tell if she’s evil or not. Would that help?

LAURA: Yeah.

LIAM: I don’t know. I don’t think she’s evil. She could be a puppet.

MARISHA: Can I try this? This is a long shot. My– actually, our fey ancestry, from being half-elves. We’re immune to charm effects. Or we have resistance.

LIAM: Resistant to it.

MARISHA: Advantage against saves. Since we have that, can we use our fey ancestry, the three of us, to tap into her and see if we can detect a charm?

MATT: Your resistance doesn’t make you attuned to it. Unfortunately, it’s just a natural ability that’s inherent. Her being human, there’s not a way to really correlate with that. I mean, you’ve read over her a few times, doing insight checks.

TALIESIN: Wait, it was Greater Restoration?

MARISHA and LAURA: Yeah.

TALIESIN: Ah!

SAM: You have that?

TALIESIN: I have a potion. This should solve all of our problems.

SAM: Or you could save that for when one of us becomes a vampire.

TALIESIN: No, it will be– And I’m pulling out a potion bottle. This is if you are controlled. This could fix it.

MATT: She puts her hand out. Her leather glove’s pulled over it now. You’ve never seen her militant before, and it’s a really interesting visual to you.

TALIESIN: I look at her.

MATT: She drinks the potion. Whole thing down. (coughs)

TALIESIN: That was actually a minor healing potion. I was just seeing if you did it intentionally.

(laughter)

MATT: She gives a wry grin and wipes her mouth. “I thought I recognized that terrible earthy taste.” She tosses the crystal decanter to you.

LIAM: Clever boy.

MATT: “Huh. You always were the clever one.”

TALIESIN: I figured it was worth a shot. Best we’re going to do.

SAM: Am I supposed to punch her in the face now?

LIAM: No.

MATT: “Do you need this thing?”

LIAM: I’ll take it back, yeah.

MATT: She hands it back to you.

TALIESIN: All right.

MATT: There’s a fascination she has with her armor. “I’ve not been able to wear this before. It feels good to have something close to Mother.”

TALIESIN: It’s been a long time. (sighs)

MATT: “Simon repaired it for me when he was working here. I haven’t seen him in a while. I’m worried.”

TALIESIN: Let’s go down and take care of this. Cass?

MATT: She leads you down through the cellar–

MARISHA: Wait, hang on. Before we enter: it’s safe to assume they know we’re coming, correct?

SAM: If they’re there.

LAURA: Yeah.

TALIESIN: Yeah.

LIAM: Better safe than sorry.

SAM: Can I ask Cassandra–

MATT: You can ask her anything you’d like.

SAM: Are the Briarwoods going to be down there? Are they here?

MATT: She goes, “I have no confirmation of it, but they spend most of their time down here. They’re preparing for something.”

LIAM: Have you ever been down here?

MATT: “I’m not allowed down here, by their orders, but I’ve snuck down a few times out of curiosity. I’ve only gotten so far before I had to return, but I’ve made it through the undercroft, through most of the tunnels, and I’ve gotten to the distillery, and that’s about as far as I’ve gotten. But I’ve followed them down here, and they usually come with a group of guards, four or five strong.”

LAURA: All right.

TRAVIS: Are there sentries? Can we expect to find traps, lookouts?

MATT: “It’s definitely a possibility, so move quietly. Be careful.”

LAURA: What is Lady Briarwood?

MATT: “What is Lady Briarwood? She’s a wicked beast of a creature, is what she is. I’d use less savory words, but my brother’s here.”

TALIESIN: There’s a first time for everything, I suppose.

MATT: As she leads you guys down the stairs towards the undercroft, she goes, “She’s not like her husband. That I know. As far as I can tell, she’s human, but she has a very powerful control over life and death. She’s a practitioner of the arcane, definitely, but her focus seems to be necromancy on a wide scale. And while Delilah and Sylas are man and wife, they speak of another.”

SAM: They speak of another?

LAURA: The guy that they’re trying to bring back.

MATT: “It’s as if a third party completes their union.”

SAM: Oh, this is the king that will rise again?

MATT: “They don’t say any names. They refer to him as ‘him’ or ‘The Whispered One.’ No reference beyond that.”

LAURA: (gasps)

SAM: What?

LAURA: (whispering) What if it’s the guy in Percy?

SAM: What if it’s what?

TALIESIN: I’m having that thought, as well.

LAURA: Percy’s smoke monster.

SAM: Oh shit.

MARISHA: Oh boy.

LIAM: He’s playing both sides, possibly, Percival.

SAM: Oh, another question for Cassandra. The duke, Negmeyer? Vegmeyer? Venkman?

TALIESIN and MARISHA: Quagmire.

MATT: “Vedmeyer, yes.”

SAM: Vedmeyer. Have you seen him around the castle today, or recently?

MATT: “I’ve only seen him in the castle maybe three times since we’ve been here.”

SAM: Because Grog? He’s a goliath.

TRAVIS: He’s– wait, what?

SAM: He’s a big goliath, so if he’s here, you should just, you know–

TRAVIS: How did you see him?

SAM: Oh, when I was a dinosaur and I burned down a house and killed a bunch of people…

TALIESIN: That’s a series of words that I know individually, but he strings them together in ways that don’t make any sense.

SAM: I wouldn’t say fought, because I beat him really easily, and then I ran away.

TRAVIS: Oh, you killed him?

SAM: No, I just pushed him off a building, then I thought that was enough for the day, so I went home.

MATT: Cassandra looks over her shoulder at this. “It’s a shame you’re not as tall as your tales, small one.”

SAM: Well, thank you. I’ll take that as a compliment.

TALIESIN: No!

SAM: Don’t worry.

MARISHA: (laughing) No.

(laughter)

SAM: Before we cross the precipice into this– what is it, undercroft?

MATT: Undercroft she was referring to, yes.

SAM: Percival, we all have fought with you this whole time, and you know that we have your back and that we’re with you in this 100 percent. But I’d like our enemies to know that, as well, so with your permission, I will cast Seeming on all of us. And I make the girls look like Cassandra, and the boys look like Percy. So I give us all the gray hair.

TALIESIN: You crazy motherfucker!

SAM: And if possible, I’d like to emblazon the sign of the rebellion on our chests in sort of an awesome Superman glowing thing.

MATT: With a flicker of Scanlan’s arcane mastery, all of you form into a small battalion of Percys and Cassandras.

LIAM: Is he a big Percy?

MATT: He would have to be, yeah, because he still stays similar to his actual size, so if Percy was a little thicker and a little taller–

MARISHA: Percy’s been hitting the ‘roids.

MATT: Yep.

LAURA: What is Trinket?

SAM: A bear with two streaks of white hair.

(all laugh)

LAURA: And he’s wearing little circle glasses.

SAM: Yeah, with the little glasses. We are all de Rolos today.

MARISHA: He’s a Hello Trinket!

TALIESIN: Hello Trinket?

MARISHA: Hello Trinket.

MATT: Cassandra looks around very confused for a second. “Curious, yes.”

MARISHA: But abrasive. Right? You’re put off by it, so it works. It’s working.

SAM: Possibly confused.

TALIESIN: Abrasiveness is his most powerful weapon.

MATT: “So I’m beginning to see. Well, then.” She pulls her shortsword out. “Shall we?”

LAURA: Are we going in to fight now?

TRAVIS: We’re going into the cavern.

LAURA: I’m stealthing.

MATT: “As are we all.” Everyone roll stealth checks.

LAURA: Should I cast Pass Without a Trace? Yeah, I’m going to use Pass Without a Trace, because I don’t have a lot of 2nd-level spells.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: Oh yeah. Please.

MATT: Plus ten.

LAURA: Yeah, plus ten to your stealth.

SAM: Oh, really?

LAURA: Yeah.

TALIESIN: Thank god.

TRAVIS: Boom!

LAURA: Natural 20!

LIAM: You’re welcome.

TRAVIS: 26. Natural 20.

LIAM: 30. Natural 20.

LAURA: Oh, natural 20.

MATT: 30, plus whatever your bonus is.

LIAM: That’s with the bonus.

MATT: I thought you rolled a natural 20?

LAURA: That’s 29, that’s 39.

MATT: Oh, you?

LAURA: 39 for me.

MATT: 39? Your sister just out-stealthed you.

LIAM: I gave her my fucking cloak, Matt.

SAM: Do we all get plus ten?

TALIESIN: Yeah.

SAM: Oh, then 29.

MARISHA: 28.

TALIESIN: 21.

MATT: You all (whoosh) vanish.

MARISHA: Before we go in, I go, Vax?

LAURA: How do you know it’s him?

MATT: Solid point.

MARISHA: Vax?

SAM: Yes, it’s me.

TALIESIN: Yes, Keyleth?

MARISHA: Vax?

(laughter)

SAM: Yes, it’s me, Vax. What do you need? It’s me.

LIAM: Kiki, I’m over here.

MARISHA: Goddamn it, Scanlan!

LAURA: This is really creepy because it’s brother and sister talking to each other right now. It looks like Percival and Cassandra.

MATT: She’s very uncomfortable right now, by the way.

TALIESIN: Is there anybody who is not made uncomfortable by this?

MARISHA: This was supposed to be a passing comment, and it’s turned into a thing. (laughs) Be careful.

