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Critical Role Wiki
Critical Role Wiki

List of Transcripts



BRIAN: (singing) Where can I find a girl like that? Oh god. Well, what do you guys think? Taliesin did a pretty great job, right? Do you like the crocs? Thank you. He told me a couple weeks ago, he said, "What kind of look do you want to go for?" and I said, "Do you have anything that's a good mix between Colonel Sanders and Liberace?" I think we got there! Right before I walked out, our producer Max whispered to me, he said, "You look like a pimp from Atlantis." In all seriousness, though, I told Taliesin, I said, "Just give me the gay televangelist." Then I realized that that's a little bit redundant.

[laughter, cheering]

BRIAN: Welcome, my friends in this room and online, to Critical Role Live at Gen Con 2018!


BRIAN: If you're at the con this weekend, please stop by our booth, number 2931, The Invulnerable Vagrant. Give it up for all of our crew who did a great job putting that together. It's so rad.


BRIAN: A couple quick housekeeping things before we get going, real fast. We're going to have a break, just like every episode of Critical Role, so try to stay in your seats if you can until the break and then you can go to the bathroom, get merch, whatever. If you guys were here last year, and those of you watching at home, you remember that when someone stands up, the chair sounds like someone's waterboarding a pterodactyl. If we could keep that to a minimum. What's that? Nobody cares. Hold on. We're moving on. No, I'm just kidding. Speaking of, during the episode tonight, you guys can laugh, scream, cheer, cry, gasp, any of that stuff. The only thing that we ask is that you don't shout any rules or corrections at Matt or the players. The only reason why we ask that, you guys, is because it's fucking annoying.


BRIAN: Let's keep those to a minimum of zero. As I'm sure many of you guys know, today, August 3rd, is our beloved Travis Willingham's birthday.


BRIAN: He couldn't make it. Him and Laura couldn't make it this year, but for the best reasons possible, because they just had a beautiful little baby boy, Ronin. I know. He's such a buddy! I thought maybe we could Facetime him and sing Happy Birthday. Is anybody interested in that?


BRIAN: All right, we're dialing. Oh my goodness!


BRIAN: Look at that. Hey guys! Look at the baby! Hey, we love you. Can you hear us?

LAURA and TRAVIS: We love you guys!

BRIAN: What are you guys doing? I was hoping we weren't going to catch Travis in the midst of breastfeeding. How are you guys doing? Do you miss us?

TRAVIS: So much!

LAURA: We miss you so much!

BRIAN: We miss you too, we wish you were here. We have a little present for you. You guys ready? One, two, three.

AUDIENCE and BRIAN: (singing) Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you, happy birthday dear Travis! Happy birthday to you!



BRIAN: We love you guys!

TRAVIS: Oh my god, you guys are amazing. I only have one request.

BRIAN: Hit me.

TRAVIS: Mighty Nein, I want you to kick some fucking ass!

BRIAN: Yeah!


LAURA: We'll be watching along with you guys tonight.

BRIAN: You'll be watching along? Okay, good.

TRAVIS: Yeah, we'll be watching. We earmuffed Ronin for that, right?

LAURA: Totally. No cussing. Don't talk about them titties.

BRIAN: We love you guys!

TRAVIS: Love you guys!

BRIAN: Miss you. Say goodbye to Travis and Laura. Oh man, I wish those guys could have been here this year, but instead they brought me for some stupid reason. What do you say we get this party started, you guys?


BRIAN: Without further ado, I would like to introduce the cast of Critical Role.

[Critical Role theme music]

BRIAN: Mr. Liam O'Brien!


BRIAN: Marisha Ray!


BRIAN: Mr. Taliesin Jaffe!


BRIAN: Love you. Ashly Burch!


BRIAN: Hide your kids, hide your wives, hide your faces. It's Sam Riegel.


BRIAN: And-- Oh no. And your, my, our beloved Dungeon Master; give it up for Matthew Mercer!


MATT: Wow. Holy shit, y'all! Welcome to the poor unfortunate soul that had to follow Sam Riegel out on stage. (shouting) No, don't touch it! We all know where it's been!

LIAM: (shouting) Marion! Don't look, Marion!

MATT: This is insane. Welcome everyone, to Gen Con 2018, our live show here at the Murat Theatre.


MATT: So many incredible faces here in this audience here and many of you wonderful people back at home watching us. So welcome, glad you could join us. Oh man, butterflies in my tummy. This is an incredible energy. Anyway--

AUDIENCE MEMBER: It's high noon!


ASHLY: Time to high noon is three minutes?

MATT: (McCree voice) Somewhere in the world.


MATT: Anyway, enough of that. Thank you guys so much for joining us. Before we get into the show, welcome to Critical Role, where a bunch of us nerdy-ass voice actors play Dungeons & Dragons.


MATT: We have some announcements to go through. First, we have our fantastic returning sponsor, our wonderful friends at D&D Beyond.


MATT: Sam, if you don't mind.

SAM: D&D Beyond did not want me to sing a song, so I have one.


SAM: I'll try and get through it quick because we have so much to do. (singing) D&D Beyond's our sponsor today. They got a lot of things they want me to say, like the discount code for new editions and their booth outside at intermission. But I'm sorry, I'm not saying those things, because when I'm inspired I just got to sing. I'm in a ridiculous pink frock and 2,600 Critters are ready to rock!


SAM: (singing) At Gen Con, I'm surrounded by my friends-con, Ashly, Marisha, Matt, Taliesin-con. They'll be by my side 'til the end-con! At Gen Con. (spoken) There's a second verse; I'll go through it fast. D&D Beyond might drop us tonight, because what I'm doing here, it just ain't right. I'm not advertising their Facebook page, or telling you the promo code GENCON2018 is what it is like I promised backstage. But this little stud's got to follow his heart. And maybe some other body parts. So if they'd want to know who to blame, why don't you just tell them by shouting my name?


SAM: (singing) At Gen Con, I'm not even going to pretend-con. My outfit definitely offends-con. You can all see my rear end-con. At Gen Con. Thank you!


SAM: But seriously, they are giving away a Legendary Bundle on their Facebook page, and they're offering up a special discount code, GENCON2018, for 25% off any digital products. Okay, I'm done!

MATT: Thank you, Sam. And thank you, our friends at D&D Beyond. Few other quick announcements to get through. My fireside chat that was part of our fantastic 826LA charity run we did a couple months back will be this coming Tuesday, August 7th at 5:00pm Pacific, where I'll be answering a bunch of your questions and generally hanging out with the community for about an hour or more. So hope to have you there. We'll have Marisha's Honey Heist 2: Electric Beargaloo--


MATT: Will be this coming Friday after this, August 10th, at 7:00pm Pacific. You can watch both of these streams at and if you miss the livestream, they'll be available on our YouTube a few days after the stream, so look for that. For more details and a link to the NPC survey-- a lot of the people in the community have been helping us forge this community-made NPC that will end up becoming part of the world that we run-- go to Another huge announcement that has taken a lot of blood, sweat, and tears from this wonderful man, Taliesin, here, and this wonderful man, Liam O'Brien, over here. We're excited to announce our coming sequel to our art book, The Chronicles of Exandria.


MATT: This one bookends the second and final half of the Vox Machina adventure, featuring all community-based art from all the incredible Critters out there. Taliesin, Liam, what do you have to say?

LIAM: (as Caleb) Well, if you were wondering why Taliesin was losing his-- (as Liam) Oh, I'm doing Caleb already. Taliesin was losing his mind the last several weeks while also dying. I quietly lost my mind at nights out in National Parks, it's because we've been working on this.

TALIESIN: That was the one thing I couldn't say on Talks was my first thought when Molly died was: I just lost three days off of my artbook schedule, oh god! Oh no! Please no!

LIAM: It's shaping up beautifully, it's full of beautiful pieces from the community that you are probably familiar with. There's some that are new to the book, and we're very proud of-- oh, it's gone-- the cover, which is done by comic artist Matteo Scalera. You might know him from the comic Black Science. I've loved his art for a while. The cover's gorgeous. Moreno Dinisio, who does the coloring on Black Science, did it for the cover as well. The book looks amazing, and, for the thousandth time, thank you to every artist in this community who gives back to the show.


MATT: For more details on that as we are able to share them going on forward, including on-sale updates, go to to get up to speed on that. As a reminder, we have our Wyrmwood giveaways that we do during the breaks here for the Critical Role intermission. We'll be having one here tonight as well. So when we go to break, you'll have to jump on over to the Critical Role Twitch chat, that's, we'll have a code at the time for you to enter, but be prepared for when that comes around. Let's see, I think that brings us mostly to the end of our announcements for the evening. It's time to get comfortable.

SAM: Oh, are we taking off our shirts? Oh, wait. Wait, what? (shouting, extended) No!


SAM: No! I feel so violated! Is this how you feel every time?

MATT: Maybe.

SAM: That's a handsome shirt.

MATT: Couldn't agree more. With all that out of the way, as we rein in--

SAM: Mercer!

MATT: --our respective nerves and ridiculousness, I think it's time for us to come into tonight's episode of Critical Role.

