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List of Transcripts

Pre-ShowEdit

[None]

Part IEdit

(laughing)

MATT: And welcome back to tonight’s episode. So, picking up where we left off, Vox Machina, having to find and collect the artifacts known as the Vestiges of Divergence to prepare themselves for battle against the Chroma Conclave, a group of extremely dangerous chromatic dragons who are wreaking havoc on the Tal'Dorei countryside, and get vengeance for the loss of Vex and Vax’s father in the past. Er, sorry, mother. The father’s still around, and kind of a dick.

LAURA: Yeah.

MATT: It’s been a long week. However, you guys have been making your way into the Feywild in search of a specific item known as Fenthras, a bow of which Vex has been sort of keeping an eye on this whole time.

LAURA: Ahh, totally.

MATT: Just like that. (laughs) We’re all having Gen Con plague residual, here. They’ve made their way through a number of strange, dangerous, and awkward encounters in the Feywild, including an encounter with their father, I meant to say earlier, in Syngorn, which is currently hiding out in the Feywild until they’ve prepared for battle against Thordak the Cinder King. You went to the Moonbrush and parleyed between pixies and werewolves, you pushed past the Gilded Run, a series of enchanted, dangerous rivers that keep the Shademirk Bog in check from spreading across the land with its corruption, and you stepped into the Shademirk Bog, its strange, sludgey, black, corrupt interior, stumbling upon what appears to be a small hovel built out of a tree trunk. The gnomes, making their way towards via Vex’s broom, caught a partial glimpse of the creature that lived within, a door was suddenly opened, and upon floating back, the broom was robbed of its magical enchantment temporarily. The party regathered and are now deciding what to do here in the depths of the Shademirk Bog. So, as the gnomes have returned, your broom has seemingly been proven to still function–

LAURA: Don’t say ‘seemingly’.

MATT: Why? It’s fun.

LAURA: Don’t say ‘seemingly’.

MATT: It’s fun.

MARISHA: We confirmed.

LAURA: Yeah.

MATT: What would you guys like to do?

SAM: All right, so that place over there, the hut.

LAURA: Yeah.

SAM: I think it was not a good idea to go over there. I think it’s one of the things that what’s-his-fuck warned us about.

LAURA: Garmelie?

SAM: Yes.

LAURA: The hag, right?

SAM: I don’t know. I wasn’t really paying attention.

LAURA: Yeah, no, he warned us about…

TALIESIN: I’m feeling the hag. Is anybody else feeling the hag?

SAM: Something about a hut.

LAURA: I am not feeling the hag.

LIAM: I’m not feeling the hag.

MARISHA: How do you mean? Yeah, how do you mean, feeling?

LIAM: I’ve had enough hag.

TALIESIN: We’re not feeling the hag, but I think we should avoid her.

LAURA: The Hut of Wodenna.

MARISHA: The Hut of Wodenna, right.

SAM: Yeah, that’s probably Wodenna.

LAURA: It could be.

SAM: So why don’t we go around the hut? Is that possible? Is Garmelie gone?

LAURA: Garmelie’s gone.

MATT: Garmelie left, you guys.

SAM: Oh yeah.

TRAVIS: Peaced out.

MATT: He wouldn’t even enter the forest with you.

LAURA: However, she is aware of our presence, now, isn’t she?

SAM: So? We’re big and scary. She’s a little old lady.

LIAM: What’s the terrain like around this hut?

MATT: The forests of the Shademirk Bog is a very very thickly wooded swamp with thick-trunked trees and almost weeping willow-type sagging canopies, but the entirety of each piece of brush here is coated and seemingly seeping this kind of black sticky tar-like ichor that just kind of pools and seeps into the ground, so even traversing this territory’s been a slow, arduous process. There is a small clearing around where this tree trunk hovel is currently located, and the tree itself does not appear to match the surrounding trees that kind of embody most of this forest terrain.

LIAM: Does it look possible to skirt around it from where we are?

MATT: You could skirt around it, most definitely, yeah. It’s just something you saw in the distance and went and inspected, you could avoid it entirely.

LIAM: Okay.

TALIESIN: And we do have a direction to move.

LAURA: Yeah, we know, we know that is not where the bow is.

MARISHA: Yes, it was on Garmelie’s list of things to avoid.

SAM: But maybe she could help us in a way.

LAURA: I know, it’s so terrible! I want to like explore everything here because–

MARISHA: I wonder if she knows the other hags that we’ve encountered.

LAURA: Forsythia…

SAM: It’s like that urge when you’re standing at the edge of a cliff, like part of your body wants to jump a little bit?

LAURA: Yeah.

SAM: I kinda wanna go in there.

LAURA: Kind of like when I dove into the river.

SAM: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

MATT: Yeah, exactly.

MARISHA: Well, see, you guys did kind of jump, and it didn’t feel good, right?

LAURA: Right, true.

TRAVIS: Devil’s advocate.

MARISHA: So…

TRAVIS: What if she’s lonely, and two, what if she’s not the hag and she knows where the hag is?

MARISHA: One, I’m certain she is lonely, and two, she’s probably the hag.

TALIESIN: I’m pretty sure she’s the hag.

MARISHA: She’s definitely probably the hag.

LIAM: We’ve kind of already had this conversation before we went and poked a badger with those floating instruments, we really don’t need to do every single thing.

LAURA: No, we don’t, we really don’t.

TRAVIS: I’m just saying you’re profiling, is all.

LIAM: And I have a bad history with hags, and I would like–

LAURA: Yes, you do.

LIAM: –to skip this fucking place.

TALIESIN: I’m okay with that. I, honestly I could use a bit of sleep at some point and I think moving in the correct direction, getting a bit of sleep somewhere safe…

LAURA: And we’ve been do-si-doing the whole time we’ve been having this conversation, definitely.

TALIESIN: I’m working on that as well.

MARISHA: I feel like we’re trying to talk ourselves out of this, aren’t we?

LAURA: I think we need to not go towards the hut.

MARISHA: Okay, we’ll not go towards the hut.

LAURA: To the tree, to scariness.

TALIESIN: If there was a time to not be us, this is the moment.

MARISHA: It’s probably now.

LAURA: This is that time.

TALIESIN: Right now.

TRAVIS: I take out the javelin of lightning.

ALL: No!

SAM: You have a javelin of lightning?

LAURA: He does.

TRAVIS: I do.

TALIESIN: He does, in fact, have a javelin of lightning.

SAM: Why have you never used a javelin of lightning?

LAURA: He has, he has one time. Don’t.

TRAVIS: And I, I just make sure that it’s clean and put it back.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: Let’s just sneakily go off and just not pay any more attention to this charming little tree.

MARISHA: Okay.

TALIESIN: I feel like we’ve done enough damage for one day.

TRAVIS: Yeah, we’ve gotta at least come back this way, so, you know.

LAURA: This is true. Ugh.

MATT: All righty. You guys–

TRAVIS: We go around. Stealthily.

LAURA: Stealthily walk away from the hut.

TRAVIS: Do we still have Pass Without a Trace?

LAURA: Do we still have Pass Without a Trace going, or do I need–no, it dropped, it dropped.

MATT: You traveled quite a while, yeah.

LAURA: Because we fought something, so I would need to cast it again. Which I do! Cast again. Pass Without a Trace.

SAM: Thank you!

LAURA: Um, maybe Dust of Tracelessness behind us so the hag doesn’t feel tempted to maybe follow in our footsteps.

TRAVIS: Don’t tell me what to do, devil-woman. I take out the Dust of Tracelessness. It looks good, I put it back.

LAURA: Grog, please, flower-girl, please.

TRAVIS: Javelin or Dust of Tracelessness, they go together. If I do one, I do the other.

LAURA: You’re terrible. That’s terrible.

TRAVIS: I need a little danger in my life.

TALIESIN: I promise you, we’re going to kill something very soon.

LAURA: Soon!

TRAVIS: There’s a giant werewolf following us…

LAURA: We just killed the crocodile plant. We just killed a crocodile plant.

MARISHA: That’s true.

LAURA: Seriously, we just fought something.

MARISHA: You were inside his gut. You have to remember that.

LAURA: Just did that.

TRAVIS: I didn’t really hit it that much, it was very unsatisfying.

(All laugh.)

LAURA: Let’s walk away.

LAURA: I wanna stealth.

MATT: All right. Everyone make a stealth check.

MARISHA: All right. New d20.

LAURA: Oh, high hopes!

TRAVIS: Did you say Pass Without a Trace?

LAURA: Pass Without a Trace, I cast Pass Without a Trace.

TALIESIN: Huh. That’s weird.

MARISHA: That’s a dick move. That is a–

TALIESIN: That’s weird.

LAURA: Did you get a 20, did you get a 20 on it?

TALIESIN: I got a 19.

LAURA: Aw.

MARISHA: He got a 19 and I got a three.

LAURA: Oh, come on.

(All laugh.)

LAURA: That’s just not cool.

MATT: That’s actually pretty funny.

SAM: That’s one better than before!

MATT: Yeah.

LIAM: Are these new opal dice?

MARISHA: It’s a step in the right direction.

LAURA: They are.

TRAVIS: They switched, yeah.

SAM: New dice.

LAURA: There’s no excuse now.

MATT: All right, so.

LAURA: I think it’s just a curse on you, Marisha.

MATT: Stealth.

TRAVIS: 25.

MATT: 25. Vax?

LIAM: Did we use the Dust of Tracelessness?

LAURA: No, we used Pass Without a Trace, though, so add ten.

LIAM: No? Well, I will settle for a 27.

MATT: Okay, with a plus ten?

LIAM: No, I, didn’t we use–

LAURA and TRAVIS: Pass Without a Trace.

MATT: Pass Without a Trace was used.

LIAM: I just, oh, all right.

LAURA and MATT: You said Dust of Tracelessness.

LIAM: Oh, 37.

MATT: Lotta traces going on, it’s fine. Plus ten added, so 37.

LAURA: 36.

MATT: 36.

MARISHA: 20.

TALIESIN: 35.

SAM: 30.

MATT: All right, and Pike…

LAURA: Pike!

MATT: All right.

(All laugh.)

MATT: Ehhh, natural three. It’s okay. You guys make your way around the outskirts of this kind of open glade area, scooting by. As you begin to separate, finally getting to a point where the direction you’re trying to head, where you noticed seemingly all the liquid that’s seeping from, the actual movement, momentum of the horrible black material was like pushing slowly outward from apparently some center place? You follow that slow flow best you can. As you begin to pull away, you hear a slight creak sound in the distance.

(creaking)

LAURA: No. Can we see if the door shut?

TRAVIS: Hide! I hide.

LAURA: Did the door shut?

MATT: Perception check.

LIAM: Yeah, perception.

LAURA: Um. 25.

MATT: You look back over your shoulder and notice the door just (creaking, bang) and closes.

LAURA: Okay.

TRAVIS: Fuck.

LAURA: No, that’s…

MATT: As it closes–

TRAVIS: She’s out here now.

MATT: –there’s a sudden flash of wind, and there’s a flicker in Pike’s form as all of a sudden she (flickering sound)

LAURA: No!

PIKE: Guys?

MATT: And her divine form vanishes in place, apparently sent back to the source of where she projected her essence.

LAURA: She didn’t get, like, stolen or something?

LIAM: That is never not unsettling.

LAURA: Away?

MATT: Uh, not to your knowledge. It’s similar to the previous times that she’s been unable to keep her form there for you. Especially between planes, you can imagine it’s been rather difficult for her to be here for the time she has.

LAURA: Maybe the hag cast a Dispel she did on the broom?

MARISHA: Yeah, Dispel Magic.

TALIESIN: Or maybe things just got strange.

MARISHA: Poor reception.

SAM: Something I said.

LAURA: Love you, Pike.

TRAVIS: Something you said. (laughs)

LAURA: Definitely something you said.

MARISHA: Okay.

MATT: All right.

MARISHA: Can we see the hag moving inside the hut through the window?

MATT: You make a perception check as you’re glancing that way.

TRAVIS: Can I look for Ukurat?

MATT: Perception check.

MARISHA: Oh my god.

LAURA: Seriously?

MARISHA: 14.

MATT: 14? You see movement on the inside, but no actual physical bead on an entity. You just see the light being broken in the window.

LAURA: Okay, so she’s…

MARISHA: Yeah, she’s inside.

LAURA: That’s good.

TRAVIS: A gigantic 11.

SAM: You’ve yet to break single digits with them.

TALIESIN: New die.

MATT: You barely notice anything beyond the trees, you have to remind yourself, oh, there’s a house there. But.

(Laura laughs.)

TRAVIS: That sounds accurate.

MATT: Yeah.

TRAVIS: Who are these people, like, (gasps).

LAURA: Keyleth, what direction was the big scary blight on the land?

MARISHA: Northeast?

SAM: Northwest.

MATT: Northwest.

MARISHA: Northwest. Northwest.

LAURA: So we head that direction.

MARISHA: This direction.

MATT: All right. (laughs)

MARISHA: This direction.

MATT: Following Keyleth’s lead, you guys begin to slowly make your way through this bog and–

LAURA: Keep an eye out for anything moving.

MATT: Everything’s slowly moving in its own right, this kind of (sludgey sound)

LAURA: Shit.

TRAVIS: Easy there, tiger.

MATT: Sliding of awful liquid.

LAURA: Anything seemingly aggressive.

MATT: Understood.

TRAVIS: Don’t shoot any trees.

MATT: As you kind of push further, further northward, you guys are having… do you have to sneeze?

LAURA: It went away.

MATT: Okay, good. You get the sensation, it’s not even a sensation, the rest of the party – aside from you– you guys are getting knee-deep in this liquid now, and it’s to the point where you’re having to take one step, lurch it out of the liquid onto another, and you’re having to go out of your way to kind of hug the edges of trees where the roots themselves are protruding to give yourself some kind of foothold as opposed to getting stuck in this bog. You, Scanlan, are having a particularly rough time trying to walk on your own, because with each… though with your light form, it’s a lot of strength to even pull your little feet out of this tar-like substance. So.

TRAVIS: Yeah, Pimps-a-lot, you wanna?

SAM: Absolutely.

TRAVIS: Okay.

TRAVIS: Can I pick him up? And it’s black stuff, right?

MATT: Yeah.

TRAVIS: Can I smell the black stuff on him?

MATT: Yeah, I mean, it permeates the area but it’s particularly strong at his feet and lower extremities, almost went up to his upper thighs. It is a, it smells like a combination of wet blacktop, sulfur, and compost decay.

TRAVIS: Yeah, in the summer?

MATT: Yeah, like a hot, hot, Florida compost, yeah.

TRAVIS: I know that exact, accurate smell.

MATT: Yeah. It’s delightful.

SAM: Drakkar.

TRAVIS: You smell terrible.

SAM: Sorry.

LAURA: That’s a lot, coming from Grog.

SAM: That is true.

TRAVIS: How about you, I’ll put you on my shoulder, but how about you sit on my shoulder like strapped back there and just hang out the back?

SAM: Sit on your shoulder straps.

TRAVIS: No, don’t put your feet near my face, like hang out on the back of me.

SAM: All right, all right. Thank you for the lift.

TRAVIS: No worries.

LAURA: It’s good, you can keep an eye out for the hag following behind us.

SAM: That’s good. Wait, am I like being Yoda-carried right now?

(All laugh.)

LAURA: Yes.

TRAVIS: I’m flipping and climbing vines and shit.

MARISHA: Oh man, that makes me want a Scanlan backpack. Oh man.

MATT: Okay. As you guys push on forward, Keyleth guiding the direction, you’re the only one who moves without an issue. Are you tracking ahead of the party, or are you staying with them?

LAURA: I am tracking a little bit ahead of them.

MATT: All right. You travel for about another hour or so forward, and you, just being naturally alert as you are, notice some shift of movement that is more sudden than the slow sway of some of the various branches and boughs of nearby trees. A little bit in the direction you’re traveling and to the left.

LAURA: What did it look like? Just movement?

MATT: It moves again, and you see what appears to be some almost large rock-like figure that’s shifting, and the more you take a moment to focus, it looks like a humanoid-type creature hunched over, facing away from you.

LAURA: (mouthing) We should go, we should go that way. Can I point everybody to go around, keeping a wide berth?

MATT: Okay.

TRAVIS: Lead the way.

LAURA: Percy, look over there with your eyesight, look through your little scope and see what you see.

TALIESIN: I’m gonna try and scope it.

MATT: Okay. Make a perception check with advantage.

TALIESIN: Ugh. Could be worse. 16.

LAURA: Oh.

MATT: Okay. You, um. You take a moment and kind of train on this movement. You now see there are two figures that are facing each other, and they themselves are covered in this horrible liquid, and you recognize the form a little bit. These, they’re humanoid, but they have long, exaggerated jaws, very long forearm limbs, tall, straggly black hair, long, pointed hooked nose, and they’re both eating something that’s partially stuck in this bog. These are trolls, these are two large trolls that are currently in the process of eating some sort of creature.

TALIESIN: A pair of trolls.

LAURA: (whispering) We need to be very quiet.

MATT: You’ve had a piece of troll in your bag for a while.

LAURA: Oh!

TRAVIS: Oh yeah. Troll dick.

LAURA: So we’ve killed them before, that’s good to know.

TRAVIS: Yeah. They’re huge.

MATT: Trolls are pretty big.

LAURA: They were–

TRAVIS: About how big are they?

MATT: Like… I’d say, even with the hunch, nine feet tall.

LAURA: Yeah. Just… you know, maybe go around?

SAM: Yes, we should go around.

LAURA: What do you think?

SAM: We could kill them quite easily.

TRAVIS: Yeah.

LAURA: Well, there’s two of them that we see.

TALIESIN: That we see.

TRAVIS: Hey, Percy.

LIAM: They’re stupid, aren’t they?

LAURA: Didn’t, wait–

MARISHA: I don’t know.

LAURA: Didn’t Tiberius turn into a lady-troll?

TALIESIN: That was a thing, yes.

MARISHA: That happened.

LAURA: Oh.

MARISHA: To be fair, also, everything in the Feywild–

SAM: What?

MARISHA: – has been more sensitive, defensive, and more intelligent.

LAURA: They could be smarter.

TALIESIN: They could be smart trolls.

LAURA: They could be, like, hag trolls, which is just terrifying.

TALIESIN: They’re eating something that’s stuck.

LAURA: Which could be us very soon.

TALIESIN: Which could be us very soon.

LAURA: We need to keep moving.

TALIESIN: Let’s keep moving.

LAURA: The longer we stand still, the more stuck we get.

MATT: You hear this (grunt) in the distance, and you now, looking through your scope, you see that one of them has looked up from its eating, its mouth covered in all sorts of shiny, fresh liquid, and it kind of glances past. Its eyes, the pupils are white against yellow eyes, so it has this very kind of flash across a cat’s face type gleam across the eyeballs. They kind of… (grunts)

LIAM: Can we all see this?

MATT: Yeah, you guys can see, since you’ve all made note of these creatures in the distance.

LIAM: Why don’t we back it up slow for once?

LAURA: Well, how about we don’t move at all right now?

MARISHA: Everybody freeze.

MATT: Turns around, (trollish grunt), says something to the other one. They both grab a big chunk of whatever they’re eating, jam it in their mouth, and then dive down into the muck.

SAM: Oh, shit.

LAURA: Can we get up in the trees?

MATT: If you’d like to try and climb them.

LAURA: Can we try and climb the trees?

TALIESIN: We’re going to try and climb a tree.

SAM: To what end? Then we’re just gonna sit here forever?

TALIESIN: For a minute.

LAURA: Well no, we can go from tree branch to tree branch. Are they tightly enough connected that we can travel on the top of the trees?

MATT: Possibly. Might require some jumping.

SAM: I am a backpack right now.

LAURA: I’m gonna get on the broom and fly up.

MATT: You fly up.

LIAM: I’ll climb after her.

MATT: Okay. Go ahead and make an athletics check, if you don’t mind, Vax.

TRAVIS: I’m not scared of trolls.

LIAM: 18.

SAM: Could you be, please?

MATT: It takes you a minute, but you manage to get up to the tree. You come up into the trees. Do you break the canopy, or do you stop up at the branches?

LAURA: I wanted to… yeah, sure, I’ll break the canopy.

MATT: Okay. As you’re climbing up, your sister actually goes past where the branches, leaves, and the top of the trees end. Before you can really kind of speak out to question, she disappears. You, Vex, come shooting up off the top out, and you can see now before you the Shademirk in its entirety, kind of wrapping around the base of this one mountain, that kind of comes up into two sharp peaks, like horns on some sort of a large debased devil, but it’s just a formless rock mold that comes up into those two peaks. Looking around you, you can see the trees are very, very dense and heavily packed together, and what immediately catches your eye is about two, three miles ahead, right towards where the base of the mountain seems to sink into the Shademirk, there is one very, very large tree that stands above the rest of them.

LAURA: Oh, shit. Why didn’t I go above the canopy before?

MARISHA: Is it to the northwest?

MATT: It is what would be considered to the northwest of you. It, whereas the rest of the Shademirk continues to this relative 20-, 30-foot-tall canopy, this tree probably goes up about a hundred-plus feet and the branches string outward and have long strands and vines dangling from them, it’s, this is a massive example of local flora and fauna.

LAURA: Wow. Okay. I say, I see the tree! And I come back down into the canopy.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: Can I come down and grab… Keyleth? And lift her up into the tree too?

MATT: Sure.

MARISHA: Ooh.

TRAVIS: How high are the lowest branches?

MATT: The lowest branches are about seven feet up.

TRAVIS: You wanna lift?

SAM: I’m just a passenger. I’m on you. If you’re not going up, I’m staying on you.

TRAVIS: I’m not going up.

LAURA: You’re not gonna go up in the tree?

SAM: We’re gonna–

TRAVIS: You think my giant ass is gonna jump frockily-fucky-fucky from branch to branch in the treetops like some kind of acrobat?

LAURA: I don’t know.

TRAVIS: No! No.

SAM: We’re standing our muck.

MARISHA: Well, okay, is what we’re trying to do figure out a way to not have to walk in the muck?

LAURA: Yeah, I think so.

MARISHA: You’re–

LAURA: I feel like the trolls are gonna pop up, like, somewhere near us.

TRAVIS: Can I put my back against a tree?

MATT: Yeah.

TRAVIS: A large tree.

MATT: Yeah. The nearest tree, the one that Vax actually climbed up, is the one that’s closest to you guys, and it’s close enough for you to just take a five-foot step back up into it.

SAM: I’m back here! I’m back here, I’m back here, I’m back here!

LAURA: You’re against the tree.

TRAVIS: I turn around. The trees talk.

SAM: It’s me. Don’t back up into a tree–

TRAVIS: I spin around again and put my back to this tree.

SAM: I’m still back here! I’m still back here!

TRAVIS: Oh.

LAURA: While that’s going on, can I fly down and get Percy out of the muck and bring him up into the tree?

MATT: Sure.

LIAM: I’m gonna chime in over the earring and say, Somebody could turn Grog into a marmoset or something, that would work for the circumstances.

LAURA: Oh, shit.

MARISHA: That’s what I was gonna say, I can always polymorph you for a moment, Grog.

TRAVIS: I might be down with being some kind of monkey.

MARISHA: You want to be a monkey? Yeah. What kind of monkey?

TRAVIS: Gorilla.

MARISHA: Okay.

LAURA: Oh, shit.

MARISHA: And I turn Grog into a gorilla.

MATT: And with that, Grog’s already pretty large form just grows smaller and hairier.

TRAVIS: Nimble as shit.

LAURA: What the fuck! I should get Scanlan…

MATT: You look down at yourself and kind of marveling at your hands, which haven’t changed too much other than the place some of the fingers and thumbs, you already have pretty big, strong, hands, but you also pull up one of your feet from the muck and you can see the additional appendage that you now have in the prehensile toes.

LAURA: Grog, get in the tree, get in the tree.

TALIESIN: I don’t see a change, I’m not sure.

TRAVIS: No.

LAURA: Tree.

TRAVIS: No.

LAURA: Please.

TRAVIS: Grog.

LAURA: Aw.

SAM: Also has the mind of an ape.

MATT: Yep.

LAURA: Seriously?

MATT: Yeah.

MARISHA: Which might be more intelligent than what he was before…

MATT: Actually, let’s…

TRAVIS: Ah, shit.

MATT: Let’s have a look what the–

TRAVIS: Gorillas can’t–

MATT: Let’s see, let’s pull up the Monster Manual here and see exactly what we’re working with.

LAURA: Gorillas are pretty fucking smart.

TALIESIN: Yeah, you have one, don’t you?

MARISHA: I think I do.

LAURA: I think they’d be smarter than Grog.

MARISHA: I do, but I don’t have it in my little book.

LAURA: They can learn sign language, they have, like, an entire, yeah.

LIAM: Strongjaw’s kitten?

LAURA: Oh!

MATT: All right, we’ll go with the stats for an ape, ‘cause that’s what’s here and available. They do have intelligence of six, so you are as intelligent as you were before.

(All laugh.)

TRAVIS: But I do this with my foot.

(All laugh.)

MARISHA: Looks good on you, Grog.

TRAVIS: I’m gonna– can I?

MATT: No, you can’t talk.

TRAVIS: (gorilla noises)

LAURA: Shit. Scanlan, do you want to ride on Grog’s back still, or do you want to come up in the tree?

SAM: No, I don’t–

TRAVIS: (gorilla noises)

MARISHA: Ooh, you’d be like a little silverback baby.

LAURA: Can I go down and grab Scanlan and put him on the broom with me?

MATT: Sure.

LAURA: Okay.

SAM: Thank you.

LIAM: Honestly, I can’t even tell the difference.

TRAVIS: That still translates, right?

MATT: Yeah.

MARISHA: Okay, I know the twins are good on flying, for the most part.

TRAVIS: Yeah, I’ll stay down here as bait.

LAURA: Yeah, yeah.

LIAM: I don’t know, how long ago did you bust out my wings for me, DM? Under 24 hours?

MATT: Yeah, it’s been under 24 hours. So unfortunately your wings are not available.

LAURA: No wings for you.

MARISHA: Well, but you can walk unhindered, right? You can walk fine?

LAURA: Yeah, yeah.

MARISHA: Can someone borrow your broom?

LAURA: Again? Yes.

MARISHA: Again. (laughs)

LAURA: Yeah, that worked really well last time. Totally. Somebody can.

MARISHA: Give it to your brother. He’s trustworthy, right? Right? Right, Vax?

LAURA: He had the carpet before, so. Maybe not so much, but the whole point was for the trolls to not have us on the ground, the trolls, but.

MARISHA: Oh, right, that’s true.

LAURA: Can we just try to travel amongst the trees?

TALIESIN: Let’s see what happens.

SAM: Stick to the plan.

MARISHA: I’m gonna go ahead, I’m gonna use a Beastshape and I’m gonna go into an eagle form.

MATT: Okay. Giant eagle. All right. Beastshape is taken, he’s gorillafied, you have Scanlan up on your broom.

LAURA: Yes.

MATT: And then Vax and… Percy, are you just traveling through the canopy?

LAURA: Shit.

MATT: Or are you carrying somebody, Keyleth?

LAURA: Do you wanna carry Scanlan?

MARISHA: I can carry Scanlan.

MATT: Okay.

LIAM: How thick are the trees here?

LAURA: I feel like we could–

MATT: They range anywhere from between five feet and–

LIAM: I had such a hard time when I flew up the other day, such a hard time…

LAURA: Yeah.

LIAM: And everyone’s just floating up, easy as pie.

MARISHA: To be fair, I’ve been flying a lot longer than you have, Vax.

LAURA: That’s true, and your wings are much larger than hers were.

MARISHA: It’s true.

LIAM: Yeah.

LAURA: Yeah. And I’ve got a skinny little broom, so I’m not flapping any wings.

LIAM: I’m skinnier than your broom.

LAURA: Yes, well.

(Marisha laughs.)

LIAM: Let’s do it.

TALIESIN: All right.

MATT: All right.

LAURA: Then I guess I can take one of you on the broom with me.

TALIESIN: Take him. I’ll be fine. I’m gonna, I have a potion of climbing.

LAURA: Do you wanna hop on this, since you have no flight?

MARISHA: Ooh, potion of climbing, nice.

LAURA: Brother?

MARISHA: All right, I fly over to Scanlan.

LIAM: No, but I will anyway.

SAM: I’m with you now?

MARISHA: (eagle sound)

LAURA: All right, he’s on the broom with me.

MATT: All right, so the twins are on the broom, they go up. Grog, you just have a field day leaping through those branches, and just coasting through, keeping an eye best you can on the guiding broom above the actual tree canopy. You go ahead and grab Scanlan as well and follow suit.

MATT: As soon as you break up as well, you can see the large tree in the distance. Percy, doing the best you can to keep an eye on Grog or at least listen to that regard, you drink your potion of climbing and begin leaping off and kind of ninja-scattering your way through the higher branches of the trees as well.

TRAVIS: Anime shit.

TALIESIN: Oh yeah.

MATT: So if I can go ahead and get Grog and Percy to go ahead and make three successive athletics checks, if you could.

TALIESIN: With advantage?

MATT: This would be, for you it would be advantage, yeah.