TALIESIN: Of course, Keyleth.

LAURA: He will be.

MARISHA: God damn it! I can’t do this anymore.

TALIESIN: Carry on.

MARISHA: Just go. Let’s go. Can we go?

SAM: Sister Vex? Do you mind giving me that gun again?

MARISHA: Shut up, Scanlan.

TALIESIN: It will be no problem at all.

LAURA: No, you can’t have it.

SAM: Why, because I’m three feet tall?

LAURA: Because I want it.

LIAM: (imitating Grog) Is this the body-switching episode?

TALIESIN: Right.

SAM: Let’s go.

TALIESIN: Let’s go.

MATT: Continuing down, a long set of whitestone-constructed stairs descend for about 45 feet before they level off into the de Rolo mausoleum. A long hallway continues forward that contains two ten-by-ten stone structures that contain the entombed bodies of previous generations of de Rolos, with six passages– three on each side– that split off of this main hallway that contain their own stone-encapsulated corpses. This is a place of silent prayer and showing appreciation for the previous families. Not all of them are full, and there were extensions planned as the family grew, but the first thing you notice is all of the tomb doors are open. Is anyone holding a torch light source, going through this?

LAURA: He’s got his flaming war hammer.

MARISHA: Yeah, and I’ll light up my hands.

TALIESIN: I think I still have a torch, actually.

MATT: Have you been carrying it with you throughout this?

TALIESIN: Yeah.

MATT: Okay.

LIAM: Dagger.

MATT: Okay, so you have enough light sources to keep a general idea of what’s going on, and I know a lot of you guys have darkvision, too, so you have a pretty decent range. What’s the marching order here, guys? Just so I know, continuing down this path.

SAM: We’ll go Percy, Cassandra, Cassandra, Percy, Percy, Percy, Percy, Cassandra.

MARISHA: Boy girl, boy girl, boy girl.

LAURA: I’m going to perception ahead, so I’ll be towards the front.

MATT: Towards the front?

LIAM: How about Grog in second place? You big sponge.

MATT: Is Trinket staying with you or staying in back?

LAURA: He’s going to stay further back.

MARISHA: Put me in a happy middle.

MATT: Grog’s second. Keyleth is, you said, in the middle?

SAM: She’s lucky Pierre.

MATT: All right, the rest of you guys?

LAURA: Trinket’s staying close to Scanlan.

MATT: Okay. Scanlan, you staying towards the back?

SAM: I guess so.

MATT: All right. Percy and Vax?

LIAM: I’ll be behind Grog, as well.

TALIESIN: So I’ll be in the back with my sister.

MATT: All right, and this is Cassandra.

LAURA: Oh no. She’s so drunk.

MATT: Okay, so it’s like a flying V formation you guys are pushing in here.

TALIESIN: Go home, de Rolo, you’re drunk.

MATT: All right, so. You progress through the undercroft as quietly as possible. You notice as you get past the first section, you look to your right and left and the inside of these small like cubby offshoots that contain these separate ten by ten stone tombs. The walls have shelves burrowed into it, in which there are urns and small gems and offerings– things that were buried alongside the family members as part of a remembrance.

LIAM and LAURA: (make snatching noises)

MATT: Yeah, no. Don’t go Skyrim on me.

TALIESIN: Yeah. Not fun.

MATT: Once again, you see the doors are open, and from what you can tell, the stone lids on the tombs are pulled off and to the side. Across the way, as you move towards the center of the room to the second set of openings, you can see the far wall which, the room ends in the far side, but there is about a 15, 20-foot wide and about a ten to 15-foot tall hole burrowed into the far wall. And the closer you get, you see large piles of dirt that fill one side of the room were put off to the side as if pieces of this dig were discarded and there is a trail of dirt across the ground that appears to have not been very well cleaned to show that dirt was being moved in and out of this area. You also see, as you push two-thirds into the room, broken pieces of whitestone that had been carved into what looks like parts of walls or pillars. Support things that failed in their construction and just broke and were tossed and discarded to the side. Make a perception check.

MARISHA: Oh!

TALIESIN: Oh! Natural 20.

SAM: Jesus.

TRAVIS: What the flipping fuck, man.

TALIESIN: I had a one today.

MATT: A one.

TRAVIS: And four 20s.

TALIESIN: I had a one.

MATT: One of you Critters out there has to get Taliesin a really, really pretty new d20 that he has to use going forward.

TALIESIN: That’s shapeways.com.

MATT: Not that one!

(laughter)

MATT: All right. So what did you get?

MARISHA: 29.

SAM: 12.

LIAM: 26.

LAURA: I don’t remember. It wasn’t very good.

MATT: Okay.

TRAVIS: 13.

MATT: Okay. Those of you with about 25 or above, you glance and you find two of these slivers of this material you don’t recognize and part of this broken stone. It’s like a dark green glass. About a half an inch to an inch thick in slivers. You only find a small scattering few, and it has a grainy texture to it, and you take a look at it, and it’s transparent. You can see shapes through it, but it’s opaque enough to the point where it distorts a little bit of the visual and color behind it.

MARISHA: Can I do a nature check on this? Is this similar to the broken glass that I collected before?

MATT: Which broken glass you collected before?

MARISHA: I don’t know. I just have broken glass shards.

TRAVIS: I feel like that was the red stones or something from before.

MARISHA: I feel like there was some sort of–

TALIESIN: There was that sea of glass.

MARISHA: Yeah, we were in some cavern.

MATT: Oh, the sea of bone and glass? Okay. Yeah, it is not similar to that, no. However, those who are trained in arcana, you can go ahead and make an arcana roll.

LAURA: Trained in arcana?

MATT: Trained in arcana.

LAURA: How do you know if you’re trained in arcana?

TRAVIS: Negative two.

MATT: You would have filled in, if you have a proficiency.

SAM: The dot?

TALIESIN: The dot.

LAURA: Oh.

SAM: Oh. 11.

MATT: You have really no idea what this glass is.

LIAM: I grab it back.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: That was just me? I’m the only arcana-trained person here?

LAURA: That’s it?

SAM: Wow. Sorry, guys. Sorry.

MARISHA: Can I try a nature check on it?

MATT: Sure.

MARISHA: He’s like, “It’s not going to tell you shit, but sure.” 15?

MATT: It’s glass. Most glass you understand is designed by usually sand or other materials that at a high temperature or some sort of process is melted and fused.

MARISHA: So it’s manufactured.

MATT: It appears to be, or naturally occurred, and the structure of it has this bumpy, wavy– it’s not like smooth glass.

MARISHA: Like when lightning hits sand?

MATT: Kind of. But you’re not sure what it actually is.

LAURA: I wonder if this was holding that acid.

TALIESIN: I wonder if something very, very hot…

MARISHA: I’m wondering if it’s a symptom of something.

SAM: When they burn the whitestone with the acid or something?

LAURA: Do I see any recent tracks around here? Does it look like people came down here?

MATT: Make a survival check with advantage because you’re a crazy ranger tracker.

LAURA: 13.

MATT: You see tracks here and there, some fresher than others. Yeah.

LIAM: How many of us found this?

MATT: Well, two of you saw it.

LIAM: I’ve got one.

MATT: Yeah, you’ve got one piece.

LIAM: And Percy’s got the other?

MATT: Second piece, yeah.

SAM: You want to burn one?

LIAM: I walk away from the group all the way to the back, and I take it–

MATT: To where you came from?

LIAM: Yeah, towards where we came from. What’s behind us? Is it just tunnel back that way?

MATT: You mean on that path you’re going?

LIAM: Yeah, I push through the back of the group to the back.

MATT: Okay.

LIAM: What’s behind us?

MATT: Where you just came from is the stairs that lead up to the castle.

LIAM: I was going to throw it, but…

TRAVIS: I see Vex looking around. Can I look for tracks as well? I’m proficient in survival, and I never use it.

MATT: Sure.

TRAVIS: Natural 20! I swear to god.

MATT: While you sit there inspecting the dirt–

LAURA: It looks like there’s some tracks here, but I don’t know what it’s saying.

MATT: Grog, you immediately see a cluster of recent footprints, probably a day old at most, that lead in towards the tunnel. Looks like the prints are of seven individuals. Feet are fairly wide, masculine and heavy in step. One gait appears to be smaller, thinner, and more feminine.

TRAVIS: How many tombs are open around us?

MATT: Eight total in this room.

TRAVIS: Should we check the tombs?

LAURA: They’re already open and empty.

SAM: They’re open and empty.

MATT: You all make a perception check.

MARISHA: All of us?

SAM: Ten.

MARISHA: 28.

TALIESIN: 25.

LIAM: 20.

LAURA: 11.

TRAVIS: 18.

MATT: Okay, 20 and above that’d be just you two?

LIAM: 20.

MATT: Oh, yeah, three. All right, so you three, you notice the temperature drop ever so slightly in the room and in the darkened shadow. you look around and you see what appears to be some sort of ethereal mass drifting away.

TALIESIN: Damn it!

MARISHA: God damn it! Here we go again.

LIAM: We’ve got company.

MATT: There’s one round that you three get to act. The rest of you have a surprise round right now.

MARISHA: What kind of mist?

SAM: Bad deadly ghost mist.