MARISHA: (drum sounds)

SAM: (screaming)

[click, TV static] [groovy Critical Role theme]

Part I[]


MATT: Welcome back. Last we had left off-- let's see if I can get some music situated here. Perfect. The Mighty Nein, an intrepid band of adventurers here in the continent of Wildemount, had found three of their members taken in the middle of the night by a band of kidnappers and slavers they found to be called The Iron Shepherds. In trying to hunt down and find where their allies were taken, they ran into a previous member of this team, known as Keg, a dwarven warrior who herself was on a path to vengeance against these people she previously worked with. Aligning focus, they made their way northward, towards the city of Shadycreek Run, which exists outside of the laws and boundaries of the Dwendalian Empire. Along the way, they ambushed The Iron Shepherds, and in doing so lost one of their allies. With Mollymauk fallen in the battlefield and the rest left to simmer the decisions they made, they continued northward, where they encountered a new friend, north of the city of Shadycreek Run. Caduceus Clay was pulled from his hermit lifestyle north of the city within the confines of the Savalirwood to join them in assaulting The Sour Nest, the keep where the Iron Shepherds call home. They staked out the outskirts of this location, managed to slay some of the guardians who were keeping watch along the outer perimeter wall, not necessarily very stealthily made their way into the entryway, but managed to take out a number of members of the Iron Shepherds, some of their paid compatriots, as well as some of their more elite, at least one of their more elite, fighters. Along with them they met Nila, who is a firbolg who was for her also kidnapped partner and son. Using her druidic powers, aided them in this assault, and in doing so found and helped her family escape. As she absconded from the location with her family to keep them safe, the rest of you remain behind, trying to find out where the remainder of The Iron Shepherds reside within The Sour Nest and how best to deal with their presence. Last we left off, Caleb, you had send Frumpkin, your familiar, in the form of the spider to inspect the upper floor of the chamber, and upon feeling a squeeze from Keg, had just instilled her with the speed and alacrity of a Haste spell. And that's where we're going to pick up. In this moment, Keg, as you go to notify Caleb of what has transpired below, he reaches out and instills you with that familiar surge of adrenaline. Time seems to slow, your muscles tense and flex. What do you do?

LIAM: I can't hear you, but we don't have much time so let's move forward carefully please and it's just the two of us so, you know, help me out, will you?

ASHLY: Yeah. Where's Frumpkin right now?

LIAM: Further up. He's made it to the second floor I think. I didn't pop out, so I'm seeing what Frumpkin sees at this point.

MATT: He's a slow spider.

ASHLY: Shit. Is he one minute slow?

MATT: Yeah.

ASHLY: (groans) I kind of want to-- no, I shouldn't-- just barrel ahead.

LIAM: I can't hear a thing she's saying.

MATT: Frumpkin has curled his way to the top floor and you can see there are the two open hallways here from left to right. Frumpkin would be-- I got two mics to make this work! Frumpkin appears on the secondary floor looking down both hallways in which there appear to be no signs of anyone at the moment.

MARISHA: I love the cheers for foresight. They're like, "Yeah, two mics! Yes! Get it, production team!"

MATT: Your Haste is running out.

ASHLY: I'm so not stealthy. Unless I go downstairs, I just got to waste the Haste.

LIAM: Well, they told us that they would wait for us before going down and I'm sure that they have done that.


LIAM: Oh, but I can't hear you. Looking through Frumpkin's eyes, there's no time to waste. I've Hasted her to protect me since it's just the two of us, but I have to move upstairs. So I'm going to feel my way up the stairs and hope that Keg comes along.

MATT: Caleb begins to slowly climb up the stairs, feeling out along these spirals as it carries from the bottom floor to the upper tier of The Sour Nest fortress.

LIAM: While I ask Frumpkin to continue along the right path.

ASHLY: Do I need to make a stealth check?

MATT: You would if you want to stay quiet, yes. With disadvantage.

ASHLY: All right, let's do it. Four. That's going to go ahead and-- yeah, it's four. A nine?


MATT: As Caleb begins to fumble his way up the stairs Keg coasts up past him, double Haste speed, clanging all the way. Frumpkin can hear this from the top floor. You hear this heavy sound of like two giant bags of pots and pans. (clanking) You make your way to the top.

LIAM: And this is where the plan falls apart.

MATT: Keg, you have about two more rounds before your Haste runs out. You now see both sides of this hallway are open and empty. They both curl around the corner to show the perimeter and there are rooms in the interior. You see one doorway right across from where you entered.

ASHLY: How far is Caleb behind me?

MATT: Caleb's about 15 feet below.

ASHLY: So you're not coming up.

LIAM: I am processing right now I haven't made a decision in a split second.

ASHLY: (laughter) I'm going to hold. I'm not going to keep going forward.

MATT: In waiting for Caleb to ascend the stairs, the Haste spell comes to a complete cycle. Your body is filled with lethargic, energy drain and you find yourself stunned there for a moment at the top of the stairs as the spell fades. But Caleb has joined you.

LIAM: Okay, that could have gone better.

ASHLY: Sorry. I misunderstood.

LIAM: No, no, no. Let's wait here for a second. Frumpkin, my boy, will you please go ahead?

ASHLY: Oh, there it is.

LIAM: I will gently pull Keg around the corner of the left path, five feet, so we are not in direct view.

MATT: This path here?

LIAM: Well, if Frumpkin's going this way, I will move Keg and I a little bit that way so we are not in direct view.

MATT: The two of you begin to move slowly in this direction as Frumpkin slowly curls, in spider speed, further down this edge. There is a closed doorway here and it curves around this side. Do you continue? There's a door right there.

LIAM: I will let Frumpkin continue and watch.

MATT: Okay. Frumpkin continues down, eventually revealing the back hallway to be also empty. There's nobody inside that hall at the moment, but you see a second doorway right at the back there. It seems there is either a linked chamber or two different rooms that have entryways right there.

LIAM: What are we doing? Let's have Frumpkin look under that door that was just revealed.

MATT: Frumpkin peeks under the door, and unveils some sort of a rest chamber for a number of hirelings. You do see inside currently, two sleeping hired members who have begun waking up from the recent sounds to go through their stuff.

SAM: Matt do they have matching Huey, Dewey, and Louie themed bed sheets?


MATT: It's what they could find on Amazon. So yes, they do. They both, seemingly alarmed by the recent sounds of both the fireworks outside and the commotion downstairs.

ASHLY: It was the fireworks, too. It wasn't just me. Okay, great.

MATT: They're going into these chests and pulling out their armor and they're in the process of putting on the leather armor. They're getting ready to scramble downward.

LIAM: They're preoccupied?

MATT: At the moment, yes.

LIAM: I come out of Frumpkin's vision and I take Caleb-- Caleb is me. I take Keg by the hand and go close to her ear and whisper and say: Just follow me, please.

ASHLY: You got it.

LIAM: And tell Frumpkin to go up that side and we will go up the other side.

ASHLY: Do I need to roll again?

LIAM: Frumpkin can get there just ahead of me and peek around that corner before we turn it.

MATT: All right, Frumpkin continues down this hall.

LIAM: We scooch to the corner.

MATT: You guys reach the corner as well and as you spin around the edge, you can see there are two doors that lead to two other chambers that are separated on the opposite end.

LIAM: Okay. Rinse, repeat. I send Fumpkin under the first door, pull Keg a little bit further so we are by those doors.

MATT: As you go near the first door, Frumpkin enters this chamber, which reveals another shared bedchamber. Maybe more elite members of the Iron Shepherds call a room to bed for the evening. As Frumpkin enters this space you hear the far door open up on that side. Footsteps, as the now donned and armed hirees of the Iron Shepherds begin to make their way down the stairs below.

LIAM: I pull out the copper wire, listening, and I aim down looking for Nott and say: there are two coming from the upper floor. I don't know if they're leaving or coming away, but be alert.

SAM: Ah! There's two coming, Caleb just-- oh wait, I got it! Caleb just warned me there's two men coming down the stairs to us.

MARISHA: Do they look like Iron Shepherds?

SAM: Let me get out my copper wire.

MARISHA: No don't worry about it, it's fine. You want to flank the door with me? You're not with me. You want to flank the door with me?

SAM: It's just us and Mr. Clay.

TALIESIN: I'll be the first to greet him. It should be fine.

SAM: Wait, you guys are dressed like guards still.

TALIESIN: I still look like a guard.

MARISHA: We are dressed like guards. Where are we? Are we on the outside of the cellar or are we down?

MATT: You guys are down in the basement still, after you sent Nila up with her family to exit.

MARISHA: Where's the body of the other guard we killed?

SAM: Ooh.

MATT: Up near the hatch on the upper stairs.

MARISHA: Is he just chilling?

MATT: You didn't put it anywhere else, so yeah, just sitting up against a wall.

TALIESIN: It's definitely, probably starting to turn a little weird.

MATT: It is a little bit. It takes a while for the decomposition to take effect.

MARISHA: We *just* killed him, man.