TRAVIS: What’s the modifier for king of the apes?

MATT: You know what, I’ll give you advantage on this just ‘cause you’re an ape.

TALIESIN: Athletics or acrobatics?

MATT: Um. For the purposes of climbing and grabbing, I would say this is more of an athletics check.

TALIESIN: Okay.

MATT: Since this is more upper-body strength and–

LAURA: Not parkouring, not parkouring through the treetops.

TALIESIN: That’ll do.

TRAVIS: That’s a 20, 12 plus eight.

TALIESIN: 16.

MATT: All righty.

TRAVIS: 21.

TALIESIN: 24.

MATT: All righty. Last one.

TRAVIS: Not so great. 23.

TALIESIN: Natural 20.

MATT: All righty. To your surprise, as the potion energy surges through your body, even with the relatively slick surface that a lot of these branches and trees have, you have an innate ability to point out which ones are the strongest, easiest to grab a hold and just keep the momentum going in the semblance of a parkour-like leap-and-grab-type circumstance, you have managed to move through almost with the grace of the gorilla ahead of you. You lose sight a few times, but you guys do take the better part of the next forty minutes or so to eventually make your way closer and closer to the tree where the shadow, the shade of it against the permanently dusk sun now begins to creep over the place you are in the forest. You have now entered a shaded nightfall by the actual tree’s location and placement. The lower forest below you is pitch-black at this point, other than a little bit of light that filters in from nearby lit areas of the forest.

(Audible feedback.)

LAURA: Oh.

MATT: Oh?

LAURA: Oh.

SAM: There’s a punk band warming up.

(All laugh.)

MATT: Never ends. There we go. You guys make your way towards, are you going straight for the tree or are you…?

LAURA: Okay. Do we wanna go straight for the tree now, or do we wanna like rest up before we do that?

TALIESIN: I think we want to observe it and rest up.

LIAM: Observe, yes.

MARISHA: Like scout?

LAURA: Watch it and see what’s going on with it?

LIAM: Yes.

LAURA: Before we just go straight to it?

TRAVIS: We don’t have the mansion, right?

SAM: We have the mansion.

TALIESIN: We do. We have the mansion.

TRAVIS: (gorilla noise)

SAM: How many hours since we’ve slept last?

MATT: I’d say it’s probably been, surmising, six to seven.

TALIESIN: Really? It’s been since the river.

MATT: Yeah.

LAURA: Yeah.

SAM: So we can at least do some, we can get closer and do some recon.

LAURA: Yeah.

LIAM: Let’s do recon, let’s observe it for the next six to ten hours and then rest up in the shag.

LAURA: That’s a long time. All right.

MARISHA: I go ahead and I take off with Scanlan and do kind of a high aerial loop around the tree.

SAM: (worried noise)

MATT: All righty.

LAURA: Oh jeez, around the tree? Around it?

MARISHA: Just at the top, really high. Really high, getting nice–

LAURA: I wanna kind of perch on top of a tree nearby and just kind of see it from there.

MARISHA: Watch.

TALIESIN: I want to see if I can find the source of the bog muck.

MATT: Okay. You both make a perception check from being up in the tree.

SAM: Wait, tre– oh.

MARISHA: Do I have advantage because I’m an eagle?

MATT: Well, it would be–

SAM: Above the tree, yeah. Yeah, yeah.

MARISHA: Don’t eagles have advantage?

SAM: Eight.

(All laugh.)

MARISHA: I do have advantage.

SAM: Just 'cause.

MARISHA: Okay.

MATT: Eagle eyes.

MARISHA: Eagle eyes. 27.

MATT: 27. As you coast around the outside of this gargantuan tree, you can see there are a number of places where the branches meet and where elements of the bark are slightly split, and there is just a slow, perpetual flow of this black tar-like substance. You’ve seen it on smaller scales seeping from the trees in this actual forest, it’s like the entirety of the landscape is kind of creating this, but the bulk of it, whether it be the source of the general corruption or at least is the largest central location of its source? There are a number of places throughout this tree where it’s just seeping out like sap.

MARISHA: Like sap.

LAURA: Like bleeding out oil.

MATT: Out of the actual tree.

MARISHA: Like even the top of the tree and stuff.

LIAM: Like evil maple syrup.

MARISHA: Evil maple syrup, yeah.

LAURA: Mm, sounds tasty. Can–

TRAVIS: Like ghostbusters.

LAURA: – we see any kind of movement, any kind of things moving around the tree?

MATT: You don’t see anything moving around the tree at the moment, other than just the gentle swaying as a little bit of wind hits the sides of it, portions of its long hundreds and hundreds of hanging vines just kind of slowly get moved and tangled by the windfall. If you want to make a perception check as well.

LAURA: Okay. That would be 30.

MATT: Okay.

LIAM: I got a natural 20. Using Luck.

MATT: Great. So the two twins up there on the broom, as you kind of glance around the other side, you both can see the branches themselves occasionally will shift and curl up, almost like an arm recoiling, and then relax slowly back out again, like a stretching arm held still for too long.

LAURA: Oh, shit. I think the tree is alive and not in a normal plant sort of way.

LIAM: Yeah.

LAURA: Yeah.

MATT: You also notice some of the vines that are wrapped around and kind of curled around these branches as well occasionally recoil and pull in and shift and move up, it’s like there’s a whole ecosystem based around numerous forms of plant life that cause this thing to almost act like a giant organism.

LAURA: Fuck, I do not wanna get close to that thing.

MARISHA: I know, that’s intimidating.

LIAM: I’m gonna rest my chin on my sister’s shoulder and just stare for a minute and say, you know, that bow is going to be reeeally cool.

LAURA: God, I hope so.

LIAM: Yeah. Worth it.

MARISHA: Still on my back, Scanlan, you wanna get closer?

SAM: I’m using my eight perception, I report to the others, it’s just a normal tree, guys.

(All laugh.)

SAM: Nothing out of the ordinary, no movement, nothing. It’s safe.

LAURA: Thanks, Scanlan. Your eyes, your eyes…

TRAVIS: Can I check myself for parasites?

MATT: You find a number of them, actually. They’re delicious.

(All laugh.)

MATT: For the two of you that are below the treeline, you don’t get a grand view above, it’s too hard to see, but you guys make your way close to the actual base of the tree?

LAURA: Ugh! No! What? The base of the fucking tree?

LIAM: No, no.

LAURA: No fucking way, don’t do that.

TALIESIN: I’m gonna get close enough to at least make out some detail.

MARISHA: And I’ll do kind of a tighter loop around it.

MATT: Okay.

MARISHA: See if I can get any more details.

MATT: All right. Percy, you have to get pretty close to even get a view because of the density of the trees the closer you get to this. So you guys are probably going to have to get within 20, 30 feet to get a view of the exterior of the large tree.

LIAM: That’s a bad idea.

LAURA: Yeah. Can we see him walking towards it?

MATT: No, you have no view of them this high in the canopy.

LAURA: Fuck.

MATT: They’re below the treeline. Percy, as you get closer you begin to notice that the actual roots of the tree almost come 10 feet up before they merge with the outside of the tree itself, a number of–

TALIESIN: Is it a solid trunk, or is it like a combined trunk?

MATT: It’s a solid trunk in most of its places, but there are swaths of vines that wrap around it and curl and create these giant, tight nets, almost like a Rat King of tails across certain portions of its exterior near the base, and where some of the roots join with the central tree trunk.

TALIESIN: I’m gonna back up and try and find a place to scan the ground, find a place to put a door for our mansion.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: Safe.

MATT: Okay, I mean, there are a number of areas that are somewhat clear on the ground, but there is no– All the landscape is coated with this molasses-type material, even the bits that aren’t submerged and are relatively shallow, there is still that substance all across them.

MARISHA: I was doing a tighter loop.

MATT: Right.

MARISHA: Of the tree, see if I can get any more details that we haven’t already seen.

MATT: Okay. Keeping your eyes out as best you can as you loop around a second time, you get closer, no real change in what you’re able to observe. You have a higher detailed look at it, but once again, you see a number of these vine-clusters around the base of some of these branches, you see elements where the bark has split and sealed over and split again and just spills out more of this black filth.

MARISHA: Okay.

MATT: You aren’t able to make out any sort of other details about its surface.

MARISHA: I fly back to the others.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: Percy?

TALIESIN: Yes?

LAURA: Are you on the ground?

TALIESIN: No, but I’m close to it.

LAURA: Do you see any sort of animal life around the tree?

TALIESIN: Nothing, no.

LAURA: The only thing I’ve seen is actual branches moving like arms. I think the tree’s alive.

TALIESIN: If I were animal life, I would live beneath the surface.

LAURA: Like the trolls.

TALIESIN: Like the trolls. I think there’s quite possibly things that live in the muck. Probably not on top of it.

LAURA: Do you guys think maybe we should, um. We should get in the mansion and have a nice little chat and figure out what the fuck we’re gonna do?

SAM: Sure. Sounds good to me.

TRAVIS: How do I not become a gorilla anymore?

LAURA: Yeah?

LIAM: Yeah. We want to be at full strength.

MATT: You don’t.

MARISHA: It’s up to me.

LIAM: Don’t run in willy-nilly.

TRAVIS: I look at Keyleth and I go–

MATT: She doesn’t see you, 'cause she’s way above the trees and you’re just kind of down in the forest as a gorilla going–

TRAVIS: I’m on the ground?

MATT: You’re not on the ground, you’re up in the actual tree top.

SAM: While we still have a, I’ll phone down to Vex and Vax and Percy and say, while we still have a giant eagle, is there any point to us, to me and Kiki scanning back to where those trolls were and just making sure they’re not following us or anything?

TALIESIN: No, although if you find a log approximately two feet thick, I could certainly use that.

SAM: A log?

TALIESIN: A log, about two feet thick.

LAURA: About how long, though?

TALIESIN: Doesn’t matter.

LAURA: You wanna fly down? We fly down, I take the broom and try to find a log.

LIAM: Yeah, you’re in control.

LAURA: All right.

MATT: All right, so the two of you kind of– make a perception check.

LAURA: (laughs) Yeah.

LIAM: Seventeen.

LAURA: That’s interesting. I got fifteen.

MATT: Okay, uh.

LIAM: What a lackluster okay.

LAURA: Yeah, okay.

MATT: It takes you guys the better part of an hour to finally find a piece of abandoned dead tree husk from which you’ll be able to carve a piece that matches the description of what Percy’s requesting.

LAURA: All right.

MATT: Requires some cleaning, it is very thick with the actual tar, but you do manage to bring it back to him. A little larger than what you wanted, but it can be carved down.

TALIESIN: It’s fine, I’ve got a thought, so I’m gonna try something.

MARISHA: I drop Grog’s polymorph and my eagle form.

SAM: (screams as though falling)

MARISHA: …after I’ve landed.

SAM: Oh, okay.

MATT: Okay. You are back to your regular Grog self.

TRAVIS: My pants are down, as my hand was behind my bottom, just contemplating flinging some poo.

MATT: All right, and in that brief moment all of a sudden you are, well, some of your sense have come to you. Not much else has changed other than your physicality, but…

TRAVIS: Hi guys.

LAURA: Hi Grog.

LIAM: I think a little bit actually got out, buddy.

LAURA: Gross! Come on.

TRAVIS: It didn’t, don’t worry.

LAURA: So foul.

MATT: All right, so. You’ve all managed to reconvene a little ways off from the base of this large tree. What do you wish to do?

SAM: Should we–

LAURA: (singing) Mansion it up!

SAM: Yeah?

TALIESIN: I could use some sleep, and I’ve got a little thing to work on for the moment.

SAM: Okay.

LIAM: What are you doing with this log, Percival? What is this for?

MARISHA: Is this what we were talking about that time?

TALIESIN: Swamp shoes.

MARISHA: Swamp shoes.

LAURA: Swamp shoes?

TALIESIN: I think some swamp shoes might not be a terrible idea.

MARISHA: I can help you with those.

TALIESIN: Thank you. Swamp shoes.

LAURA: So you can walk like me?

TALIESIN: Yes. I mean, not quickly, it won’t help you walk quickly, it’s not necessarily the most stealthy thing on earth, but you won’t drop two feet into the muck every time you take a step.

LAURA: That’s good.

TRAVIS: I’ve got a question. Can one of us that can turn into things go in the muck?

LAURA: Oh.

TALIESIN: Maybe.

LAURA: I feel like, is it bad? Do we get any kind of bad vibe, bad energy off the muck?

SAM: Other than it being black magic?

MATT: Roll an insight check.

TALIESIN: The muck is unhappy to be there.

MARISHA: That mud looked at me the wrong way.

LAURA: No, but I mean, what if it makes us sad to be around it?

TALIESIN: It does make us sad to be around it.

LAURA: Nineteen. Nineteen.

MATT: Those are some nice boots you’re wearing, you’re probably gonna have to get a new pair when all this is over. It stinks, it’s sticky, the muck itself is probably not a very nice conversationalist. It doesn’t also from what you can tell appear to be sentient or give you any kind of bad vibe that you can pick up.

LAURA: Okay.

TALIESIN: It’s just muck.

MATT: From looking at it. It is muck.

TRAVIS: I mean, I’ll go in and–

MARISHA: I can go.

TRAVIS: Yeah?

LAURA: Stanky-stank.

MATT: Stanky-stank.

MARISHA: Sounds fun.

TRAVIS: What are you gonna turn into?

MARISHA: Something that burrows. I guess I technically could’ve taken a short rest, correct?

MATT: Not yet, no.

TALIESIN: We haven’t yet.

SAM: So we’re doing this now?

MARISHA: In the time we’re just chilling? Okay, well, I’ll take a short rest.

TALIESIN: Let’s take a long rest, I mean.

SAM: Well, no, I–

MARISHA: I just want to take a short rest, just–

MATT: A short rest is about half an hour or so. Half an hour to an hour.

MARISHA: Yeah, just enough time, and then I’m gonna turn into an earth elemental and I’m gonna swan dive–

SAM: Wait, wait!

LAURA: Swan dive?

MATT: We’ll get to that. Because as you take your short rest and begin sitting amongst the ground or the bough of the trees–

MARISHA: I thought we were in the mansion.

MATT: No, the mansion hasn’t been cast yet.

MARISHA: Oh.

MATT: So as you’re resting, here amongst the tree tops–

LAURA: We’re in the tree tops.

MATT: Yeah. The branches begin to sag ever so slowly.

LAURA: Shit.

MATT: And particularly Keyleth and Percy, actually Grog as well, you begin to feel the branches slowly almost trying to push you off them, like you sort of slide forward.

MARISHA: Did I say something? I don’t know.

TALIESIN: No, you didn’t say anything.

LAURA: Trees, you’re so lovely, even though you’re covered in this black stuff, I can tell that you have really good personalities.

MARISHA: You’ve clearly been moisturizing.

TRAVIS: You really don’t think that’s–

MATT: All the branches begin to slowly sag down.

LAURA: Shit! I push off, we’re flying, we’re hovering.

MATT: And you guys all begin to slide down–

TALIESIN: I’m going to make a jump to another tree.

MARISHA: Yeah, I do the same.

MATT: Okay, make an athletics check, both of you.

SAM: I will too.

LAURA: What about you, Grog?

MARISHA: Oh my god. This is horrifying.

TALIESIN: Oh my god.

TRAVIS: All right, I’ll try.

MARISHA: Ten.

TALIESIN: My potion has worn off, hasn’t it?

MATT: At this point in time? How long does it last?

TALIESIN: One hour.

MATT: Yeah.

TRAVIS: I frenzy raged last time.

MATT: Yeah, so you have disadvantage.

SAM: You’re dead, sir.

LAURA: Oh no.

TRAVIS: Don’t worry about it.

LAURA: Oh my god, you rolled 19 twice in a row.

TRAVIS: Yeah, 19 and 16.

LAURA: Oh, okay.

TRAVIS: 24.

MATT: Okay, so you leap onto another tree branch.

SAM: I got a 23.

MATT: You also leap after and actually land next to Grog.

SAM: Hey, buddy!

GROG: Hey, pal!

MATT: What did you get, Percy?

TALIESIN: Seven.

LAURA: Oh no.

MARISHA: 10.

LAURA: Oh no!

MATT: You both reach, leap for the branch, but you’re a good foot and a half, two feet short, and as your fingers catch the edge–

MARISHA: Percy, catch me!

MATT: It’s slick, and both of you go plummeting about 15 feet to the ground. You both suffer four points of falling damage as you catch yourself on the ground, kind of jamming your ankles a little bit. There’s a (splash) of liquid as you impact and the lower patch goes partway up your calf, almost to your knee, as you hit and you have to wiggle to try and–

TALIESIN: I want the mansion, now.

SAM: Okay.

LAURA: Can we drop the endless rope down, say, hey, grab on.

MATT: Yeah.

LAURA: And try to yank 'em back up into the tree.

MATT: Okay. You guys take the rope and begin to pull yourself up. You feel your branch begin to slowly–

LAURA: Oh, I was on the broom.

MATT: You’re still on the broom this whole time?

LAURA: I’ve been on the broom, yeah, I don’t wanna stand on anything.

MATT: All right. Then you manage to get the rope down, you guys grab onto the rope and you pull them ever so slowly out of the muck. It’s a lot of weight. I need you to make a strength check.

LAURA: Can I tie the rope off on a branch?

TALIESIN: It won’t hold.

LIAM: Can I help?

MATT: Sure. Sure, we can do that. You don’t need a strength check to tie the rope off, we’ll just take it. You guys manage to pull yourselves at least out of the muck, however, you’ve gotta climb up the rope to try and get back in the branches?

TALIESIN: I’m just gonna hold on.

LAURA: We just need to get in the fucking mansion.

TALIESIN: We just need to get in the mansion.

MARISHA: Yeah, can we have the mansion?

SAM: Okay, I’ll do the mansion.

MARISHA: I mean, we can still come in and out of the mansion.

SAM: Yeah, that’s true, that’s true.

MATT: All right.

SAM: I will cast the mansion. I will sing the song to conjure it. (Sings) Home, home on the range, where the trees are acting real strange, where chickens are pecked, Vex shoots me in the neck, and the hot tub is filled with grenades.

(All laugh and applaud.)

MATT: Well done.

TRAVIS: I’m sick, don’t make me laugh that hard.

MATT: All right. With that, Scanlan, after leaping onto the next branch, you create the doorway into the mansion up in the trees. You guys all slowly eventually climb back up and get to where the entrance is, and each member of Vox Machina currently present leap into the mansion, to safety, where it’s seemingly much more clean, though you are dragging clumps of this liquid on the main carpet.

TRAVIS: That’s good.

TALIESIN: It’s fine.

SAM: I command my servants to wipe our feet.

TRAVIS: Whoa whoa whoa, I’m sure you want to test the gunk, right, Percy?

LAURA: Yeah, we should–

SAM: Oh, go out and test it?

TRAVIS: Is it flammable, is it poisonous, is it acidic?

MARISHA: I take my fire hands and I see if I can light the gunk on fire.

MATT: Okay. As you bring it near, the gunk does not burn. You see one little pssh as a bubble bursts and there is a little burst of sulfurous flame, but it burns away in an instant, the actual liquid itself does not catch.

MARISHA: Okay. I start taking my short rest.

MATT: All right.

LAURA: Should one of us lick it?

TALIESIN: Sure.

SAM: Grog?

TRAVIS: I take a pinky-smear–

LIAM: Give it to Mikey, he’ll try anything.

TRAVIS: Like a droplet, right, I stick my tongue out, and I touch it to my tongue.

MATT: It resembles, and it’s only familiar to you because you’ve tried this before, it’s like tasting the filthiest copper coin you’ve ever held in a pocket before. It has that kind of metallic residue to it, but also this kind of earthy griminess where it’s probably been devoured and digested by a number of creatures before it found its way–

LAURA: Ew!

TRAVIS: I detect a note of digestive tract.

MATT: It is not pleasant by any means.

LAURA: Do you feel evil? More than usual?

TRAVIS: I raise my hand– no.

LAURA: Okay.

TALIESIN: Give me a little bit and I’ll do something to it. I don’t really know what I can tell you, but I’ll take a look.

LAURA: Hold out your hand, then.

TALIESIN: Thank you. I need that tree as well, let’s take that down to– want to help me with this before your nap or after?

MARISHA: I dunno. After.

TALIESIN: All right, I’ll start on it, then you can help when you finish.

MATT: All right, so you guys begin…

TALIESIN: I’m gonna go work for a little bit.

MATT: Okay. What are the rest of you doing?

LIAM: I’m gonna hobble past Vex and say, you know, I think that broom is not as well-suited for, um, men. I think you might have done Gern a favor. I’ve just taken a very long spin class. I sort of tenderly walk past.

LAURA: Well, I have a seat, sorry I didn’t think about.

LIAM: Oh dear.

MATT: So Vax goes to rest his bruised arch.

(All laugh.)

MARISHA: Is that enough time?

MATT: You’re making those–

TALIESIN: I’m gonna make swamp shoes.

MATT: Okay, that’s gonna take you–

TALIESIN: They’re very simple, but yes, I have to make a lot of them.

MATT: You have to make a pair for most everybody here.

TALIESIN: And I’m going to be enlisting her help, it’s literally just thin slices, I’m not making them super nice, I’m just–

MARISHA: I druidcraft the shit out of those.

TALIESIN: Yeah, I’m gonna have her–

LAURA: I’m gonna come out of the door with you.

TALIESIN: That’s pretty much what I’m doing other than sleeping.

MATT: Okay, go ahead and make four tinkering checks.

SAM: I’m gonna inspire him once with an inspirational quote. You have to look through the rain to see the rainbow.

(All laugh.)

TRAVIS: I gotta leave, I can’t–

TALIESIN: I have to take a negative 10 for that, like that really removes 10?

MARISHA: Did you get that from a fortune cookie, where’d you get that?

TRAVIS: I can’t be here when this happens.

SAM: Hey, pal. Life is what happens when you’re making other plans. If plan A doesn’t work, there’s still 25 letters left in the alphabet.

LAURA: Oh, wow.

TRAVIS: Oh my god.

LAURA: That’s three inspirations you’ve just given him.

TALIESIN: Let’s burn that page.

MATT: That’s borderline Lisa Frank quotes here, this is…

LIAM: Kill him!

TALIESIN: Can I remove that extra two from your charisma? I’m gonna wipe it out.

MATT: Yeah, all that reading finally goes to shit.

SAM: It was my footprints you saw.

TALIESIN: It’s proficiency bonus, plus dex.

MATT: Yes, go for it.

SAM: I was carrying you all along.

TALIESIN: I hate you. I hate everything that you stand for. Oh, this is nice. This is, um.

MATT: Remember, you don’t have to use the inspiration dice if you don’t want to.

TALIESIN: It’s two 26s.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: I’m keeping the inspiration dice. And, let’s see, and two 19s.

MATT: All righty. Yeah, you guys take the better part of the next hour to make some loosely functional swamp shoes. They’ll get you a short distance, they’re not gonna last you a long time.

TALIESIN: They’re not pretty. They’re made of rope.

MATT: Yeah. All right. So you finish your short rest.

MARISHA: I really wanna swan dive into the muck.

LAURA: I feel like, Keyleth, a swan dive is maybe not the best idea because I feel like it’ll make a lot of noise. Maybe nice and quiet.

MARISHA: If I tighten my abs and keep my feet together, it shouldn’t make much noise at all.

TALIESIN: You’ve been watching a lot of Olympics.

MARISHA: I have been watching a lot of Olympics.

LIAM: I come back in with a big bag of ice.

MATT: And two spirits trying to hold it for you.

TRAVIS: Did we take a long rest or just a short rest?

LAURA: Short rest right now so Keyleth can go into the muck.

TALIESIN: I’m going for a full long rest after my crap.

LAURA: I’m gonna go outside with her and just hover on the broom to keep an eye.

SAM: I’m going out as well and I’m just sort of shuffling in place and moving.

LAURA: Do you wanna hang out on the broom with me?

SAM: Oh yes, that would be better.

MATT: All right, so the two of you on the broom. Grog, what are you doing?

TRAVIS: I’m going into the kitchen with the Titanstone Knuckles, and I’m gonna start hitting things.

LAURA: Wow, Grog’s getting aggressive.

TRAVIS: Well, I wanna see if I can upgrade the knuckles, so I’m gonna start using them.

LAURA: Oh, smart. Smart.

SAM: I have a training basement, but okay, sure.

TALIESIN: And there’s food.

MATT: You guys make your way to the front door, in the distance you can hear a series of dull thuds, bangs, cracks, and various sounds as Grog begins to just punch his way through the entirety of your mansion’s kitchen.

LAURA: Do you wanna check on that?

SAM: Seems like it’s normal.

LAURA: All right.

MATT: You doubt you’d ever see a fully dominated spiritual servant look nervous, yet at this moment you have about 17 of them all just going (high-pitched whine). You just tear through the vicinity.

TRAVIS: Yeah.

MATT: You’re trying desperately to finish up your short rest, as you get up, you hear this noise as well as you guys make your way to the front door. You’re left to try and finish up this project, probably for the next 20 minutes or so, while they go ahead and attempt this process. Vax, you’re resting up your loins with ice.

LIAM: No, I mean, I’m gonna take my bag of ice and I’m gonna sit on the doorjamb and watch them go. And just see if they need help, but I’ll stay here if I can.

MATT: All right. You.

LAURA: Scanlan, do you wanna actually sit on my lap so you don’t have to suffer through the indignity that Vax just did?

SAM: Yes, that would be lovely, thank you.

MATT: All right, so as you guys step out, Keyleth.

SAM: Will you tell me a story?

LAURA: Whatever you want, darling.

MATT: Keyleth, as you step off of the tree branch, are you gonna climb down or just leap down into the muck?

MARISHA: I swan-dive. I take a minute to compose myself. And then–

LAURA: You’re earth elemental?

MARISHA: –as gracefully as possible, pull like a Pocahontas, and then turn into the earth elemental as I dive in.

TALIESIN: Sail!

MARISHA: Sail!

MATT: All right, as you do, your form suddenly ripples and extends out into the form of your elemental body. You slam into the surface and sink down below. You guys see a slight (burble sound) in the liquid, and it leaves this sort of crater of splash that slowly closes up over with no sign of Keyleth now visible on the surface.

LAURA: I’m gonna hand Vax the endless rope and say, you might just wanna drop that down to the muck so she can get out if she needs it. Maybe. Like fish for her.

LIAM: Yeah, I go and I tie one end of it to the heaviest piece of furniture I can find in the foyer.

MATT: All right. No heavy furniture per se, but there are a series of large marble pillars that are load-bearing within the interior, and that’s probably your best bet, so you go ahead and wrap the rope around that.

LIAM: Yes, I use the swirly-whirly knot.

MATT: Great. The one that Pike taught you from her sailing days.

MARISHA: I start to earthglide, breaststroking through the mud under the swamp to the tree.

LAURA: To the tree, you’re going to the tree?

MARISHA: I’m heading towards it.

SAM: Wait, hold up.

MATT: Swimming through the tar itself is a slowing process even as an earth elemental. Earthgliding would mean going subterranean to where the actual physical earth and soil is what you can traverse through. The tar is not natural in comparison to your elemental form, so you’d have to go beneath the actual bog.

MARISHA: How much further down is it?

MATT: I’d say it’s probably anywhere from three to five feet, depending on certain things, that’s to get past how much of it has seeped into the ground.

MARISHA: Okay, then I go down.

MATT: Okay. You go down, and you have to get lower the closer you get to it, as the actual seep, the actual depth in which this substance seems to have penetrated the dirt gets lower and lower. You begin to move through as you glide in the darkness.

SAM: You know what, we should’ve definitely tied that rope to her before–

LAURA: Yeah, before she went in, yeah yeah yeah.

MARISHA: I wanna use my tremor-sense too to just be aware.

MATT: Yeah, every now and then you feel a twitch, a large twitch in the ground, and you kind of shoulder-charger into what seems to be a large root that is dug into the ground. And you start finding little pockets here and there beneath these roots of that awful tar-like substance that have just been pushed into the ground like these little tar geodes, if you will. You start feeling around and finding these large roots that are just a heavy network of chaos beneath the tree. You’re now under the tree, probably a good 25, 30 feet below it.

MARISHA: Okay. If I reach and out touch one of the roots, like just run my hand along it, what happens?

SAM: God, what is she doing?

TALIESIN: You’re my hero.

MATT: You run your hand along the root. It’s stiff, the surface of the bark itself is a little rough at the touch. Yeah.

TALIESIN: Sorry. I just love that word.

SAM: Dick joke.

MARISHA: I move back a little bit, kind of getting away from the tree.

MATT: Okay, glide backward, away from that large root that you had run into.

MARISHA: Do I sense any type of creatures living under here?

MATT: Not within your vicinity, no.

MARISHA: Any movement, nothing crazy?

MATT: Just the occasional shift, like a very faint movement that’s rather sudden in certain areas nearby.

MARISHA: Okay, I’m gonna start making my way back to the mansion.

TALIESIN: It was good, it was good.

MATT: You earthglide back up, you guys, after waiting a few minutes, suddenly emerging from the bottom of the bog, you see Keyleth’s now covered in black tar-like material, her elemental form emerges.