MARISHA: What kind of mist?

SAM: A miasma.

MATT: Grog and Vex are out here checking this. You guys are back here. Keyleth is here. Vax, you’re back here. Trinket’s up with you, and Scanlan you’re–

SAM: I was in the back.

MATT: So you’re over here with these guys. You see one drifts out from this side, another drifts out from this side, and another drifts in from this side.

MARISHA: Undead ghoulie guys?

LIAM: Ghosts. Wraiths.

MARISHA: Wraiths?

MATT: There is a cold chill that runs down the spine of Keyleth and Vax, as they’ve encountered enemies similar to this in the past.

MARISHA: It’s that fucking shit that turned us.

MATT: All right, let’s roll some initiatives.

TRAVIS: Just those three, right?

MATT: Just those three.

TALIESIN: I feel like an asshole.

MARISHA: Shut the fuck up!

TALIESIN: I feel like an asshole.

MARISHA: Get out!

TALIESIN: I’m changing dice. This is bullshit.

MATT: Yeah, I’m banning that d20 for the rest of the game.

TALIESIN: I’m changing dice.

MARISHA: It makes no sense. Yes! It’s a hollow die.

TALIESIN: It’s a hollow die. There’s nothing to be weighted on it. It’s a wiffle die.

MARISHA: And I rolled a one!

MATT: So it’s just you. Okay, so! Initiatives.

TALIESIN: 28.

MATT: (giggles) Okay.

MARISHA: 14.

MATT: Okay.

LIAM: 15.

TALIESIN: Thank you for that.

MARISHA: (laughing) I can’t believe I did that. Rolled a one on it.

MATT: All right. Percy, you’re up first. You glance around, and you can see the two entities going (hiss) towards you, towards Keyleth, and you glance over your shoulder and see one drifting out of the distance towards Vax.

TALIESIN: I yell, “Look out!” And I take several steps toward Vax.

MATT: To there?

TALIESIN: Actually, on the other side of the pillar so I can actually see the one that’s getting towards him.

MATT: There?

TALIESIN: Yeah.

MATT: You won’t be able to see this one, just those. This one actually will block your view to that one. These are about ten feet tall. These are the little sections here, so right now, you would be able to see these two here and barely see this one. It would have three-quarters cover. Which you ignore, with Sharpshooter.

TALIESIN: I know. I want to back up into that corner, though, just to get away from them.

MATT: Over here?

TALIESIN: Yeah.

MATT: Okay, so you can see one of them right now.

TALIESIN: I’ll take– fuck. Yep, screw it. I’ll take shots with the Pepperbox.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: I’ll take my first shot.

MATT: Go for it.

TALIESIN: That can’t be right. Just checking. 20. Natural 20.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: With a different dice?

TALIESIN: With a different die. Of course, with a different die.

MARISHA: Shut the fuck up!

TRAVIS: Who are you?

TALIESIN: I’m the devil. I am the devil, and I have come to do the devil’s work.

MATT: So all of you who are going to conventions to meet Taliesin in the future, make sure you get a nice long hold of his hand so you can roll better, too.

TRAVIS: Yeah, would you touch my dice?

TALIESIN: I will lick your die, because that is how I bless them.

MATT: All right, so that’s your first attack. Second attack?

TALIESIN: First attack.

MATT: Both at the same guy?

TALIESIN: Yeah, all against the same guy.

MATT: Okay. Go for it.

TALIESIN: First attack is 22 points of damage.

MATT: Okay, is this with the element, or not?

TALIESIN: No, no element.

MATT: Okay. You fire. Just passes through it with no effect.

MARISHA: Yeah, fucking misty dudes.

TRAVIS: What?

MARISHA: Damn misty dudes. I’m mocking them.

TALIESIN: I spin.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: Shoot with fire.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: What the fuck?!

MARISHA: Get out!

MATT: Take a picture. Take a picture right now.

TALIESIN: Taking a picture.

MARISHA: Get out! You’re the anti-Wheaton.

SAM: He’s had, like, eight tonight.

MARISHA: How many is that?

TALIESIN: I don’t know!

MARISHA: CritRoleStats, how many is that? Tell us! I know you’ve been counting.

LAURA: Ridiculous.

SAM: Go to Vegas!

TALIESIN: I’ll put it on Instagram later.

MARISHA: Go to Vegas!

LAURA: Yeah.

TALIESIN: I go to Vegas. I don’t gamble!

LAURA: We need to go.

MATT: You need to go find the D&D casino.

SAM: D&D casino?

MATT: D&D casino. Make it happen, guys. I know one of you can.

TALIESIN: All right.

MATT: So which one is this?

TALIESIN: This is fire elemental.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: That’s 14 points of damage, plus three damage of fire.

MATT: That’s including crit damage?

TALIESIN: Including the crit damage. I rolled really poorly on my damage.

MATT: Okay, so this one, the bullet does (impact noise) hit its form with a burst of flame, the bullet converted to magical due to the nature of the chamber. You can see its form (raspy cry). It disperses for a second and then re-forms, continuing its movement.

TALIESIN: We need magic! I’m taking my last shot.

MATT: Okay.

MARISHA: That was seven, by the way. Seven 20s this game.

MATT: That’s stupid.

TALIESIN: Okay, see? That’s better. 15.

MATT: 15 does hit.

TALIESIN: All right. They’re easy to hit, at least. That’s such a shitty roll. 12 points of ice damage.

MATT: Okay. The ice shot (gunshot) tears through it, doing additional damage. You see part of its form crystallize from the little bit of ectoplasm that’s floating in the air, but it’s not enough to actually disperse its form. It continues pushing forward. You would have to reload to use those again.

TALIESIN: Yeah, I’m out.

MATT: Okay, that ends your turn. It’s now their go. This one drifts forward to Keyleth. This one drifts forward to Grog.

MARISHA: That’s with our surprise round? You said we have a surprise round.

MATT: No, you guys were aware. Everyone else is surprised.

MARISHA: Oh, we’re the only three that aren’t surprised. Oh, that sucks.

MATT: So. Unless you do anything against surprise?

TRAVIS: Not unless I’m raging.

MATT: That’s true. All right. Keyleth, I need you to make a constitution saving throw. Sorry, no, a charisma saving throw.

MARISHA: A charisma saving throw? That’s not great. And no saving throw bonuses, okay, so that’s ten?

LIAM: (quietly) Oh, she’s gone.

MARISHA: We’ve been here before.

MATT: Did you roll already?

MARISHA: I did.

MATT: What did you get?

MARISHA: Ten.

MATT: Ten. Okay. The ghost reaches out and embraces Keyleth. It disappears into her form and she shivers for a second, and it is no longer visible.

LAURA: Oh, he’s taken over her body?

MATT: Keyleth’s eyes all of a sudden flare up with a ghostly blue glow, and she turns around, looking at the group with a hunger you haven’t seen in her eyes. For those who see it, as well– I should have made this happen before– I need you guys to immediately after seeing these ghosts make a wisdom saving throw.

TALIESIN: What for?

SAM: Everyone?

MATT: No, just the ones that see it.

LAURA: We’re all immune to fear because of the feast.

MATT: That’s right, so never mind. That doesn’t matter.

SAM: (laughs) Yeah!

MATT: Good reminding. So I was right, then. I didn’t forget anything! All right, charisma saving throw?

LIAM: Charisma saving throw?

MATT: Correct.

LIAM: Okay.

MARISHA: This isn’t a charm thing?

MATT: And Grog, charisma saving throw.

LAURA: Is this charm?

MATT: Nope. This is not a charm.

LIAM: Okay, so a 12 for me. Am I caught, as well?

SAM: 12?

MATT: 12?

LIAM: Yeah.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: God damn it.

SAM: That was your last Luck, too.

LIAM: No, that’s two, isn’t it?

MARISHA: You did two.

LAURA: We’re going to die!

TRAVIS: Grog is batting for the other team.

MATT: What did you roll?

TRAVIS: Four.

LAURA: (muffled) We don’t even have a cleric with us!

SAM: Wait, this is against charisma?

LAURA and MARISHA: Yeah.

SAM: Jesus.

MATT: And with that, three of your teammates turn around, their eyes intensely glowing with some sort of a weird ghostly glow.

MARISHA: Three v three, man. Battle royale. Let’s do this.

TALIESIN: Oh god.

SAM: Wait, we have to fight them?

MARISHA: He’s going to call it at eight. He’s going to call it.

MATT: Everyone else roll initiative.

SAM: We have to fight them. How is that going to happen?

TALIESIN: This is going to go so poorly.

TRAVIS: Not us. Not the possessed ones, right?

MATT: No, you guys are already on the initiative. Oh, no. Grog, you still do.

TRAVIS: I still roll initiative?

MATT: Yeah, for yourself.

LAURA: What?

TRAVIS: I’m possessed, though.

TALIESIN: Roll your initiative.

LIAM: What just happened?

LAURA: You have to roll initiative to see when you attack all of us.

MATT: Yeah.

TRAVIS: Well, then it’s good it was a one.

MATT: (laughs) Okay.

MARISHA: Do we roll initiative, too? We’re re-rolling initiative, the three of us?

MATT: Everyone who hasn’t rolled yet rolls now.

MARISHA: Oh.