TALIESIN: Let's head upstairs and take care of this.

MARISHA: Okay, so we'll go up into the cellar and I'm going to open the hatch and say: Help me out. And shove the guard's--

SAM: Down the stairs?

MARISHA: Nott, let's put him in the cage and maybe he'll--

TALIESIN: I think you're overplanning. Let's just go upstairs, we'll tell them everything's fine, and then we can kill the two of them. It should be fine.


ASHLY: Matt, are we in-- are they going to pass us on the way out?

LIAM: No, the stairs were down in the corner closest to us.

MATT: The stairs to go down are right there. That's the one exit you have.

LIAM: I will say in the meantime that I would, of course, have sent Frumpkin into the final room to know if we have cleared this place up here.

MATT: As Frumpkin enters the final room, it reveals a large bedchamber adorned with more intricate silks and accoutrement, to design a garish but somewhat ghastly bedroom in dark reds and purples. You can see, on the side of the bed, a plate that still contains mostly eaten remains of some sort of creature. The room smells of a musty smoke and some thick animalistic musk. It's hard to pinpoint, but it's a putrid stench immediately once it hits Frumpkin's nose. But the room is empty.

ASHLY: Okay.

LIAM: Quickly, do I see anything of note in this room?

MATT: Make a perception check.

MARISHA: You know Caduceus, I think there's actually merit to your plan. I'm kind of into it.

LIAM: 17.

TALIESIN: Two escaped prisoners, one got them out. Damn shame.

MARISHA: Damn shame.

TALIESIN: Yeah. Right.

SAM: I'm not following, what are we doing? Am I an escaped prisoner?

TALIESIN: No, we got an-- you really not following? I felt like that was really clear.

MARISHA: Just stay here in case-- when Caleb and Keg get back.

SAM: You're going to go attack these people with--?

TALIESIN: I'm going to see if I can get them to leave the house and if they don't leave the house, then I think you should probably shoot them with that thing.

MARISHA: We're going to have them chase the escaped prisoners.

SAM: All right. Sounds good.

MATT: As this is transpiring, what did you roll for a perception check?

LIAM: 17.

MATT: There doesn't look to be anything about the stonework or beneath the bed at Frumpkin's level that looks out of the ordinary. Frumpkin briefly leaps up onto the edge of the bed and you can see the bed, while it was once well made, seems to have been worn-- the actual cushion is sagged pretty heavy in the center-- it looks like it's been slept in for quite some time.

LIAM: Okay. Well, if we are still alive in an hour, there will be time for this later. I leave it. Listen, you're not going to see me for a while, but I will be with you.

ASHLY: What do you mean? You'll leave me alone!?

LIAM: No, I am not--

ASHLY: I'm canonically a coward!


LIAM: Yeah, ditto kiddo. It galls me to do this because I will only be able to do it the one time. Fuck it. I pull out the scroll of invisibility that Calianna gave me and recite a few words and I am gone.

ASHLY: What the fuck?

LIAM: Then you feel a tap-tap-tap on your shoulder.

ASHLY: What the fuck?

MARISHA: Keg doesn't have object permanence.


ASHLY: That is now also canon. Write that in your Wikipedias. Okay, I guess I'll go back down to everyone else?

LIAM: Quietly please and I will not be walking right next to you, but a little ways away. You can trust me; I will not leave your side.

ASHLY: Okay.

LIAM: Carefully.

ASHLY: If you can tap me every so often to remind me of that, that would be great.

LIAM: Oh, one other thing-- and there's a little flash on your shoulder and there is a large-ish spider.

ASHLY: (high-pitched) What the fuck!?


LIAM: A little quieter than that, please.

ASHLY: (whispers) What the fuck?

LIAM: That's the ticket. Let's go.

ASHLY: Okay, must I roll again? For stealth?

MATT: For stealth? Yeah. Still with disadvantage.

ASHLY: Give me some good juju guys.


ASHLY: It didn't work. It's a ten.

SAM: That's double digits!

TALIESIN: It's a number.

MATT: Better than last time. By one.

SAM: The audience's support counts for one.

ASHLY: All these people.

MATT: It's a scale in the right direction. So Keg, as you hold up your plates a bit, like you're trying to cross a puddle, you're trying to tiptoe down the stone hallway towards the staircase. The rest of you begin to hear what sounds like the arrival of footsteps rushing along the stone on the outside of the small hallway that leads to the trapdoor into the basement. What do you do?

TALIESIN: I'm going to position myself in the corner between that-- hunch against the wall, try and lose my breath if that makes sense.

MARISHA: I'm going to face away since I don't have the disguise spell and look really perturbed towards the prison.

SAM: Matt, are they in the little hall just outside the--

MATT: Yeah, it's maybe a 15-foot wide hallway.

SAM: Can I sneak into the far hallway that is away from the kitchen?

MATT: Yeah, you can do that. Make a stealth check, please.

SAM: Oh yeah, that's a one.

ASHLY: Oh no.

SAM: I'm going to hide, just in case they come this way.

MATT: As Nott darts around the corner, you suddenly hit what feels like a wall at first. But it's softer and covered in material. You look up to see one of the hooded lackeys of the Iron Shepherds who had just come around the other side. Goes, "What the fuck?" and pulls out his short sword.

SAM: Oh shit.

TALIESIN: I grab Nott by the scruff and lift him away.

MATT: Her you mean?

TALIESIN: Her, oh thank you.

SAM: Mr. Clay, I am a woman, I know you're new here.


TALIESIN: There's a whole conversation there that I'm excited to have when we're not having, okay-- We need one for questioning man. We caught one of them.

SAM: Let me go! I didn't do nothing wrong.

TALIESIN: Nope, no, we got you.

MARISHA: I say shut up you miscreant and I backhand Nott.

SAM: (cries out)

MATT: All right. I'll say make a deception check Caduceus, with advantage because you've been given help from your friends.

TALIESIN: My deception-- That's 15.

SAM: He's going to roll. He's going to do something.

MATT: They both stop and glance and look at this, and the one that Nott had bumped into leans forward-- you can see his squared, scarred chin where none of his facial hair grows from some sort of deep wound he had received at a younger age. You see his eyes, these deep, sunken brown irises staring back, as he goes "I don't think I've ever seen you around here before."

TALIESIN: I have his face though. I have the face of the one-- I'm not wearing a costume, am I?

MARISHA: "I have his face though."

TALIESIN: I mean I look like one of the guards.

MARISHA: Yeah, he had the disguise spell.

MATT: I understand that, but not every transformation is impervious to scrutiny. "Wait… shit, we've been infiltrated!" He pulls his other blade out, the guy behind him goes ahead and pulls out his blade as well. Roll initiative.


MATT: This is small enough where we can theatre of mind this.

TALIESIN: Oh no. Where's my initiative?

SAM: I've got a seven Matt.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: I can top that. I got a six.

MARISHA: 12. Not great.

SAM: We've got this.

ASHLY: Do I get to be part of this mix because I was coming down the stairs?

MATT: You will be in just a moment. You're catching up to it. You're coming around the corner. They were a bit quicker than you and you were trying to be stealthy.

ASHLY: Trying being the operative word.

MATT: No worries, all right. Beau, you're up first-- they rolled really bad initiative.

MARISHA: Oh what? Aw, cool!

MATT: Not as bad as these guys, but--

MARISHA: Wasn't expecting that. The one who drew his blade-- I'm going to try and take an elbow and do a knockout crack right to his temple.

MATT: Go for it, roll for attack.

AUDIENCE: Don't fuck me, Gil!


MARISHA: That wasn't a Gil die, but I'll let you know when it happens. 19.

MATT: Hits. Roll damage.

MARISHA: 11 damage and can I do a stunning strike? Crack.

MATT: You can. Saving throw on that is a six.

MARISHA: Fail! It's only worked like once before!

MATT: The one who just drew the blade-- as you crack him upside the head, he stumbles a couple of feet into the wall. As he backs up, you can see his eyes rolling around in the sockets and he's trying the grab the edge of the stonework to get his bearings. He has no idea where he is for the moment.

MARISHA: As he backs up, I'm going to take his head and slam it back into the wall he just ran into.

MATT: Go for it. Attack rolls have advantage now because he is stunned.

MARISHA: Good, because that was a natural one. 17.

MATT: That hits.


LIAM: You're a beast!

MATT: He's still standing, but he's looking pretty beat up and he's just making vowel sounds now. Speech isn't capable given the series of events that have transpired.

MARISHA: I'm going to say: Shut up! And crack him across the face again with my bonus, my off-handed.

MATT: Also with advantage.

MARISHA: That was a Gil, but he did good. 19.

MATT: That hits, roll damage.

MARISHA: Nine damage.

MATT: As you're like Shh! (crunching noises).

MARISHA: Shh, go to sleep.

MATT: Just repeatedly slamming his head into the stone until his arms go limp. You slide his face across the stone as he collapses to the ground.


MARISHA: I'm going to take my scarf, wipe the wall.

MATT: As you're doing that, the guy behind him, who was his backup, sees this happen, because his initiative's next in the order, and he turns and runs.