MARISHA: Ooh, like the swamp thing? Do I look like the swamp thing?

MATT: Kinda.

MARISHA: That’s cool.

LAURA: Are you okay?

MARISHA: (rock noises)

LAURA: Oh, right. Cool.

MATT: She talks. It sounds like a slow-moving rockslide. (rock sounds)

LAURA: Awesome.

TALIESIN: Do you speak rock?

MARISHA: That’s very poetic. And then I kind of make my way up and drop earth elemental form.

MATT: Okay, as you drop the form, much of the muck just kind of drops off of where the form once was. A little bit’s still clinging to the bottom of your robes, but mostly clean.

MARISHA: Yeah, I think it’s good, I didn’t really see much or learn much more than we already knew.

LAURA: Did you see any creatures around?

MARISHA: No creatures.

SAM: Did the muck try to eat you?

MARISHA: The muck did not try to eat me. It’s not as deep as I would’ve thought, actually. It’s only three feet or so deep. I do believe that the tree is living, though. I think its roots were kind of twitching and moving around.

SAM: But you felt the roots, it’s not an illusion, it’s a real tree.

MARISHA: It is a real tree.

SAM: Okay.

MARISHA: The roots were very turgid.

SAM: Hmm. What a good word.

MARISHA: Someone taught that to me earlier.

TALIESIN: I feel like a terrible person, I think. It’s just a great word, that’s all.

MATT: All right. So with her return, what are you guys gonna do?

TRAVIS: (punching sounds)

LAURA: Do you wanna go, maybe?

SAM: Yeah, I guess we should go in and see what going on, what’s cooking in the kitchen.

LAURA: Okay.

MATT: As you guys rush into the kitchen, and looking around, you can see now every cabinet’s pulled off of its hinges and shattered in half, what was a central stone island is now just a pile of smashed granite.

SAM: Damn it.

MATT: Every single possible breakable utensil, platter–

TRAVIS: Don’t forget the holes in the wall.

MATT: Oh, it is just ruin. You see every servant is now on the ground trying to scoop things up, and as soon as they get a handful to go ahead and set it somewhere, just slapped out of their hand by a fist.

SAM: Grog, what are you doing? This is our kitchen and we need to eat dinner here!

TRAVIS: I’m trying to activate these, and they require pain. (yells)

MATT: With that, what was once a large black cauldron that was used in soup and other sort of base-like liquids, is now, pwang, a large heavy ding is now on the inside in the shape of a fist, and it’s half as useful.

LAURA: Grog!

TRAVIS: Do I notice any difference in the gauntlets?

MATT: Make a perception check.

TRAVIS: At disadvantage?

LAURA: Because you’re super tired.

MATT: Yes, because you haven’t rested yet.

TRAVIS: One less. Ten.

MATT: No difference whatsoever.

TRAVIS: Maybe I need to hit people.

LIAM: I start backing away slow.

(All laugh.)

TALIESIN: I walk in at this point and I’m just looking for some chicken.

MARISHA: I also walk in. Scanlan!

LAURA: Oh, you’re not an earth elemental anymore.

MARISHA: Are you remodeling?

LAURA: That’s too bad.

SAM: I didn’t intend to, but Grog has forgotten that I have a whole training ground downstairs that he could’ve used. Grog, if you need to hit something, someone, I can give you a few of the servants.

TRAVIS: Would you?

SAM: Sure, I’ve got like a hundred of them.

TRAVIS: How many?

SAM: You guys don’t mind, do you?

LAURA: Wait, do they feel pain?

MATT: They all turn to you and kinda go.

TRAVIS: How many can I have?

SAM: Have a dozen. Baker’s dozen.

TRAVIS: I go into the next room.

TALIESIN: A dozen bakers.

TRAVIS: With the dozen servants.

LAURA: Go downstairs, Grog!

TRAVIS: What if a change happens, don’t you wanna be there?

LAURA: All right, yeah.

LIAM: Scanlan, does your house unbreak itself if Grog breaks it, you know, if it goes away, it poofs and it comes back, is all his damage there or does it–

TRAVIS: Please. Grog always leaves his mark.

SAM: The damage, I believe, I’ve never seen damage this bad in our place before, but. I believe it will reset. It goes back to normal at the end.

MATT: We’ll find out.

LAURA: We haven’t looked at the spa since we destroyed it.

SAM: I haven’t been down to the spa in a while.

TRAVIS: I pick up one of the servants by the head and I try and crush his head.

LAURA: Oh, no!

MATT: Your fingers pass through its spectral form. There’s no actual–

TRAVIS: Make yourself grabbable.

SAM: You have to try harder, Grog.

MATT: Passes through again.

TRAVIS: Fix this. You fix this now. I will break more stuff.

SAM: I thought that would work, honestly.

TALIESIN: Is Keyleth still covered in goop?

TRAVIS: I punched the cow before.

LAURA: You did punch a cow.

MARISHA: I kinda fwooshed it off.

TALIESIN: Do you have any left on you?

LIAM: Grog, he doesn’t want you to know this, he told me this the last time you were here, you actually have to do that 33 times before it takes hold, so just keep going.

TRAVIS: I grab again. I grab again. I grab again. I grab again.

MATT: As you keep going, you’re not even sure quite what a 33 is, but you just keep going. The servant stands there, its kind of loosely formless face, other than you can see eyes, a nose, and a mouth, but the features are very plain and translucent, just stay wide and staring straight at you.

TRAVIS: Fine, fine. Bring me a cow.

LAURA: Ohh.

SAM: We usually have one cow.

MATT: The servants vanish and come back, you hear a familiar (dinging).

LAURA: No, I hated it when you punched the cow!

TRAVIS: No, no, no.

TALIESIN: I’m going back to my room.

TRAVIS: It’s time to ring this bell.

LAURA: No.

TRAVIS: I beat the shit out of the cow.

(All groan.)

LAURA: That is awful. I leave, I can’t watch, I go and look for chicken.

SAM: Before you beat this poor senseless cow–

TRAVIS: It’s a purple, like, ethereal cow.

MATT: Yeah.

LAURA: It’s still a cow, it’s still a cow, don’t.

TRAVIS: I’m gonna rocky ribs the shit out of this cow.

LIAM: Street Fighter it?

MATT: Bonus round. You take the next half an hour, beating the non-living crap out of this spectral cow, which, every impact has a sound hit. Does not seem to react in pain as much as (distressed mooing). There’s no physical damage seen upon its form, it just gets knocked around.

LAURA: That’s good.

SAM: I’ve got an idea. I can fix this, Grog, I want you to be a satisfied customer. Let’s go downstairs.

TRAVIS: Okay.

SAM: Okay. I take him downstairs.

MATT: All right.

SAM: I say, you’re gonna punch me and keep punching me as long as you can. All right?

TRAVIS: Are you sure?

SAM: And I transform into a triceratops.

LAURA: Awesome.

MARISHA: I go downstairs to watch.

TRAVIS: Is this my day-birth or something?

SAM: Birthday. I mean, (growls)

MATT: Yes, as you hear the growling creature you’ve never seen before in your life, horns protruding from the front of its bony, armored headpiece, its scaled armored body standing before you, massive, snorting, you just start punching the crap out of it.

TRAVIS: Yeah. Rage-punching.

(All singing Jurassic Park theme.)

SAM: I’m gonna fight back a little.

MATT: A little bit? All right. You guys do begin to scrap back and forth for the next ten minutes. 'Cause it takes ten minutes of solid punching and missing for Grog to eventually whittle your triceratops hitpoints down to zero. However, in the process, you do manage to get a bit gored, suffering a total of nine points of piercing damage throughout the entirety of this, just little scrapes and scratches, the occasional puncture wound, but eventually you get one solid crack with the gauntlets across his face, and the triceratops form shifts back down to a tiny little Scanlan Shorthalt.

LAURA: Don’t hit him, don’t hit him!

SAM: Wait, wait, did it work? Are your gauntlets better or whatever you’re trying to do?

TRAVIS: Do I feel anything?

MATT: Perception check.

LAURA: You need to rest so you can perceive things better. Oh.

TALIESIN: Can you roll lower?

TRAVIS: I could. There’s one number lower.

(All laugh.)

MATT: No seeming change whatsoever. Although no scarring. The good thing about the gauntlets is that they’re powerful enough where all those impacts don’t appear to have scratched or dented the surface.

TRAVIS: No.

SAM: Am I okay?

MATT: You’re a little sore. That last hit did carry over a little bit, the form didn’t absorb the entirety of the blow. You did come back with, uh. Four points of bludgeoning damage to your chin, so you’re, you know, a little bit of blood on the corner of your lip that you can taste, and your jaw is a little sore on the right side.

TALIESIN: Just for fun while everything’s going on, I’m running two passive experiments in my lab while I’m working on the shoes.

MATT: Sure.

MARISHA: Oh, and I help him finish the shoes by helping druidcraft them.

TALIESIN: I’m leaving some of the muck on some chicken that I took from the kitchen to see if it has any effect on flesh after a long exposure.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: And then I’m distilling some to see if I can even identify anything in there or anything weird.

MATT: All right. So what are you guys doing now?

TRAVIS: Being disappointed.

TALIESIN: Do you have to roll for that?

MATT: Disadvantage.

LAURA: Natural 20.

(All laugh.)

LAURA: I was saying it, but it really happened!

TALIESIN: Metaphor! Metaphor!

SAM: You know what, Grog, you could, it might make you feel better if you repaid the favor. I’ve been meaning to try to upgrade Mythcarver.

TRAVIS: Yeah, come get it. Come get it.

SAM: All right, I’m gonna do a stab. I’m gonna sing a note and see if this does anything to Mythcarver. I’ll just go (sings a note) and I’ll try and jam it through his arm.

MATT: Okay, you hit up a scale of notes, and one note resonates with the blade, and the harmonic resonance kind of causes it to shake ever so slightly as it kind of amplifies the sound. Go ahead and roll an attack.

LAURA: Oh my god.

SAM: 18 plus nine.

MATT: That definitely hits. Go ahead and roll damage.

SAM: Uh, not much. 1d8. Three, six, plus one… ooh, nine!

MATT: Nine points of damage to you, Grog, as the blade kinda sinks about four inches through one of your pectoral muscles.

TRAVIS: (grunts)

SAM: And I will sing as I withdraw it as well.

(sings a note)

MATT: You pull it out and the blade almost vibrates as it does, it scatters the blood off of its surface as you withdraw it from the wound.

SAM: Do I notice any change in the weapon?

MATT: It is bloodless.

SAM: Damn it.

MATT: No noticeable change.

TRAVIS: Nothing?

MATT: Nothing.

TRAVIS: You’re only gonna do it once?

SAM: But it hurts you!

TRAVIS: Nah. Do one more, but like, angry-sing.

SAM: All right. All right, one more time. I’ll do some like Black Sabbathy sort of (heavy metal screaming).

MATT: (laughs) Go for it.

SAM: All right.

MATT: Take advantage on this one because of your intense singing.

SAM: 18 plus nine.

MATT: All right, go ahead and roll damage.

LAURA: Oh my god.

SAM: Ooh, yeah, that’s better.

SAM and TALIESIN: Ooh!

SAM: 15.

MATT: Shnk! Other pectoral muscle now.

TRAVIS: (yelps)

MATT: A matching wound, this one kind of, (yelps), tickles you a little as it goes a little deeper and kinda tickles the outside of a lung.

SAM: All right. I withdraw. And any change?

MATT: As you withdraw, it kind of rings with the pullback, blood scattered, blade is clean, no noticeable change.

SAM: Ah, damn it. All right, forget it.

TRAVIS: These things don’t work.

SAM: I know, these suck.

TRAVIS: What are we doing wrong?

SAM: I don’t know. Wish there was a manual.

TRAVIS: Have we looked for instructions? Is there writing on the Titanstone Knuckles?

MATT: There are various carvings on it.

TRAVIS: Carvings.

SAM: Anything on mine?

MATT: There are runes around the base of it. What languages do you know?

SAM: Nothing. I know Common and Gnome.

MATT: Yeah, you don’t recognize it.

LAURA: I’m gonna go up to Grog and cast Cure Wounds at third level.

MATT: Okay, go for it, you can roll that up.

LAURA: Ten whole points of healing.

TRAVIS: Thanks, man.

MARISHA: I also go ahead and cure myself up.

MATT: Okay. All right.

SAM: We’re about to take a rest.

MARISHA: Eh.

MATT: What else do you guys want to do?

TRAVIS: I’m gonna long rest now.

TALIESIN: Long rest, eat some chicken.

MARISHA: Wait, do we have any vague plan, wait, we plan at dawn?

LAURA: We’ll plan tomorrow morning.

MARISHA: We’ll plan at dawn.

TRAVIS: We’ll plan at dawn.

LAURA: I wanna go upstairs and just open the door and keep an eye out of it for just a little bit and see what I see out the doorway.

MATT: Okay. Make a perception check.

LAURA: Oh, come on! Oh, um. That would be a 15.

MATT: 15. All right. How much time do you spend out there?

LAURA: Well, at the door?

MATT: Yeah.

LAURA: How much time can I spend and still get a good rest?

MATT: Well, I mean, you need an eight-hour rest for a full night’s rest, so it depends how much time you want to push off until you begin taking your rest.

LAURA: Oh, right. Well, how about a couple hours?

MATT: Okay. First hour, seemingly no real change. Second hour, go ahead and make another perception check.

LAURA: 17.

MATT: 17. You do notice a little ways off, some of the tree brush shifts a little bit, and then you see what looks to be a few trees kind of (fwoosh).

LAURA: Disappear?

MATT: Seemingly there’s now a hole in the canopy where once was straight canopy.

TRAVIS: What do you think that is?

LAURA: I dunno.

TRAVIS: Like a giant werewolf maybe?

LAURA: A giant werewolf eating an entire tree?

TRAVIS: Tree’s not missing.

LAURA: The tree, like, disappeared?

MATT: There is now a hole in the canopy where there was not previously, seemingly the treetops that filled that space have kind of moved out of the way.

MARISHA: They go straight down?

LAURA: Oh, I bet something was sitting in the tree maybe and was keeping still. That could be it. Can I look down underneath us and see if the trees are kind of staying put where we are?

MATT: Yeah, and glancing about, nothing is really moving in your vicinity, and the area, the part of the canopy that is now missing, is a pretty large area.

LAURA: It seems bigger than a creature would be.

MATT: It would probably have been the sudden removal or shift of multiple trees to leave that opening in the canopy.

TALIESIN: All right.

LAURA: Holy moly.

TALIESIN: All right.

MARISHA: Maybe something has trees on its back and moves.

LAURA: Wow, maybe the hag can just move her hut magically whenever she wants. Do you think that’s possible?

MARISHA: I don’t know, maybe.

LAURA: But the big scary tree, that’s staying still.

MATT: Yeah.

MARISHA: Was it coming from that direction?

MATT: Yeah, it’s still in its place.

LAURA: What direction was it coming from?

MATT: Actually, it would be kind of southwest from where you are now.

MARISHA: So the direction we came from.

MATT: No, you came southeast, not the direction where you came from, it’s still maybe a quarter-mile to a half-mile from where you currently are, so it’s not on your path per se.

TRAVIS: Can I roll some hit dice to heal up?

LAURA: All right. Shit.

MATT: Well, for a full night’s rest you’re fully healed.

LAURA: I guess I shut the door. That’s creepy.

MATT: All right. You close the door.

LAURA: I don’t know who I would talk to about that. Can I go find Keyleth, are you asleep yet?

MARISHA: No. I don’t think so. I’ve been helping Percy with his shoes.

TALIESIN: Yeah, we’re in my room. Making shoes.

MATT: Okay. Shoes are finished now.

LAURA: Oh. Okay. So you guys are together?

MARISHA: Just finished making shoes.

LAURA: Oh, look at those beautiful shoes. They’re lovely.

MARISHA: Yeah, they might work.

TALIESIN: They’re not, but thank you.

MATT: They’re pretty rough. They’re pretty rough.

LAURA: No, no, those look great.

MARISHA: Thank you.

TALIESIN: Rustic. Very rustic.

MARISHA: Thank you. I’m proud of them, Percy.

TALIESIN: I’m proud too.

TRAVIS: Your shoes suck.

TALIESIN: You’re not here.

MATT: He did pop in briefly to just tell you that.

LAURA: (Grog voice) Those shoes suck.

MATT: And closes the door.

SAM: He did that to everybody’s room, just in case.

MATT: To cover all his bases.

SAM: Hey!

MATT: Perfect.

LAURA: Can I sit down?

MARISHA: You were supposed to be a bootmaker. You’re super-judgey.

LAURA: Oh, this is true.

TALIESIN: You were a bootmaker, that’s very true.

MATT: You did start making your own boots, yeah.

LAURA: That was your very first–

TRAVIS: You didn’t ask me to make the boots.

LAURA: Can I sit down and start playing with the shoes? And, um, ask, Keyleth? Do you know of anything that would cause entire trees to vanish?

MARISHA: How do you mean, vanish?

LAURA: Well, I was staring at the door, and all of a sudden, around a space, about three trees just disappeared.

MARISHA: Like something really large passed in front of it?

LAURA: No, like they dropped, and there’s a hole in the canopy.

TALIESIN: Huh.

MARISHA: That’s different.

TALIESIN: That’s interesting.

LAURA: Do you know of anything that would cause that?

TRAVIS: In the Feywild?

MARISHA: Do I know of anything that would cause that? Can I roll a nature check or something?

MATT: Roll a nature check.

MARISHA: Don’t fucking fail me.

LAURA: Would we have learned anything about that in our studies?

MARISHA: (yells wordlessly)

SAM: Wow, those dice.

LAURA: Maybe just don’t use them anymore.

TRAVIS: Don’t know who you pissed off…

MARISHA: 14.

MATT: 14.

LAURA: They’re so nice and– maybe just put them on display! Maybe put them in a really pretty glass case.

MATT: No. Make 'em work for you. Make 'em work for you. You paid for that shit.

LAURA: Turn 'em into jewelry?

MATT: I mean, there are a number of things that could’ve done it, whether it be lumbering, people chopping down trees takes them down. Creatures that are large can push over trees. Trees that are dying and rotting and eventually fall over on their own.

LAURA: Did it look like they dropped down, though? Or did it look like they dropped over?

MATT: It’s hard to know from this perspective. You just saw them kind of fall out of the canopy, so you’re not sure if it was at an angle or straight down or what.

MARISHA: That could be so many things.

LAURA: Yeah.

MARISHA: It’s hard to say.

TALIESIN: At this point, can I tell anything about the muck from just boiling it to separate components? Trying to just see what’s in there. I’m assuming it’s probably just death-paste, it’s just rot.

MATT: It looks to be just congealed decayed matter. It does not have any properties that you can tell on a chemical level at least that stand out.

TALIESIN: But it is decayed matter.

MATT: It is various types of decayed matter, organic matter.

TALIESIN: The tree is producing it.

LAURA: So it is like oil.

TALIESIN: Well, here’s my question.

MARISHA: It’s producing a lot of it, too. Way more than it should.

TALIESIN: What do trees need to live?

TRAVIS: Grass.

SAM: Sunlight and water.

LAURA: Sunlight and water.

MARISHA: And a little bit of minerals and dirt.

TALIESIN: Where is the sunlight?

LAURA: Not here.

TALIESIN: And the tree’s alive.

MARISHA: Well, we’re also in the Feywild.

LAURA: Might not need the same thing.

MARISHA: Might not need the same thing.

TALIESIN: Well, it’s got to eat something. This is what it’s producing, and it’s got to eat something.

LAURA: Maybe it eats living creatures?

TALIESIN: Maybe it eats trees.

LIAM: So Percival, would you imagine that the science of the Feywild, I don’t know what that phrase means, would it be the same as our own world? Maybe it follows different rules.

TALIESIN: It probably does, but at the same time, you don’t get something from nothing. And… life needs things to live.

SAM: That’s so poetic.

TALIESIN: You don’t get life from nothing. A little iffy.

LAURA: And we did see those branches moving like actual limbs on a being as opposed to branches on a tree.

MARISHA: Well, I mean, nothing here has really been natural.

LAURA: It could be like a venus flytrap.

TALIESIN: It’s just a hypothesis, but what if the tree’s carnivorous. Or omnivorous.

LAURA: I think that’s a very viable option.

MARISHA: So you think maybe it’s the tree that ate that other group of trees?

LAURA: Possibly.

TALIESIN: It’s very big.

MARISHA: It’s a cannibal tree?

TALIESIN: It might be a cannibal tree.

MARISHA: It’s eating its own kind?

TRAVIS: I mean, the sphinx did say that the bow is the heart of a cancerous tree, I think if we’re expecting to not find the tree, we’re stupid.

MARISHA: Does Fenthras mean anything? Fenthras doesn’t mean anything, right?

TRAVIS: I am the wrong one to ask.

LAURA: Fenthras, is that elven?

MATT: Fenthras is elven.

MARISHA: Is that a name?

MATT: There is no direct translation to it, per se, but its name has hints or at least bases of the ancient elven words for protector and growth.

TALIESIN: Interesting.

MARISHA: Protector and growth.

TRAVIS: Why don’t we poison the tree?

LAURA: I think it’s already poisoned.

TALIESIN: How do you poison a poisoned tree?

LAURA: Give it sunlight.

TALIESIN: Sunlight is definitely something you should put in your arsenal. Whatever it’s not used to being exposed to.

LAURA: Sunlight and water. Fresh water.

TALIESIN: I don’t think rot is going to be how we kill this thing. I think it’s not going to be like the crocodile.

TRAVIS: Abba music.

LAURA: (laughs) Abba music.

MARISHA: No, it seems–

TALIESIN: It needs purification.

SAM: Don’t worry, Pike can… oh.

TRAVIS: I also have poison.

SAM: Oh, okay.

TALIESIN: I think it might just laugh poison off.

TRAVIS: Oh.

TALIESIN: I don’t know.

TRAVIS: What about honey?

TALIESIN: Nothing laughs honey off.

LAURA: You have honey? Can you make honey in your–

TALIESIN: Can you make honey in that jar?

LIAM: Pull out the magic jug, yeah.

LAURA: You can make fresh water in that jug, though, can’t you?

TRAVIS: I got honey for you.

TALIESIN: You’ve got very little brain, don’t you?

MARISHA: Make some maple syrup?

SAM: How about holy water?

TRAVIS: No.

LAURA: Maybe? I don’t know.

TRAVIS: I mean, I can make some water if you wanna bless it.

SAM: No.

TALIESIN: That’s not what we’re hoping for.

MARISHA: I mean, when I was in my earth elemental form, I got up underneath the tree, I mean, I feel like if we needed to, I can get inside of it.

TRAVIS: (laughs) By yourself?

LAURA: I think that could be a very scary prospect.

TRAVIS: Let me tell you a tale of two people that went inside a dragon.

LIAM: Worked out.

MARISHA: Yeah, they’re still sitting here today. It’s fine.

TALIESIN: I was about to say, I don’t think it’s much of a cautionary tale, really.

MARISHA: No. If anything, it’s a terrible, terrible influence.

TALIESIN: Yes. I think that’s definitely, I think light, I think electricity.

MARISHA: Well, it’s not short on water, that’s for sure.

TALIESIN: There is water in the, was there groundwater of some kind?

MARISHA: I mean, it was sludgy enough. Was there groundwater?

MATT: I mean, there were pockets or some bit of groundwater in there, but a lot of the dense pockets you found were just deeply seated pockets of that sludge-like material that seems to be produced or put out by the nearby roots.

MARISHA: Right.

LAURA: When you talked to the trees around you, did it seem like they were actually alive, or was it all dead forest that we’ve been traveling through?

MARISHA: When I communed with nature?

LAURA: Yeah.

MARISHA: Everything was alive everywhere. That’s what, the rules here haven’t really–

SAM: Have you been talking to any of the trees around here? Right around here?

MARISHA: Yeah, I can. I can.

LAURA: Maybe before we sleep. Can you talk to the nature?

MARISHA: I can.

TALIESIN: I’ll watch this.

MARISHA: Do we have any questions that I might want to figure out before I–

SAM: Is the big tree eating you all?

LAURA: Are you friends with the big tree? How can we help?

TALIESIN: Can we cure you?

MARISHA: Cure the tree, is the tree eating other things, can we cure the tree…

SAM: Is that a tree?

MARISHA: Is that even a tree?

LAURA: Oh, what if it’s a big scary creature, not actually a tree?

TRAVIS: Can we hurt the tree?

LIAM: Does the tree have a weakness?

LAURA: Yeah.

MARISHA: I’ll maybe try and figure out… okay, all right. I’m gonna go step outside.

LAURA: Do you want to hang out on the broom so you don’t actually step–

TRAVIS: You’re just giving the broom away now.

LAURA: Well, I just don’t want anybody to actually stand on a tree for very long.

TRAVIS: Just saying.

MARISHA: I have to be connected with the ground, I think.

TALIESIN: Tie a rope around her this time.

LAURA: Right.

MARISHA: Okay, yeah, tie a rope around me. And I jump back in the mud.

MATT: You land (splash), close to knee-deep in the actual muck below you.

MARISHA: I’m gonna kind of lay back into it.

LAURA: Oh, jeez!

SAM: Ooh, like American Beauty?

MARISHA: Sensory deprivation tank-style.

LAURA: I just send things down onto her.

SAM: Chicken?

MATT: As you lay there, you slowly sink into it, until you guys just see the outside of Keyleth’s face emerge, some of her horned crown sticking out of the muck. A little bit of her chest and her knees and some of the hands emerging, the rest of her is submerged entirely in this muck.

TRAVIS: Sweet.

MATT: You close your eyes and begin reciting the incantation of the spell. You begin to worry as she begins to sink further in, but as she finishes the incantation she stops sinking and it brings her to the surface halfway and keeps her at this balance point there.

LAURA: We’re just staring out the door down at her.

TALIESIN: Holding a rope.

MATT: Suddenly your consciousness kind of extends into all the nearby, and it’s rush because there’s just life all around you, life itself is dark, it’s twisted, but it is living. What do you wish to ask of the nearby essence?

MARISHA: Um, okay. Can I figure out what is feeding the tree, what the tree, if the tree is consuming things around it, what is fueling the tree?

MATT: The response?

MARISHA: I sense a lot coming out from the tree, that’s clear, can I sense an energy going in towards the tree?

MATT: Well, your question is, what is feeding the tree? You have to ask a question.

MARISHA: What is fueling the tree, yes.

MATT: Sondur.

SAM: Sondur?

LAURA: We aren’t listening to this.

MARISHA: Sondur.

TRAVIS: I love having a character who can’t read. No pressure.

MATT: Sondur is the only response you get.

MARISHA: What is the tree’s weakness?

SAM: Poovah.

(All laugh.)

SAM: Shamalaka.

TALIESIN: Terry.

LAURA: (laughs) Terry.

MATT: You get no response, it seems like the question doesn’t take hold in the connection, there is no answer to that question. It doesn’t consume the question asked as part of the incantation.

LAURA: Remember, we asked if it was an actual tree, if it’s an actual tree.

SAM: Has it been eating you?

LAURA: (whispers) Who is Sondur?

MARISHA: Who is Sondur? That’s actually, I should’ve thought about that, that’s a good one.

MATT: It has to relate to the area, terrain, bodies of water, actual information about individuals? The living essence of the forest would not probably know that.

MARISHA: Okay. Then can I ask the living fauna around me if this tree is sucking life force from them? Is the tree in the middle hurting the plants all around, like for example–

MATT: The answer is yes.

MARISHA: Is that all I got?

MATT: That’s your two questions. You asked one that wasn’t effectual, and thus the incantation did not consider it utilized.

SAM: Is it a tree?

MATT: One more question.

MARISHA: Is the cancerous tree more than just a tree?

SAM: Good question.

MATT: Yes.

SAM: Yes.

MARISHA: Sure, that probably… sure.

TALIESIN: We got a name.

MATT: And with that, suddenly, you feel the incantation break its hold with the nearby life sources, you begin to sink once again.

LAURA: (gasps) Pull her out, pull her out.

MATT: As you guys pull up as you reach up and grab it, pulling her free from the swampy morass, and carry her back up to the entrance of the mansion.

SAM: What did he say?

MARISHA: Sondur.

SAM: Sondur.

LAURA: What do you mean, Sondur?

MARISHA: Sondur, that’s…

LAURA: Is that a band, what is it?

SAM: Flight of the Sondurs?

MARISHA: (laughs) Flight of the Sondurs.

TRAVIS: Is that like an elven word?

LAURA: Is it an elven word?

MARISHA: Is it an elven word?

LAURA: That we’ve heard?

SAM: Do any of us recognize the word?

MATT: None of you recognize the word, but it does sound like a name with elvish background or heritage, or at least some sort of ancient elvish roots to the name structure. It doesn’t have specific meaning, but there are names you’ve heard of people of elven lineage that are plays on a similar sound.

LAURA: Does it sound… I mean, what would those names mean?

MATT: Well, I mean, the one that’s closest to you is your father’s, which is Syldor.

LAURA: Right, and he’s a dick, so the tree probably is too.

SAM: Sondur, Syldor, they’re brothers.

MATT: Totally.