SAM: 15.

MATT: 15. Okay.

TRAVIS: Unless I have to roll with advantage.

SAM: Do you have to roll with advantage?

MATT: Technically, you would, yeah.

TRAVIS: Two.

MATT: All right, and what did you get?

LAURA: 13.

MATT: 13. All right. Percy, you’re up first.

MARISHA: Help us!

TALIESIN: I don’t know what to do.

LAURA: We don’t have a cleric!

SAM: You have– ugh.

MARISHA: I think you guys–

SAM: No, it’s up to us to figure out, right?

LAURA: He cast Turn Undead. We don’t have that.

MARISHA: Was that when Kashaw was here?

LAURA: Yeah.

MARISHA: That was Kashaw. Yeah, he cast Turn Undead.

TRAVIS: Awesome. He’s not here right now. What are you going to do?

TALIESIN: Okay! What are we going to do?

MATT: What are you going to do?

TALIESIN: (sighs) All right, who’s the most dangerous?

TRAVIS: Does Cassandra have any–

TALIESIN: That’s my first action. I’m going to use my bonus action to turn to my sister and go, what the hell do we do?

MATT: She looks at you, a little bit frustrated.

MARISHA: Please tell me she trained in cleric. Please tell me she multiclassed.

MATT: She looks about, annoyed, and goes, “I’m sorry. I’m not a holy woman. I have no symbols. I have no power. I have nothing. Let’s see what we can do.”

TALIESIN: All right. I’m–

MARISHA: You guys have that holy water, right?

TALIESIN: I’m backing up. I’m going to do my best to back up into the tomb right here.

MATT: Right there?

TALIESIN: Keep going to my right until the drop-off behind me, and I’m going to back up into the tomb.

MATT: Okay. Into there?

TALIESIN: No, up. Towards you; the other side.

MATT: There we go.

TALIESIN: There we go. I’m putting my back against the wall.

MATT: Okay, so you’re up against the stone?

TALIESIN: I mean that column.

MARISHA: Take the damn laser pointer.

TALIESIN: Yeah, there.

MATT: There you go.

TALIESIN: Yeah!

MATT: All right.

TALIESIN: I’m unloading two shots. I’m reloading and unloading two magical shots at Vax.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: I’m going to burn some fucking points. What am I going to do?

SAM: We’re fucked!

TRAVIS: Do your worst.

TALIESIN: First shot– fuck it, I’m using the old die. I’ve already rolled two 20s on that one. First shot, I’m shooting to get Vax to drop his knives.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: Burning a grit point to drop his knife.

MARISHA: Good idea!

MATT: He has two, so you only knock–

TALIESIN: One of them out of his hand. The one that doesn’t auto-return.

LIAM: They all do.

TALIESIN: They all do?

LIAM: Yeah.

MATT: That crazy belt, man.

TALIESIN: Shooting him in the face. Fuck it. And my gun jams. You did that!

MARISHA: I touched it. I’m sorry!

MATT: (laughs) You turn around and holding your gun out at Vax, even with this ghostly form, it’s so hard to do so, and you close your eyes for a second and you pull the trigger, and in a weird way you’re both immediately distraught and at the same time relieved that the gun jammed. (mechanical noise)

TALIESIN: (frustrated noise)

MATT: So that’s your turn.

TALIESIN: Yep.

MATT: All right. Vax, you’re up first. The ghost drives you to turn up to him as he’s trying to fix the gun. Daggers out. Go ahead and make your two attacks against him. No sneak attack damage.

LIAM: The first was a 13. The second was a 22.

MATT: Pretty sure the 22 hits.

TALIESIN: 22 hits.

MATT: Okay. Go ahead and roll damage against Percy.

LIAM: Eight.

MATT: All right, so you take eight points of piercing damage. You feel the blade (pained cry) pierce into the side. It doesn’t get too far in, but you haven’t been on the receiving end of his daggers before, and it’s not fun seeing what they do to others. All right, at the end of your turn, I want you to make a religion check.

SAM: Check?

TALIESIN: Oh yeah!

MARISHA: Come on.

TALIESIN: Magic fingers.

LAURA: Magic glove.

MARISHA: Do you want Taliesin to lick it?

LIAM: 18.

MATT: 18? That gentle glow left behind, that slight sliver of Pike’s essence that went into your symbol of Sarenrae, flares for a second. It flares again, and for a moment, in your head, in which darkness has taken your vision, you feel your body moving on its own, but you have no control. You hear Pike’s voice whisper in your ear from a distance. It says, “Vax? It’s okay.” At which point, suddenly you feel the coldness sucked out from you. The symbol flares for a second, and the ghost is thrust out of your form.

MARISHA: (excited shout)

TALIESIN: Yeah!

MATT: That is your turn, however. All right. Scanlan, you’re up.

SAM: I read my Scroll of Spirit Guardians. I call them forth to protect us in this moment.

TALIESIN: Treguna mekoides–

SAM: Hakuna matata.

TALIESIN: Trecorum satis dee.

SAM: I don’t know how this works.

(laughter)

MATT: That’s okay.

SAM: (silly voice) They attack bad things around me, and they don’t like bad things, so I thought maybe that would be good.

(laughter)

SAM: Spirit Guardians. The thing I bought from Gilmore. Right? Didn’t I buy the Scroll of Spirit Guardians?

LAURA: Yeah, you did.

SAM: They attack anything evil within 15 feet of me.

MATT: Indeed.

SAM: Necrotic damage.

MATT: There we go: Spirit Guardians. So you call forth spirits to protect you for the duration, for up to ten minutes. Your alignment is…?

SAM: Good?

MATT: Good, yeah.

SAM: Good-ish. Sort of devious good.

MATT: Okay, so here’s what you do. You actually use this to create these guardians– this spell hasn’t been used, either. To a distance of 15 feet. You have to choose things within 15 feet of you, so you have these two right here.

SAM: They’re both within 15 feet of me, aren’t they?

MATT: So, these guys. Their speed is halved.

SAM: When they take their turn, they get 3d8 damage.

MATT: Yeah.

SAM: It’s a very confusing spell.

MATT: Yeah, when they move within 15 feet of you, their speed is halved, and at the start or when they enter the area, they make a wisdom saving throw or take radiant damage.

SAM: Is that now or when they move?

MATT: That will be at the end of their turn.

TALIESIN: Yay, radiant damage. That’s awesome.

SAM: I know.

TALIESIN: You made a good call.

TRAVIS: Nice, dude.

MATT: All right. Does that end your turn?

SAM: Do I get a bonus action?

MATT: You get a bonus action, yes.

SAM: Okay. Who’s not undead right now? You? I’ve already inspired you once. Sure, I’ll inspire you again. I’ve got nothing. This time, I’ll just go, (harmonica noises).

LAURA: I feel really inspired.

MATT: Take the lamest d10 you’ve ever accepted, because harmonica’s not your favorite instrument. All righty. Great. That brings us to Keyleth’s turn.

TALIESIN: (squeaking noise)

MARISHA: Did you just squeak?

TALIESIN: Maybe. You don’t know. Shut up!

MATT: So it turns towards Scanlan, having cast that, and you make a staff attack against him.

MARISHA: (grunts)

SAM: I do a little doo-wop. (vocalizes) And that’s my Cutting Words to try to distract her from her attack.

MATT: Okay. Go for it.

MARISHA: I rolled a 19.

SAM: Do I roll now?

MATT: Yeah, you roll a d10 and subtract that from her attack.

MARISHA: I rolled a 19.

SAM: Two.

MATT: So it’s a 17.

MARISHA: What’s your AC?

SAM: I have a 17 armor class.

MATT: Roll damage.

SAM: Oh, wait! No, that’s a ten. That’s right.

MARISHA: It’s not a lot of damage, I promise. Oh, see? Even better. Four damage.

SAM: Oh. I shouldn’t have even wasted it.

TALIESIN: It’s “ow.”

LAURA: It’s just your little staff?

SAM: You’re adorable.

MARISHA: I’m still doing my granny routine.

MATT: Okay, now it has to make a wisdom saving throw, which it succeeds. It still takes half as much damage, so roll 3d8.

SAM: Who, me?

MATT: Yes.

SAM: Oh. Yes. Of course I will. I will do that right now with these d8s that I have. 12.

MATT: Okay. All righty. So this burst of radiant energy burns around her. You take 12 points of radiant damage.

MARISHA: 12 points?

MATT: Yep. Vex, you’re up.

LAURA: All right.

MATT: You see Grog turn to you with this wicked grin on his face, eyes glowing a pale whitish-blue as he brings the hammer up in the air.

LAURA: Oh god! Am I close by him?

MATT: You are. You’re right next to him.

LAURA: I’m right next to him?

MATT: You’re right there.

LAURA: Oh no! I back away from him. He’s going to get an attack on me.

MATT: Yep.

LAURA: But I really needed to put some distance there.

MATT: Make an attack of opportunity.

LAURA: Wait! Okay, that’s good.

TRAVIS: 13.

LAURA: You don’t hit me!

MATT: Whiff. (impact noise) The hammer hits the side of the stonework, cracking it a little.

TALIESIN: Oh, that’s my mausoleum.

MATT: What are you doing, Vex?