[laughter, cheering]

MATT: He goes at a full run and then a dash, so he's about 60 feet away from you down the hallway getting near the front doors of the fortress.

MARISHA: I'm going to shout out: Hey Keg, we got a runner! I don't know if she heard me or not.

MATT: At this point, Keg, you've just come down the stairs. Roll initiative for me.

ASHLY: I have a 16, my friend.

MATT: That'll put you next at the top of the order. You see this guy cross around the corner as you step to the bottom of the steps-- there's a moment of pause where you both make eye contact, "Oh, this is awkward." We're going to finish up with Nott and Caduceus and then we'll come back to you. Nott, what are you doing?

SAM: Can I peek around the corner where he just ran?

MATT: Yeah, you have enough movement to get around and you can still see him as he's turning around the side.

SAM: Leave no one alive! I'll fire. 27 to hit.

MATT: Yeah, that'll hit.

SAM: But it's not sneak, right?

MATT: It's not sneak attack, no.

SAM: Six plus five, 11 points of damage. And a bonus action, I'll shoot again. That is a 21 to hit.

MATT: That hits, roll damage again.

SAM: With another six points of damage. Ah!

MATT: As both crossbow bolts (zooming) in his back, he reaches back and you can see the muscles in his shoulders pull back from the pain and he looks back in your direction then glances back at Keg. He's not sure which threat is more nominal at the moment. Caduceus, your turn.

TALIESIN: I'm also going to peek my head around the corner and I'm going to blow a little bit and cast Sacred Flame.

MATT: That's a natural five on his wisdom saving throw. Dexterity or wisdom, I don't remember, but it doesn't matter.

TALIESIN: It's a dex 16 save.

MATT: Yeah, that's not happening.

TALIESIN: I didn't think so.

MATT: Go ahead and roll your damage on that.

TALIESIN: That's 14 points of damage.

MATT: Keg, you watch the person run around the corner and look at you and go "Uh. (pained grunting)," get shot with two bolts from behind, tense up, and then burst into radiant flame and then collapse to the ground, slow smoldering on the stone.


MARISHA: I say: Never mind, Deuces got him.

ASHLY: Got here a bit late. Is he dead?

TALIESIN: I hope so.

MATT: He will be in a moment.

ASHLY: Okay, so I can leave him. He's good.

MATT: It looks like he's not putting up much of a fight at the moment.

ASHLY: Should I take him out? Okay. How far away is he from me?

MATT: Roll an attack with advantage because he's-- Sure, go for it.

ASHLY: That was an 18. Yeah, 18. It's plus seven.

MATT: You don't even have to roll damage. You walk up and you see him on the ground going (pained yelling) and rolling, and you shake your head.

ASHLY: Shut up. 12.

MATT: Like a watermelon at a Gallagher performance you bring your war hammer down on top of his skull and paint a new carpet for the front entryway of The Sour Nest. At that moment, it doesn't appear like there's any immediate danger or movement. You all take a moment to look about and there's no sign of anybody else coming at the moment.

LIAM: A disembodied voice says: Oh! This is going wonderful.

ASHLY: Jesus! Oh, I forgot you were there.

SAM: Mr. Clay, I apologize. That was a good plan. It was so easy!

TALIESIN: That came together pretty nicely. You're really good at the whole fake hostage thing, too. That was great acting. It was very--

SAM: Ah, let me go! I'm crazy! Ah!

TALIESIN: Oh, that was great. We still got two downstairs.

MATT: A strange blur streaks by. Caduceus, you see it from the upstairs. It looks like a blur of black. No larger than that big. It scoots past and curves around the corner, back in the direction of the basement.

TALIESIN: Did somebody see something?

ASHLY: What the fuck?

TALIESIN: I'm going to-- I don't know why I'm being quiet. We should head downstairs.

MATT: You guys see this and begin to follow past. Beauregard, you're still standing back by the hatch and something stops in front. Make a perception check.

MARISHA: It's not great. Ten.

MATT: Ten? It wizzes right past you and you don't even have a moment to make out any details of what it is.

MARISHA: This place is fucking haunted.

SAM: Kill it!

MATT: It immediately heads down the stairway towards where you found Nila's family, into the basement.

MARISHA: Follow it.

SAM: Kill it!

MARISHA: We got to follow it first.

SAM: Okay. Kill it and follow it.

MARISHA and ASHLY: No. Follow it *then* kill it.

LIAM: Will you stop arguing and can we go downstairs? Carefully and quietly, please. Oh, by the way, I am invisible.


SAM: I didn't know you could-- Oh, the scroll. Oh. Good job, Caleb!

MARISHA: Yeah. It looks really good on you, man.


LIAM: I am actually over here, though.

MARISHA: Oh. Sorry.

SAM: Let's go downstairs. I'll go first.

MATT: You guys have returned to the entry where you had met Nila's family and sent her off to protect them. You now head down the hallway that curves to the right. You had made some intel when you had sent Frumpkin earlier to see. You saw in the next chamber two members, Ruzza and Protto of The Iron Shepards, waiting on the opposite end, weapons ready, knowing you're coming. There appear to be two cages with people inside, but you couldn't make out any details.

LIAM: Okay. I whisper into Nott's ear and say: (stuttering) Just this once, I think I should go first.

SAM: (gasps) You don't need to do this, Caleb, if you don't want to.

LIAM: I'm not there anymore.



LIAM: Brave. Dead. It's semantics, really.

MATT: Caleb, as you continue down the hall, unveiling it to the right, it still appears to be open without issue. You peek further down. The rest of you follow suit or do you stay in the back chamber?

ASHLY: I feel like I should hang back, probably. Stealth-wise.

SAM: I'm going to go up and peek around.

MATT: Make a stealth check, please. A stealth check for you too, Caleb, but you have advantage.

MARISHA: I'll follow Nott.

MATT: Stealth checks for all those that are going to follow.

SAM: 27.

MATT: Nice.

ASHLY: How close can I get without doing a stealth check?

MATT: I don't know. Do you want to be stealthy or not?

ASHLY: Fuck. I'll hang back.

MATT: Okay. Keg's going to make to the edge of the hall and just wait.


MATT: Okay.

LIAM: 17 for me.

MATT: Okay.


MATT: As you guys all make your way quietly around the side, Caduceus's armor catches the edge of the stonework and gives this faint grinding sound. But you work forward. Looking inside, you can see these two archways in this chamber you had previously seen. There, on the other side, you can see Ruzza and Protto, weapons ready, whispering to each other. As you're standing there, Caleb, that familiar sound, that buzzing, small, dark shape appears and stops for a second there in space. You can see a small bird.


MATT: A jet black hummingbird hovering there.

[louder cheering]

MATT: With something long and metallic in its beak. It darts up into the shadow and is gone.


ASHLY: What's happening up there?

AUDIENCE MEMBER: The audience is aroused!


MATT: You hear as Ruzza looks over to Protto and goes, "Are they coming or not? I'm getting impatient." Protto goes, "Yeah, maybe we should poke one of them." He pulls out a blade and jams it into the cage to the left. You hear a voice against the gag. A muffled yell.

LIAM: I am going to move into the room and sit down on the floor between the cage and the door, pressed against the wall.

MATT: Right here?

LIAM: *Ja* and just wait.

MATT: Make a perception check.

LIAM: 19.

MATT: 19. You move up against the side. What faint bit of light is coming from the almost entirely extinguished torch on the wall. You see a bit of shifting movement and you hear the movement of chains inside the cage where the blade had just been stabbed inside. You see a large, shifting gray-white shape in the shadow. You hear a muffled voice cursing against the constraints of the binding. Out of the corner of your eye, a hand slips out of a chain, carrying the same metal object that the small bird was carrying in its beak.


MATT: The hand slowly pulls the gag away from the mouth. Khary, if you'd like to join us at the table?

[roaring applause]

ASHLY: The murmuring!

KHARY: Well, I don't know about you people, but I'm tired of this stabbing feeling.

MATT: The rest of you, what are you doing?

SAM: Not hearing Caleb for a while, I'm going to, again, creep down the hallway and peek around a bit.

KHARY: Yeah, go ahead. Take your time.

MARISHA: Can we do the thing? The Brady Bunch: where all of our heads are stacked while we peek around the door.

ASHLY: Screw it, I'm going to come too. I'm sorry!

SAM: Can you do some magicky things, Mr. Clay? Something?

ASHLY: That's an eight.

MATT: As the three of your heads poke around the corner, all three of you shift as Keg slams into from behind. Both of their heads, who were currently bickering, of Protto and Ruzza look back towards the front. "Shit, they're here! Back up!" They both begin to retract and back up into the chamber behind them.

SAM: Can I shoot?

MATT: If you'd like to.

SAM: I would like to shoot.

TALIESIN: I also have a thing I'd like to do.

MATT: All right.

SAM: I'll shoot at-- it's Protto and Ruzza?

MATT: Well, now that we're entering combat, and everybody's there, it's time to roll initiative. Everyone, roll initiative.