SAM: Isn’t that how it works?

LAURA: That is how it works. Vex and Vax.

MARISHA: Percy.

TALIESIN: Yes?

MARISHA: You’ve done a lot of reading of the elven culture. Do you know anything about a Sondur?

MATT: You have no idea.

TALIESIN: I have no idea. I’m racking my brain and wishing I had access to a library.

LAURA: Do you have a library here?

SAM: Do I?

MATT: Well, you can have one apparate within the mansion, if you wish.

SAM: With books?

MATT: Yeah.

SAM: Of course I have a library! It’s in my personal chambers where I do all of my studying.

TRAVIS: Keyleth.

LAURA: Oh. We have to go to your actual bedroom?

TALIESIN: It’s all pornography. Just the entire library is like–

SAM: Only in the back.

TALIESIN: It’s like Beauty and the Beast, it’s just pornography.

MARISHA: Yes, Grog?

TRAVIS: Did you ask if the tree was just one thing?

MARISHA: It didn’t appear to be one thing. Because it was harming the plant life around it. So it’s not necessarily all connected, it seems. But it is also definitely not just a tree.

TRAVIS: What if we, like, salt the earth? That’s an expression.

TALIESIN: It’s more than an expression, it’s legitimately something you do. Unfortunately, you need salt for that.

LAURA: Do we have salt? Do we have lots of salt here in the mansion, Scanlan?

SAM: It’s all over the floor of the kitchen.

LAURA: Oh, but we can’t bring it out, we can’t bring it out.

TRAVIS: I have 12 gallons of salt water.

MARISHA: Didn’t you get a bunch of salt when you jumped into the–

LAURA: I don’t know if 12 gallons is enough to kill a tree.

MARISHA: –when you did the cannonball contest?

TALIESIN: That wasn’t salt.

TRAVIS: I’ve heard them say it before, they’re like, oh, you are the salt of the earth.

TALIESIN: That wasn’t salt, that was something else, and I used it all for the cannonball.

SAM: So what’s our plan? Do we attack this thing with brute force? How do we corrupt the ground? You can turn the ground to stone, will that help anything? Right?

TRAVIS: What’s on the other side of this tree? It’s huge, it’s a hundred feet.

TALIESIN: Inside the tree is the bow. I think if we remove the bow, I think if we find the bow inside the tree, I think that’s how–

SAM: That’s a lot of tree to search, it could be way up, it could be in a branch.

LIAM: What is the legend, at the heart of this tree?

TALIESIN: The heart of this tree. I think we go in.

TRAVIS: It used to be a titan that had its heart broken or something.

LIAM: Probably inside.

LAURA: Yeah, what if the–

SAM: It says it now acts as the heart to a cancerous tree corrupting the verdant land.

TALIESIN: If I were the heart of a tree, I’d be in the center.

MARISHA: It was a bow that felled the titans.

LAURA: I feel like we probably should’ve done some research on Fenthras before we came out here.

SAM: We can go to my library.

LAURA: Look in your library, I am following you to your library.

TALIESIN: I’m curious to see the library, I just want to see what a giant disaster this is.

MATT: You did receive a little information about it from Allura, from her research as well.

LAURA: Yes, that’s right, that’s right!

MATT: Did you write that down?

SAM: Maybe?

LAURA: Yeah, but I listened to her real hard when she was talking.

SAM: Marisha writes down everything.

MARISHA: I do, it’s just… where.

SAM: The bigger question is how does she find it.

MARISHA: How do I find it, exactly. When did we talk to her?

MATT: Last time you were in Whitestone, right before you left for the actual Feywild.

LAURA: Aw man, I don’t think I wrote it down, I think I was just listening.

MARISHA: All right, Feywild, hang on.

SAM: I know that Simon’s mom is Elwen.

MATT: There you go. See? Perfect. That was pre-stream.

SAM: I know that…

LAURA: Fenthras! No, that’s all I wrote.

MATT: (laughs) You were so excited for a second. So excited.

LAURA: I was so excited 'cause I saw it written down, but no, I didn’t write.

MATT: No.

LAURA: I’m sorry.

TRAVIS: You’re gonna make me check my notes?

LAURA: I didn’t write it down. Dammit. Balls. But I have a real good–

SAM: I know that there’s a hatmaker named Deirdre somewhere in the world.

MATT: Guys. You guys.

LIAM: Would a really successful history check help Vex remember what the fuck she was told?

MATT: (laughs) Go ahead and make a history check.

LAURA: Okay, okay, okay.

TRAVIS: I’ve got vegemite written down.

TALIESIN: I think that’s a shopping list.

MARISHA: God, I was clearly writing incredibly fast.

LAURA: Shit history.

TALIESIN: Yeah.

SAM: Did you roll it?

LAURA: 17 is what I rolled.

SAM: Well, that’s something.

MATT: 17 is not too bad.

MARISHA: I have 'archfey, black heart’.

MATT: Yes.

LAURA: Okay, that jogged my memory a little bit, I sort of remember.

MATT: There you go.

MARISHA: He was an arch– yes, go ahead.

MATT: There was an archfey that existed here that was apparently the holder of Fenthras that was betrayed and his heart became corrupted and thus became the center of this corruption.

SAM: There you go.

MARISHA: So we can assume that the archfey is probably Sondur.

LAURA: Sondur.

MARISHA: And he’s probably still inside the tree, and he probably is not gonna let go of his bow.

LAURA: What exactly is an archfey?

MATT: An archfey, from your knowledge and experience, they’re very powerful fey creatures, some largely belonged to some of the leading courts in the Feywild, the Seelie and the Unseelie.

LIAM: Oberon.

LAURA: Oh.

MATT: Some unaffiliated. Like for instance, in Midsummer Night’s Dream, Titania and Oberon would totally be archfey.

LAURA: Archfey. Okay.

MATT: Very, very powerful and influential fey creatures that both have understanding and powers to bend the surrounding Feywild to their will.

MARISHA: And then he must have fought in what was known as the Calamity?

TRAVIS: Yes.

MATT: Well, the Calamity wasn’t against the titans, the Calamity, those were the final battles of the gods physically on Exandria before the Divergence in which they separated from all their creations for good.

MARISHA: Where does 'black heart’ come from? Why did I write that down?

MATT: His heart was corrupted? I don’t know why you wrote it down.

MARISHA: I wrote down 'black heart’.

TALIESIN: Seemed like a thing.

MARISHA: Seemed important.

MATT: Sure.

LAURA: Okay.

MARISHA: 'Cause he was corrupted. Okay.

SAM: So we’re fighting an archfey inside a tree.

LAURA: So we know how to fight the tree. Okay.

SAM: We gotta get the archfey out of the tree.

TALIESIN: We gotta get the archfey out of the tree.

MARISHA: So someone’s going into the tree.

LAURA: Maybe we can talk to it.

SAM: What’s its name again? Sorry.

MATT: Sondur.

SAM: Sondur.

MATT: Was the name you were given.

LAURA: Maybe if we call out to him, he’ll talk to us.

MARISHA: Maybe.

LIAM: Maybe if we put Shorthalt forward…

LAURA: You’re so charming.

TALIESIN: You are so charming.

SAM: Yeah, sure.

TALIESIN: And you have so much good advice.

TRAVIS: Do fey creatures live a long time?

SAM: Hey, Sondur, Sondur, give us your bow.

TRAVIS: What if he was betrayed by something in the Feywild, and we found that thing, whether it was a comrade or a–

LIAM: Well, that seems likely, but we’d have to turn over every stone in la-la land to find it.

LAURA: Or we have to talk to him and find out, and maybe…

TRAVIS: Yeah, and you can talk to trees.

MARISHA: I can. I can attempt to talk to the tree.

TALIESIN: After a rest, I’m going to sleep.

LIAM: Scanlan and Keyleth combo?

MARISHA: Huh?

LIAM: Scanlan and Keyleth duo to talk to the tree?

SAM: What are we asking the tree?

LAURA: In the morning.

SAM: Yeah, but what are we–

TRAVIS: Who betrayed it.

LAURA: We’re gonna talk to Sondur and see, you know, why are you acting this way?

LIAM: Yes, how can we help you, how can we fix what’s going on?

LAURA: Oh no, look at his face, he looks like that is a very bad idea.

MARISHA: (laughs) Why are you acting this way?

MATT: No, I’m just, I’m just enjoying you guys planning and plotting.

SAM: We’re just gonna say hey, Sondur, how can we help you?

LAURA: Yeah yeah yeah, like how can we help you? Why are you hurting?

MARISHA: Please give us your bow, yeah.

LAURA: No, no, don’t even bring up the bow right now, let’s just try to help him out.

MARISHA: So wait, are we here on a mission to cleanse the land? Is that what we’re posing as? We’re like missionaries?

LAURA: I mean, if we did cleanse the land, that would be a wonderful thing.

TALIESIN: That would be great.

MARISHA: It would be a wonderful thing.

TALIESIN: But we’re also getting the bow.

LAURA: The bow is a wonderful thing. I have a pretty fucking cool bow now, I don’t even know if this new one’s gonna be as cool. You don’t even know what Mythcarver does, Titanstone Knuckles aren’t advancing at all, who knows? Maybe this bow is shit and the whole point of this is so we can help people.

TALIESIN: I think it’ll give you wings so you can fly.

TRAVIS: Can’t we just say that we’re obsessed with the hundred-foot fucking moving tree in the middle of the Feywild?

LAURA: Maybe we just think it’s really cool.

TRAVIS: Yeah, we’ve come to talk to it, no bullshit.

SAM: We’re fanboys.

LAURA: Yeah.

TRAVIS: No.

LAURA: Yeah, like we’ve heard tale and it’s wonderful.

TRAVIS: We wanna know what’s up.

SAM: Great. That sounds like it’s gonna end well.

TRAVIS: Well, if he pulls any shit then we kill it.

SAM: Okay.

TALIESIN: I am going to sleep, there’s nothing that can be solved right now that cannot be solved over coffee and bacon.

LAURA: We don’t have bacon.

MARISHA: Just chicken and waffles.

TALIESIN: I will make bacon from chicken.

SAM: Chicken-skin bacon.

LAURA: Ooh. That actually sounds really good.

TALIESIN: That actually sounds really good.

LIAM: Tofurkey.

MATT: All right. You guys all taking your long rest?

(Various sounds of agreement.)

MATT: All right, you all–

LIAM: No, I’m going to knock on my sister’s door before she falls asleep.

MATT: All right.

LAURA: Oh shit, I’m pretty tired, what’s up?

LIAM: Hey, well, you know, we don’t get a lot of time to talk alone because everything is so fucked up, but you seemed really on-edge. More than normal, when we lived there before. You know what I’m talking about.

LAURA: Oh, yeah.

LIAM: Are you all right?

LAURA: Um. Yes? I don’t know. It’s the weirdest thing, I never realized how much it affected me until we actually were faced with it again. It was good, standing in front of him with everyone else, wasn’t it?

LIAM: I’ve… he’s not a concern for me anymore. I don’t think fondly back on it, we have bigger things on our plates, but I do care how he affects you, and there is no question how much it affected you when Percival made his offer in that room, and I was a little surprised. And I’m not trying to start an argument or anything like that, I know why he did it, of course. And every fairy within a thousand miles of that room could see how deeply it affected you, and it surprised me, because… Look, if that makes you happy, it is to be embraced, and I’m certainly in support of anything that gives our father heartburn, but… I’m sorry, his offer, in your brother’s eyes, is a bit like gilding a lily or framing a sunset. You have always been the coolest person I have known, ever, in my life. And you still are. You’re already perfect, at least in your brother’s eyes. And I guess I just hope you believe in you as much as I do, because it’s quite a bit.

LAURA: Thank you. I mean, I can’t give back the title, that would be kind of shit.

LIAM: Well, you’re a countessa know, I understand, that’s what you are.

LAURA: Baroness, no, baroness, actually.

LIAM: All right.

LAURA: Just a little bit cooler than before. Just a little?

LIAM: Whatever floats your boat, Stubby, but, you know. Just don’t wuss out on me now.

LAURA: I won’t.

LIAM: All right? You’ve always been stronger than me, I need you to keep doing that.

LAURA: It’s all an act, dear.

LIAM: Bullshit. That’s it.

LAURA: I love you. Thank you.

LIAM: I love you too.

LAURA: Go get some sleep. Your feathers are all ruffled.

LIAM: All right.

MATT: All right, so as you separate and go find your own ways to rest, you guys find your way to your dreams for the evening, getting a full night’s rest, HP resolved to full, spells returned, and we’re gonna go ahead and take a break here, restroom break for a few minutes, we’ll see you guys back here in just a minute. Once again, thank you, Lootcrate, you guys are awesome.

ALL: Lootcrate!

MATT: All right, we’ll see you guys here in a few minutes.

BreakEdit

[break]

Part IIEdit

SAM: Lootcrate, lootcrate, lootcrate.

MATT: Welcome back, everyone. So, we had a quick break, you guys, coming to consciousness the next morning, freshly rested, the smell of some cooked chicken in the downstairs area and a little bit of chicken-skin bacon…

LAURA: Can I go knock on Percy’s door before we head downstairs, just really fast?

MATT: Yeah.

LAURA: Um. Percival?

TALIESIN: Yes, yes, good morning.

LAURA: Sorry. Good morning. I forgot you’re grumpy when you wake up.

TALIESIN: It’s all right.

LAURA: Look, Vax came and talked to me last night, and he actually reminded me of something that I forgot to say to you, which is: thank you. Seriously. We haven’t really had a moment to say anything, and…

TALIESIN: No.

LAURA: Really, what you did back in Syngorn was more than I ever expected, and honestly it’s-- I don’t know of any other time that somebody has stuck up for me quite as much, outside of Vax. So thank you.

TALIESIN: You’re welcome. And… it’s the lovely thing about a title, and I had one to give, is that it’s, when used appropriately and properly, it’s mostly there to remind you you don’t really need it.

LAURA: Right. Question, though?

TALIESIN: Yes?

LAURA: Because I sort of realized, being a baroness of Whitestone, that I literally owe my fealty and allegiance to… you.

TALIESIN: Yes.

LAURA: All right.

TALIESIN: Well, technically my sister, but yes.

LAURA: Okay.

TALIESIN: If that makes you feel a little better.

LAURA: Thank you, Grand Sire de Rolo, and if there’s anything you ever need in return, all you have to do is ask.

TALIESIN: Never do that again, that was very weird. It was really, it was… it was worth it to see the look on his face.

LAURA: It was quite wonderful.

TALIESIN: It was quite wonderful. No, and it worked out well, because technically speaking there’s only really about 15 foot square that’s actually standing that you technically have a baronry over.

LAURA: Oh.

TALIESIN: And at the moment it is currently a shrine to the Raven Queen, so that works out well.

LAURA: Oh, that’s what… so technically we gave it to Zahra, didn’t we?

TALIESIN: No, she’s just fixing it up for us.

LAURA: Okay, all right.

TALIESIN: We did not give it to her. It wasn’t mine to give. Just the title. You’re welcome, and… it doesn’t change anything.

LAURA: Good, that would be very strange, wouldn’t it?

TALIESIN: Yeah. Although I imagine you’re eventually going to become very insufferable, but yes.

LAURA: Only sometimes, dear.

TALIESIN: Oh, you have to be… there’s a thing. But we’ll get to that later. There is a thing, I forgot, there is a thing.

LAURA: Does it have to do with the Hunt?

TALIESIN: Yes, a thing, we’ll get to that, it’s really not important right now. That’s if we survive, that would be very important, but right now it’s not.

LAURA: Not… not a given.

TALIESIN: No.

LAURA: We might die today.

TALIESIN: We might.

LAURA: I’m gonna get some coffee.

TALIESIN: I think that’s an excellent idea. Let me join you.

MATT: You all eventually find your way down, breakfast served in a central dining table with no platters, no silverware.

LAURA: Thanks, Grog.

TRAVIS: It’s a mansion! We could eat somewhere else.

MATT: The meals are just placed literally on the table.

TRAVIS: Bare-bones. I like it.

SAM: All right, eat up, let’s go.

MATT: You finish your meal, and you guys prepared yourselves, what are you doing?

SAM: We go out into the world, right?

TRAVIS: Bum-rush the tree.

LAURA: Uh-uh.

TALIESIN: I have shoes for everybody.

SAM: Oh!

MARISHA: Yes.

SAM: Those are terrible shoes.

TALIESIN: They’re awful, I’m aware.

TRAVIS: We put the shoes on?

LIAM: What do they look like?

TALIESIN: We’re going to wear the shoes.

SAM: Yeah, describe them.

TALIESIN: They’re swamp shoes. They’re circular, they’re like large circles, and there’s like a base connected to them, and whole thing’s connected together with ropes.

MARISHA: Kind of like snowshoes but with more surface area.

TRAVIS: I’m only wearing that if it helps.

TALIESIN: It does. It will keep you from sinking into the muck. It will allow you to, you’ll have to walk very slowly, you can’t walk very quickly, and if things get hairy you can cut them off, they’re just wood and rope, they’re not that complicated.

MARISHA: Basically, wood paddles on our feet.

TALIESIN: Yes. Move like a giant frog.

MARISHA: Yeah.

TRAVIS: I put the giant frog-shoes on.

MATT: All right, you put them on. You guys exit the mansion?

LIAM: I set the Deathwalker’s Ward for necrotic damage.

MATT: Okay, necrotic damage is set. Okay. As you guys emerge–

LAURA: Oh. Wait.

TALIESIN: You don’t need them, though. You’re the one person who doesn’t need them.

LAURA: How long does Protection Against Poison last? Oh, it’s only an hour, okay, so no, I don’t want to cast it yet.

MATT: Okay.

MARISHA: But you have that.

LAURA: I do.

MARISHA: I won’t take that.

SAM: Maybe now would be, we’re going straight to the tree, right?

MARISHA: Are we still doing our–

LAURA: Aren’t you going to try to talk to it?

TALIESIN: Talk to it, see what happens, and if everything goes terribly, we just retreat back to the mansion, it’s not going anywhere anytime soon.

SAM: Should any of us hide?

TALIESIN: I’m going to keep back in the treeline.

LAURA: I can only cast it on one person, though, Keyleth. I don’t have, I’m not as good with spells as you, so if you can do it to multiple people, it might be good.

MATT: All right.

LIAM: Do we have any fancy, um, fancy–

LAURA: (posh voice) Fancy?

LIAM: Crystal bowls for Keyleth to crush up and feed us from?

LAURA: What?

SAM: Crystal what?

LAURA: Oh, like a Fancy–

LIAM: Heroes’ Feast, yeah.

LAURA: Heroes’ Feast? I don’t know if we have–

LIAM: Never mind.

MATT: I don’t think you have one purchased and ready.

TALIESIN: I don’t think we have one.

LIAM: I don’t claim to understand anything.

MARISHA: We’d have to make that decision now, while I’m learning my spells at the top of the day.

TALIESIN: No, no.

SAM: Don’t do it.

LAURA: We should’ve done it last night if we were gonna do it.

MATT: Yeah.

TALIESIN: It’ll be fine.

LAURA: It’s gonna be fine, we’re all gonna die.

SAM: All right.

LAURA: How are you guys gonna go talk to him, are you just like walking to him?

TALIESIN: A tree is just a door that hasn’t been made yet, remember.

MARISHA: That is true. That is an old Druidish proverb.

TALIESIN: It’s an old Druidish one?

MARISHA: Yep.

TALIESIN: Thank you.

MATT: All right. So. You guys emerge from the mansion?

SAM: Yeah, anyone want to go stealth or anything?

LAURA: Yeah yeah yeah.

SAM: It’s just gonna be all of us presenting ourself?

LAURA: Maybe we’ll go stealth… well, can a tree see us? I dunno. Let’s go stealth.

MATT: All right.

LAURA: Why not? And you guys can go talk to it.

SAM: All right.

MATT: Roll stealth checks as you emerge from the mansion, up into the boughs of the tree where you left the exit.

TRAVIS: You don’t think we’re, like, perfectly on this tree’s radar? That going stealth is insulting?

MARISHA: I’m kinda wondering if the tree has a tremor-sense.

LAURA: Oh, that’s true. All right, all right, you’re right.

SAM: Don’t do stealth, I’ll present us all as a group.

LAURA: Okay.

MATT: All right. You emerge. Still the dusklight, that kind of warm purplish-orange perpetual sunset glow in the sky. The tree there remains. You glance out. That little pocket where the trees were is filled once more. The trees now stand, the pocket is now done.

LAURA: That’s where, that’s where the hole was! But it’s not a hole anymore!

MATT: Make a perception check as you’re looking.

LAURA: That’s good, that’s good. 29.

MATT: 29. About three-quarters of a mile further west from your current location, there is now a different opening in the canopy, similar size, but even further out that way.

LAURA: What the fuck? It’s further away. Trees fucking moved. At least it’s further away from us and not closer to us.

MARISHA: Wait, is it the same… maybe it is something big blocking it, with like an invisible field? I don’t know. I don’t know.

MATT: So. What’s the plan?

SAM: We have no plan. So let’s just walk right up. I take, me and Keyleth take tip of the spear, and we just walk right up to the base of the tree.

LAURA: I float on my broom.

MATT: Okay, so. What’s the marching order?

SAM: Scanlan and Keyleth first.

MATT: Scanlan and Keyleth at the front.

LAURA: Oh no, oh no.

MATT: Who’s after them?

TRAVIS: I’m in the middle.

MATT: All right, so Grog’s up next.

LAURA: Trinket’s behind Grog.

MATT: Trinket’s behind Grog, all righty. Percy? Vax? Are you guys holding up the rear?

TALIESIN: Yes.

MATT: And you’re on the broom above.

LAURA: I’m on the broom, yes.

MATT: All right, got it.

LIAM: I actually think I want to tail Grog.

MATT: All right.

LIAM: Thank you.

TALIESIN: I’ll take the rear, then.

MATT: All right, so Percy’s at the rear, Vax and Trinket are both right behind Grog as you guys push forward. You touch down in the swamp, the actual thickness of the morass, moving forward very slowly with the swamp shoes. Grog, you get two steps before they break under your weight.

TRAVIS: Good.

MARISHA: We tried.

TRAVIS: I take them off.

MATT: Okay. But the rest of you, it does help, you are not sinking. Your progress is very slow, slower than it was previously when you were already at half-speed, but you aren’t breaking the surface of the actual substance. It is sticky, and you have to pull it forth, and it is tension put on the ropes, but for the most part, most of you are light of foot, and it’s not a huge issue. Except for you. Trinket’s just up to his elbows, just (sloshing) through the water.

LAURA: Does he look miserable?

MATT: He’s not enjoying himself.

LAURA: Do you wanna go in the crystal? Okay.

MATT: And he just keeps pushing forward.

LIAM: All right, I’m scritching his ears while we walk.

LAURA: Thank you.

MATT: You push onward. It’s not too far of a distance, it takes you ten or fifteen minutes to reach the very base of the tree where you had previously scoped out. The large roots climb up ten, 12 feet before emerging from the base of this large tree. Maybe, at this point you can look at it now, taller than you thought at a distance. It’s roughly 80 to 100 feet in width and probably over 150 to 200 feet tall. It is just a thick, solid, giant tree.

LAURA: That is a huge-ass tree.

SAM: As we approach, I take a little muck and I’m going to draw like a little tree on my forehead and one on Keyleth’s forehead as well.

MARISHA: What are you drawing?

SAM: Just like a little mud tree on your forehead.

MARISHA: Oh, yeah.

LIAM: Not a penis at all.

LAURA: Oh, yeah.

MARISHA: How is my tree?

LAURA: Looks kind of like a dick.

MARISHA: Scanlan!

SAM: Don’t worry. It’s for a good cause.

MATT: You step up to the heavy roots there, and the mass of vines that are all clustered and matted together. What do you do?

TRAVIS: We fan out.

SAM: Just a little bit.

LAURA: Yeah, we kind of branch, we just spread out a little bit.

MATT: All right, so you guys spread out a little bit.

MARISHA: Are we trying to talk to it first?

LAURA: Yeah, yeah, talk to it. Be charming.

SAM: I call out to it. Saundor! Saundor, hear us! We are your devotees! We have come to pay homage and respect to you. We follow your ways and your teachings.

MARISHA: And I make myself to look like the tree-dick on my forehead.

SAM: We wear your mark on our heads to show respect. Please show us your power and grant us your blessings.

MATT: Long absence of sound following your statement. Couple of small vines as part of that knotted mess kind of twist tighter and then relax. Does not appear to be any sort of reaction beyond that.

MARISHA: I cast Speak with Plants.

SAM: Okay.

MATT: All right.

LAURA: Just repeat–

MARISHA: Are you waiting for me?

MATT: You imbue plants within 30 feet of you with limited sentience and animation, giving them the ability to communicate with you and to follow your simple commands.

MARISHA: Saundor. Can you hear me?

SAM: Question one.

MATT: There is no response.

MARISHA: I am Keyleth from the Air Ashari. Druids of the prime realm. Are you still present?

MATT: This low, cracking, creaking sound of heavy wood on wood-fall begins to slowly emerge in your head. It just says, “I am here.”

MARISHA: We would like to see your heart.

LAURA: What?

SAM: Wow. Straight to it.

LAURA: Just straight-up. Just right in.

SAM: Just straight to it. Just go straight for… I wanna spend the night with you. Just straight there.

MATT: There’s a pause. You hear, (snapping sounds), and you notice the vines, some are pulling and snapping while others begin to slowly pull apart. That giant mass of vines that are clustered between two of the large roots that merge with the tree? Begin to untangle and fall free, revealing what appears to be a slowly opening pathway into the tree itself. You now see what looks to be about four and a half feet tall and about three feet wide, a tunnel, like a crack in the bark itself, that disappears into darkness deeper into the tree.

LAURA: No.

MARISHA: Me and my fellow companions are coming in.

LAURA: No, this is so stupid.

SAM: Coming in?

TRAVIS: Yeah.

SAM: All right.

TRAVIS: Wait, how big is it?

MARISHA: I go in first.

SAM: Wait, you’re going in?

LAURA: What, you’re just going in?

SAM: Going with Kiki.

TALIESIN: Going in.

TRAVIS: You said four and a half feet…

MATT: Four and a half feet tall, about three feet wide.

LAURA: So we can all fit in.

MATT: Well, you’re gonna have to practically crawl to get in there, Grog.

TRAVIS: Not this guy.

LAURA: You can fit in there.

MATT: You can fit, but you’re gonna have to crawl.

MARISHA: Just army crawl.

LAURA: Can Trinket fit through?

LIAM: It’s gonna be a squeaker.

MATT: Trinket’s gonna have to get down and like–

SAM: Your Pokeball.

LAURA: I know, I can just put him in the crystal and then–

MATT: You can do that too, yeah.

LAURA: I’ll put him in the crystal.

MATT: Okay. Trinket into the Raven’s Slumber.

SAM: Do you want to stay outside?

LAURA: Grog, you can do it.

TRAVIS: Not normally.

LAURA: Turn your shoulders.

TALIESIN: (chicken noises)

LIAM: Could you pour some Crisco out of that magic jug of yours and lube up?

LAURA: Yeah, oil yourself up, real good.

MATT: Just Winnie the Pooh you through?

SAM: Mayonnaise. Mayonnaise is slippery. Butter.

LIAM: This is Sparta. Come on.

TRAVIS: I’m going in, I’m going in.

MATT: Oh, bother.

LAURA: Oh, bother.

MATT: I don’t know why he’s British suddenly. All right, so, marching order. Who’s going in first?

MARISHA: Me.

MATT: Keyleth.

SAM: And me second.

MATT: And Scanlan, who’s going in after them?

LIAM: I am.

LAURA: Then me, behind him.

MATT: Vax, Vex.

TALIESIN: Then me.

MATT: Percy. And then finally Grog.

LAURA: Grog!

MATT: All right.

MARISHA: Bringing up the rear this time, Grog.

MATT: So.

LIAM: Here comes the general.

MATT: As you begin to make your way into this entrance to the tree–

LAURA: Oh no. We are so dumb.

MATT: This scent catches you as soon as you step five, ten feet into the darkness.

LAURA: It smells like fart?

MATT: It’s metallic, iron-like. Sharp, acrid, uninviting. As you step inside and your hand touches the inside of the entranceway, Keyleth, as soon as your fingers make contact with the slick wood, there’s an image that flashes in your head.

LAURA: Oh, god.

SAM: The whispers, the whispers.

LAURA: Oh no.

SAM: Oh my gosh.

LAURA: Don’t hit that.

MARISHA: Watch the–

LAURA: That would be so bad.

SAM: Oh boy.

LAURA: I’m gonna smack his ass right now. Whack!

SAM: Ordinarily I would plug Lootcrate right here, but this is too tense.

MARISHA: Wait wait wait.

TALIESIN: Way too tense to talk about all the great things Lootcrate will send you every month.

SAM: Way too tense, yeah, I’m too nervous to remember the three-dollar-a-month discount that you would get by signing up–

TRAVIS: That’s Lootcrate.com/crates.

LAURA: No, it’s /criticalrole. And it’ll take you to crates.

TALIESIN: Crates will just show you everything they have.

MARISHA: We’re not alone.