LAURA: I’m going to have Trinket– is he lined up with anybody?

MATT: Just Keyleth right now.

LAURA: He can’t cannonball through to Grog and Keyleth?

MATT: He can, but he’ll hit Scanlan, as well.

LAURA: Can you dodge, Scanlan?

SAM: We’ll see. Let’s do this. I always loved that bear.

LAURA: Right! You deserve it. He’s doing it.

MATT: We’ll say Trinket backs up a little bit to get enough room on it. Keyleth, swing an attack.

MARISHA: Oh, to Trinket?

MATT: Yeah. Trinket has to get enough distance to actually build up momentum.

MARISHA: Oh, I think that hits. 20 total?

MATT: 20 total is exactly the AC. Roll damage for Trinket.

MARISHA: It’s okay. It’s not a lot. Nine?

MATT: Trinket takes nine points of bludgeoning damage from the staff.

LAURA: Halved?

MATT: Right, yeah, because it’s bludgeoning, so five points. Trinket then rolls forward, (thudding noises). Roll attacks on Grog, Scanlan, and Keyleth.

MARISHA: Trinket bowling.

LAURA: Eight plus 16 is 24.

MATT: For who? Keyleth, Scanlan, and Grog.

LAURA: Okay, so Keyleth is 24.

MARISHA: Hits.

LAURA: Scanlan is 18.

SAM: Hits.

LAURA: And Grog is 18.

TRAVIS: Misses.

LAURA: No, Grog is 20.

TRAVIS: Hits.

MATT: All three hit? All right, so no attacks of opportunity against Trinket. Roll damage, and everyone takes that damage.

LAURA: I don’t know what to roll for cannonball damage because I’ve never actually gotten to hit.

MATT: Oh, I know. I have this. It’s 2d6 plus four.

LAURA: Okay. For each person?

MATT: Yep.

LAURA: Oh, okay, so ten for Keyleth.

MATT: Ten points of bludgeoning damage.

LAURA: Seven plus four is 11 for Scanlan.

SAM: Okay.

LAURA: Oh, less for Grog. Eight.

MATT: Eight points of damage for Grog.

LAURA: And while he’s doing– I don’t get to shoot an arrow. Yes, I do! I get to shoot an arrow.

MATT: Bonus.

LAURA: I’m going to shoot an arrow as Trinket is hitting Grog.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: Oh god. 14 doesn’t hit him.

MATT: Nope. It hits the shoulder and gleans off and carves a little wound across his chest, but not enough to do any damage. That ends your turn. Grog.

LAURA: And now Trinket is close to me, then. Did he go through them and get back to me?

MATT: Trinket, due to the line, slams into Grog at the end of it, so he is now between the three others.

LAURA: Shit.

MATT: Grog. As a ghost, you just got shot and slammed by a bear. I want you to roll one d20.

MARISHA: Oh, he’s going to see if he raged.

TRAVIS: 15.

MATT: 15. Your attention goes to Vex, as opposed to Trinket. You move out of the way.

SAM: And he takes 3d8.

MATT: That’s true.

SAM: Eight plus nine is 17.

MATT: Well, the creature has to make a wisdom save. Fails, so yeah, takes 3d8. Yep.

SAM: 17.

MATT: 17.

TRAVIS: 17 to hit?

SAM: No, I just hit you with 17 points of damage.

TRAVIS: Okay.

MATT: All right. You’re feeling the ghostly form– you take the damage as soon as the form inside; you’re feeling this dissipation. All right, so you make your two attacks against Vex.

LAURA: Shit.

TRAVIS: Oh, that’s not awesome. That’s 17.

LAURA: Doesn’t hit.

TRAVIS: That does. 24.

MATT: Yeah. Go ahead and roll damage. The first hammer swing you’re ready for. Swing backward. It goes long.

LAURA: Grog! Grog, no. No!

TRAVIS: 20 on the first.

MATT: 20 points of damage. (impact noise) First one didn’t hit, did it?

LAURA: The first one didn’t hit, so you only get the 20.

TRAVIS: Oh, just the 20!

MATT: Just 20, so as the first one misses, you pull back, trying to stop him, but the hammer still slams you in the side; you don’t have time to move out of the way, and it pushes you up against the wall. You land on your feet, and you can feel the pulsing of the blood broken beneath the skin. That ends Grog’s go. Percy, you’re up.

TALIESIN: (gasps, sighs) “Hi!” I saw what just happened, right?

MATT: Yeah.

TALIESIN: I’m going to try to fix my gun.

MATT: Go for it.

TALIESIN: That fixes.

MATT: All righty.

TALIESIN: (sighs) Are you better? Good, then let’s deal with this. I’m going to start diving around the columns to get away from the wraith.

MATT: Around here?

TALIESIN: Yeah, because I don’t have a shot this round.

MATT: Okay, so you move around that way.

TALIESIN: Yeah, cool.

MATT: All right. That ends your turn?

TALIESIN: That ends my turn.

MATT: It’s now their turn. This one currently loses interest in you and drifts two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight– it (whoosh) passes through the stone. Moves through and appears on the other side. I need you to make a charisma saving throw.

TALIESIN: I have advantage on charisma saving throws right now, do I not?

LAURA: Oh, yeah, because she cast–

MARISHA: It’s not there anymore. Sorry.

MATT: Yeah. She dropped it when she picked up the concentration spell.

TRAVIS: Roll high, golden snitch.

MATT: And that was ability checks, not saving throws.

TALIESIN: Oh, then never mind. What’s my charisma saving– oh boy. Nope. I rolled a natural one. You did this! This is the third natural one. You touched it.

LAURA: That’s why I’m superstitious about my dice.

MARISHA: I touched it.

LAURA: He also touched mine, and I rolled a three.

TALIESIN: I’ll come back to you after Thanksgiving, baby.

MATT: And with that, it goes dark and a spiritual intent takes over your body. You feel like you’re being puppeted, and you have no control over yourself. You’re hidden, captured within your own form. All right, that ends his turn. Vax, you’re up.

LIAM: Okay.

MATT: You still feel the residual warmth in your glove pulsing.

LIAM: All right. I’m going to click my boots together. I’m going to move towards him.

MATT: Towards Percy?

LIAM: Towards Percy. Shit. I’m going to take the keen dagger and stick it into his gut, and I’m going to take the glove with the symbol of Sarenrae and punch him in the nose.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: I like that you’re violent instead of just going, “Healing hand.”

MARISHA: Yeah!

LAURA: You go, “fuck you!”

SAM: Can I just say, this is Percy beating up Percy right now.

(laughter)

MATT: Yeah. You’re being attacked and stabbed by yourself. It’s weird.

LIAM: 20 for the dagger.

TALIESIN: I’m not reading too much into this.

MATT: That hits.

LIAM: The punch is just strength modifier, right?

TALIESIN: This is not a metaphor!

LIAM: 17 for the punch.

MATT: All right. Roll damage for the dagger. What’s your AC?

TALIESIN: 18.

MATT: 18. Okay.

LIAM: Nine.

MATT: You take nine points of piercing damage as the dagger stabs into your stomach. As you swing to haul the punch off, the body ducks out of the way.

MARISHA: Take the punch!

MATT: All right. That ends your turn.

LIAM: Wait. How far did I go?

MATT: You were there, so that’s 15 feet.

LIAM: I want to spring back and run as far as I can in the other direction, around the corner towards the rest.

MATT: All right. That brings us to Scanlan.

SAM: I walk between Grog and Keyleth, maintaining my 15-foot distance. Even more between.

MATT: There?

SAM: Yeah, and I’ll Thunderwave them both. Oh no, and I hit Trinket.

(laughter)

MATT: All right. Constitution saving throw from Grog and Keyleth and Trinket.

TRAVIS: Do we roll something?

LAURA: Yeah.

MATT: What did you roll?

MARISHA: 12.

MATT: (thud) Grog?

TRAVIS: I rolled an 18.

MATT: What’s your DC?

SAM: 19.

MATT: All right, so roll damage. What’s Trinket’s?

LAURA: You have a constitution saving throw of eight.

TRAVIS: Oh. 26.

MATT: Okay, so you take half damage.

LAURA: Trinket rolled an 11.

MATT: Okay. (thud)

SAM: Eight points of damage.

MATT: Okay, so you take eight points of damage. Grog takes four. Trinket takes eight.

SAM: Are we trying to kill our friends, here?

TRAVIS: Yeah, get us.

LAURA: Get them unconscious so they come out. But then if they’re unconscious, the ghosts come out and they could possess us.

SAM: That’s great.

MARISHA: But they take radiant damage.

MATT: Keyleth, top of the turn, roll–

MARISHA: Did I get radiant damage from that push?

SAM: No.

MATT: You take 3d8 points of radiant damage.

MARISHA: Oh, I do.

SAM: From the spirit guardians. Oh, and I’ll also inspire Vax. (sings) Rip out someone’s tongue and I’ll know you. Cure someone dead and I’ll show you’ve got those moves with dagger. You’ve got those moves with dagger. You’ve got those–

ALL: (sings) Moves like dagger.

SAM: Okay. 13.

MATT: All right, so 13 points of radiant damage to you and to… okay.

MARISHA: 62 hit points.

MATT: All right. Scanlan, that’s your turn. Keyleth.