ASHLY: Ugh, farts.


MARISHA: Nope. That's not good.

TALIESIN: Probably for the best.

MATT: All righty, do we have-- (laughs) 25 to 20?

SAM: No.

KHARY: Oh, oh! I rolled a natural 19, so I'm pretty sure that puts me at--

MATT: What's your dexterity bonus?

KHARY: Plus three, so yes I am.

MATT: All right. 22. You are tied with Ruzza.

KHARY: It's so nice to see familiar faces.

MATT: With The Duchess now perched upon the wall, you can see, creeping along the side, the tiny goblin face of Nott and Beauregard, hood up around the edge. For the first time in a day or two, you sense the tide turning in your favor. All right. 20 to 15, anybody?

SAM: 18.

LIAM: 17.

MATT: 15 to ten?

LIAM: 17 over here.

MATT: Oh! Caleb, all righty. 15 to ten?

SAM: Guys, come on. I know we want to make it interesting for the audience, but come on.

TALIESIN: Ashley Johnson has nothing on me in this realm.

MATT: All righty, ten to five?



[sympathetic yelling]

TALIESIN: I actually don't move until next combat, funny enough.

ASHLY: (high pitched) Three?

MATT: What did you get?

TALIESIN: Two. (laughing) The lowest I can roll!

MATT: You guys are going to go at the same time because you have the same dexterity. You and Ruzza are going to go at the same time, what are you going to do?

KHARY: Well let's see. The best thing that I can do is be the eyes of these people since I'm still working on getting out of my predicament. Let's say we move The Grand Duchess to a safe, but at least well lit, place to see the action.

MATT: The Duchess darts across the chamber, across from where the torch is, and perches upon a piece of the protruding stonework where she has a good view of the hallway where they're currently receding and the chamber you're in.

KHARY: All right, very good. How well do I see these two gentlemen who have been keeping me company?

MATT: The gentleman and the lady, you see them both pretty well. She, at the same turn, is running down the hallway. So what are you doing?

KHARY: What can I do besides trying to pick the lock? Is there anything I can do to knock it open at this point? I still only have one hand free, right?

MATT: You've managed to get both of your hands free and slowly dropped the manacles and the gag. You've been working on this for a while. You're still in the cage.

KHARY: Freedom, baby! Man, I hate to use this so early in the--

ASHLY: Do it, these guys suck.

KHARY: Oh, screw it. You know what? There's nothing like a spiritual weapon to tear into a--


MATT: All right, and what form is your spiritual weapon?

KHARY: That's a great question.


TALIESIN: We get props?


TALIESIN: Oh my god.

KHARY: You know, when Shakäste makes a spiritual weapon it's normally a very powerful woman from the past. When I saw this downstairs--


KHARY: I said: plug her in! Nefertiti is in business. You know, I deal with royalty. I deal with queens and duchesses, man. [1:00:00]

MATT: All right. With your view, you could drop it directly in front of Protto, or behind Protto to still try and get the strike. Would you want it in the front or the back?

KHARY: Can I bowl her down that hallway and see how many pins I can knock over? I'm just asking.

MATT: At this distance, you could get one. You'd be able to-- next round-- try again, but you could get the one.

KHARY: All right. Let's pick up this spare.

MATT: We'll say it bowls by and slams right there towards Protto. Make a spell attack roll for me, please. So d20, add your spell attack modifier.

KHARY: Big baby?

MATT: Yeah.

KHARY: Seven.

LIAM and MATT: Plus?

KHARY: Seven plus--

LIAM: It'll be your spell plus-- Oh, it's none of these.

SAM: Paperwork!

LIAM and KHARY: 14.

MATT: 14 unfortunately does not hit. Protto's a nimble fellow. As Nefertiti's mystical bust slams towards him, he dodges out of the way and goes, "Ugh!" and begins darting back towards there. That was your bonus action. You still have your action to either cast a cantrip or do anything else with your action, like pick the lock or anything else you want to try and do.

KHARY: Oh, I'd say we try to pick the lock a little bit to see if we can get out of here.

MATT: Go for it. Go ahead and roll a d20, add your dexterity modifier and your proficiency modifier. That's three plus three. So plus six to whatever you roll.

KHARY: 14, 17.

LIAM and KHARY: So 20 total.

MATT: 20 total? 20 is what you needed. It was a DC 20 save.


KHARY: (singing) Now I'm free, to do what I want!

SAM: (singing) Any old time!

MATT: Taking the small pieces of metal and wire that The Duchess has been slowly stealing from throughout The Sour Nest and bringing back to your cage, you manage to get the lock to fall open. With that, the cage opens and you can step out, taking your first breath of free air in a couple of days.

KHARY: Ladies and gentlemen, it feels so good to be out with all of you beautiful people!

MATT: All right, does that finish your turn?

KHARY: I do believe that does.

MATT: Finishing Shakäste's run, Ruzza has darted to the back there. Let's see, that brings us-- Ruzza's going to hold her action. Nott, you're up next.

SAM: Is Protto still in the room?

MATT: Protto is out of the room, but Protto is moving through the hall further down that way.

SAM: Can I see him?

MATT: Yeah.

SAM: I would like to shoot him. But first, I'll run closer so I'm within 30 feet.

MATT: You run to within 30 feet?

SAM: Yeah. Oh god. There's probably traps. Oh shit.

MATT: There you go. That's about 25, 30 feet right there.

SAM: Did I die?


SAM: Okay, cool. I will shoot my crossbow. Oh, that's no good. 12. No, 13!

MATT: 13 does not hit. Protto ducks out of the way as it hits some of the stone wall, sparking before it lands harmlessly on the wall to the back.

SAM: One more shot, bonus action. That's better, 19!

MATT: 19 does hit, roll damage.

ASHLY: Okay, good.

SAM: That's ten points of damage!

MATT: Not bad. As he dodges the first one, the other one-- He tries to duck out of the way and instead, you see it vanish into the cloak. At first, you thought it just passed through harmlessly, but you hear an “Ugh!” and he falls and limps against the wall for a second before looking up in your direction with a snarl.

SAM: (yelp)

MATT: All right. That finish your turn?

SAM: Have I done all of my movement? Yeah?

MATT: No. Technically, you still have about 15 feet.

SAM: I'll just duck over towards Shakäste so I'm not right in eyeline of either of the hallway baddies.

MATT: You go to duck over towards Shakäste, and your face hits something that's not there. It's like some sort of invisible force.

SAM: Why do I keep running into things? I need contact lenses.

MATT: You immediately recognize the familiar scent of Caleb's coat right in front of you.

SAM: Oh! Caleb! Caleb, is that you?

LIAM: Act natural.


SAM: All right.

MATT: Caleb, it's your turn.

LIAM: I'm going to slide out away from Nott and go to the other side, clear of the hallway, to look into the cage that's there.

MATT: Into the cage across--

LIAM: To the other side of the room. Is anyone alive or dead in that cage?

MATT: Make a perception check.

LIAM: That is a 19.

MATT: Okay. Inside, you see two people. You see a small child and a dwarf male, older. Both are looking scared, the child especially, but the dwarf has his arms around the child protectively. Though it is a human child, it looks like they've both been in captivity for a bit and at least he's feeling protective of the child. They're both stripped of any necessary implements aside from just their clothing, and they look scared, but not too worse for wear.

LIAM: Okay. Er, Hello… I am invisible. Stay as low as possible, and this will all blow over quickly, I think. That's the end of my turn.

MATT: That brings us to Protto. He's going to-- Is this working?

SAM: It's not working.

MATT: There we go. Protto's going to dart over to join Ruzza at the back and says, "Quick, send it down!" Ruzza, who's been holding her action, reaches back and grabs some sort of a lever. At which point-- both of the archways to the front and the back of the chamber that you're in-- you hear this grinding of chains.


SAM: Are you out? You're outside of the room.

ASHLY: No, I came in with you guys, I think. Am I not in?

SAM: I don't think you're in.

MATT: Sealing the three of you in the chamber. Beauregard, Keg, Caduceus, in the hallway behind, as you spin around the corner, this portcullis suddenly slams down, separating you from the other half of your party.

SAM: Matt Mercer!

MARISHA: That's not good.

SAM: First the T-shirt and now this? You bastard!

MATT: Protto, who has kept you at bay and can see the space between the bars, takes out his crossbow. The one that he can see best at this moment is Nott. He's going to take a shot at Nott. That's going to be a 17 plus four?

SAM: Oh yeah, that hits. For sure.

MATT: Plus six to hit. That hits. This is a longbow, not a crossbow. My apologies. That's two plus four. You take six points of piercing damage.

SAM: Okay. Yes, fine.

MATT: Then he's going to dart around the corner.

SAM: Oh wait, I can take my little-- my reaction, can't I?

MATT: Yes, you can.

SAM: What is that thing called? Uncanny Dodge? Uncanny Dodge! I'll reduce that to three.

MATT: There you go, so three damage to you. That's going to end Protto's go, as he darts around the corner. Beau, you're up.