SAM: What do you mean?

LAURA: What do you mean?

SAM: There’s creatures?

MARISHA: He’s watching us.

SAM: Who?

LAURA: Saundor.

MATT: As you’re saying this, your hand’s following the side, and it opens up again. You only have about five feet of walking before this tiny tunnel opens up into an interior chamber.

TRAVIS: Well, I hope he’s watching. We just crawled in his tree anus.

MATT: His tranus?

(All laugh.)

SAM: Ah, Matt.

LIAM: Bad DM.

MARISHA: Saundor. Is this you leading us straight to you?

MATT: Nothing.

TRAVIS: How about we hit the wall?

LAURA: No! We’re trapped in the tree.

SAM: I will, I’ll try one more time and just say, Saundor, we are… Saundorites, here to pay homage to you. Please, show yourself and make us feel your presence.

MATT: Are you guys still entering, or have you stopped?

LAURA: (sings) Oh, Saundor… (stops singing) We’re walking forward, we’re walking forward.

MATT: Because some of you are still outside of the tree.

TALIESIN: Still going in.

MATT: Okay. So you all eventually make your way inside this space.

MARISHA: I look at Scanlan and wipe the tree-dick off my forehead.

MATT: Okay, it’s pitch-black in here, by the way.

SAM: (whispering) It’s our sign!

MATT: Percy, you see nothing. The rest of you have some semblance of dark-vision here, so you can see, the interior here, it is wall-to-wall vines and thick, heavy roots. You are definitely on the inside of the tree, this portion of the giant hollow chamber. You can see it kind of lifts up. Entangled webs of these branches and smaller, long-dead trees jutting out inside, like actual smaller physical trees within the large tree. As you all enter, the little bit of light behind you, Grog? Begins to shrink, and you look over your shoulder as the entrance you came through slams closed and you are all left in darkness.

LAURA: We’re just stuck in a tree now.

TRAVIS: Well, he puckered up.

MATT: The smell gets stronger and stronger. At that point, as Grog, you kind of pull your way through, and you’re all standing shoulder-to-shoulder in this dark space, this one singular tree root that’s sticking up from the center in two different places. This thin, reedy voice begins to echo through, sourceless around you, that says, “I know you. The moment you touched my sickness, I knew you.” At this moment, small patches of fungal clusters begin to illuminate in the room. Areas of the vines and ground just spring to life, and this dull blue glow begins to fill the room with very, very low light. You can just make out shapes. You can see that the vines are just very slowly shifting around you. The walls are not still. That little bit of movement you’d occasionally catch on the outside of the tree, it is perpetual inside here. It is this constant churning mass of living tree. You look up, and you can see all the branches come and mat together into this conical ceiling, where a number of vines drip down and just hang, hundreds of them. You see the vines are slowly coalescing in the center of this upward kind of pinnacle. Slithering one into the next like a thousand slithering snakes. A voice comes out again. “Why do you come here, children of the lost? What purpose brings you to Saundor’s madness and pain?”

LAURA: We’ve come to help you.

MATT: A mass in the ceiling separates ever so slightly, and you watch as two feet descend from this strange apex. You now see the feet are a full creature, held aloft by connected tendrils of black plant matter, emanating from the back and shoulders, as it slowly descends from the ceiling. A thin, elf-like individual, their body comprised of hundreds of small plants, leaves, and thorns. The only semblance of flesh you see across the face is the nose, the eyes, and the mouth. The rest of it just slowly giving way to a similar nest of plant-like vines that completely fill the exterior of this room. It slowly touches down, its feet hitting the ground, and as it does, the tendrils all detach and withdraw back into the ceiling, leaving it there, arms to its side, its head down. Its face comes up, its eyes immediately open with this bright yellow glow that kind of bathes you. You can see the form, the edges of all of your allies now, even being framed by this light that’s just pouring forth from its face.

LAURA: I bow.

LIAM: Follow suit.

SAM: Sure, I’ll bow as well.

MATT: You all bow before this creature. Do you bow? All right.

MARISHA: I stand as well.

MATT: All right. “You all come here, but one of you is the reason.” It looks straight towards you. The light focuses and narrows from his eyes. “You. Sweet, broken Vex'ahlia. Unwanted daughter, unproven ally. Selfish and cruel. You drive those whom you would call family into danger and death for your own gain. I understand you.” There’s a softness and sadness to the face as he takes one step in your direction. “You are lost without form. Without knowing who you are, child. You stand shattered by expectation. Presenting an illusion of confidence. Behind it, you never left that bloodied girl, dagger in hand, body at your feet. You are a killer, run as you may. The tears you cry are not in vain, my sweet, my dear Vex'ahlia. You can rise above your trembling destiny. I have lived a thousand years and a day. I have seen many things. I can grant many gifts.”

LAURA: Are we still pretending to like this fuck?

SAM: Nope.

LAURA: I don’t want anything you offer.

MATT: “You mistake. My intent is not to hurt, but to understand. I see lots of my youth in you. We are not as different as you may think. You have things I do not. Companionship. I have been without for so very long. And the ones I have let in have hurt me so very deeply.” His eyes actually cast away from you for a second and he steps back into place. Almost seems to, his confident form withdraws into this almost hanging, sad position.

LAURA: You’ve been betrayed.

MATT: We all have in some degree, yes.

LAURA: Is that why you are what you are now?

MATT: I don’t even remember. I just know that I’m alone and she left me there.

LAURA: She? Who is she?

MATT: Memories have faded. I just want someone to understand me, that’s all. Can you understand me?

LAURA: Saundor. I understand.

MATT: “Is there trust in you?” His form steps forward once more, his head tilted, looking at you curiously.

LAURA: You want to be loved.

MATT: I wish a bond. A companion once more. Would you embrace me? Embrace your rebirth? I could give you so much.

LIAM: Vex'ahlia.

MATT: I could give you the means to protect them. Your home.

LAURA: What would you ask in return?

MATT: Your heart.

LAURA: My heart is someone else’s. And I pull my bow.

MATT: He withdraws a moment. The tendrils whip out again and connect into his back, and he’s pulled aloft, back, further in. “All I ask is one who knows my pain. What is your answer?”

LAURA: I release the arrow.

MATT: Roll an attack.

LAURA: I’m sorry, I feel so guilty about it!

MATT: Roll an attack.

SAM: He just wanted a kiss and you shot him!

MARISHA: He’s a dick.

LAURA: 25.

MATT: All right. Go ahead and roll damage.

SAM: Just a lonely guy.

LAURA: 16.

TALIESIN: I have no respect for anyone who says we’re not so different.

MATT: 16 points of piercing damage.

LIAM: And shitting black diarrhea out of the tree.

MATT: As the arrow hits his form as he’s being pulled up– (gasps)– you hear the air escape like he had the wind knocked out of him. His glowing yellow eyes blink, blink, and his jaw kind of hangs open. There in the low-lit darkness. And you watch as more of that black, thick tar just begins to pour from his mouth onto the ground, splattering and seeping into the floor. His jaw slowly closes. “Then I am to be alone.” He reaches his hand up, and you watch–

MARISHA: Oh shit!

MATT: – as these vines reveal and give to him this large curved bow that he grasps in his hand. The other vines curl around his body, and you can see his form begin to build, like his actual body begins to grow as the vines become part of him. His face of flesh disappears behind an exterior of dark and gnarled wood. The voice grows deep as he all of a sudden withdraws into the side of the tree itself, and then bursts forth, landing on the ground. Not an elf-like entity, but some sort of gnarled root-like tree creature, holding Fenthras in one hand.

LAURA: Was that bad? Should I have not attacked him?

SAM: You did great.

LAURA: Okay.

TALIESIN: No, no, he was being terrible.

LAURA: We should probably–

MATT: Your choice is made.

LAURA: I call out Trinket–

MATT: Become another memory here and keep me company in oblivion.

SAM: Oh, god.

MATT: The two dead trees quake and begin to lift up–

MARISHA: Oh, fuck.

MATT: – from the sides of the tree. Everyone roll initiative.

TALIESIN: Oh.

TRAVIS: Yeah!

LAURA: I feel so guilty.

MARISHA: No, he was a fucking cock.

LAURA: He was terrible, was it mean?

MARISHA: No, dude.

LAURA: Okay, we’re in the tree, we’re in the tree.

MARISHA: Like you said, I don’t trust anyone who says we’re alike, you and I.

SAM: What, were you gonna give him a hug and get possessed forever?

LAURA: I know, he’s offering terrible things, right?

TALIESIN: He was a dick.

MARISHA: I also don’t like anyone who tries to act like we didn’t make our own choice to come in here.

TALIESIN: And for that matter, anybody who says we’re not so different, that’s usually a sign of a terrible person.

MARISHA: That we’re totally different.

TALIESIN: Terrible person.

SAM: Because we’re terrible people.

TALIESIN: Well, that’s very fair.

LIAM: He’s creeping on my sister, fuck him.

MARISHA: Yeah.

TALIESIN: I was only not shooting him to be polite.

TRAVIS: Oh, shit.

MATT: All right, so. 25 to 20, anybody?

TALIESIN: 21.

MATT: 21.

LIAM: 23.

MATT: Nice.

TRAVIS: Just so you know, your notepad is in the upper-left.

LIAM: Secrets.

LAURA: (laughs) Scootch-scootch.

MATT: All right, and so. Vax, Percy, 21, er, 20 to 15?

TRAVIS: 18.

MARISHA: 15.

SAM: 15.

MATT: All righty.

LAURA: I got that one hit and that was all I got. I’m sorry.

MATT: All right, and then…

LAURA: 14.

MATT: 14? Okay. All righty. So, top of the round, Vax. You have first up. You’re currently over here.

LIAM: Yeah. I can see fuck-all through this magical window–

MATT: I understand.

LIAM: So I see where I am in that circle, what are the big clumps of poop in the middle?

MATT: This right here is part of the root that is growing up in the center of this tree. There are two trees on the side that are shifting, and the actual large dark-rooted form that is now Saundor is over here on the far side.

LIAM: All right, boots click, uh, I am hanging back behind– is Trinket out still?

LAURA: He’s out. Oh. I haven’t brought him out yet, I haven’t brought him out.

MATT: No.

LIAM: All right. Then I’m just leaning out from behind Grog and I am going to dagger-dagger-dagger him.

MATT: All righty, go for it.

LIAM: And I’m first to attack so I have advantage.

MATT: You do.

LIAM: Okay, so the first hit is a 26.

MATT: 26 hits.

LIAM: Yeah, second is a 26.

MATT: Hits.

LIAM: And the third is a 21.

MATT: 21. All three hit.

LIAM: Okay, so the first one is sneak attack.

MATT: It is.

LIAM: This one is the flame-tongue, here it goes. Six and seven, here comes the sneak attack damage.

MATT: All the sneak attack damage!

LIAM: Say again?

MATT: Percy, you’re up next, just so you’re aware.

LIAM: (mumbling) 30 for the first.

MATT: 30, nice.

LIAM: Seven for the second, and eight for the third.

MATT: Great, all right. You, tapping the boots, rush out behind Grog, fling all three daggers, all seem to stick into the wood-armored exterior of Saundor’s treant form. You see he kind of pulls back a bit from the impact. Damage definitely has been sustained unexpectedly.

LIAM: Where am I in relation to the party, to my sister?

MATT: You’re right there, your sister is right there. So you’re about 10 feet from her.

LIAM: I’m gonna just roll forward and crouch in front of her low, to give her a shot but be in front of her.

MATT: All righty. There you go. All right, that finishes your turn. That brings us to Percy.

TALIESIN: I’m going to dart to the right and keep about 10 to 15 feet distance away from the exterior wall, because that looks creepy as fuck.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: About there. First thing I’m gonna do is I’m gonna pull out Bad News and I’m gonna take a shot, and I’m gonna try and disarm him.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: So. We’ll see if that does anything. Natural 20.

LAURA: Yes!

SAM: At least five a session.

LIAM: That loaded die was the best investment we ever made.

TALIESIN: It was the best, it was such a wonderful, wonderful–

SAM: Did a fan give that to you?

TALIESIN: A fan gave that to me, yes they did.

MATT: All right, natural 20.

TALIESIN: Natural 20, and that means I don’t even burn the grit for it, and that’s arm-shot, so. Strength saving throw against a DC 19.

MATT: That is 21, so yeah, it manages to maintain it.

TALIESIN: Okay, so it maintains it. I forgot to cast Hex, but god damn it. That’s fine. So, taking my shot…

MATT: Dice times two.

TALIESIN: That went well. That’s 19 times two, that’s 38.

MATT: 38 points of damage.

TALIESIN: That’s 44 points of damage.

MATT: 44 points of damage on the critical hit.

TALIESIN: Of piercing damage. I’m gonna reload.

MATT: All right.

TALIESIN: I’m gonna cast Hex.

MATT: The impact manages to hit part of the wood, it splinters, not doing as much damage as you’d expect it would.

TALIESIN: That’s fine.

MATT: It’s still a nice hit, but the form seemed to resist it–

TALIESIN: Seems to be taking it. That’s fine. I’m casting Hex.

MATT: All right.

TALIESIN: I’m giving him disadvantage on strength saving throws.

MATT: All righty.

TALIESIN: I’m gonna take another shot–

MATT: Ability checks, not saving throws.

TALIESIN: Yeah, checks, excuse me. I’m gonna take another shot at getting that damn bow out of his hand. So we’ll see if we can do that. Yeah, that’s a 19, so that’s 32 to hit.

MATT: That hits.

TALIESIN: He can roll his saving throw.

MATT: 17, so no.

TALIESIN: So no, he drops the bow.

MATT: The bow gets dropped.

SAM: Oh, shit!

TALIESIN: Bow’s on the ground.

MARISHA: Oh, bow’s on the ground, bow’s on the ground.

TALIESIN: That’s a terrible roll. That’s okay. So that’s ten points of piercing damage and two points of necrotic damage.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: How do you want to do this?

MATT: So you fire the second shot, does hit, a little crack of impact, the wood on the exterior splinters a bit, the necrotic hit does still push through. All right, that finishes your turn, as Fenthras gets blasted off, a finger’s actually missing from the impact. A finger begins to grow back.

TALIESIN: Bow’s on the ground!

MATT: All right, Grog. Actually, no, before you’re up, we’re at count 20. All right.

SAM: Count 20.

LAURA: What’s that mean?

MARISHA: What does that mean?

MATT: So. Suddenly the ground quakes for a second, part of the roots expand–

TALIESIN: Oh, shit.

SAM: Lair actions.

MATT: – and a cloud of gas begins to fill a small area about that big.

LAURA: Oh, of course.

MATT: I need Scanlan, Keyleth, Vax, and Vex to make a constitution saving throw.

MARISHA: Where’s that dice?

LIAM: Oh, that’s our specialty.

MARISHA: Yeah, right? Not bad.

LAURA: Oh, natural 20!

MATT: Nice.

LIAM: I’m gonna burn a Luck. 16.

MATT: All right.

MARISHA: 20 total, 20 total.

SAM: 20 total.

MATT: Okay.

(All laugh.)

MATT: All of you guys manage to just in time–

TRAVIS: He’s pissed.

MATT: – catch your breath and keep below the poison cloud as it dissipates in the vicinity of you, so you reduce the damage to each of you guys to be 12 points of poison damage to all of you guys.

MARISHA: Damn. That’s half.

MATT: So that’s 12 points of poison damage to each one of you guys. Now, Grog, it’s your turn.

TRAVIS: I would like to advance– I would like to rage.

MATT: All right.

TRAVIS: I would like to advance as far as I can get towards the treant.

MATT: You can get right there, you’re not quite close enough to hit.

TRAVIS: Hey, that’s cool, and I’m gonna use the chain of returning with the blood axe, and I’m gonna throw it at the tree.

MATT: All right.

TRAVIS: At Saundor.

MATT: Go for it.

TRAVIS: That’s not great. Oh! 20 total.

MATT: 20 total? All righty.

(background music becomes distorted)

LAURA: Oh no. We gotta get a new cable, a new cable for you.

SAM: It’s dying.

MATT: I know, I have a new iPad coming, actually.

LAURA: Oh, okay.

MATT: It’s in the budget, having issues, strangely. Which is a shame, because this works really well for this battle. I dunno. Maybe.

SAM: Music help!

MATT: I’ll try.

MARISHA: Oh, that got so awkwardly quiet.

LAURA: Oh no, it’s all…

MATT: Yeah, I don’t wanna tear it. Whatever, it’s fine, it’s fine.

MARISHA: It just sounds weird inside the tree…

TALIESIN: Acoustics.

MARISHA: Acoustics.

SAM: If anyone works for Apple and wants to send us all new iPads.

(All laugh.)

TALIESIN: iPhones. iPad Pros.

MARISHA: Preferably in rose gold.

(The music comes back in, less distorted.)

SAM: Better? Better!

LAURA: That sounds better.

MATT: It’s working better.

MARISHA: Yes, much better. Much better.

LAURA: Yeah.

MARISHA: You’re good.

MATT: Okay, cool. We’re good.

SAM: Forget those iPads.

MATT: So, Grog, what was your attack roll?

TRAVIS: It was a 20 total.

MATT: That does just barely hit. Go ahead and roll damage.

TRAVIS: 24.

MATT: 24 points–

TRAVIS: Ahh, plus… four points of necrotic damage, for 28.

MATT: 28 points of damage. The axe, with all your heaving might behind it, travels the ten feet to slam into the chest of Saundor. Reaches up and tries to grab it, smashing it between his hands to hold it there. Go ahead and make your strength to pull it back.

TRAVIS: 18.

MATT: 18, yeah, that works fine, okay.

MARISHA: It appeared he took damage from the necrotic?

MATT: Yeah, he did.

TRAVIS: On Percy’s and mine.

MATT: Yeah.

MARISHA: So he can take necrotic damage.

TALIESIN: Apparently he can.

LAURA: That’s good, that’s good.

MARISHA: Good to know.

MATT: But not as impacting on the necrotic damage as much as you’d hoped.

LAURA: Oh, okay.

MARISHA: On the necrotic damage.

TRAVIS: But Liam did, I mean, Vax did something.

MATT: Yeah, you guys have all done damage to him, it was just generally lesser than you hoped it would be.

TRAVIS: Yeah, yours was surprisingly good.

LAURA: Piercing damage…

MATT: Well, his just, he just sneak attacked.

TALIESIN: We haven’t found a winner.

LAURA: Okay.

LIAM: Sneak-attack damage.

TALIESIN: We haven’t found a winner, we’ve just been hitting him really god damned hard.

MATT: But anyway. So you pull the axe back, grab it from the chain, it’s back in your grip, you’re fine, you’re good to go. Does that end your turn?

TRAVIS: That does.

MATT: All right, at the end of your turn, he’s gonna go ahead and burn two legendary actions to cast a spell.

LAURA: Oh no! He’s like a dragon!

MATT: All right. I need– (laughs)

LAURA: I should’ve just gone evil.

MATT: I need everyone, all of you, to make a dexterity saving throw.

SAM: Is he casting a spell?

MATT: He is, yes.

SAM: I will attempt to Counterspell it.

MATT: Okay. All right, go ahead and make your d20 plus six.

SAM: I’m gonna go at level five.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: Level five. What do I, d20 plus six?

MATT: Correct.

SAM: 24.

MATT: 24?

SAM: Yeah.

MATT: All right.

MARISHA: Hell yeah.

MATT: He goes to create this spell, and suddenly it fizzles in midair, unable to actually take effect.

(Sam rings a bell.)

MARISHA: Hell yeah, Scanlan! Hell yeah.

(All laugh.)

MATT: All right, so that finishes that. Ending Grog’s turn, the legendary actions return now.

SAM: Return?

MATT: Yes.

SAM: But he’s just used them!

MATT: Yeah, it comes back at the end of his next round. At the beginning of his round, you watch as his form begins to seal up the wounds he had taken, beginning to heal ever-so-slightly.

LAURA: It’s his turn now.

MATT: He reaches down and grabs the bow from the ground, and you watch as he sinks down into the ground, roots reaching up and grabbing him, and he vanishes into the bottom of the tree.

MARISHA: Whoa. Yeah. That makes sense. It’s what I would do.

SAM: He’s getting that invisible figurine that he has.

MATT: And reemerges–

SAM: Oh, hi. Hi, friend.

MATT: – way up in the top of the tree, out of the branches up there, his upper torso extends outward and he pulls back the bow–

LAURA: Oh no.

MATT: – and begins just unleashing arrows that are forming out of his hand, these thin thorn-like arrows are built out of his viny-like arm, and he pulls back and releases them as they snap as arrows towards you guys. He’s going to make a bramble-shot attack at you, Grog.

SAM: Bramble-shot. Sounds tasty.

MATT: That is going to be 21.

TRAVIS: Hits.

MATT: That hits. All right. So you take 14 points of piercing damage, reduced to half, so you take seven points, plus four points of lightning damage.

TRAVIS: Lightning damage?

(Computer alert sound.)

SAM: Hi, hi Liam.

LIAM: Not my computer.

MATT: Plus an additional 18 points of piercing damage.

TRAVIS: Halved?

MATT: Halved to nine.

LAURA: Wow.

MATT: As the arrow hits you, and then bursts into a series of jagged, thorny vines that wrap around you. I need you to make a strength saving throw.

TRAVIS: That’s pretty awesome.

TALIESIN: We’re gonna set him on fire, we’re gonna hit him with light, we’re gonna hit him with things.

MARISHA: I was thinking fire too.

LAURA: Lightning. Lightning? Has anybody tried electricity yet?

TRAVIS: 22.

MATT: 22. You feel the bramble vines wrap around you and try to hold you in place, and you just angrily burst out of them.

SAM: Yes!

LAURA: Yes!

MARISHA: Fuck yeah!

MATT: You are not restrained.

SAM: Yes, for once.

MARISHA: (laughing) Yeah, you’re not grappled.

MATT: He’s gonna go ahead and unleash two more arrows–

LAURA: Shit, Jesus.

MATT: – this time towards you, as he’s kind of focused now on the–

LAURA: Both of them at me?

MATT: Yeah.

TRAVIS: Rejection’s a bitch.

MARISHA: Yeah, rejection.

MATT: He’s not too happy with being rejected, it seems.

MARISHA: He’s been alone for too long.

MATT: The first one is 24 to hit.

LAURA: That hits.

MATT: Second is a 25 to hit.

LAURA: Both hit.

MATT: All right.

LAURA: I’m gonna die.

MATT: So you take–

MARISHA: No, you’re not.

SAM: Nah, you’ll be fine. (whispering) She’s dead. She’s dead. She’s definitely dead.

MATT: 13 points of damage with one lightning, and, that’s a lucky roll, eight points of piercing damage with one lightning.

LAURA: Okay.

MATT: As two additional arrows just wh-whack! right inside of you, and you look down and can see these large, thin stiletto-like wooden forms that are just pierced into your armor and cut into your flesh.

LAURA: Is that plus one additional lightning damage, you mean?

MATT: Yeah.

LAURA: Okay, so 14 and nine?

MATT: Right. Yep. That’s gonna end Saundor’s turn. The two dead trees that you saw quaking on the sides suddenly burst out, the roots becoming legs, and you watch as two treants emerge from the sides of the tree.

TRAVIS: Oh, I was joking when I said it.

TALIESIN: You shouldn’t have been.

SAM: Oh my god.

MATT: Large sort of freed and sentient trees begin stomping forward towards you guys. This one is going to go ahead and rush up to you folks, while this one is gonna go right for Percy, which is right in its side there.

SAM: God, this is a tough one.

MATT: Two slam attacks against you, Percy.

MARISHA: Ooh, fuck.

MATT: That is a 19 to hit.

TALIESIN: That hits.

MATT: And a natural 20.

TALIESIN: That doesn’t hit.

MATT: All right.

TRAVIS: Natural 20.

MATT: That sucked. For you. Right, so the first hit, you take 17 points of bludgeoning damage. The second hit, 28 points of bludgeoning damage, as the giant tree just whack! And as soon as you try and get out of the way, the giant fist comes down and slams you right across the neck and shoulders, causing you to take a knee, and you can feel the muscle pop from some sort of overextension. The giant tree now, you can see its bark contorted in this angry face as it pours more of that black oil-like liquid out of the corner of its mouth. The other one that’s rushed up against the two of you is going to go ahead and take one hit against you, Vex, and two hits against you, Vax. Sorry, it only gets two slams. One on each. My apologies. One against you, Vex, is going to be sixteen.

LAURA: Oh, it misses.

SAM: Hey!

MATT: You duck out of the way and it actually slams the large root tree to the front of you. The other one goes to Vax. That is going to be a 26 to hit.

LIAM: Oh yeah. Uncanny dodge.

MATT: Okay, so you take–

LIAM: Oh, at disadvantage, excuse me, because of the cloak of displacement.

MATT: Rolled an 18 on the second one, so it still hits you. So that effect goes away, but you would take 18 points of bludgeoning damage, reduced to nine because of your Uncanny Dodge. All right, that ends their turn. Now it is Scanlan and Keyleth’s turn. What are you guys doing?

SAM: Preference?

MARISHA: I’m gonna go for the ents.

SAM: I’m gonna go for the big guy.

MARISHA: All right. So you go first, then.

SAM: All right. I’m gonna go a couple steps to the right, like split the difference between me and Percy.

MATT: All righty.

SAM: I will cast, I will use the wand of… well, jeez, lightning or fire, lightning or fire.

MARISHA: Fire.

LAURA: Try fire.

SAM: Wand of fireballs, I’ll use three charges.

MARISHA: Fuck yeah.

SAM: At the big guy upstairs.

MATT: Up there?

SAM: Yeah.

MATT: Okay.

MARISHA: Pew-pew.

LAURA: Big guy upstairs. Santa Claus?

MARISHA: The CEO of this tree.

MATT: DC of what on the spell?

SAM: 15.

MATT: That, yeah, he makes his save with a 19. So half-damage, go ahead and roll that, five charges?

SAM: I’m going to use three, I get three charges and then two more is five… yeah, five. Yes, five.

MATT: Yes, so–

SAM: So it’s 10d6.

MATT: Correct.

SAM: Okay. Six, eight, 14, 16, 17. 23… 28, 32. 33.

MATT: 33.

SAM: Halved.

MATT: Half that for 15, or 16 actually, sorry. 16 points of fire damage as the Fireball bursts up where you can see some of the roots are blown off and a bit of the upper ceiling collapses and hangs for a second.

LAURA: Did it look like it actually affected him, the fire?

MATT: It looked like he took damage from it, yeah.

TRAVIS: It didn’t catch fire.

MATT: It didn’t seem to catch fire, no. In fact, the decaying liquid it seems to be spewing out of it, it’s almost–

TRAVIS: A natural retardant?

MATT: Yeah, it’s preventing any flame from catching on the creature in the vicinity as the flames slowly go out. The vines begin to reform to close up the ceiling, and you see Saundor is still kind of gliding through the vines and using them to move along the upper outside of the tree. Is that going to be the end of your movement?

SAM: Yeah, I’ll use a bonus action, gah, do I heal or do I inspire? What’s more helpful here? I will heal Percy a little bit. I can only cast Healing Word at level one as a bonus action, right?

MATT: You can cast it at any level you want to as a bonus action.

SAM: Oh, okay.

MATT: Since you didn’t actually cast a spell, you used the wand.

SAM: Oh, that’s true. Okay, well then I’ll do it at, uh, level two.

TALIESIN: Okay.

SAM: I don’t know what I’m gonna need today. It’s 2d4 plus five.

TALIESIN: Okay. Do you roll that or do I?

SAM: I do.

MATT: Plus six, technically, because your charisma went up.

SAM: Ooh! Oh, nice. I will sing to him, let’s see if I can do this. “Come on, come on, get your Scanlan on, it’s Thursday night and it won’t be long, gonna play my flute, play my shawm, it’s Thursday night and it won’t be long 'til I get your health up, get your health up, I got all you need, no I don’t shoot bows, I don’t swing swords, but damn I can sing.”

(All cheer.)

MATT: You take that god damn inspiration.

MARISHA: That was really good!

LIAM: Sang for his supper.

SAM: 4d4 plus six. Er. Four plus six, ten. Ten, ugh!

LAURA: Ten is better than nothing!

MARISHA: That’s pretty good.

MATT: Ten hit points as the song pushes your healing at a rapid pace because it’s so inspiring. All right. Are you staying where you are, Scanlan?

SAM: I already moved a little bit, I’m gonna stick right there, yeah.

MATT: Yeah, you moved ten feet, so you’re gonna stay there? Okay. Keyleth.

MARISHA: Okay, so these trees that are moving appear to be living trees more or less, correct?

MATT: Appear to be, yeah. From what you can tell.

MARISHA: I’m gonna cast Tree Stride on myself.

MATT: Okay.

MARISHA: And then I’m gonna go into fire elemental form and flame on.

TALIESIN: Yeah!

LAURA: Oh shit, girl!

SAM: Have you done that before?

MARISHA: No, and I don’t know if it’s really gonna work.

SAM: You’re Johnny Storm?

LAURA: Flame on!

MARISHA: Oh, I’ve been a fire elemental before, yeah.

MATT: So you’re gonna move next to this tree, then? Is that what you’re gonna do?