MARISHA: Yeah?

MATT: You turn around as you see Vax rush up with a look of fear and intensity on his face. You see her turn around with this twisted grin on her face, and she brings her staff up and swings it towards your head. Roll an attack.

MARISHA: (whoosh) Baseball. 17.

MATT: What’s your AC?

LIAM: It is 18.

MATT: 18. As she swings, you duck, and her staff (impact noise) smacks against the stone wall of the mausoleum. That ends your turn, bringing us to Vex.

LAURA: And I’m in a fight with Grog.

MATT: Correct.

LAURA: Okay. This is totally awesome.

SAM: Wait! We have Cass. Does she get a turn?

LAURA: She’s not doing anything.

MATT: I forgot to add her to the initiative. That’s my own fault.

LAURA: I just thought she was being a bitch.

MATT: I’ll give her a couple of rounds here in a second. Anyway, finish up.

LAURA: Trinket runs forward and tries to pull Grog’s focus so that I can back away.

MATT: Okay, so Trinket moves up to there.

LAURA: He tries to grapple him, or something. Can he do anything to make Grog not be able to attack me if I run away? Can he try to knock him down, or something? Jump up on his back and knock him over.

MATT: Use an action to make a trip attack. Sure, why not. Roll an athletics check.

LAURA: Okay. Yeah, no problem.

TALIESIN: I’m imagining a bear doing mild calisthenics.

LAURA: An athletics check for me?

MATT: No, for Trinket.

LAURA: Okay. 12?

MATT: Make a strength saving throw, Grog.

TRAVIS: That’s a 26.

MATT: Yeah, Trinket rushes over and tries to knock you off your feet, and you just (thud) no effect. You still have a bonus action and your movement, if you want to.

LAURA: I’m going to try to roll out of the way. I’m going to try to duck down and roll out of the way to make him less likely to hit me.

SAM: Yeah! The old “less likely” trick.

MATT: Make an acrobatics check.

LAURA: Okay. Oh, my dice suck tonight!

SAM: You’re inspired.

MARISHA: He’s sucking up all the good energy.

LAURA: That’s good! Acrobatics. 28.

MATT: 28? Grog, roll an attack with disadvantage, just for the hell of it.

TRAVIS: 23.

MATT: Okay, roll damage against Vex as she pulls away from you.

TRAVIS: The first one was a natural 20.

MATT: Be glad it was disadvantage.

TRAVIS: 21.

MATT: You take 21 points of bludgeoning damage. As you pull away, Grog (whack) backhands you with his hammer. Now you can take your bonus action, if you want to.

LAURA: As my bonus action, I’m going to cast–

TRAVIS: Kill Goliath.

LAURA: Right? I don’t want to use any of my shit!

TRAVIS: Can you conjure a keg of beer?

SAM: That would distract you.

LAURA: I can’t, but that’s a really good idea. For my bonus action, I’m going to go, help!

SAM: You can use your bonus action to throw me the gun!

LAURA: Oh. No.

MATT: All right, that ends your turn. Cassandra is going to rush up angrily with her shortsword out. Rushing up behind Grog, she’s going to make a strike. That is going to be 18. What’s your armor class?

TRAVIS: 19.

MATT: 19. She goes to strike and whiffs, unfortunately. She’s going to attack with her dagger she pulls out in her off hand. Rolls a three. Yeah. I’m giving her a second round because I missed the one. She’s going to angrily pull up again and attempt to strike with both a second time. That will be a 20.

TRAVIS: That hits.

MATT: All righty. Because Trinket is adjacent, she gets sneak attack damage.

LAURA: Yay! Oh, she’s a rogue.

LIAM: Rogue.

MATT: So you take 27 points of piercing damage. Well, it’s slashing damage from the shortsword. The offhand attack is another three. Going to miss.

TRAVIS: Okay.

MATT: All righty. That brings us to Grog. Roll another d20.

TRAVIS: 11.

MATT: 11. Your attention switches to Cassandra. Roll two attacks.

SAM: Do I get my radiant damage on him?

MATT: At the top of his turn, you do, yeah. Actually, before that happens, roll radiant damage.

SAM: 21.

TRAVIS: 21 points?

MATT: With that, as you’re reeling up your hammer to strike Cassandra, a burst of radiant energy disintegrates the ghostly presence within your body, and you find your mind come to you as you’re about to go into a downswing to smash Cassandra’s head in. You catch yourself.

SAM: Do it anyway, Grog!

(laughter)

MARISHA: Don’t!

SAM: She’s one of us.

MATT: You have your turn now.

TRAVIS: Oh, I have my turn?

MATT: Yes.

SAM: Grog, I know you don’t know what’s going on right now, but kill Keyleth!

TRAVIS: Okay. I turn and walk over to Keyleth.

MATT: Over Cassandra.

TALIESIN: Poor Cass.

TRAVIS: I’m going to swing my hammer at the middle of her chest.

SAM: Oh, you’re scary. She’s so cute.

TRAVIS: 15.

MATT: What’s your AC, Keyleth?

MARISHA: 18.

MATT: She ducks out of the way with this preternatural speed.

TRAVIS: Wow. 16.

MARISHA: (cackles)

MATT: Keyleth’s ghostly form is too fast for you. The confusion of the whole sequence caused you to not be able to think straight in the moment, and you miss twice. That ends your turn, Grog. Percy.

LAURA: Oh, right. Percy’s still–

SAM: Jesus. And he’s got guns.

MATT: Your gun was just fixed, correct?

TALIESIN: Yeah.

(laughter)

TALIESIN: Would he use the gun or the sword in phantom mode?

MATT: You just finished fixing this, and you have a gun before you. It’s going to use it. Make three attacks against Vex– Vax. I mean Vax.

TALIESIN: I’m going to use this die, because it’s been–

MARISHA: Failing? Yeah, I touched it. Use the one that I touched.

TALIESIN: That’s– I can’t talk. 21.

LIAM: That hits, but what’s applicable? Uncanny Dodge or Evasion for a gunshot?

MATT: Whatever reduces the damage to half. It’s not a saving throw, so it would be– which one reduces the damage by half?

LIAM: That’s Uncanny Dodge.

MATT: Then it would be Uncanny Dodge. All right, so attack two more times.

TALIESIN: 21.

MATT: Hits. And?

TALIESIN: 26.

MATT: All right, so roll damage three times. The first one is halved.

TALIESIN: All right. 13.

MATT: So you take seven damage.

TALIESIN: Fuck me. 15.

MATT: 15 piercing damage.

TALIESIN: And 11.

MATT: Okay. (three gunshots)

SAM: We are so strong! We should never fight ourselves.

MATT: All right. That ends Percy’s turn there. Vax, you’re up.

LIAM: Am I able to slide around Keyleth closer to you, into that little alcove, or am I too pressed against the wall? The other way.

MATT: Currently, it’s just enemies, so you can’t move past them.

LIAM: Okay.

MATT: I could make you roll an acrobatics check, if you wanted.

LIAM: That’s all right. I flip the daggers over, and I start to whale on the back of Keyleth’s head.

MATT: Okay.

LIAM: Pommels of the daggers.

SAM: Kiss or kill.

LIAM: 18.

MATT: Are you doing sneak attack on this? She’s adjacent to Grog, so yeah.

LIAM: Definitely.

MATT: 18 hits.

LIAM: Second one is 20.

MARISHA: Hits.

MATT: They both hit, so roll damage on both.

LIAM: And then 32 on the last.

MATT: Oh, that’s right. So three hits, with sneak attack.

MARISHA: Oh, sneak attack is going to take me down.

LIAM: Three. Plus seven is ten. And the ten gets doubled? Or everything?

MARISHA: Dice rolls get doubled.

LIAM: Ten, 16, 20, 21, 22, 23, 25, 50.

SAM: 50?

LIAM: 50 for the first hit.

MARISHA: (laughs) I’m still alive.

MATT: Was it doubled because you rolled a critical?

MARISHA: Sneak Attack.

MATT: Sneak Attack, you just roll the dice.

LIAM: Well, then no. 25.

MATT: 25.

LIAM: Thank you.

MATT: No worries.

LIAM: Plus nine, plus nine.

MATT: Okay, so 25 plus 18…

LIAM: 38.

MARISHA: 38? Okay.

MATT: 25 plus 18 is 43.

MARISHA: 43?

MATT: Yep.

MARISHA: What was I at just now?

SAM: 62. So you’re at 19.

MARISHA: 19 hit points.

LIAM: I’m going to use– I don’t care. I’m going to slide around Grog, to the side. Towards Scanlan. Right there, yeah.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: What’s up, brother?

MATT: All right, that ends your turn. Scanlan, you’re up.

SAM: I’m up again?

MATT: Yep.

SAM: I feel like I just went. All right. We’re trying to kill our friends, right?

LIAM: Yes.

SAM: Okay. Thank you for moving, Vax. I’m going to blast them both with lightning. Straight shot through, 100 feet.

MATT: Through those two? Yeah. Okay.

SAM: Yeah. What do I do? 8d6?

MATT: 8d6, and I need Keyleth and Percy to both make dexterity saving throws.

MARISHA: Just the two of us? I actually have disadvantage on dexterity stuff because of corruption. 20 for me.