MARISHA: Okay. I come around the gate. I look in and I go, hey, Shakäste!

KHARY: Hello, darling.

MARISHA: What's up? What're you doing out here?

KHARY: Well, you know, vacationing.

SAM: More like a staycation.

MARISHA: I'm going to hold my action and start wedging my staff up under the door, and maybe Deuces can help me crank it open.

TALIESIN: I'm actually going to turn around and start searching that hallway.

MARISHA: Oh. Cool, man. Yeah. I'm not doing something really important here to keep our friends from reaching their peril.

MATT: You hold your action to try to wedge it, look back for his help, and you see him turn the other direction and start walking away. Are you going to continue with your action or still hold it?

MARISHA: Real cool, man. Keg?

ASHLY: I'm going to try to pull a Nila and fucking rip that shit open with my bare hands. We will see! Come on, baby. No whammies.

MATT: Keg comes through that. You have advantage on this because Beauregard is helping you because she's holding her action to help with that.

ASHLY: Seriously, no whammies this time, please. Fuck! So that's a 16.

MATT: The bars begin to pull open ever so slightly, but not enough. You do feel, however, that whatever weight is carrying it down, it's heavy, but with two people you might have a chance of lifting it. But it looks like the bars are too thick to try and pull apart.

ASHLY: I did the wrong-- We should-- Under's better.

MARISHA: That's okay. With our legs… lower back, you know.

ASHLY: Yeah.

MATT: That ends Keg's turn. Caduceus.

TALIESIN: I want to search this little hallway for a switch or some kind of panel to open this thing from this side.

MATT: Make an investigation check.

TALIESIN: All right. Is there anything I can do?

SAM: He's so calm under pressure. He's like a walking quaalude.


TALIESIN: Yeah, no. I don't find anything.

MATT: What'd you get?

TALIESIN: After adding my negative investigation number, it's a one.

MATT: You start to just trace the stonework with your fingers and then find this really fascinating bit of moss. Soft green, it's been growing in the crevice. You haven't seen this type of moss before.

TALIESIN: Hey, fella. Hi friend.

MATT: You forget for the moment what you're doing.

TALIESIN: What? Oh. Yeah.

MATT: Top of the turn, that brings us to Shakäste and Ruzza. Now, she's going first because she's a little quicker than you on this one. Ruzza's going to… Let's see here… Yeah, she's going to Vicious Mockery. That's a fun one. Looking through at Shakäste, since you're the one who stepped out of the cage, and they had seen you there for a bit, looks over to you and goes, "Oh, I'm sorry. Were our bedding arrangements not good enough for you? Oh, we can arrange for a much better place to sleep, about six feet beneath this." Make a wisdom saving throw, please.

SAM: Oh, no.

ASHLY: I hope you're wise.

TALIESIN: Oh, I can do it.

MARISHA: Wise as fuck.

KHARY: 20.

SAM: Whoa. Never mind.

MATT: Oh, yeah.

TALIESIN: Cannot be mocked.

MATT: Like water off a duck's back: doesn't bother you.

KHARY: (chuckling, then laughing) Darling, you just put one obstacle between us. You know I'm just going to knock that one down, too.

SAM: I think they're in love.

MARISHA: No, there's definitely sexual tension.

KHARY: Ain't no mountain high enough.

MATT: All righty. What are you going to do for your turn?

KHARY: Let's see. Well, I believe that trapped within that gate is the beautiful Queen Nefertiti. I think she should just go slamming her ass all up and down that hallway.

MATT: Go ahead and roll another attack. d20, big one.

KHARY: Oh, that didn't work. Let's see, what did that end up doing?

LIAM: What are you trying to roll?

MATT: That's your spell attack modifier. Should be a plus seven, I think?

KHARY: Oh. So ten.

MATT: Yeah, once again Nefertiti goes grinding through the hallway, slamming near Ruzza. Ruzza quickly ducks out of the way and dodges over to where Protto is hiding.

KHARY: The Queen's used to having other people do her work for her, I guess. Why don't I point my middle finger down through those slats in the gate and send some Sacred Flame?

MATT: Yeah, that'll work. That's a wisdom saving throw, I believe. Or Sacred Flame is dexterity? I think it is. Either way, let's see what she rolls. That's a 13 plus--

SAM: Oh, that's a good roll.

MATT: Taliesin, is it wisdom or dexterity for Sacred Flame?

SAM: Sacred Flame, save. You said dex?

TALIESIN: Yeah, it was dex for me.

MATT: Dex. So that's a 19. That's a success. As the middle finger sticks through, she ducks out of the way. She's a wily one, that Ruzza, and she keeps dodging and weaving, dancing around your assault.

KHARY: Next time, I'll use the other finger.

MARISHA: So much sexual tension. They had a thing.

SAM: Get a room, guys!

MATT: Finishing up Shakäste's turn, that brings us to Nott. What're you doing?

SAM: Oh, me? Again? I just went! Great.

MATT: You're on deck, Caleb.

SAM: I'm going to run up to the cage. Do I still see them? Through the portcullis?

MATT: You don't see Protto, but you see Ruzza.

SAM: All right, I'll take a shot at Ruzza!

MATT: Go for it.

SAM: Pew! That's 25.

MATT: Oh, that'll hit.

SAM: I get to roll, but still no sneak attack, damn it. Six.

MATT: Six points of damage to Ruzza.

SAM: I guess I'll shoot again. Yeah because I can't lift this thing, and I'm a wee thing.

MATT: I mean, you can certainly try.

SAM: No, I can't. I'll just shoot again. That's an 18.

MATT: 18 hits. Roll damage again.

SAM: That's 11 points of damage. Ah! These are rolls! These are good rolls today.

MATT: Firing between these bars of the portcullis, you fire both bolts. Both of them sink into the armor and probably pierce and intrude too, into the torso of Ruzza. As she falls back against the wall, "Ah, you son of a bitch." (panting)

SAM: Then I'm going to duck around again so they can't see me. Just anywhere.

MATT: Right up next to you, you bump into an invisible Caleb again.

SAM: Aah! Are there duplicates of you? How are you doing this?

LIAM: I am very stealthy.

SAM: Ah! You are amazing!

MATT: Caleb, it's your turn.

LIAM: This seems to be going okay, not so bad. Are those tables by the gate that Keg and Beauregard are trying to pull up? Not the room I'm in. I am going to kick one over and roll it over because I can see Keg jimmying on the gate. I see where she is going with it and I am going to be ready to push it under once it's lifted up. I will hold my turn, but I am going to do that pushing my rear end out of the way of view of anyone even though I am invisible.

MATT: Just for the hell of it, make an athletics check for me.

LIAM: Yeah, okay.

TALIESIN: Always fun.

LIAM: What could go wrong? Big six.

MATT: All right. You manage to make it most of the way over but it's a relatively heavy table for your size and diminutive form.

LIAM: I have average strength.

MATT: You can probably get it there by the end of next round but you're in process.

LIAM: Yeah okay.

TALIESIN: Aw, there's a tiny table you can move.

MATT: Finishing Caleb's go, it is now Protto's turn. Protto is going to go ahead and dart back around the corner, ducks beneath Nefertiti and then is going to take two shots at Beauregard but because it is between two portcullises he has disadvantage on the strikes. There is only one he can currently see down this long hallway. So the first shot is a natural 20 but disadvantage. That is a nine plus six. That is a 15 to hit. What's your armor class?

MARISHA: Miss. 17.

ASHLY: Nice.

MATT: Second shot is 19 to hit.

MARISHA: Oh, hits!

MATT: So, the second longbow shot releases towards you for eight points of piercing damage.

MARISHA: I'm going to use my reaction to deflect missiles. Oh, I rolled a nine. Sorry! I should have dictated that.

MATT: The first one goes wide and hits the wall beyond the boundaries of the portcullis. The second one you see coming towards you and you just catch it.

MARISHA: I would probably have disadvantage if I'm throwing it back through?

MATT: Probably yeah.

MARISHA: (high pitched hum of uncertainty)


MARISHA: Okay, I'll do it! I'll do it! I'm going to pull some Gambit moves and try to-- right through the door. Toss it back.

SAM and MARISHA: Monk shit!

SAM: Guys, this material does not breathe.

MARISHA: Can I get a "Don't fuck me, Gil"?


MARISHA: Aw, Gil fucked me! Seven!

MATT: You go to throw it and it hits the bar immediately upon releasing and shoots off at the side. It skids to a stop at the foot of Shakäste as he looks down at it, confused.

MARISHA: I got this for you.


KHARY: You've always been so thoughtful.

MARISHA: Yeah, I know.

KHARY: Thank you.

MATT: Beau. That was the end of Protto's turn. Protto is going to move back behind the corner. Now it's your turn.

MARISHA: Okay, I'm going to wait for Keg so we can hoist.

MATT: Holding that. Keg it's your go. With advantage.

ASHLY: (singing) 20!

SAM: Natural 20!


MATT: Beau, as you squat down to get your hands in the position to grab it you're like, "All right, time to go!" As you go to reach for it, it's already lifted up.