MARISHA: Well, I’m casting Tree Stride.

MATT: Right, but Tree Stride, you have to, you have the ability to enter a tree. You must use five feet of movement to enter a tree.

MARISHA: Right. I’m casting Tree Stride because it’s a concentration that lasts a minute.

MATT: Right.

MARISHA: And then I’m going to use my bonus action to flame on.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: This is pretty cool.

MARISHA: If this works.

MATT: Where once was Keyleth is now a fire elemental.

LAURA: I fell over, I was so impressed.

MARISHA: All the rage of the fire ashari. And then I’m going to enter inside that treant right in front of me.

LAURA: She’s going to enter inside of it.

MARISHA: I’m going to very nicely enter it with its permission and consent.

MATT: Okay.

MARISHA: And then I’m going to multi-attack.

MATT: So you’re using this to just stay within the tree while punching it on fire.

MARISHA: Well, ideally, because as per the rules of Tree Stride, I may use, I instantly know the location of all other trees of the same kind and as part of my movement I can pass into any other trees of my choice of that same kind.

MATT: Yep.

MARISHA: So I’m gonna take this guy on for right now.

MATT: Okay, go for it. So, make your attack rolls against this treant.

TRAVIS: Interesting, Keyleth.

TALIESIN: You are doing some crazy shit.

LAURA: Crazy shit.

MARISHA: We’ll see.

SAM: We brought a gun to a tree-fight.

(All laugh.)

MARISHA: Those are pretty good. The first hit, sorry, I don’t know my… I’m trying to find what I add here. Okay. So the first one is going to be 25 to hit.

MATT: 25 hits, yep.

MARISHA: And the second one’s going to be 16.

MATT: Just barely hits.

MARISHA: Fuck yeah.

LIAM: (Malone voice) They send one of yours to the Feywild, you send one of theirs to the morgue.

(All laugh.)

MATT: Don’t forget your additional, because even if you’re a fire elemental you still get your additional fire damage.

MARISHA: Flame hands, which is an additional d6, correct?

MATT: Correct.

MARISHA: So I am rolling 2d6 plus three twice, so I’ll do 4d… or, I’ll roll 3d6 twice. First one… not bad. Eight plus five is 13, plus another three, so 16. 16 for the first one.

MATT: 16 points of fire damage, all right. All right, the next one?

MARISHA: The next one is 14.

MATT: All right.

MARISHA: And until the creature takes an action to douse the fire, the target takes– oh, it also, anything that if I move within, it immediately takes 1d10 damage whenever I move into its space.

MATT: All right, so go ahead and roll another d10.

MARISHA: Nine.

SAM: Also, if it’s a tree it instantly dies.

LAURA: That’s just the rule, that’s just what it says.

MATT: You notice as you tear into its body with the Tree Stride to open it up, it looks down confused as you pull into it and then just begin pummeling and scraping the inside of its form. As you do so, from the inside, what little bit of fire retardant-like black liquid was somewhat dried or coated on these, not as thick as it was on Saundor, not only has it caught fire but the wood here is very, very ready for kindling, and it’s vulnerable to fire, everything in that was doubled, so you just tear into it–

(All yell.)

MATT: You just watch as this treant has a flaming elemental in its stomach just bursting forth in gouts of fire. You watch as it begins to crack up the center and parts of it are just bursting into flames and burning at the top.

LAURA: Holy crap.

MATT: It’s having a bad day right now.

LAURA: Keyleth. Serious.

MATT: Is that the end of your turn?

MARISHA: That I am satisfied with, yes.

MATT: All right. Ending Keyleth’s turn, that brings us to Vex, you’re up.

LAURA: Okay. I’m gonna step just a little bit away from that flaming tree.

MARISHA: Yes. It is now a safety hazard.

LAURA: To the side, I’m just gonna step to the side. Yeah.

MARISHA: Careful for falling limbs.

LAURA: I’m gonna Hunter’s Mark Saundor, damn it.

MATT: Okay, as you pull back it does get an attack of opportunity on you.

LAURA: Aw.

MATT: That is an 18 plus ten, 28.

LAURA: Oh, fuck.

MATT: So you take–

SAM: A billion.

MATT: – 17 points of bludgeoning damage as you rush back–

LAURA: Motherfucker.

MATT: – and the flaming treant just reaches out and strikes you across the back of the head, almost sending you tumbling to the ground. Giant dull thud in the back, you can feel the headache growing in your skull, but you continue forward.

LAURA: Ah! (strained) Fuck you. Okay. I Hunter’s Mark Sandor. Sandor?

MARISHA: Saundor.

TALIESIN: Saundor.

LAURA: Saundor, Saundor. Sandor is in Game of Thrones.

MATT: Yes.

LAURA: And then I’m going to attack him with the sky sentinel bow.

MATT: Go for it.

LAURA: (nervous noises) 17 on the first one.

MATT: Misses.

LAURA: Natural 20 on the second one.

MARISHA: What up!

LAURA: And 19 on the third.

MATT: Misses.

LAURA: Fucking balls mother bitch, okay, wow.

MATT: But the critical hit, so go ahead and roll damage for the critical.

LAURA: So what, do I just double all my dice?

MATT: Yeah, double the dice and then add the bonus at the end.

SAM: How’s the Sky bar?

MARISHA: I think this is caramel? Nope, fudge.

TALIESIN: Oh, you got the fudge end.

MARISHA: I got the fudge end.

LAURA: 16 times two is 32, yeah? Plus seven, plus two. 41.

MATT: 41 points of damage.

LAURA: On the first attack. And then I’ll attack him again. 'Cause that was just one.

MATT: Right, that was the sky sentinel. You didn’t double the bonus, right, that was just the dice roll?

LAURA: Nope, I just doubled the dice.

MATT: Shit, yeah, with Hunter’s Mark, yeah, that’s slick. All right, go for it.

LAURA: Okay, so the second one, I’m gonna attack him through the blazing bowstring.

MATT: Go for it.

LAURA: And that is a 30.

MATT: 30 hits, yes.

TRAVIS: How high is Saundor?

MATT: He is roughly 30 feet up.

TALIESIN: At the very least, I might try and get him to drop the bow, and then you’re gonna be the one who has to grab it if things get…

LAURA: Is 14 plus eight, is 22. 22 on the second.

MATT: 22 points of damage. Nice.

LAURA: And that was with eight points of fire damage. I don’t know if that matters.

LIAM: Is he pressed against the roof of this chamber?

MATT: He’s getting up towards the roof, yeah.

LIAM: Towards it.

MATT: As the two arrows shhhk to the side, the one single arrow pierces into the side of his chest and arm where Percy had shot before, and the arrow disappears into the side, and you see a burst of electrical energy causing the one arm that was getting ready to pull one of its thorny arrows kind of goes limp for a second, and a second arrow just shoots right in the side of the face and is now protruding from underneath his cheekbone. (angry breathing)

LAURA: And for my movement, can I get on my broom for my movement?

MATT: You’d have to–

LAURA: I’d have to pull it out.

MATT: Your broom is kind of slung over your shoulder.

LAURA: Right. Okay. Then I’m just gonna… I feel like anywhere I go it’s danger-zone in here. I’m gonna try to hide behind that tree in the middle, but I feel like that’s a bad idea. Yeah.

MATT: You’re right there.

LAURA: I don’t want him to be able to hit me with arrows if possible.

MATT: Right, no worries. At the end of your turn, he’s going to use two of his legendary actions to try and cast a different spell, actually. He begins to, from up there above, lifts his hand up like this. I need everyone but Grog to make a dexterity saving throw, including the treants.

MARISHA: Including me inside the treant?

SAM: I guess I will try to counterspell this one as well.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: Also at level five, I don’t know if that helps.

MATT: All right. So go ahead and roll, plus six.

SAM: All right. Plus six? 16.

MATT: Nope. Sorry. Close, you were one off. So dexterity saving throws for the treants. Nope. And nope.

LAURA: 17.

LIAM: 29.

MATT: So Vax succeeds.

LAURA: 17.

MATT: Grog, you don’t have to worry about it, 'cause you’re out of the radius.

MARISHA: 16.

TALIESIN: 14.

SAM: Oh, am I rolling for–

MATT: Yes, you are.

SAM: What is the save?

MATT: This is a dexterity saving throw.

SAM: Dexterity saving throw. 14.

MATT: All right. Vax, only you succeed. Suddenly you feel as if there is a sense of weightlessness, or at least you’re being drawn at a very intense speed upward in the room. Vax, you manage to reach down and grab one of the roots on the ground and hold yourself there while the rest of you are thrown, including the treants, at a similar velocity as you would plummet off a cliff, but upward. Up into the ceiling and roof, slamming into the roots, crack! And then gravity returns to normal and all of you fall, once again, slamming back down onto the ground.

MARISHA: Am I immune to that as a fire elemental?

MATT: You still take bludgeoning damage as an elemental.

MARISHA: Just resistant to it.

SAM: How high’s the roof above the ground?

MATT: It’s about 50 feet at the top.

LAURA: So 100… no, that’s just two times in a row.

SAM: Two 50 drops.

LAURA: Wow.

MATT: That’s a total of 24 points of bludgeoning damage to all of you except for Vax.

MARISHA: I take half damage.

MATT: You take half that, because–

MARISHA: How much did you say it was? 24?

SAM: 24.

MATT: Not you, Grog, you’re unaffected by it. Yeah. But the treants also take it.

SAM: Oh! Poor guys.

MATT: All righty.

SAM: No problem, no problem.

MATT: End of Vex’s turn. Vax, you’re up. You watch as all of your friends and the treants come crashing down from the ceiling, slamming, you hear the groans of various people getting up off of root knots on the ground. Your feet come back to you, and it’s your go.

LIAM: So the treants are prone, right?

MATT: In fact, everybody here for the most part is prone, yes.

LIAM: Everybody’s prone, and that gives me advantage on the attack as well, doesn’t it?

MATT: Technically, yes.

MARISHA: I’m immune to prone.

LIAM: All right, so I’m just gonna whip down and stab into the treant that’s at my feet now.

MATT: All righty, go for it.

LIAM: Okay, first attack is a 29.

MATT: That definitely hits.

LIAM: Well, actually, yeah, 29. Second attack is a 29.

MATT: Hits.

LIAM: Third attack is a 17.

MATT: Hits. All three hit.

LIAM: Okay, so the first one…

MATT: Percy, you’re up next.

LIAM: Which is with the dagger of venom, I don’t know if it’ll do anything, but I’m gonna use the poison in it. Two… eight… 28, and the poison DC on that is 15.

MATT: No, it does not succeed, it rolled a one.

LIAM: 11 points of poison damage on top of that.

MATT: All righty.

LIAM: Second attack does seven. This is the flametongue dagger, I don’t know if that’s going to do anything–

MATT: Sorry, how much on the first attack again?

LIAM: And the third attack does–

TRAVIS: Liam, how much was your first attack?

LIAM: I don’t remember, now. Uh, I can figure it out…

MATT: Make sure I got it right.

LIAM: It was roughly, it was 20-something. 25.

MATT: Yeah, we’re good, we’re good. All right, third strike?

LIAM: Third strike got eight.

MATT: Eight, got it.

LIAM: Thanks.

MATT: As it’s on the ground, sprawled out, flames still burning off of it, you leap up onto its thigh and come down to some of the open wound that Keyleth’s fire elemental’s been tearing through, you’re just prying into it with your daggers and pulling the bark back, revealing its softer, burning underwood, if you will. You do a sincerely awful amount of damage to it, and it looks like the creature’s already in dire straits.

SAM: This is one of the treants?

MATT: One of the treants, yes.

SAM: Oh, okay.

MATT: Does that end your turn?

LIAM: I just quickly look into Keyleth’s flaming eyes and say, “Finish it off,” and then I’m going to run double speed along the curve of the wall underneath flying fuck.

MATT: This way?

LIAM: Yeah.

MARISHA: Other way, I think.

MATT: Oh, this way. The one that’s not flaming?

LIAM: Past Keyleth and the one that I just stabbed the shit out of.

LAURA: Oh, the other way, you were going the right way.

MATT: This way.

LIAM: Yeah.

MATT: Okay. You’re about there with your movement.

LIAM: I’ve got double speed.

MATT: All right. Oh yeah, double speed, you’d actually get closer to there if you wanted. All right, that ends your turn. Percy, you’re up. Actually, at the end of Percy’s turn he’s gonna use his last legendary action to go ahead and make an attack with Fenthras. As he sees you running past, Vax, he goes ahead and takes one arrow shot at you as you’re running super fast across the floor.

LIAM: Disadvantage.

MATT: No, because, well, no–

LIAM: Turns on–

MATT: – no, you did, at the beginning of your turn it did, you’re right. So. Good thing, too, 19 and a one. It goes to fire but you’re too quick, and as it releases its spikelike arrow, you hear it go right past you, catching the edge of the cloak and actually going through it, leaving a small hole in the corner, but no impact to you. All right, so now, Percy, it’s your turn.

TALIESIN: We’re both prone, does that mean that we’re in combat, or can I walk away from it and it doesn’t–

MATT: You’re both prone, you can walk away without it getting an attack of opportunity, you just spend half your movement to get up.

TALIESIN: All right, I’m spending half my movement to get up, and I’m backing up against the wall.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: Backing up against the wall. I’m not using Bad News, I’m going to use Retort, I’m going to try and, first thing I’m gonna do is use a bonus action to heal a little bit. Yeah. That’s nine plus twelve, so that’s 21. Figure that out when it’s not my turn. Next thing I’m gonna do is I’m gonna start shooting to try and get that bow out of his hands one more time.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: First shot…

MATT: This is with Retort, right?

TALIESIN: Retort, yeah. Same trick, but not nearly as much damage. That’s 16 to hit?

MATT: Hits the nearby wood, splinters off one of the vines, sending a shower of broken wood chips.

TALIESIN: Firing again.

LIAM: C'mon, dangerous nerd, do it!

LAURA: (laughs) Dangerous nerd.

TALIESIN: That’s another 16.

MATT: Can’t quite catch a bead on it. Being a human without dark vision, it’s hard to see it in the low glowing light.

MARISHA: I give off a soft glow.

MATT: But at a distance.

TALIESIN: 18 to hit?

MATT: That misses.

(All groan.)

TALIESIN: God damn it. Okay. That’s my bloody roll.

MARISHA: That’s always a bummer, man. That sucks.

MATT: Ending Percy’s turn, that brings us to our next set of lair actions. All right.

TALIESIN: God damn it.

MATT: Suddenly all the vines on the nearby walls on the inside of the tree whip out and begin grabbing anyone nearby. Percy, Scanlan, Keyleth, and Vax, you guys are all of a sudden, the vines try and wrap around you. They pull you back.

MARISHA: Immune to grapple.

MATT: So yeah.

LIAM: Dexterity save?

MATT: The vines try and wrap around you, Keyleth, and burn in the process. You are still pulled right against the wall. I need Vax, Scanlan, and Percy to make a strength saving throw.

SAM: Strength.

LIAM: Strength.

MATT: Yes.

SAM: Oh, god. Just straight strength?

TALIESIN: 23.

SAM: 15.

LIAM: Burn a Luck. Ah, 20.

MATT: 20, okay. Vax and Percy, you guys manage to break free of the vines. Scanlan, you are considered grappled, so your speed is zero. The vines are actually holding you against the side. They’re not hurting you or anything, but you cannot actually move from your space 'cause you’re being held against the wall of the tree. That ends the legendary action. Grog, you’re up.

TRAVIS: Can I run immediately underneath Saundor?

MATT: Saundor, yes you can.

TRAVIS: Are there any vines that are hanging from him? There are none?

MATT: There are vines hanging from the ceiling, but he himself just kind of sunk into the tree and then emerged above, he himself does not have any wayward vines that are just hanging.

TRAVIS: Right. Are there any vines that look like they might be thick enough for me to try and climb up if I wanted to get to his height?

MATT: Probably a couple, yeah.

TRAVIS: Could I grab a few of those vines to try and climb up to where he’s at?

MATT: Make an athletics check. With disadvantage. And then you have advantage because you’re raging, so just a straight roll on that.

TRAVIS: Athletics. 23.

MATT: 23, all right, let me check and see how far you can actually climb at that speed.

SAM: Tense fight, guys. Wouldn’t wanna be in it with anyone else.

LIAM: Us against the environment.

SAM: I think that my plan should work.

MATT: I’d say your physical strength and your ability to just kind of one hand over hand, not even pull up, especially with your Titan gauntlets and that type of a roll, you could probably get right up to him, but that’s gonna be your action to get up there.

TRAVIS: Okay.

MATT: So you’ll only have your bonus action left at that time, but essentially you climb up and get right up to where he is at the top of the tree. As he’s up there pulling the bow back, getting ready to, you see another pointed arrow kind of shift out of his arm, you come right up to his face and you’re right there holding on with the vines, with the axe hanging over your shoulder with the chain.

TRAVIS: With my bonus action, can I let out the loudest howl I possibly can.

MATT: Yes, you can.

TRAVIS: (howls)

MATT: All righty.

MARISHA: Calling in the cavalry.

LAURA: Yeah, come on! Please, I hope he can get in here.

MATT: That’s your turn?

TRAVIS: That’s my turn.

MATT: All right. It is now Saundor’s turn.

SAM: Oh boy.

MATT: All righty.

LAURA: He’s deaf from that howl, he’s definitely deaf.

MATT: No, not so much. Saundor takes Fenthras and actually lets go of it to his side, and these vines grab it and hold it in place just wherever he lets it go. As he pulls back, his fingers curl up into these giant, extremely hard petrified root-like clusters, and he just starts starts whaling on you as you’re holding onto that vine. Three strikes against you. The first one is gonna be a 25.

TRAVIS: Hits.

MATT: Second one is a 23.

TRAVIS: Also hits.

MATT: Third one is a 15.

TRAVIS: Misses.

MATT: It hits you, but just not enough to do any damage. So, looking at this, that brings it to, oh no, that’s two. 14 points of bludgeoning damage on the first one, halved. And the second one–

LAURA: Oh, it’s just the fucking coolest.

MATT: 22 points of bludgeoning damage, reduced to 11. I need you to go ahead and make a strength saving throw to maintain your hold on that vine. As he just bats you around.

TRAVIS: That’s a 21.

MATT: 21. It punches you twice, and your grip causes you to slide a foot, but you catch yourself and you’re still maintaining yourself. The vine is now swinging from the impact, and you’re in the process of this weird momentum where you’re passing by a little out of control with your movement up in the air of the inside of this tree.

TRAVIS: Awesome.

MATT: So that’s gonna end its action. You now watch as Saundor reaches up and grabs the bow again and shifts into the tree to get away from you. You do get an attack of opportunity, though. As you come around, watching him sink in with your one hand on the axe.

TRAVIS: Oh, that was so close to being a crit. That is a 33.

MATT: (laughs)

LAURA: 19 isn’t a crit for him, right?

TRAVIS: No.

MATT: No. So go ahead, I will say the damage is gonna be a 1d10 rather than a 1d12, just for the sake of, you’re swinging with one hand.

TRAVIS: That’s… wait, no, that’s 22 plus one point of necrotic damage, so 23.

MATT: All right, so 23 points of slashing damage as you come around, as the vine is arcing around, whack! You cleave through, catch part of the side of the shoulder and the jaw. Part of this hard bony root exterior actually gets carved off and you see more black ooze spill out from underneath as it shrieks, pulling back into the tree. You watch him vanish, you’re still left there.

TRAVIS: Killed him.

LAURA: Good job, Grog.

LIAM: Smacked him into the wall.

TRAVIS: Not so tough, really.

LIAM: Go hide like a potato in the earth. Oh jeez.

MATT: As high up as Saundor can get, right at the edge, actually emerging out of the ceiling portion of the top of it, ten feet higher than he was before, he comes out with Fenthras.

LAURA: Ten feet higher than he was before?

MATT: Before, he was out of the wall, before the ceiling even came up into a cone. He’s now coming out of the ceiling in another part.

LAURA: Jeez.

MATT: Now hanging out halfway and ready to go ahead and let loose with a bow, that’s gonna end his turn, however.

LIAM: How high off the ground is that apex that he’s hanging out of?

MATT: Right now he’s 40 feet up.

LIAM: 40 feet, all right.

MATT: Yep. That ends his turn, it is now the treants’ go. They both get up, using half their movement. (laughs) Let’s see. That one currently is just being harried with the flames on the inside, it takes, does it take any damage on its turn?

MARISHA: It does. Unless he douses himself, he takes another 1d10.

MATT: Go ahead and do 1d10 damage to him.

MARISHA: Six.

TALIESIN: Doubled.

LAURA: Doubled, yeah.

MATT: As it begins to take the damage, it begins to pat out the flames, but as it does, the fire just roars into this inferno, and you hear it give out this creaking, painful (pained groan) as it tumbles forward in a timber fashion, the flames actually burning the life essence out of the treant. It falls to the ground, dead, smoldering.

SAM: Hey, damn!

TRAVIS: Yes.

MATT: You pop out of his form as the living entity is no longer living and you are but an elemental now. I’m gonna leave him there just for reference, because it is a big thing to get through. But you are now pushed off to the side. That treant is gone. The other one gets up and steps over to Percy.

TALIESIN: I made a friend.

MATT: You did. As you just manage to avoid that, the treant comes up and goes into a double-slam against you.

LAURA: Fuck.

MATT: That is gonna be 19.

TALIESIN: That hits.

MATT: And 21.

TALIESIN: That also hits.

MATT: All righty. You take–

TALIESIN: I’m fine.

MATT: 13 points of bludgeoning damage. 20 points of bludgeoning damage on the second hit.

LAURA: (gasps)

TALIESIN: That’s mean.

MATT: It’s now pushing you up against the side of the tree. You can feel the roots hitting the back of your head, and as you ricochet off the impact, you come into another fist right to the face. You feel the nose break under the impact and possibly a tooth get loose as you spit blood out the side. It was a rough hit on you.

TALIESIN: Yeah, that was rough.

MATT: All right. That ends the treants’ turn. Scanlan and Keyleth, you’re up.

MARISHA: You’re still–

MATT: You’re grappled, and currently prone.

SAM: Okay.

MARISHA: Where is he? Where are you, Scanlan?

SAM: I’m against the close side of the wall.

MATT: You’re over there. But because your movement is zero and you’re grappled, you cannot get up. So right now you are prone and stuck to a wall.

SAM: Can I pull out a wand, or not even?

MATT: You can pull out a wand, you’re just at disadvantage for all attacks right now.

SAM: All attacks. Even spell attacks?

MATT: You have disadvantage on attack rolls, and any attack rolls against you have advantage, yeah. If they’re within five feet of you. Otherwise they have disadvantage.

MARISHA: I might be able to try and do something, if I can go first.

SAM: That’s attack rolls, Fireballs just happen.

MATT: Correct.

MARISHA: Maybe I can burn you away.

SAM: I’ll do Fireball on the treant. I’ll aim it far away enough so that it won’t hit us. Is that a thing? Is that possible?

MATT: It is, it’s hard because you’re on the ground and he’s right there.

SAM: Can I go up?

LAURA: Can you hit Saundor?

SAM: Well, yeah, but I don’t know how–

MATT: It’s your call. It’s a tough circumstance here, because to hit the treant from your perspective, you’d have to hit behind it, but you have no view behind it because you’re on the ground.

SAM: Got it. Got it. All right.

MATT: I mean, if you want to try that, I’ll give you a roll, and based on how good you roll it may or may not hit an ally.

SAM: Then I will not risk it and I will just Fireball good old Saundor, I guess.

MATT: All righty. How many more–

SAM: I’ll use three more charges. I have seven total.

MATT: Okay. Seven total left? Or total?

SAM: Total. So I’ve used three.

MATT: Well no, you used five last time.

SAM: I thought the first one is just three balls? No? I don’t know how this shit works.

MATT: What does it say on the actual item?

SAM: I don’t have it anymore. I lost it months and months ago.

(All laugh.)

MATT: It’s a good thing it’s in the Dungeon Master’s Guide. God damn it, Sam. Let me know these things, I can get you the item printout.

LIAM: King of improv. Right here.

MATT: Okay. Wand of Fireballs, has seven charges. You can use an action to expend one or more charges to cast the Fireball spell. For one charge, it’s the level three, and for each additional charge it’s more than that. So.

SAM: So I used three charges.

MATT: So you used three charges, you have four charges left, yes.

SAM: Okay, so I’m gonna use three on him.

MATT: Oh, three more? All right. Go for it. That’ll be another 10d6.

TALIESIN: I don’t understand how magic works.

LAURA: I don’t know, I don’t understand that at all.

MATT: We’ll see if he makes his saving throw. It does not make the saving throw, it’s gonna use its legendary resistance to automatically make it.

LAURA: Aw.

MARISHA: Fucking dick.

LAURA: Does that half it again?

MATT: Yeah.

TRAVIS: I have a question.

MATT: What’s your question, Grog?

TRAVIS: I forgot about Retaliation. That’s a new feat I have.

MATT: Yeah, where when it hits you you can use your reaction, but you used your reaction to get an attack of opportunity, so you still hit him.

TRAVIS: Oh, that’s true.

MATT: But essentially, they don’t have to do that now. As long as they hit you, you can use your reaction to just hit them back.

TRAVIS: Hit them back.

MATT: So yeah, as long as you stay within melee–

TRAVIS: As long as I’m within five feet. That count on his two hits against me?

MATT: I mean, you can only do it once, because you only get one reaction.

TRAVIS: One time. Okay.

MATT: And you technically already hit him with that.

TRAVIS: That’s true.

MATT: Same thing, so you used your attack of opportunity, so you can do that whenever anybody hits you.

LAURA: See, you’re fine.

MATT: You’re good, but good to remember.

SAM: Laura, are you like…

LAURA: About to die? Yeah.

TRAVIS: I haven’t used it before.

SAM: All right, that was 29. So 14.

MATT: 29. Halve that, 14 points of fire damage.

LAURA: Like one more hit and I’m unconscious.

MATT: As another Fireball bursts into the air, lighting up the room even brighter for an instant. You can see now as the smoke clears, the front of Saundor’s form is black and beginning to char with each blast of flame. A lot of the oil has dried off and is now coming off in clumps.

LAURA: That’s good.

MATT: Almost like dried mud. All right.

SAM: I will also heal Vex. She’s close enough, right? Yeah? Yeah? Ish?

TALIESIN: Yeah.

SAM: With an inspirational quote.

LAURA: (laughing) No.

SAM: Something Percival once said a long, long time ago.

TALIESIN: Oh no. Oh no.

LAURA: I’m ready.

SAM: Life needs things to live. That’s it. That’s the whole quote.

(All laugh.)

SAM: Earlier tonight. Percival von Fredrickstein von Rollo de Frankenstein de Roll. Credit where credit is due.

LIAM: Put it on a kitten poster.

SAM: Oh, and I’ll do it at level three, so that’s, sorry, not inspiration, healing, healing, healing.

LAURA: Oh, okay.

MATT: That’s right, this is a healing spell, all right.

SAM: So that’s 3d4 plus six.

MARISHA: Oh man.

SAM: 12.

LAURA: Okay, thank you!

TALIESIN: 12 helps.

MATT: All right, Keyleth.

MARISHA: Okay. I am going to march over to that, oh man, to that guy.

TALIESIN: Number two?

MARISHA: Number two. Treant number two.

MATT: All right.

MARISHA: I want to see if I can Tree Stride through him–

MATT: Did you take damage from the fall earlier?

MARISHA: I did.

MATT: Make a concentration check.

SAM: (sings a note)

MARISHA: Even though I have resistance on bludgeoning damage and all that shit?

MATT: Yeah. So just add your constitution modifier.

MARISHA: Oh, my constitution modifier? As a–

MATT: As a fire elemental.

MARISHA: Just my modifier?

MATT: Yes.

MARISHA: Eight.

MATT: Yeah, so Tree Stride has faded. Sorry.

MARISHA: Fuck!

MATT: Concentration spells when you take damage, man.

MARISHA: Well, I still whelm him. That guy in front of me. I still can move into his space.

MATT: Into his space. Go ahead and make your attacks.

MARISHA: That’s my fucking opal dice again. Asshole. Oh look, and that was 18.

SAM: You gotta roll it angry.

LAURA: Oh, maybe that’s the key.

TALIESIN: Maybe you have to roll it angry.

TRAVIS: You’re being so fucking nice.

TALIESIN: Angry die.

LIAM: But she’s always angry.

LAURA: Just like “arrgh” every time you roll it.

MATT: Keyleth must embrace her anger to actually make the dice work for her. I like that.

MARISHA: Two slam attacks.

LAURA: See, that’s Taliesin’s secret, he’s always angry.

TALIESIN: Always angry.

MATT: Are you rolling with advantage?

MARISHA: Do I roll with advantage?

MATT: No.

MARISHA: No.

MATT: Sorry, I saw you roll two dice, so I… those are both attacks at once? Got you.

MARISHA: No, I’m rolling my three dice.

SAM: Two slam attacks, right?

MATT: You have two slam attacks. Did you roll to hit on those?

MARISHA: Oh, wait, no, I don’t think I did.

MATT: That’s what I’m asking.

MARISHA: I forgot that part.