TALIESIN: 21.

MATT: You both take half damage.

SAM: 24.

MATT: You both take 12 points of lightning damage. The bolt strikes through, hitting both of you in the chest, but you both manage to pull out of the way just in time to reduce the impact of the spell.

SAM: And as a bonus action, I’ll do a Healing Word on Vex. Right? You’re injured badly?

LAURA: I mean, not badly, but–

SAM: Oh, well then fuck it. Oh, you’re injured badly? Would I know that?

MATT: You could glance over and look at him as he pulls up to you, and see him (pants).

LIAM: I’ve got gunshots in my back.

SAM: Okay. Yeah, so I’ll Healing Word.

MATT: Roll the healing points for that.

SAM: What is it? Shit. It’s right here: d4 plus five. That’s it?! So lame. Seven points.

MATT: All right. That ends your turn. Keyleth, at the top of your turn, roll 3d8 radiant damage.

SAM: Ooh, yes. Oh, this is going to knock you out.

MARISHA: Hopefully.

SAM: That’s nine already.

MARISHA: Yeah, I’m down.

SAM: Six more is 15.

MATT: Keyleth falls unconscious to the ground as this blast of radiant energy bursts around her as this spiritual radiant form that’s been surrounding the area and stalking the various individuals. It slams into her form. As she collapses, the ghost is jettisoned from her body and looks like it’s been taking the radiant damage and is having a hard time keeping its corporeal form. All right, that ends Keyleth’s turn. Keyleth, I need you to roll a death saving throw.

MARISHA: Nope. Six.

MATT: You take one death saving throw failure. All right. Vex, you’re up.

LAURA: I see the ghost come out of her? Okay, I’m going to shoot it with my Blazing Bowstring.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: 16?

MATT: 16 hits.

LAURA: 17. I want a good one. 17. 25.

MATT: 25. As you pull back the arrow and you see the flames ignite around the shaft, you release it. It slams into the ghost, and you see its form (raspy cry) disperse from the impact, the arrow hitting the wall behind it and shattering against the stone. Ghost destroyed.

LAURA: For my second attack, I’m going to attack Percy. Can I see him?

MATT: Yep, right over there.

LAURA: All right, I’m going to do it. 21.

MATT: 21 hits.

TALIESIN: (ghost noises)

LAURA: 16.

MATT: 16 points of damage to you, Percy.

TALIESIN: 16?

MATT: Yep.

TALIESIN: Cool.

LAURA: That was also through my Blazing Bowstring.

MATT: So you’re using both Blazing Bowstring abilities right now?

LAURA: Yeah.

MATT: Okay. A flaming arrow (impact noise) sticks into the shoulder, and you can feel the flames burning into your body–

LAURA: Plus another five. That was another five burning damage.

TRAVIS: 21.

TALIESIN: 21?

MATT: There you go.

TALIESIN: I’m still doing fine.

MARISHA: I hate these things.

MATT: It’s now Cass’s turn. Cass, who’s having a weird time with the whole process of seeing a bunch of herselves and her brothers stabbing each other and getting possessed.

LAURA: How do we even know who’s who?

MARISHA: Stop hitting yourself!

TALIESIN: Thank you for that. I was almost going there.

MATT: She’s right there, and she brings herself around the way. She’s not able to do any actions, so she sees another of her brothers possessed but clutching the gun in the hand, and is steeling her blade for the moment and doesn’t do anything with her turn. Grog, you’re up.

TRAVIS: “Percy!” And I run towards him.

TALIESIN: (creepy voice) I’ll swallow your soul!

TRAVIS: 25.

TALIESIN: Is no one a Sam Raimi fan? Never mind.

SAM: That was Donald Duck, right?

TRAVIS: 18?

MATT: What’s your armor class?

TALIESIN: 18.

MATT: Yeah, hits. Damage on both.

TRAVIS: 17 for the first one. 19 for the second one.

MATT: Okay, so 36 points of damage. (two impacts) You’re thrown up against the wall and almost pushed over off your feet from the sheer weight of the impact.

TALIESIN: It has to be magic damage, though.

LAURA: It was. It’s a magic war hammer.

TALIESIN: Okay, so it’s taking damage, too. That’s good. Maybe.

MARISHA: They have to be spells.

TRAVIS: There was fire damage.

MATT: Yeah. It seems that the radiant damage from the Spirit Guardian spell you’re doing has been doing the bulk of damage to them while they’re inside the form. Most everything else is going straight to the individual.

TRAVIS and SAM: Oh shit!

SAM: We’ve just been killing our friends for no reason?

LAURA: Good times.

TRAVIS: Let’s pass our–

SAM: Hold our wrath.

MATT: Percy. You have three more shots with this gun, two of which are magical.

TALIESIN: I do.

MATT: So you pull up the gun, you take a step back.

TALIESIN: Does he get an attack of opportunity?

MATT: You do. Attack of opportunity against Percy, if you want to take it.

MARISHA: Come on, take him down.

LAURA: Oh no!

TRAVIS: That’s a natural 20.

TALIESIN: Yes!

MATT: Roll damage.

TRAVIS: That’s actually the first time I’ve critted on this show.

MATT: You get additional dice.

TRAVIS: It does additional damage.

MATT: It’s the first time you’ve critically hit on this show?

TRAVIS: I think so, because I’ve never doubled my dice.

MATT: That’s absurd.

TRAVIS: I know. 14.

TALIESIN: 14? I’m already out.

MATT: Roll damage. I want to know what it is.

TALIESIN: Yeah, go ahead, but I’m out.

TRAVIS: 18, so– what was the first one? 18 and?

MARISHA: You said 14.

MATT: Okay. You are out. Percy falls to the ground, unconscious. The spirit is jettisoned out the side. That ends your turn entirely. The ghost is going to shift over. It does not get its possession back.

TALIESIN: It was just a crit. It wasn’t hit twice.

MARISHA: It wasn’t when he was down.

MATT: Percy, I need you to make a death saving throw, by the way.

TALIESIN: Yay!

MATT: Okay. The ghost gets pushed out of the body. With you on the ground and its possession not returned, it reaches down and strikes at you with its withering touch.

TALIESIN: Oh, for the love of–

MARISHA: With its withering touch?

MATT: You take two death saving throw losses.

TALIESIN: Whoa!

LAURA: He rolled a crit?

MATT: It’s an auto-crit because he’s unconscious.

LAURA: Oh, jeez Louise!

MARISHA: But you passed your first one.

TALIESIN: I passed my first one.

MARISHA: So you have two failures on you?

TALIESIN: I have two failures and one success. So guys? Heal me. Heal me now.

MATT: Vax, you’re up.

LIAM: I start sprinting around that open hallway near Cassandra. I stop by Cassandra and dagger, dagger, dagger.

MATT: Do it.

LIAM: First one is 30. Second one is 15. Third is 28.

MATT: All three hit.

LIAM: They all hit? Good. Ten plus seven is 17. 27 total.

MATT: 27 damage, total?

LIAM: All magic.

MATT: All righty, so all daggers strike through its form. You see it tearing through its ethereal physicality, but it’s still holding its form together. It looks damaged, but it’s still holding its form on this plane. Scanlan, you’re up.

SAM: I vault over Keyleth–

LIAM: Wait. I ran 20 feet? 30 feet?

MATT: You were here, so 35.

LIAM: 35? Can I run the “west” of the way–

LAURA: The “west” of the way?

LIAM: The “west” of the way through it in front of Percy. Yeah.

MATT: There? You can, yeah.

LIAM: That’s what I want to do.

MATT: All right. Scanlan?

SAM: I vault over Keyleth’s body, using the right part of a buttcheek to launch off. Grab a little feel as I go.

MATT: Creepy gnome.

SAM: I try to get within 15 feet of the thing.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: And as my first thing, I will Healing Word Mr. Taliesin Jaffe. Percival de Rolo de Monico de Chico…

TALIESIN: (sings) It’s delightful, it’s de-lovely.

SAM: Just at normal level, so that’s nine points.

TALIESIN: Thank you!

MATT: Your death saving throws are fine.

TALIESIN: Nine. Nine points! Ah-ah-ah.

SAM: Jesus. I don’t want to burn another fucking thing on this guy.

TALIESIN: Your aura thingy with 15 feet should do it.

SAM: I know, but that’s when he moves, not when I move, so I will mock him! I will say, you’re not even corporeal. You have no substance. You’re a nothing. You’re a nobody! You won’t amount to nothing in this world!

(laughter)

MATT: Okay.

TRAVIS: (laughing) You’re a nothing. You’re a nobody!

MATT: What’s the DC on that?

SAM: 19.

MATT: It fails its save. Roll 3d4.

MARISHA: Kill it, Scanlan. Kill it.

SAM: Six.

MATT: (laughing) How do you want to do this?

(cheers and laughter)

TRAVIS: A mocking kill!

SAM: (giggles) I would like it to cry. That’s all.

MATT: (laughs) As you’re shouting this, you can see its ghostly form. Its face suddenly shifts into the face of a person.

SAM: You were nothing in life, and now you’re nothing in death!

MATT: It recalls its memories. You can see its physical form become that of a young adult wearing robes that hold the symbol of the de Rolo crest. You see it look at its hands, and you see it look at you and look at Percy on the ground, unconscious, and it moans out in horror as it suddenly dissipates.