MARISHA: Man, it was really light actually, I don't--

MATT: You see Keg there just holding it up, both arms overhead.

ASHLY: 'Sup. (tongue click)

MARISHA: Beau is aroused.

MATT: With that, Caleb scoots the table back into space to keep it held somewhat aloft.

LIAM: (strained) Yeah, this table is pretty heavy too.

ASHLY: Do I have more things? Can I rush forward and try the second door?

MATT: That would be an additional action, but you can move through the space if you would like.

ASHLY: Okay.

MARISHA: I move through as well if I can.

MATT: Unfortunately, you had to ready your action on your turn so you don't have any movement.

MARISHA: Okay, copy.

MATT: That puts you right up next to Shakäste. Shakäste, of all the friends that you recognize coming into this event, you watch as this short-haired, burly, gritty, stubble-chinned female dwarf in full jagged looking half-plate armor comes up with two heavy weapons: one a giant warhammer, the other a battleaxe. The edge of a mostly burned cigarette dangling at the edge of the lip. After holding this thing up and stepping through, dropping it behind her.

KHARY: So what's your name?

ASHLY: Keg, as in booze or powder. Explosions et cetera. What's your name?

KHARY: Shakäste. We'll get a keg later, Keg.


SAM: Get a room you two!


ASHLY: Keg is aroused?

SAM: Is he flipping you?

MATT: Question mark?

ASHLY: I go both ways, baby!

KHARY: What can I say? I love a strong woman. Let's do this.

MATT: Caduceus, it's your turn.

TALIESIN: I see that this is no longer fruitful. Get a little momentary frustration. I'm going to drop this ridiculous form I'm in and go back to normal. I'm going to dive underneath the door, take a look, assess the situation. I'm going to take my staff, and I'm going to whisper to it: It's lunchtime, children. Let's throw a swarm of insects right into the middle.

MATT: You watch the naturally twisted and gnarled wooden staff that Caduceus carries, which previously had a dozen of small knot holes in it, suddenly begin to exude dozens and dozens and dozens of small beetles that begin to swarm out of the staff and curling onto the ground. You can place it.

TALIESIN: Can I put it right on top of that problem in the corner, so it can't quite be seen by anyone down the hall, but close enough to bite?

MATT: It's 30 feet, you can't quite get it to them.

TALIESIN: Even if I go all the way? Okay. How close can I get to him?

MATT: You're right next to him. This swarm of beetles is right beneath the floating bust of Nefertiti.

TALIESIN: Can it make a bite attack?

MATT: It won't be able to attack this turn, unfortunately.

TALIESIN: I think I get a bite attack on first appearance.

MATT: Right, but how close can you summon it?

TALIESIN: 30 feet.

MATT: Right, so it appears 30 feet--

TALIESIN: Can't move yet.

MATT: Right, but it's not quite close enough to bite. It's about ten feet away.

TALIESIN: It's cool. You look really cool. Hi.

KHARY: Hello. So do you! I don't know who does your hair, but we could talk about it later.

TALIESIN: I'm very impressed. Now that I realize that we're in fighting shot, I'm going to back up so I'm to the far left corner.

MATT: The rest of your movement puts you right there.

TALIESIN: That's as far as I can get? All right, I'll go invisible until my next turn.

MATT: As a bonus action?


SAM: Whoa! You can just do that?

TALIESIN: You don't know me!

KHARY: I'm going to need somebody to teach me this trick.

MATT: That finishes your turn. At the top of the round, as you're all gearing, this bassy, resonant voice fills the chamber you're in. "Mm.”

SAM: Boo!

MATT: “It's rare that the meat carries itself right to your table." You don't see anything around you. That's all it says.

MARISHA: He's invisible, too?! Everyone knows this trick!

MATT: At the top of the round, Ruzza, seeing that the scenario is turning and this trap scenario isn't going in their favor, darts away.

SAM: Darts away?

MATT: Darts further down that hall. Shakäste.

KHARY: Is there anybody still in that hallway?

MATT: Not that you can see. There is still that portcullis blocking your path.

KHARY: Okay, let's see. Let's have the Duchess move a little further, through the slats into that corner, perch up there, and see if she can see down the hallway a little bit.

MATT: The Duchess manages to find her way over to the far corner of that hall, perches up to give you a view, and you can see as Ruzza is making her way down the edge and around the corner, vanishing into this next chamber. Oh god, I'm knocking things over. It happens, I'm sorry. It's fine. They'll be okay in the end. There we go. Ending your view there, what are you going to do?

SAM: Marisha, did you just look at me? Is that what's happened? That's why you're suddenly laughing?

MARISHA: (laughing) Yeah, fuck you. Sorry.

KHARY: Let's see. Oh, you know what? Is there a mechanism for opening that gate?

MATT: You can spend the rest of your turn investigating the room for something like that, if you'd like.

KHARY: Yeah, why don't we do that?

MATT: Roll an investigation check.

KHARY: All right. What do I roll again? 20? 12.

MATT: You don't see anything in the chamber. The only thing that you did notice was the switch at the end of the hallway that Ruzza had originally put down to send the portcullises falling.

SAM: We saw that?

MATT: You saw them drop the portcullises, yeah.

MARISHA: Is it a-- or a button?

MATT: No, it's a small lever that goes downward and causes them to be released, to slam down.

KHARY: Too big for a tiny bird.

MATT: For a tiny bird, yeah.

KHARY: Is that the end of my turn?

MATT: You have an action, if you wanted to try something else.

KHARY: Let's see, is there anything that we could do to shake this thing free?

LIAM: Spiritual Weapon it?

KHARY: Oh yeah, why don't we slam the gate with Nefertiti? Let's see if we can find something she can hit.

MATT: Have Nefertiti roll an attack against the wall.

KHARY: All right. Natural one.

SAM: It's that big headdress. It's getting in the way. Yeah, restart it. Sometimes that what's you got to do with Nefertitis.

KHARY: Sometimes if you turn it off and turn it on, it helps.

MATT: As the bust slams into the bars, the metal rings from the impact, but unfortunately the mild bulging of the metal on this side isn't enough to cause any damage. Does that finish your turn?

KHARY: That's it, yeah.

MATT: All right, that brings it to Nott, with Caleb on deck.

SAM: Nott's going to run up to the cage and reach out with her Mage Hand and try to flip the switch.

MATT: As it does so, you hear (clicking) and the portcullis begins to raise up.


ASHLY: Good job, Nott!

SAM: I'm going to inch around Nefertiti. Excuse me, Mrs. Titi. Pardon me. Is Protto still there, or did Protto bug out?

MATT: No, Protto is ducked around the corner.

SAM: And Ruzza's still there?

MATT: They both disappeared around the corner, from your perspective.

SAM: All I see is a hallway and a swarm of bees?

MATT: Well, swarm of beetles, yes.

SAM: Okay. I don't want to go through the swarm of insects. I don't know what would happen.

MATT: Only one way to find out.

SAM: Oh Jesus. I will run through the swarm of insects, and bonus action disengage from them! I don't know if that works!

MATT: As you dart and vault over the beetles, they seem to not pay you any mind or really care of your presence, but nevertheless, you dodge the shit out of them! They never had a chance!

SAM: Just in case, I grab some chopsticks and I catch one.

MATT: As you turn around the corner, immediately, maybe ten feet from you, is Protto, who's currently pulling another arrow out of his bow and turning around the corner, glancing over. "Ah, shit!"

SAM: Can I duck back behind the corner, or am I exposed?

MATT: Your movement got you right around that corner. That's going to be the end of it there. Caleb, you're up.

LIAM: Yeah, okay. Since the gate is open, I'm going to start slowly walking down the hallway after Nott, sticking close to the wall. That's as far as I get?

MATT: That's as far as you can get on 30 feet of movement. You can use your action to dash if you want.

LIAM: I could, but I don't want to do that. I will put Frumpkin on the wall, opposite me, ten feet ahead of me. I would love to give Frumpkin his turn to go as far along the ceiling after Nott as he can.

MATT: What's the movement of the spider again?

LIAM: Oh, you know, 120 feet.

SAM: Question: did we ever get the father and son out of the cage?

ASHLY: No, they're still in there.

LIAM: 20 feet.

MATT: All right, so Frumpkin moves 20 feet along the ceiling on the edge, making his way further down, not full enough to reveal the next chamber, but is there nevertheless.

LIAM: Okay, and I will just stay pressed against the wall and that is the end of my turn.

MATT: Okay, that finishes Caleb's go. Protto's up. Protto runs and disappears into the next chamber. You hear a door open. That's all. That finishes. Beau, your turn.

MARISHA: I halt everybody, and I say: Wait.

ALL: Wait.


MATT: This is absurd.

MARISHA: I don't know. This feels like we're being lured right into a trap. We're following him.

TALIESIN: That's what it feels like, all right.

ASHLY: Where's Caleb? Caleb?


ASHLY: Caleb's gone.

MARISHA: He's dead.

ASHLY: Who's the next in command when Caleb's not around?


MARISHA: You know, Keg, I feel like we don't need a man's approval for a plan, necessarily.