MATT: Do that first.

MARISHA: Oh, man. Two 11s. Which, 17 to hit both times.

SAM: Make a wish.

MATT: Both hit.

MARISHA: Okay, so the first one, um. 15 for the first one.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: All the big ones, they just–

TRAVIS: Love it.

LAURA: They’re pretty but–

MARISHA: And another 15 for the second one.

LAURA: Why would you do that?

MATT: And for the first one, it was…

TALIESIN: That don’t suck. And then he’s on fire now, right?

MARISHA: He’s on fire. Oh, and he takes another d10 because I moved into his space.

MATT: Yeah.

LAURA: Oh, good good good, that’s good.

MATT: And he’s on fire.

MARISHA: So another four points from me.

SAM: (softly sings along with the background music)

MATT: All righty. The flames burn up into his form, he starts shrieking as the flame starts curling up its body, it does not like being on fire. That end your turn?

MARISHA: Yeah.

MATT: All righty. At the end of your turn, Saundor is gonna go ahead and–

SAM: I’m just gonna go ahead and borrow this. Possibly permanently.

TALIESIN: God damn it.

MATT: Is gonna cast another spell.

TRAVIS: Over here, you piece of shit. Nope.

LAURA: Anything?

TRAVIS: I cough weakly.

MATT: The bow’s held aloft, he looks down and sees you on the ground, Vex.

LAURA: Ow.

MATT: And just extends his fingers and says, “You had your choice.” Make a constitution saving throw.

LAURA: Oh, good. 20.

MATT: 20? Success.

(All cheer.)

MATT: So you take half damage.

SAM: Half damage? Wait, what? No damage!

MARISHA: That sounded like a lot of dice.

LAURA: That’s a lot of dice.

LIAM: That’s a fucking miracle is what that is.

TALIESIN: That sounds like a handful of hate. That was like four dice.

TRAVIS: It’s okay, they’re all d1s.

MATT: 31 halved… you take 16 points of necrotic damage.

TALIESIN: You’re good.

MARISHA: You all right? Still up.

MATT: As the Blight spell takes over–

SAM: Whoa.

MATT: – you feel the vines wrap around you and the life force pulled from your form momentarily. Suddenly they crack and break as you shove them off, the air pulled from your lungs, and you gasp for air, holding onto that last little sliver of life you still have.

MARISHA: Two can play at that game, motherfucker.

TALIESIN: You need healing.

MATT: All righty. Now it’s your turn, Vex.

LAURA: Now it’s my turn.

MATT: Yes.

LAURA: Okay. I’m gonna take, can I–

MATT: You’re still prone on the ground, by the way.

LAURA: I stand up.

MATT: All right, so that’s half your movement.

LAURA: Can I take a greater healing potion?

MATT: You can.

LAURA: As a bonus?

MATT: Yep.

LAURA: How much is that?

MATT: Greater healing would be 4d4 plus four.

LAURA: Okay. 11 plus four is 15. Okay.

SAM: Okay, okay.

TRAVIS: It’s that hit back.

LAURA: Okay, that’s good, that’s good. 37, okay. Okay. I guess I will, his Hunter’s Mark is still on him, right?

MATT: Actually, you should make a concentration check because of the Blight damage, which I forgot to take as far as the fall damage earlier as well, so make two concentration checks.

LAURA: Cool.

MATT: Yeah, so add your constitution modifier.

TRAVIS: (laughs) Yeah.

LAURA: 19 for the first. And a natural one for the second.

MATT: Yeah, no, that’s faded, sorry.

LAURA: Okay, cool. Okay, so–

MATT: Actually, Percy, I need you to make a concentration check as well. I need to get better at that.

LAURA: I guess for my– Jesus Christ.

MATT: Two, one for each slam.

TALIESIN: It’s a constitution?

MATT: Yeah, add your constitution modifier.

TALIESIN: Ten.

MATT: Yeah, so the Hex has also faded, sorry.

TALIESIN: Damn it.

LAURA: Fuck. I guess I’m gonna Hail of Thorns him.

MATT: Okay, go for it.

TRAVIS: Well, tit-for-tat, give him something else.

LAURA: Right?

TALIESIN: Just hurt him, just hurt him.

SAM: Yeah, man.

LAURA: Okay, so that’s a regular attack.

MATT: What level are you casting it at?

LAURA: Oh! Right, oh, I can cast it at higher.

MATT: Yes you can.

LAURA: I’m gonna cast it at a level four. Fuck it.

MATT: Go for it! So go ahead and roll the attack.

LAURA: Okay, that is… I roll a d20 and then I add what? My spell attack bonus?

MATT: No, it’s just a regular attack, and if it hits– because you cast the spell as a bonus action onto an arrow, release the arrow, and if it hits–

LAURA: 27.

MATT: 27 hits. So you do damage for the arrow, plus an additional 4d10 damage, yeah.

LAURA: 4d10.

LIAM: Girl!

LAURA: That’s good, that’s good, that’s good. Oh, that’s good, okay. 17 for the actual hit.

MATT: Nice.

LAURA: And then an additional 4d10?

MATT: Yep.

LAURA: Wow. That’s awesome. Hopefully these will be good. 20 additional.

MATT: 20 points of damage to him. Nice. As you release the arrow, it sticks into his chest. (chuckles) “You will–” (explosion sound) It just bursts in his chest, these thorns go spraying into him and the nearby area, just like a pipe bomb went off in his chest, and he’s just like (gasping roar of pain). All right. And do you want to move or stay where you are?

LAURA: I’m gonna stay where I am.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: But I’m gonna hold onto that tree.

MATT: Okay, you grapple onto that tree. End of your turn, he’s gonna use his last legendary action to make one attack with Fenthras back at you out of anger. That is a 25.

LAURA: That hits me.

MATT: All right.

SAM: I’m gonna actually, wait, can I Cutting Words that?

MATT: Sure. What are you gonna do? What do you say?

MARISHA: C'mon, c'mon.

SAM: I’m gonna insult him. I’m gonna call him a (clears throat) “Oi, you fobbing elf-skinned flapdragon! You paunchy ill-breeding lewdster! You unmuscled reeling ripe mumblenews!” Shakespeare insult generator.

MATT: That is fantastic.

TRAVIS: That’s unbelievable.

MATT: That’s really quite good.

LAURA: He’s really old, so that really means a lot to him.

MATT: Unfortunately, they fall on deaf ears, he’s beyond 60 feet from you, and doesn’t hear the insult.

SAM: What? I thought the roof was only like 45 feet up, 50 feet up!

MATT: But you’re over there.

SAM: I yelled it really loud.

TALIESIN: Did you use the cone? No, you can’t use the– oh, you could use the cone.

MATT: Just on the cusp. At an angle, let me see here, 'cause he’s about 55 feet from you and then is 40 feet up, yeah, at the angle, he’s just out of range.

MARISHA: Aw, Pythagoras’s theorem, man, c'mon, that’s right at 60, right?

MATT: Just misses him.

MARISHA: A-squared plus b-squared equals c-squared? C'mon.

SAM: No problem.

MATT: Yeah, he’s just out of the range. You shout it, it echoes, it was a great insult, but he’s too focused–

LAURA: Fuck.

MATT: – and looses the arrow. It manages to catch you for…

TALIESIN: Oh, don’t make that face.

MATT: 15 points of piercing damage and one point of lightning damage.

LAURA: Okay. Okay.

MARISHA: Still up?

LAURA: I’m good.

TALIESIN: Ish.

LAURA: Ish.

TALIESIN: Esque.

MATT: All right. Up at the top of the round. Vax, you’re up.

LIAM: All right, I think from where I’m standing I’m close enough to see that Keyleth is absolutely mauling the tree, she’s right on top of it, right?

MATT: That appears to be the case, yes.

LIAM: With double speed I can get there, yeah?

MATT: Yes, you can.

LIAM: All right, so I’m gonna flit across the floor, come up right behind Keyleth, shoot right around the side of her and stab up and in, one-two-three.

MATT: Go for it.

LIAM: First attack is a 28.

MATT: 28 hits.

LIAM: Second attack is a 29.

MATT: Hits.

LIAM: And the third attack is a 26.

MATT: Hits, all three hit.

LIAM: Sneak attack on the first. Two plus six is eight… 30.

MATT: 30 points.

LIAM: For the first attack, second attack does seven, and the third attack does ten.

MATT: Ten, all righty.

LIAM: Ten and seven.

MATT: You rush up from the side, seeing the inferno engulfing the creature as it’s shrieking in pain, you rush up and just start stabbing it repeatedly, throwing your dagger up into the various exposed parts of its bark form. You can see it’s actually breaking apart from the inside. It’s still holding itself together, but it’s looking pretty rough.

LIAM: Am I burning at all, as I just came up next to flamey here?

MATT: What’s the radius, Keyleth?

LAURA: On fire damage.

MATT: What’s the radius to take damage? When they come within a certain area of you?

MARISHA: No, it’s when I’m–

TALIESIN: Sharing space.

MARISHA: Five feet, maybe? Wait. I think it’s when I’m sharing space.

LIAM: Because that came up in the past, being around her.

MATT: No, you’re right, it doesn’t affect, you’re fine, you’re fine.

LIAM: Woo!

MATT: You’re good. You can feel the heat, it’s emanating from it, definitely. All right. That end your turn, Vax?

LIAM: Yeah.

MATT: Percy, you’re up.

TALIESIN: I just watch this. I put my gun down, pull out my sword, and just start hacking at the tree.

MATT: Go for it.

SAM: What happened?

TALIESIN: That’s 25.

MATT: 25 hits.

TALIESIN: 23.

MATT: Hits.

TALIESIN: And 27.

MATT: Hits. All three hit.

(A dice clings loudly against a glass.)

TALIESIN: That’s a thing that happens now. Okay, and so that’s… (Travis elbows the set, which makes a loud thump noise)

TRAVIS: Jesus. Thunder strikes outside the tree.

LIAM: What was that?

LAURA: That was Travis hitting the side of the room.

TRAVIS: I’m too big for this world.

TALIESIN: 35 points of slashing damage.

MATT: On the first hit? Rolled together?

TALIESIN: All three together.

MATT: I was like, holy shit.

TALIESIN: Yeah, I just went thump-thump-thump.

MATT: Yeah.

TRAVIS: You’re a greater barbarian than I am.

MATT: As it’s on fire and shrieking, you pull the sword out and, seeing the wounds that Vax already left open, you leap up off of one knee, leap up, spin it around, and jam it into the center where you see the bark is actually splitting, and with that, you look down at Keyleth, and together, she forces outward as you dig down with the blade. The treant actually splits up the middle and then just falls to two sides and begins to burn from the inside.

SAM: It’s looking pretty rough.

(All laugh.)

MARISHA: Is he dead? He’s dead.

LAURA: That’s good, that’s good.

MATT: He is dead and on the ground there, just burning.

SAM: Loot the body. Might get some acorns.

LAURA: So much lumber.

MARISHA: Let’s make s'mores after this!

MATT: Percy, do you want to move or do you stay where you are?

TALIESIN: I’m going to move, I’m going to charge north, just to split the group up a bit.

MATT: Over here?

TALIESIN: Yeah, actually if I can hug the edge a little closer–

MATT: Like there, or around this way, you mean?

TALIESIN: Around that way, and then ten feet away from the wall.

MATT: Ten feet away.

TALIESIN: And then, bonus action to put my mask on in case anything more gassy happens.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: And then I’ve got a grit left, so fuck it, I’m gonna– oh no, because I can’t switch weapons fast enough. Never mind. I’m gonna call it.

LIAM: I have a question, and I could be wrong–

MATT: Yes?

LIAM: I thought Percy gave me that mask.

TALIESIN: I took it back from you last game.

MATT: He did.

LIAM: Oh right, I forgot.

TALIESIN: 'Cause you weren’t there.

MATT: You weren’t there and he was walking through the swamp, yeah.

LIAM: That is true.

TALIESIN: Yeah, you can have it back if you want, I just took it for the swamp.

LIAM: Nah, it looks good on you.

MATT: It’s now count 20.

LAURA: Any sign of umber-werewolfy–

TRAVIS: Ukurat.

LAURA: Ukurat?

MATT: So. First you watch as a low mist begins to slowly filter into the room. Everyone in this radius here, it’s gonna be Keyleth, Vax, Percy, and Vex, I need you all to make a wisdom saving throw.

SAM: Oh.

MARISHA: Wisdom.

MATT: Yes, as the fog fills the–

LAURA: Natural 20!

TALIESIN: 19.

SAM: Wow.

LIAM: Best wisdom roll of my life.

SAM: What’d you get, Liam?

LIAM: 21, which was huge for me.

MATT: 21.

LAURA: Natural 20.

MARISHA: 18 plus 11, so 29.

TALIESIN: 23.

MATT: Jesus Christ.

TRAVIS: It’s just on that smog thing.

MATT: You feel like the fog as it fills your senses begins to cloud your mind and your vision begins to blur, but then you shake it from your mind and focus in and it has no effect on you.

LAURA: Yes!

MATT: Lot of fucking help that did. At which point, the area that it closed before, where you guys entered, you hear this loud creaking sound and the breaking of wood and bark.

TALIESIN: Yeah!

MATT: Suddenly you watch as it’s forced open as these two feral claws (growls).

(All cheer.)

MATT: And Ukurat darts inside from the entrance. Looks around, looks up. “Where’s my quarry?”

LAURA: Up, up, up!

MATT: Looks up and sees Saundor. “So be it." And begins jumping onto the wall and climbing and running up the side of the actual–

TALIESIN: Parkour.

MATT: Parkour, indeed.

SAM: You could cut me out first! Okay, just go, it’s okay.

MATT: Gets up and runs, and he only manages to get just up to where we’ll say where Saundor is there in his turn.

LAURA: Look at how big they both are.

MATT: But he’s now right up in the face of Saundor. Saundor’s like, (grunts).

SAM: Sic 'em.

MATT: All right, that ends his turn, 20, Grog, you’re up.

TRAVIS: I’ve been so taken out of this fight, it’s driving me crazy. I’m hanging from vines, I see Wolfman come up, I’m not gonna be left out of this. Can I try and Tarzan my way over into the fray?

All: Yes!

MATT: Yes. This will be the majority of your movement and your action to do so.

TRAVIS: Just get me there, baby.

MATT: All right. So you, go ahead and make an athletics check.

TRAVIS: Okay. With advantage.

MATT: With advantage. At disadvantage because of your skill check, so just regular attack.

LAURA: No.

MATT: What’d you roll?

TRAVIS: A one.

TALIESIN: Watch out for that tree.

MATT: Getting your momentum, you pull back and your feet catch the edge, and you push off, and you swing out, and as you reach for the next vine (snapping sound).

MARISHA: Oh my god.

LAURA: Ohh. Boo.

MATT: You plummet to the ground. That puts you, you take eight points of bludgeoning damage and fall prone.

TRAVIS: Okay. And prone. That’s probably more insulting.

LIAM: Are you halfway done yet, Groggy?

TRAVIS: Because it fails, does that still take up all my action? All my whole thing?

MATT: I mean, you still have your bonus action.

TRAVIS: To get up?

MATT: No, half your movement, but yeah, you won’t be able to this turn, so.

TRAVIS: I’ll cry a little.

LAURA: Do you have any other bonus, anything you can do for a bonus action?

TRAVIS: Do I keep my rage, because I fell and took damage?

MATT: Uh. Let me double-check the specifics for the rage here, if it’s, just to make sure.

TRAVIS: I think it has to be an attack.

MARISHA: I mean, he’s gotta be pretty angry.

TALIESIN: Yeah, I’d be angry.

MARISHA: I’d be angry.

LAURA: Yeah, I’d think that would piss him the fuck off.

MATT: No, you took damage, so it maintains.

(All cheer.)

MATT: You’re really angry now, you’re like "Fuck this!”

TRAVIS: I’m good.

MATT: All right. So. That ends Grog’s turn. It is now Saundor’s turn. Saundor, who is looking at this sudden large werewolf entity that shows up out of nowhere knows he has to get away from this, and is gonna go ahead and attempt to begin by vine-walking into the, well he heals a little bit first, sorry. And then he’s gonna go ahead and vine-walk into the wall. Ukurat does get an attack of opportunity on him. That does hit, a 27. So he takes 15 points of slashing damage. And vanishes back into the wall and emerges on this side here.

MARISHA: Exactly where Grog was? That’s cool.

MATT: Over here.

LAURA: So close to where Grog was. Damn it.

MATT: From there, he’s gonna go ahead and make three attacks with Fenthras. First one’s gonna be at you, Vex.

SAM: My God, better miss.

MATT: That is a 20.

LAURA: 20 is my armor class.

MATT: Aw. You suffer 15 points of piercing damage and four points of thunder damage, or, uh, lightning damage.

LAURA: 19?

MATT: 19.

LAURA: Cool.

SAM: You’re still alive!

LAURA: I’m still alive.

SAM: Wow. That’s impressive.

MATT: Shhnk. The first arrow hits you and you take the damage and lean against the tree, and you’re still standing. He goes, (angry roar), pulls back and takes another shot.

TALIESIN: God damn it.

LAURA: Can I shout out, “I was wrong! Uh… you’re so dreamy!”

MATT: Same exact roll, 20, hits you again.

SAM: Damn it.

MATT: Natural nine on that one. This one is going to be… that is eight plus three, eight points of piercing damage plus three points of lightning, so.

MARISHA: She’s down.

MATT: With that, Vex falls unconscious onto the ground. With his third and final shot of the round, he’s gonna look down at, I’m gonna say at Percy, who’s right below. Take a shot at Percy. Natural 20.

MARISHA: What? What?

TRAVIS: Wow.

MATT: It works against you, sometimes.

TALIESIN: Bastard.

MARISHA: Fucker’s having a good round.

MATT: 23 points of piercing damage and four points of lightning.

TALIESIN: I’m gonna do a missile snare.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: Yes!

TALIESIN: 23 points of piercing damage?

MATT: Correct.

TALIESIN: That’s gonna be 13 points of piercing damage.

MATT: Okay, plus four lightning, so 17.

TALIESIN: And can I use that four, I’m gonna take that four lightning, can that hit the glove?

MATT: We can say you bring up the glove and it does–

TALIESIN: I mean, like, hitting, so–

MATT: Yeah, it takes the damage, but you kind of bring it up instinctually and it does seem to rev some charge to it.

TALIESIN: All right, so that’s rolling now, that’s in play.

MATT: There you go.

TALIESIN: Thank you.

MATT: All right. That ends his turn. The treants are gone. Let’s see. That’s gonna bring us to Scanlan and Keyleth.

SAM: You wanna do–

MARISHA: I don’t know if I can be grappled. We can Dimension Door, though, I can try and take you–

SAM: Nah, I can’t do that to you.

MARISHA: I can try coming to get you undone.

SAM: I can’t Dimension Door you.

MARISHA: No, I mean, I mean burn you from the vines.

SAM: Oh.

MARISHA: Like get you ungrappled. I don’t know if, so, question. Could Bigby’s Hand toss a fire elemental’s ass?

MATT: Yeah, I mean, you have some sort of physicality to you, it’s just somewhat fluid in its structure.

MARISHA: So it’s like a magical hand meets magical fire elemental could kinda work?

MATT: Yeah.

TRAVIS: Like a Molotov cocktail.

MARISHA: All right. Here’s what I’m gonna do. I’m gonna go over to Scanlan and I’m gonna burn the vines around him that are holding him in.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: Is that your action, though?

MATT: That would be your action, yeah.

MARISHA: That’s my action?

SAM: Don’t do that, then. You need to, no, you need to attack–

LAURA: Yeah, don’t use your action to–

SAM: Fuck that. I’m fine.

MATT: So as you run up to Scanlan, he’s telling you this. What are you doing?

SAM: Leave me, I’m fine, this is cozy.

MARISHA: I go, “Okay.” And I hold my action until I wait for Scanlan. I wait for Scanlan.

MATT: Okay, so you move over there and you hold your action waiting for Scanlan to…

MARISHA: To–

SAM: To throw you.

MARISHA: To throw me.

MATT: Okay. All right. Scanlan.

SAM: I will heal Vex with my bonus action first, right, she’s still within range, yes?

MATT: Yeah.

SAM: (singing) I’m… I don’t know. I’m giving you everything, all that health will bring, this is true.

TRAVIS: Fucking Spice Girls.

LAURA: Is that Spice Girls?

SAM: (singing) And all I want from you is a promise you will kiss me forever.

MARISHA: It was girl power that healed you.

LAURA: Girl power healed me. I feel it.

MARISHA: I’m feeling it, yeah. Spice magic.

SAM: (singing) I’m - I’m! - giving you everything, all that health I bring, yeah– All right, so that’s at level one.

MATT: So 1d4 plus six.

SAM: Eight.

LAURA: Awesome.

MATT: So you heal eight. You come to consciousness again on the ground, face-down, you can see the sludge sort of filling in your nostrils–

LAURA: (gasps) Spice Girls?

MARISHA: This is my jam.

SAM: And then I will cast Bigby’s Hand.

MATT: All righty. Next to Keyleth.

SAM: Next to Keyleth, and cup her gently.

MARISHA: I turn into a fireball myself.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: And just sort of cup and fling.

TRAVIS: Cup that ball.

MARISHA: Very gently.

TALIESIN: As you’ve cupped so many before.

SAM: Yes.

MATT: Okay. Roll a d20 plus eight.

SAM: What is that for?

MATT: That is the strength of Bigby’s Hand throwing the elemental.

TALIESIN: (singing) I believe in you, you can do the thing.

SAM: 24.

MATT: 24. You lob the elemental in a wide arc. It makes it most of the way, and then falls past and lands on the ground there. You are by him. Not quite a hit on that one, unfortunately.

MARISHA: God damn it!

MATT: But you do take five points of bludgeoning damage from the fall.

LAURA: Ooh, nice.

MATT: A 25 or higher would have got to him. He’s a long ways away!

MARISHA: Five points halved, or was that–

MATT: That’s halved.

SAM: Hey, you’ve still got your attack.

MARISHA: Did I?

TRAVIS: Yeah, you’ve been thrown.

MATT: You held your action, so you can still use your action to do something if you can.

TRAVIS: Can you?

MARISHA: Can I–

SAM: Just throw a fireball?

MARISHA: I can’t do that.

SAM: Aren’t you Johnny Storm?

MARISHA: I gotta be there.

MATT: Yeah, it’s a melee thing.

MARISHA: Do I still have any movement?

MATT: No, just your action. To get through, I’d say… what’s your speed as an elemental?

MARISHA: 50.

MATT: 50? It took you 25 to get there, you still have 25 feet, I would say.

MARISHA: Can I start climbing 25 feet up the wall?

MATT: Make an athletics check.

MARISHA: Okay.

MATT: Using the strength of the fire elemental. Add your strength modifier.

MARISHA: Not good.

MATT: What’d you roll?

MARISHA: Five.

MATT: Five? You start climbing up, you get maybe five feet up the wall, but already the impact of the fall and most of your round exhausted you for this one pass.

MARISHA: Okay, well then I’m gonna take the rest of my action, I’m just going to angrily slam into the tree, and see if I can catch the tree up under him on fire.

MATT: Okay, cool. Ending your turn, Keyleth. Vex, you’re up.

LAURA: I’m up?

MATT: Yeah, you’re conscious, you’re on the ground.

SAM: Run away.

LAURA: Uh, oh right, you’re on the ground. Can I, ah, fuck. Okay.

MATT: Actually, hold on. Sorry, I’m gonna be a dick here.

TALIESIN: Really?

MATT: He’s getting his legendary actions back at the end of Keyleth’s turn, watching Scanlan heal you, he’s gonna use another one of his legendary actions to take an attack on you as you come to consciousness on the ground.

LAURA: You’re an asshole, Saundor.

MATT: He does attack at disadvantage, though, because you are prone. That puts him at a 16.

LAURA: Yay!

(Loud computer noise in the background.)

MATT: He fires an arrow, but it hits the ground inches from your face. You see the spike impact and then turn to dust.

LAURA: Youuu.

MATT: All right, so take your turn.

LAURA: Fuck. I’m gonna… it’s useless, I can’t do anything.

SAM: Heal yourself.

LAURA: I know, but my heal is an action, and then I can’t attack.

SAM: Do you have any more potions?

LAURA: Um. I’ve got, oh, I’ve got a superior healing potion, that’s better than a greater, right?

MATT: Yeah.

LAURA: Okay. I’ll use that.

SAM: Is that like a venti?

MATT: Yeah, that is 8d4 plus eight.

SAM: Whoa!

LAURA: Okay.

MATT: That is one of the pricy healing potions.

LAURA: Oh, well, okay.

TALIESIN: Burn it!

LAURA: Ten…

MARISHA: That would’ve been so cool had it worked.

TALIESIN: I know. Had it worked.

LAURA: 20 plus eight… 28.

MATT: 28 you heal, yeah.

SAM: That’s the last time I listen to you.

TALIESIN: It was a good plan.

LAURA: Okay, so I’m back at 36. Okay. I’m gonna run and duck behind Grog.

MATT: Well, you get up, which is half your movement, so you have five, 15 more feet, so you can move three squares.

LAURA: Can I get to Grog?

MATT: No. You can get there, is the closest you can get.

LAURA: All right, I’ll go to there and then I will, I’m gonna Hail of Thorns him again.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: Oh wait, is that–

MATT: No, your Hail of Thorns is a bonus action, and you already used your heal spell, so no.

LAURA: A bonus action, okay. Then I’m gonna, so I’ve got two attacks on him.

MATT: Yeah, you do.

LAURA: I’m gonna hit him with two attacks.

MATT: Go for it, roll for the attacks.

LAURA: I get another flaming bowstring, I’ve got one more flaming bowstring.

MATT: Vax, you’re up next, by the way. Go for it.

SAM: Someday Travis will attack again.

MATT: The first one is the flaming bowstring.

TRAVIS: Will he?

SAM: It’s been like eight weeks.

MATT: 17. The flaming shot unfortunately goes wide, slams into the wall next to him and the flame curls up.

LAURA: Okay, so 23 on the second hit.

MATT: Second hit does hit, so roll damage.

LAURA: 15.

MATT: 15 points of damage? All righty.

LAURA: And then I’m gonna duck behind the tree as much as I can.

MATT: Well, that was your full movement was to get there, so.

LAURA: Can I not use my full movement to get–

MATT: To get behind the tree? Hmm, you wouldn’t really have much of a shot at him. I guess he–

LAURA: Could I have shot him before I moved?

MATT: You would’ve been there, suuuure. I normally don’t let that retroactively happen.

LAURA: Okay okay okay.

MATT: I’m gonna say you’re halfway through. You’re sort of there.

LAURA: Okay.

MATT: All right. So. That brings us to Vax. You’re up.

LIAM: Vex just healed herself, right?

MATT: She did, yes.

LIAM: All right. All right. And is he within 60 feet of me?

MATT: Actually, uh, he is, but at the end of Vex’s turn he’s going to take a second shot.

LAURA: What? What? Why?

MATT: No, he’s gonna use his other two legendary actions to cast another spell.

LAURA: He just has so much.

TALIESIN: Asshole!

MATT: Angry that she gets up and runs off to the side, he says, “You stay DOWN.” I need you to make another constitution saving throw.

LAURA: Jeez Louise, come on, man! Saving throw?

MATT: Yes.

LAURA: 19.

MATT: 19? What’s your constitution modifier?

LAURA: Zero, but I have a +2 on all saving throws with my ring.

MATT: That’s true. Nice. All righty. That is…

TALIESIN: God damn it.

TRAVIS: Yeah, when it’s like, when he’s playing fucking Applejacks back there.

MARISHA: I know.

LAURA: Is this another Blight, did he cast Blight again? Motherfuck.

MATT: 41 points of necrotic damage, halved to 20, you take 20.

LAURA: Oh, god.

SAM: You out again?

MARISHA: You’re down again, aren’t you?

LAURA: No, it was halved to 20, so I’m 16.

SAM: Hey!

MATT: But a second Blight is used.

MARISHA: Blight’s nasty.

TALIESIN: Blight’s nasty.

MATT: All right. Vax, now it’s your turn.

LIAM: He’s within 60 feet of me?

MATT: He would be, yes.

LIAM: All right. And is there anyone around me? I just can’t see too well from here.

MATT: There’s people around you, but there’s nobody next to him.

LIAM: Next to him, no, I know. Fuck it. I’m gonna burn a bonus action and shoot out the wings and I’m gonna fly into his face and stab into each side of his neck.

TALIESIN: Fuck yeah!

MATT: All righty. All of a sudden, the giant raven wings streak out from each side of you and the air in the entirety of the room begins to swirl around you, your hair gets tossed, as the giant wings begin to push him into the air. The raven-like dagger-wielding champion of the Raven Queen leaps up and finds himself face-to-face with Saundor, blades out. Go ahead and make your attacks.

MARISHA: The breeze from his wings kinda stokes my fire elemental form a little bit and I’m kind of into it.

MATT: There you go. Yeah you are! Vax, go for it.

LIAM: 28 on the first.

MATT: Hits.

LIAM: 29 on the second.

MATT: Hits.