SAM: I’m sorry, I didn’t mean it!

TALIESIN: Which one of my ancestors did you just shame to death? Again?

SAM: The one who possessed you!

TALIESIN: Okay, fair.

MARISHA: Again! (laughs)

TALIESIN: You’re going to say it, aren’t you?

LIAM: I double back to Keyleth and start trying to administer some sort of aid.

MARISHA: Hi, I’m dead.

LIAM: Medicine check? Is that it?

MATT: You can make a medicine check to try to stabilize her, yeah.

LIAM: 18.

MATT: 18, yeah. You stabilize the bleeding. She’s no longer making death saving throws. She is still unconscious. You all reconvene. Take a breath.

SAM: Wait, is Keyleth alive?

MARISHA: Nope.

SAM: Oh Jesus! Keyleth, I’m sorry.

MARISHA: I’m stabilized.

LIAM: She needs help. Scanlan, come here.

TALIESIN: Let’s pull ourselves together.

SAM: I will sing a song of rest, which will give us 1d8 for everybody.

MATT: For hit dice spent, or just for the rest?

SAM: I don’t know. It just says 1d8. It’s my song of rest.

MATT: Song of rest.

TRAVIS: I’ve got a lot of health potions.

MARISHA: You do?

TRAVIS: Yeah.

MARISHA: That’s good.

TALIESIN: I’ve got three.

TRAVIS: Would you like one?

TALIESIN: Probably.

LAURA: What if we take a short rest?

MATT: At the end of the short rest, everyone gains an additional 1d8. It’s nice. Doesn’t hurt.

MARISHA: I come to consciousness by Scanlan’s singing?

SAM: (singing) You’re down with more HP. Yeah, you know me!

TALIESIN: That’s nice.

MARISHA: What?

TRAVIS: Hit dice?

LAURA: Yeah, we can roll some hit dice.

MATT: You guys take a short rest here to roll some hit dice.

MARISHA: (groans) Wait, how much did you heal us, Scanlan?

SAM: Just one extra d8. Do I roll that, or do they?

MATT: Everyone rolls it on their own. It’s fine.

SAM: Holy ba-Jesus, guys.

LAURA: That was insane.

SAM: Can we never do that again?

LAURA: Well, we’re about to, I think.

LIAM: Who feels like making camp?

SAM: Making camp?

LIAM: Yes.

SAM: We’re in a tomb with ghosts. We have to continue on.

LIAM: I’m exhausted.

TALIESIN: We’ll heal, but I think we need to continue down.

LAURA: We need to keep going.

MATT: Cassandra looks about the rest of you, still seeing a group of herself and her brothers. She shakes her head for a second. “We can rest a moment, but I don’t think we can stay here much longer. The more time we spend here, the more chance they have of returning. If they get the jump on us, we’re done.”

TRAVIS: Let’s go.

LAURA: We need to press on.

SAM: Yeah, aye.

MARISHA: Yeah.

SAM: Let’s continue.

TRAVIS: Yeah.

SAM: Into the tunnel. Into the dark.

MATT: She sheathes her sword and her dagger. (sighs) “Let’s do this.” As you all climb into the beginning of the excavation tunnel leading to the south, slowly making your way towards–

SAM: Wait! Sorry. Percival, any point in looting?

TALIESIN: Don’t loot my family’s crypt!

SAM: Sorry! Forget I mentioned it. Let’s go kick some ass.

MATT: Making your way towards the tunnels beneath the city of Whitestone, towards whatever this ziggurat construction project has been, we will pick this up the week after Thanksgiving.

LAURA: Oh man! We’re taking a whole week off from this.

MATT: Yeah. We went a little late tonight to try and give a little extra since we’re not going to be here next week, but that’s it for the evening.

MARISHA: We almost got our ass kicked by ghosts!

SAM: No, by each other.

LAURA: We really need a cleric.

MATT: There were some really bad– everyone rolled poorly on those saving throws. That sucked. Oh, yes!

LAURA: Oh, man. Right. Giveaways.

ZAC: We’ve got to do a giveaway, so I am opening the floodgates.

TALIESIN: Welcome, all!

LAURA: The whole time.

TALIESIN: This is Twitch. Holy cow.

MARISHA: I might need to burn a Cure Wounds or something.

TALIESIN: I’m not at a hundred, but I’m okay.

MARISHA: I burned almost all of my hit dice to bring me back up.

TALIESIN: Ashley is getting home right now, in case we need her.

LAURA: Yeah.

MATT: We’re good.

TRAVIS: Are we?

TALIESIN: Can she come in for 30 seconds and heal us?

MATT: (laughs) It doesn’t work that way.

TALIESIN: I know.

MARISHA: Guys, I got a little bit of a connection! And gone. That’s all.

ZAC: We also got up to $6,000 total so far, raised.

LAURA: Oh wow, that’s great!

MATT: Incredible!

ZAC: So we will continue that throughout the weekend, all the way up to Monday.

MATT: Thank you all so much for helping out.

TALIESIN: Holy cow.

MATT: You’re helping a lot of wonderful people do a lot of amazing things in places that need it.

ZAC: So the floodgates are open. We’re going to let that build up for a little bit and then do the giveaway.

MATT: Oh! Chat room explode!

ZAC: Oh shoot, that’s true. The next episode is Critmas, as well, isn’t it?

LAURA and TALIESIN: No.

ZAC: Is there not? There’s one before it?

LAURA: No, there’s another one before.

ZAC: Are you sure?

TALIESIN: No.

MARISHA: No, we’re doing the Christmas Critmas a little bit earlier, so we’re going to do the next one before we go on Christmas break, right?

MATT: No, the 3rd is the next Critmas. Because the 17th, our last show, is also the opening night of the new Star Wars movie, we can’t go late that night because everyone’s going to be gone.

LAURA: Oh. So yeah, we can’t do Critmas next week.

ZAC: Next week’s Thanksgiving.

LAURA: I mean, on the 3rd.

ZAC: And we’ve already told everyone the first week of the month is–

SAM: So the Christmas Critmas is going to be the 3rd.

MATT: It’s going to be the 3rd.

LAURA: December 3rd?

ZAC: Yes.

TALIESIN: Yeah, that will be the Crit–

ZAC: Math is hard, guys.

MATT: Welcome to our late-night meetings.

(all laugh)

ZAC: All right, pull in a winner.

MATT: We’ve got a winner coming in.

LAURA: Can’t we just do it the second week? It’s going to be a long episode. We’ll have to cut it super short.

MARISHA: That’s what I was thinking. Can we move it to the second week?

TALIESIN: Move it to the 10th.

MARISHA: Christmas Critmas is going to be the 10th.

ZAC: Before we officially say that, let me check the schedule, because we’ve already told everyone the first week, so before we say that officially, let me check the schedule and make sure that’s okay.

LAURA: It’s going to be really hard to do it on the 3rd.

ZAC: Okay.

TALIESIN: I’m literally leaving the studio on the 17th for a road trip.

ZAC: IEShoemaker is the winner.

MATT: IEShoemaker, congratulations!

ZAC: We’re sending you a message right now. Send back with your address and we’ll send you all sorts of great shit. Tune in tomorrow, guys, for Group Hug. Hector’s bringing a couple of comedian friends of his, and they are playing all of the Jessica Jones Alias characters tomorrow, and nobody wanted to play Purple Man.

MATT: Understandably so.

TALIESIN: Creepiest character in the Marvel universe.

ZAC: How do we do this?

TALIESIN: He is the creepiest creep.

ZAC: Whoever plays him has to know you’re going to get your ass kicked.

MATT: That’s Tennant, right?

TALIESIN: That’s Tennant. That’s also who I dressed up as at the superhero party. I painted myself purple.

ZAC: You did Purple Man? Why would you do that?!

TALIESIN: There’s an amazing photo of a friend of ours dressed as Luke Cage, just beating the shit out of me. It’s amazing.

ZAC: Well, that’s good.

MARISHA: He also sang Gogol Bordello’s–

MARISHA and TALIESIN: “Start Wearing Purple.”

MATT: It was good.

TALIESIN: It was creepy.

MATT: I’m just excited to see all the Doctor Who Tennant fans watch the series for Tennant and then be like, “Oh no, no, no!”

ZAC: Yeah. Sorry, guys. No bueno.

TALIESIN: It’s just going to be bad.

ZAC: Sweet. That’s it for tonight, guys.

MATT: Thank you guys so much.

MARISHA: See you in two weeks!

MATT: For the next episode. See you guys in two weeks.

TALIESIN: Happy Thanksgiving!

MARISHA: There will still be a new comic next week to hold you guys over. And playlists. Guess whose playlist is next.

TRAVIS: Oh, is it mine?

MARISHA: You’re the last one, right?

TRAVIS: Oh, I’m the Thanksgiving playlist.

SAM: Does the DM get a playlist?

MATT: I get one.

MARISHA: He does, but he’ll go last. Because you always go last.

MATT: All right, guys. Thank you so much. Have a wonderful evening. We’ll see you in a couple of weeks.

MARISHA: Bye!

SAM: Happy Thanksgiving.

TALIESIN: Happy Thanksgiving!

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