LIAM: As I stab into both sides of his neck, I say, If you want to get to my sister you gotta get through me. Stab-stab. First one is ten, second one is eight.

MATT: All righty. As you jam both blades into the side, the flames kind of curling up from the hit of one, the poison dagger jammed into the other, the head descends and the mouth opens and from the inside you can see the semblance of the human-like face you saw before come peek through, leaning out, almost like the queen alien’s secondary mouth. It kind of leans into your face, and the grin curls up in this evil smile. “I’ll take both of you at this rate. There’s only so many betrayals one can survive.” It clinks back into the head, the jaw closes. That finishes your turn, Vax.

LIAM: Yep.

MATT: Percy, you’re up. At the end of Vax’s turn… no, he can’t, he already used his spell, you’re right.

TALIESIN: All right. Okay.

MARISHA: This guy had a rough breakup or something, man.

TALIESIN: No breakup is that rough. I’m going to, I’m switching back to Bad News, and I’m going to reload and I’m going to try and, got that last grit, I’m gonna just try and get him to drop the bow.

MATT: Okay.

MARISHA: Come on, Percy.

TALIESIN: Part one. That’ll do. 24.

MATT: 24 hits.

TALIESIN: He has to make a strength saving throw.

MATT: Okay, that is a two, he’s gonna use a legendary resistance, the second one, to make the save.

TALIESIN: Made the save using a legendary resistance.

MATT: Yes.

TALIESIN: Okay, that’s fine, don’t care.

MARISHA: (laughing) Don’t care.

TALIESIN: That’ll do. That’s 20 points of damage.

MATT: All right.

SAM: He has to make a strength check?

TALIESIN: He has to make a, it’s strength saving throw.

SAM: Saving.

TALIESIN: Yeah, he makes it.

SAM: Because I had a Cutting Words a while back.

MATT: Right, but it means he has disadvantage, but even if he fails, which he would’ve in that case, he still gets to make it automatically as part of the legendary resistance.

SAM: So that’s negated my Cutting Words as well.

MATT: For a legendary resistance, it does. Which is why if you can burn through those early, then they’re a little more vulnerable.

TALIESIN: And just because nothing else seems to be happening, I’m just gonna burn my Action Surge and just keep plowing into him for two more shots.

MATT: All right. How much damage did the first one do?

TALIESIN: That did 20 points of damage.

MATT: Nice! (gunshot sound)

TALIESIN: Taking another shot, that’s 29.

MATT: Hits.

TALIESIN: That’s 28 points of damage.

MATT: Three hits. Go ahead and roll the other two damage, now.

TALIESIN: Hm?

MATT: So you hit with all three, so.

TALIESIN: No, I’ve been doing damage.

MATT: Oh, those were the damage.

TALIESIN: Yeah.

MATT: Oh, I’m sorry.

TALIESIN: Sorry. That’s 20 points of damage and 28 points of damage. 22… wait. 20 points of damage on the first attack.

MATT: Yeah.

TALIESIN: Attack I just did was 28 points of damage.

MATT: 28, sorry, all right, and then the third one.

TALIESIN: And then the third one.

MATT: Roll to hit.

TALIESIN: That hits, that’s a 31.

MATT: All righty.

MARISHA: Do you crit on a 19?

TALIESIN: I do not crit on a 19.

MARISHA: Fuck. That’s a good roll, though, that’s a good roll.

TALIESIN: 18 points of damage.

MATT: Nice. So (three gunshots) you can see now he’s starting to sag as he hangs outside of the wall with the daggers still held in him by Vax, both impacts, each blast hitting the side of his torso, you can see now the wooden-armored exterior is shattered and there’s just this writhing mass of dark veiny vines holding his torso together. He’s looking pretty rough.

TALIESIN: Lay into him! And I’m gonna run and try and get some cover on the ent. In the dead-ent. Dead-ent dead-ent.

SAM: (to the tune of the Pink Panther theme) Dead-ent dead-ent–

SAM, TALIESIN, and MARISHA: Dead-ent dead-ent dead-ent dead-ent–

MATT: Grog, you’re up.

LIAM: (slightly delayed) Dead-ent.

TRAVIS: All right, can I stand up?

MATT: Yes.

TRAVIS: And I casually walk over so that I’m standing between Vex and Saundor, right in front of Vex, like a human shield.

MATT: Right there? Yes.

TRAVIS: And I look up and I’m like, “Jesus, this is fucking stupid. I’ve broken some hearts in my time, but you, stupid Romeo, are taking it way too far. Guess what? NOBODY CARES.” And I take the javelin of lightning and I throw it at him.

(All cheer.)

MATT: Slick. So let’s go ahead and roll for that.

SAM: Javelin of lightning.

TALIESIN: Very very fair.

MATT: Let me see what you have to do for that. Do you have the item rules there?

TRAVIS: I do have it here.

MATT: What does it say?

TRAVIS: If it hits, they have to make a DC 17 dexterity saving throw. If it hits, it’s a 4d6 lightning. Half if they make it.

MATT: Right. So go ahead and roll to hit, what was the hit?

TALIESIN: And he burned a legendary save.

TRAVIS: It was 24.

SAM: He burned two of them.

TALIESIN: Yeah.

MATT: It hits, go ahead and roll damage.

TRAVIS: 4d6.

SAM: He didn’t use any sort of legendary thing, Matt?

MATT: Well, when you hurl it, you don’t roll to hit with it. Five feet wide, it extends out from you to the target within 120 feet. Each creature in the line, excluding you and the target, must make a DC… no, you’re right, I read too far ahead. Yeah, you’re good, so 4d6 lightning damage.

TRAVIS: Nice. Six, eight, seven… 12.

MATT: 12 points of lightning damage?

TRAVIS: 12 points of lightning damage.

MATT: How do you want to do this?

(All scream and cheer.)

LAURA: Fuck, yeah!

MARISHA: Yeah, Grog!

SAM: You got the kill?

MARISHA: Yes!

SAM: You didn’t do anything!

TALIESIN: Walking around like an idiot the entire game.

TRAVIS: Chasing him around the room.

SAM: You fell five times!

MARISHA: You basically killed him with bro-shame.

LIAM: And that cheeky line about romance.

TRAVIS: I know, fuck! I throw it and hopefully get it to go right in his mouth as he’s trying to have a comeback. And I’ll just look bewildered that it worked.

MATT: As you just shove it upward–

LIAM: Can he use his bonus action to just shove his sunglasses up at the end?

MATT: As you chuck the javelin, you see it burst forth with lightning-based propulsion magic. It sinks into the center of the jaw, which the eyes go wide, the jaw hangs open loosely, and you can see the secondary face of Saundor inside, the javelin pierced through his jaw now, his eyes wide, and you see the hand reach up to try and grab the back of the vines. As he does, the javelin bursts into a shockwave of electrical energy, scattering his body into a hundred pieces across the wall, falling off. Vax, you are pushed back from the force of it, tumbling, manage to catch yourself in the air with your wings, still flying, as the rest of Saundor’s body just comes clattering to the ground in chunks.

LAURA: I jump up on Grog’s back. What the fuck!

TRAVIS: I honestly did not expect that to happen.

TALIESIN: I’m gonna walk up and grab–

LAURA: Oh my god.

MATT: The javelin clatters to the ground.

TALIESIN: Grab the bow, real quick.

TRAVIS: I go get the javelin, because it’s obviously worth keeping.

SAM: I instinctually throw Keyleth in the air.

MARISHA: And I go for it, too.

MATT: You manage to dig yourself out of your vines and rush up to Keyleth.

SAM: No, no, with the hand.

MATT: With the hand, oh yeah. The hand darts over, grabs the fire elemental, and just kinda (sound of throwing and catching).

MARISHA: Heeheehee.

TRAVIS: Can I run back to Vex and offer her a healing potion, unless someone can do better?

LAURA: Oh, I can cast Cure Wounds on myself.

TRAVIS: Are you all right?

LAURA: I’m fine. Thank you. I was really regretting that, attacking him, I thought maybe I should’ve just said yes and dealt with it.

TRAVIS: What, become a corpse bride?

TALIESIN: He was terrible.

LAURA: I don’t know, I just felt terrible.

TALIESIN: He was terrible.

MARISHA: I drop my fire elemental form.

TALIESIN: That was a terrible person.

TRAVIS: It’s all right.

LAURA: Thanks, Grog.

TRAVIS: You did… you did good.

LAURA: Thanks, so did you.

MATT: A loud impact sounds as Ukurat lands.

SAM: Oh, thank god.

LAURA: I’m gonna cast Cure Wounds on myself before anything else happens. As high of a level as I can, which is level three.

MATT: Go for it.

SAM: Does my Song of Rest need to be during a short rest?

MATT: Yes.

TALIESIN: We have a mansion that’s within walking distance. And if we have to, we will run.

TRAVIS: I’m gonna hand her the potion anyway, as she’s standing there, so.

MATT: Okay. As she finishes healing herself, Ukurat walks up towards the center of the room where you’re standing next to her, and just kind of pushes the currently now-smoldering body of the treant to the side. “A little late on the call to arms. I’m just sad I missed most of the fight.”

TRAVIS: Didn’t want you to miss out on all the action.

MATT: Got a couple licks in. Well. I guess this calls us even.

LAURA: Yeah.

SAM: Thanks for coming.

LAURA: Thank you for joining us.

MATT: Be safe.

LAURA: You too.

TRAVIS: Wait. What will you do now?

MATT: “My business is my own. As is yours. I’ll find my people. We’ll find a home for us. Now. You’ve done your task. Leave before you plummet into any further unknown dangers, foolish people.” He turns around and leaps towards the opening that he carved and crawls out of it and just disappears.

MARISHA: You know, from him I think that was a compliment.

TALIESIN: It kind of was.

MARISHA: Yeah.

TRAVIS: He’s so awesome.

TALIESIN: It is sort of sad that we didn’t catch any theater.

LAURA: Well, there’s still time.

TRAVIS: Can I try and jump through the hole like he did?

MATT: You reach over and leap through the hole. Catch it. Yeah, it’s still open, it’s like pulled open and actually–

TRAVIS: I don’t make it all the way in, though, do I? It’s up there.

MATT: Oh, no, the hole that he pulled in was the entrance you walked in to the base.

TRAVIS: Oh, good.

MATT: So you get there.

TRAVIS: Little colonoscopy?

MATT: Little bit, yeah.

MARISHA: I go up to Vex and I just grab her arm and I say, Don’t let any man– or anyone for that matter– make you feel like you need them to be great. Because you don’t. I’m not good with words.

LAURA: That was wonderful, Keyleth. Thank you.

MARISHA: But he was an asshole.

LAURA: No, yeah, he was really… right?

MARISHA: And I don’t want you ever dating an asshole.

LAURA: (laughs) Thank you.

MARISHA: He wasn’t good enough, he was mean.

TALIESIN: I’m going to saunter over.

LAURA: What?

TALIESIN: (in an exaggeratedly evil voice) We’re a lot alike, you and I. Bleaaah. (normal voice) What an asshole, Jesus.

MARISHA: (in an exaggeratedly evil voice) You drug your friends to their doom.

TRAVIS: Can I walk over to Vax while they’re making a show?

MARISHA: We keep making a show.

TRAVIS: Quietly, I say, What was he talking about with the bloody dagger?

LIAM: Sorry, Feywild interference, what was that?

TRAVIS: What was he saying about the bloody dagger when he was talking to Vex?

LIAM: You know, it’s interesting, I understand exactly zero percent of what the DM was saying while he was in-character as that particular character due to the nature of Skype and microphones.

TRAVIS: Yes.

LIAM: So I was faking understanding the whole time, and then picked it up in retrospect listening to Laura’s responses. I missed it.

TRAVIS: Yeah.

LAURA: Who’s this Laura you’re speaking of?

(All laugh.)

LIAM: I don’t know. I don’t know anything.

LAURA: That’s okay. It’s fine that you didn’t hear. He said nothing about a bloody dagger. Nothing at all.

LIAM: We should find that dagger. No question.

TALIESIN: Is there anything other than the bow worth looting on this terrible person, since I’m rummaging through his…

MATT: Make an investigation check.

TALIESIN: Right.

TRAVIS: Well, let’s not downplay the bow.

TALIESIN: I’ve got it already.

SAM: Hey, guys, I’m still trapped in the vines!

LAURA: Oh, Scanlan! I run over and I start pulling the vines off of him. Holy shit, Scanlan, I’m so sorry. Thank you for healing me.

SAM: Certainly.

TRAVIS: Are you in fine form? Should I hit you until you–

SAM: No, don’t hit me. I’ll sing more Spice Girls.

LAURA: That was really lovely.

SAM: Thank you.

LAURA: Spice Girls is so empowering.

MATT: So, you pull the vines from him, as you inspect around, too, you notice there’s not much really of worth here. This home is mostly natural in its base. However, the slow trickle of the black oil-like substance has ceased. Most of it’s grown thicker and stopped, and it just feels like the whole place went into this sudden stasis, like the slow crawl of everything nearby, the vines, everything stopped.

LAURA: We didn’t kill the whole forest, did we?

SAM: Little bit.

MARISHA: I drop to my knees and do a Commune with Nature.

MATT: Okay.

MARISHA: Do I gather a different energy from the surrounding plants?

MATT: You still feel the ever-present bloom of life and life-forces surrounding you entirely. You do feel a wave of relaxation. There is a sort of general radial sigh that is slowly trickling from the center of the tree.

MARISHA: Do I still sense the presence of Saundor?

MATT: No.

MARISHA: Do, last question. Does the tree seem happier? What is the tree gonna do from here on out? What are you gonna do, tree?

MATT: Exist.

MARISHA: Exist, cool. Everything seems great.

TRAVIS: Cool. Since I got the killing blow, can I chop this tree down now?

LAURA: This whole tree?

MARISHA: This big one?

SAM: No, it’s just a tree now, I think it’s okay.

MARISHA: Yeah, you know, the tree just told me that it actually feels much better, so.

TRAVIS: I get to chop a tree at some point.

LAURA: You see those trees over there?

TRAVIS: They’re already down.

LAURA: No no no, I see it twitching, Grog, it’s definitely twitching.

LIAM: We’re going to Vasselheim soon, you can cut down a lot of trees there. It’s cold there, they could use the firewood. Soon.

MARISHA: Trees that won’t take it personal.

TALIESIN: I know that’s not nearly as much fun, but it is available.

TRAVIS: This is true.

LIAM: What are we talking about? Vex'ahlia.

LAURA: What?

LIAM: I’m fucking curious. Pull that bowstring.

LAURA: Well, I don’t have it.

TALIESIN: Toss it.

SAM: Are you sure Vex'ahlia should get it?

TALIESIN: I know, I was thinking that.

LAURA: Do you need it, Scanlan, do you think–

SAM: I think maybe I should get it, I fought bravely in the last fight.

LAURA: You did. Maybe Grog should get it, I mean, he did get the killing blow.

LIAM: Scanlan, I think you would make a very good arrow for it.

(All laugh.)

TRAVIS: I could get down with that.

MATT: You hold it in your hand and look at it. The handle is wrapped with a very tight dark brown, black leather, and at the cusp of where the handle itself is and where the arrow is notched is this nice golden-bronze cap-like metallic inlay. The rest of the bow itself is this curved, almost deep verdant green jungle vine-type texture to it, where it builds on itself like a series of natural leaf scales. And as it curves into the ends of the actual recurve bow, as you hold it, it flexes and shifts on its own. It actually looks, as you hold it it almost seems to tighten and then relax, and then as you reach back an arrow, it goes taut, and the string goes extremely tight. As you pull the arrow back, it’s like no strength involved at all.

LAURA: What?

MATT: It pulls back on its own, and as soon as you release, the arrow that you fire shoots off at an incredible speed and the actual bow itself flexes with such intensity that it makes this roaring whoosh sound with each shot.

TALIESIN: Well, that’s exciting.

LAURA: That’s really badass.

TRAVIS: You wanna shoot me with it?

LAURA: I wanna shoot everything with it.

LIAM: Do you still need muscle strength to pull it, or is it just easy-peasy now?

LAURA: It’s kind of easy-peasy. I guess anybody could pull this.

LIAM: You’re going to have to start doing pushups, then.

LAURA: (laughs) I guess I did say–

MARISHA: Do you want to hit something? Here, I’m–

SAM: Do you want to shoot me? I’ll be okay.

LAURA: I’m not going to shoot you.

SAM: I’ll be okay, you shot me before.

LAURA: No.

SAM: Right here.

TALIESIN: You don’t know what it does.

LAURA: Oh, look at that scar, it’s beautiful.

TRAVIS: Can we get out of this fucking tree first?

LAURA: You’re right, we should probably get out of here, maybe.

SAM: Guys. Life needs things to live.

(All laugh.)

TALIESIN: I had not had my coffee, I was tired, there was no bacon…

SAM: And we are those things. I think we’ve all learned a lot today.

LAURA: We’ve learned so much.

TALIESIN: I hate you so much.

TRAVIS: I walk out of the tree.

TALIESIN: I need fresh air. I’m done.

LAURA: What does it look like outside of the tree? Is the black muck still black mucky?

MATT: I mean, the whole forest is still just coated in this horrible thick liquid.

TRAVIS: Did you loot Saundor’s body?

TALIESIN: I did, but it wasn’t much.

MATT: But when you approached and you inspected the tree, there was just an ever-constant flow of it, of this thick molasses-type material, just slowly drifting down the tree. You look down and a lot of it seems to have stopped and is hardening, almost like an amber.

LAURA: Okay.

TRAVIS: Like Jurassic Park.

TALIESIN: This is good.

SAM: (cracks up)

LAURA: Yeah, at least it’s not burying the forest anymore.

TALIESIN: No, we did very well.

SAM: Sweet.

TALIESIN: Let’s go home.

MARISHA: You guys ready to go home?

TALIESIN: I’m, well. Do we wanna, is there a reason to stay or is it time to go home?

LAURA: Let’s get out of here.

MARISHA: I think I’ve seen enough of the Feywild for now.

TALIESIN: I’m quite pleased.

SAM: We could stop at that hut on the way out.

MARISHA: No, no, no.

LAURA: No no. Not.

SAM: We never found the theater.

LIAM: The theater, the theater! What about the theater?

SAM: You know what we could do–

LAURA: Sorry, brother, I think we have other things to attend to.

SAM: You know what we could do, Vex'ahlia, we could go about 200 feet away from the hut and you could just–fink!–and see what it does and then we’ll shift out of there.

LAURA: And then we just shoot out of the Feywild. How about no.

SAM: All right.

TRAVIS: Anybody want to climb to the top of the 200-foot tree to see what the rest of the land looks like?

MATT: (clapping)

LIAM: I fly up there–

SAM: Oh! Wait, someone’s here.

MATT: You hear slow clapping from nearby.

MARISHA: That can’t be good.

LAURA: Oh, no.

MATT: As you look off to the side of the tree, rounding the bend, you see a very tall and thin, chest-forward, regal-posed, almost elflike but still exaggerated in the Feylike features. Long ears that curl past the head. The head itself is small with a pointed chin, the eyes almond-shaped and wild, curly orange hair like a lion’s mane that goes down to the lower back, just up and large, curves up at the very tip. You see sleeveless silk vestments of blue and green billowing freely behind him as he walks up clapping.

LAURA: I instantly case Cure Wounds on myself again.

MATT: All right.

LAURA: At a level three.

MATT: How much do you heal?

LAURA: 13 plus eight is 25.

MATT: There you go. 25.

LIAM: Garmelie?

LAURA: No, that’s wrong. 21.

MATT: Bravo, everyone.

SAM: Who is this?

MATT: Bravo to each and every one of you. It’s been fun to watch. You know, I get so disinterested in these lands, and I have to say, I’m impressed. Well. I wish to say adieu. Good luck on your journeys.

LAURA: Who are you?

MATT: But I am a simple wanderer. An individual who sees the landscape for artistic benefit.

TALIESIN: I knew it.

MATT: But I’m glad to have made your acquaintance. It definitely made these past few days absolutely devoid of boredom, at the very least, and filled my sketchbook.

MARISHA: Garmelie?

MATT: Is one of my names. I prefer Artagan.

SAM: Artagan?

MATT: But Garmelie suits needs here and there. I go by many names and many interesting–

TALIESIN: I knew I should’ve asked for that portrait.

SAM: What are you?

MATT: I’m afraid the time for questions is done. As your journey has come to an end, and I have to be out of here quickly as–

SAM: I cast Otiluke’s Resilient Sphere on him.

MARISHA: And I cast Hold Person at the same time.

MATT: (laughs)

TALIESIN: What? What! What! What!

TRAVIS: Nice, Sam.

TALIESIN: No! Oh!

LAURA: What is he? Who is he? What is he?

MATT: All right.

SAM: I don’t know.

MATT: What’s the DC?

LIAM: He’s a deity.

TRAVIS: Hold it, Marisha.

SAM: 19.

MARISHA: 19 for mine as well.

SAM: 'Cause I didn’t pull up the Cone.

LAURA: Is he like a god?

MATT: Right. So. The sphere appears around his form, however, Keyleth, your spell does not seem to take any sort of hold on him. As it forms around, he’s still just standing there unmoved, hands clasped. “That’s adorable. So. Where to now? Where’s your journey taking you? I take it this was not your only purpose. Where’s your next destination?”

TRAVIS: We left an empty grave inside, it’s got your name on it if you don’t talk.

LAURA: Pfff.

MATT: Please.

LAURA: We go home. And we kill a dragon.

MATT: Good. They are fickle creatures. They need to be taught a lesson.

LAURA: Any tips?

MATT: (laughs) Don’t be eaten. Um. Do not misunderstand their intelligence. Some are more bestial. Some are more together. Anyway. If you’d be so kind, I’d like to get on with my day.

LAURA: Wait, one last thing. What is this statue that you tried to steal from me?

TRAVIS: (whispers) Nice.

MATT: Oh, that’s a companion. You’re welcome to keep him with you. I just figured since I was leaving you soon, I’d have someone to wander at my side as well.

SAM: A companion? What does that mean?

MATT: Yes.

TRAVIS: A statue.

SAM: Does he come to life?

MATT: With the right words, yes.

LAURA, SAM, TALIESIN, and MARISHA: What are those words?

MATT: (laughs) Well. Take some time with it. You’ll learn them soon enough.

MARISHA: You know, for someone who hates the theater, you’ve made quite a show of all this.

(All laugh.)

TRAVIS: Oh man. That was a ten.

LAURA: That was good, that was good, Keyleth.

LIAM: Yep, yep, yep.

MATT: Touche, Keyleth, touche. But no, seriously, I fucking hate the theater. You avoided the other one, right?

LAURA: The hag?

MATT: Hag?

SAM: The hut, the hut.

MARISHA: Wodenna.

LAURA: The hut.

MATT: The hut, yes, you avoided the hut?

SAM: She’s not a hag?

MATT: She’s many things, but she’s not a hag. She’s an ex.

LAURA: Oh.

MATT: Anyway. If you don’t mind.

SAM: One question.

MATT: (exasperated noise) Now you grow boring and dreary. I hate boredom.

SAM: Do you stay on this plane or do you come with us?

MATT: No, I stay on this plane.

SAM: All right.

MATT: Unless I decide to come with you. But that’s of my own volition. Probably when you least expect it.

SAM: All right.

TALIESIN: Good day to you, Puck. Good day.

SAM: What was your name again?

MATT: Ah, well. Artagan.

SAM and LAURA: Artagan.

LAURA: Thanks for the fun.

TALIESIN: Thanks for the art.

MATT: Thanks for the memories. Ah, memories.

SAM: You know, at some point you should ask yourself why we didn’t just kill you and why we knew that you were there the whole time.

MATT: What, you think I didn’t let you find me? Think you could’ve killed me if you wanted?

TRAVIS: Artagan. Did you know Saundor?

MATT: I knew of Saundor, yes.

MARISHA: Did you know Sorudin?

SAM: Who?

MARISHA: Sorudin the Happy?

MATT: Sorudin I did not know, but I was aware of the enchantment left behind. But who am I to lead a horse to water when you are so determined to drink yourself?

LAURA: (laughs) It was great fun.

MATT: That it was. It was great fun. But alas.

SAM: All right.

MARISHA: I have a feeling we’ll meet you again, Artagan.

MATT: I hope so. It does get ever so boring.

SAM: All right, I’ll release the sphere on one condition.

MATT: Yes?

SAM: I believe you have a quill that belongs to us. Just a single writing implement. We lent it to you, we want it back.

MATT: It appears in his hand. “I’m happy to give it to you, but I'm apparently trapped in this sphere of magic.”

SAM: All right, I’ll let you go.

MATT: Thank you.

SAM: Thank you. Vax. Was this yours?

LAURA: There’s your raven feather. Nice.

MATT: “All right. Travel safe. Stay alive. And maybe visit. If you get lonely.” And he gives a deep bow and just vanishes.

LAURA: He was fucking cool.

TALIESIN: Dear god, let’s get out of here before something else happens.

LAURA: I really liked him.

MARISHA: Everyone hold hands and say Kumbaya.

SAM: Okay. Let’s go back to our plane.

TRAVIS: You don’t want to see the ex?

ALL: No.

MARISHA: We’ve dealt with enough scorned lovers for one day.

TALIESIN: People get bitchy over here.

LAURA: Where are we popping into?

MARISHA: I guess Whitestone?

TALIESIN: Whitestone.

LAURA: Yeah.

LIAM: What are we doing, we’re warping out?

TALIESIN: Yeah, we’re warping out.

SAM: Say bye to the Fey.

LAURA: Hold your hands up, brother, we’re holding your hands.

LIAM: Yeah, but I’m tangling my fingers up, if she’ll let me, with Keyleth.

LAURA: Oh.

SAM: Gross.

TRAVIS: I let go.

TALIESIN: Ew.

MATT: All right.

MARISHA: I take his hand.

LIAM: And say, just quietly to the side, You know, you’ve been pretty fucking amazing lately. As usual.

MARISHA: I say, You haven’t been quite bad, yourself. And then we go to Whitestone.

MATT: To Whitestone. The transition takes place, you all feel the breath fill your lungs as all of a sudden your momentum is shot through but a step forward, and you catch yourself standing outside of the Sun Tree in the center of Whitestone’s main area. And that’s where we’ll end tonight’s session.

TRAVIS: What! Got your bow!

LAURA: Hey!

MARISHA: You got your bow!

TRAVIS: You didn’t die!

TALIESIN: You got your bow.

SAM: Ooh, there it is.

LAURA: Ahh, there’s the card, there’s the card.

MARISHA: Man, that guy tried to act like he knew you. Fuck that shit.

MATT: Ryan, do you have the–

LAURA: He had so many things wrong.

MARISHA: Oh, dude.

MATT: The item list that you found–

SAM: What does it do, what does it do?

LAURA: Okay, okay. +3 bonus to attack and damage rolls. 1d4 lightning damage.

TALIESIN: Yeah.

LAURA: I can declare a bramble-shot like you did. Whoa. Target takes an additional 4d8 piercing damage, plus they have to make a strength saving throw or be restrained.

MATT: Restrained means it can’t move, all their attacks have disadvantage, and attacks against them have advantage, until they break free. And this is the figurine.

LAURA: Whoa, this is so cool! Once per short rest, I can use an Oracle Shot.

SAM: What does that do?

LAURA: I can project my sight through my arrow that I fire from it, for up to ten minutes.

SAM: Oh, Prince of Thieves-style?

LAURA: My god.

TALIESIN: Is that really a thing?

SAM: I don’t know.

TALIESIN: Okay.

LAURA: That’s awesome.

MARISHA: That’s cool, she’s like Hanzo.

MATT: It’s pretty cool.

LAURA: Imagine from the broom up high how far that arrow would go. And then when a creature is killed by an arrow from this weapon, a single six-foot tree grows out of their corpse.

TALIESIN: Yeah!

MARISHA: Out of their corpse?

SAM: A Christmas tree?

LAURA: A Christmas tree.

MATT: Depending on the time of year, it may be.

TRAVIS: You don’t need the Onyx Dog, why don’t I hold onto that.

SAM: Wait, you got the dog?

LAURA: Wait, no, I wanna see what it is.

MARISHA: Yeah, can we talk about that dog? Can we talk about it?

TRAVIS: You don’t need it.

LAURA: I have it.

MATT: (laughs)

LAURA: Travis.

TALIESIN: Roll for it. Roll for it, bro.

LIAM: More animals. More animals for Vex.

LAURA: I don’t wanna keep it, I just wanna, I’m the one holding onto it, man.

TRAVIS: We’ll have to tune in next Thursday to see what it is.

SAM: Sounds good to me.

TALIESIN: Stay tuned for another episode of Critical Role.

MATT: You’re such a terrible person, I love it. All right, well guys, thank you so much. That’s the end of this episode, we’ll be back next Thursday.

MARISHA: Back in Whitestone!

LAURA: Whitestone!

MATT: To see what adventures befall Vox Machina in the next arc of the story. In the meantime, thank you for watching, we’re gonna get some sleep. Thank you Lootcrate for your awesome sponsorship.

ALL: Lootcrate!

MATT: Thank you Critters for having patience for our eleven-plus-hour, 11PM later episode tonight. Ask you all: Is it Thursday yet?

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