MARISHA: I think this is a pretty solid fucking plan.

ASHLY: What's the solid plan?

MARISHA: I don't have a plan!

LIAM: In Beauregard's ear, she hears: I am in the hallway ahead of you. Chill out for a moment. I will continue to let Frumpkin creep around, if we are in that sort of a scenario.

MATT: At the moment, this is more of a chase sequence, as you guys are going after them. In this order, as we progress, next up in the order would be Caduceus. Caduceus, what are you doing?

TALIESIN: I'm going to send my insects further down after them.

LIAM: Bugs. The show's all about bugs now. Bugs.

MARISHA: I'll hold my action in case I see anything, by the way, with my turn, if that's okay. Oh! Can I move in? I want to move in. I was talking to everybody. Mm-hmm. That's good.

TALIESIN: I'm going to push to the far corner of the hallway and take a look down to see if I see anything. As far as I can get.

MATT: You don't quite get that far. The invisibility lasts until the end of your next turn? The invisibility that you get?

TALIESIN: Oh, then now it's over.

LIAM: As you pass in the hallway, you hear lightly: *Entschuldigung*.

TALIESIN: Hey. Cool.

MATT: All righty. As Frumpkin creeps around the corner, the last thing that Frumpkin sees in this area is another cage that is closed and locked, and another humanoid figure that is slumped inside, gagged and bound, chains, manacles behind the back, and similar to the other captives being held. There is a doorway that one of the higher guards is closing behind him, and for a brief glimpse, you see Protto and Ruzza further in the chamber with a torch light source within the next room before the door closes.

LIAM: If I am able to now, I will send Frumpkin over the ceiling and down the door, and if there is a crack, he will go through.

MATT: Are the rest of you moving in further to the next chamber?

SAM: Sure, yeah, if there's no threat. I'll scan for traps as I walk.

MATT: Make an investigation check.

SAM: Yeah, motherfucker! 24! Best rolls of my life!

MATT: As you turn around the corner, you can see the beetles swarm and Frumpkin both making their way towards the bottom of the door as the rest of your friends are coming along. You look down and the generally pretty rough-hewn stone flooring that most of these lower chambers entail, the step right in front of the closed door behind them seems to have a grooved pattern in it that is mostly filled with dust and dirt.


SAM: I am the greatest rogue alive! I will go try and disarm that trap. Well, with my Mage Hand.

MATT: Go ahead and attempt to do so.

SAM: It's plus seven?

MATT: It's plus your dexterity modifier and your proficiency modifier.

SAM: 20 even.

ASHLY: Nice!

MATT: You manage to get the Mage Hand beneath, and at a quick glance, you can see this is not a mechanical contraption more than it's an enchantment on the piece of stone itself.

SAM: Oh. So I can't disarm it.

MATT: What you do is the Mage Hand runs itself around the outskirts of it, pulling up the dust and dirt that has settled in to have it blend in with the rest of the stone, curling beneath, and pops it up, and causes it to fold up a bit, lift out the stone tablet, and drift it off to the side and set it down. The trap is still armed, but that part of the floor has now been moved out of the way.

SAM: So we can step over, around it? Yes! Wow! Caleb! Are you right next to me? No.


MATT: You're sending Frumpkin into the next chamber?

LIAM: *Ja*. If there's a gap, *ja*.

MATT: There is a slight gap. Roll a stealth check for Frumpkin this time.

LIAM: Frumpkin's not invisible, is he?

MATT: No. He's a spider.

LIAM: Good news. I rolled a one.

MATT: Frumpkin curls beneath the door frame, revealing this other hired guard that was back further in the chamber. Protto and Ruzza, they've lifted another barred trap door that guards another set of stairs that goes deeper below into another chamber.

SAM: A dungeon in a dungeon?

MATT: They're stepping further down into this next bit, at which point Protto looks over his shoulder and goes, "Hurry!" (arrow firing) No, he gets an attack before you can pull him back. That's a 16 plus six; that's a 24.

SAM: Maybe it's only one point of damage!

MATT: That is 11 points of piercing damage.

SAM: (groaning)

MATT: A rapid-fired arrow about that long, I'd say, against a spider would look terrible if it wasn't a fey entity that dissipates into dust as it blinks back into its home dimension.

LIAM: They. Are. Going. To. Die.


MATT: How long does your beetle swarm last?

TALIESIN: A minute.

MATT: Okay. It probably only has a few more, maybe ten, 15 more seconds before it fades.

ASHLY: Can we have followed behind at this point?

MATT: You guys could've followed and got to the next chamber behind them, if you want.

ASHLY: Can we say that we did that?

MARISHA: Yeah, can we all convene in this room?

MATT: You may.

MARISHA: Before we do anything else.

KHARY: Can I bring my Spiritual Weapon with me?

MATT: You may.

KHARY: As ineffectual as she's been.

MATT: She's tried, though.

KHARY: She's tried.

MATT: As Nefertiti floats in behind Shakäste as you're stepping inside, the spell begins to blink out, running its course.

KHARY: You tried, baby.

MATT: You see now, there is the unconscious humanoid--


MATT: The unconscious humanoid figure in the cage before you, and the closed door where they all vanished behind, and you hear (clanging) Sounds like some sort of metal object or slab has fallen solid onto flat ground.

LIAM: I start moving up through the hallway. Nott-- *ja*, it's still me, I'm still invisible. You need to check that door. I don't know if it's trapped or--

SAM: Which door? The door that I just checked or the next door?

LIAM: You checked a trap in this room, didn't you?

SAM: In the hallway that leads to the first chamber.

MARISHA: What about this door?

LIAM: Frumpkin went under a new door.

SAM: You know about more rooms than I do. I just checked the door in the front of the first room.

MATT: You checked for traps right there, and there was a trap on the floor right in front of that doorway. You disabled it, moved it out of the way, and now you guys are looking at the door.

LIAM: I point invisibly and say: The door that I'm pointing at! That one!

SAM: I don't see-- I don't know what you're saying. Waft your smell in the direction that--

LIAM: A gentle knock happens on the door in front of her.

SAM: Is that the door that I checked? No? Yes?

MATT: You didn't check the door, you checked the room for traps, and that was the trap you saw.

SAM: Oh, the door! The door, okay. I'll check the door. Why don't you check the cage for these fellows?

KHARY: I was just thinking the same thing.

SAM: That's a 17 on investigation.

MATT: The door does not appear to be trapped. It is locked, however, from the other side.

LIAM: The other side?

MARISHA: I'll help search the room as well. I'll look for any other triggers or passageways.

ASHLY: Any objections to me trying to chop this door down? Is it made of wood? I should ask first.

MATT: It is made of wood. It has some metal framing to it, but it's wooden primarily.

LIAM: *Ja*, I would prefer it. We are blown anyway, so have at it.

ASHLY: All right, here we go!

SAM: Wait, what about these people in the cage?

KHARY: Yeah, I was thinking, maybe can I investigate these people that are in the cage?

MATT: Yeah. You walk up to it, and there are the two people, the small child and the dwarf, in the previous chamber where you were locked, and in the chamber you just discovered there appears to be an older gentleman in his maybe late fifties, early sixties or so. Looks pretty bruised up; one eye is swollen shut, the other looks pretty bloodied as well. He's chained from behind and has the gag in his mouth, as well.

KHARY: Can I at least get in to move close enough that I could get the gag out of his mouth?

MATT: Yeah. You go ahead and pull it free-- “(gasping, panting) Who are you?"

KHARY: We're friends. We're going to get you out of here. How are the bindings on your hands?

MATT: "They hurt." You can see he looks weak. He probably hasn't eaten well in a number of days. As part of the process of mentally conditioning those they capture, it's minimal sustenance and a lot of mental and psychological damage, as well as physical torture to go along with it. You've seen and endured some of it, but looks like some of these other figures have gone through more of it.

MARISHA: I have one goodberry left over from Nila that she gave me that I didn't eat. So I'm going to hand him the goodberry--

MATT: Well, his hands are bound.

MARISHA: I'm going to feed him the goodberry.

MATT: He looks at you with his one semi-good eye, and, "What-- What are-- What are you-- Why?"

MARISHA: What, you don't like berries?

SAM: (shouting) Just eat the berry!

MATT: Make an intimidation check.

SAM: Eight.

MATT: He looks at you-- “(sobbing)”

SAM: I'm sorry, I'm sorry!

MATT: “(sobbing) Aah," and just sadly eats the berry.


MATT: "Okay, it's not too bad."

MARISHA: Antioxidants, you know.

MATT: "Açaí."

KHARY: What's your name, friend?

MATT: "Jusca."

KHARY: Jusca.

MATT: "I'm just a farmer, I don't know why they took me." He pulls against the constraints from behind. "Can you get me out? Can you get me out, please?"

LIAM: We are just giving them time to be ready for us. We need to proceed.

ASHLY: Yeah, we need to move. Sorry about your ears, grandpa! Then I smack the door with my hammer.

MATT: All right, make an attack roll.

SAM: You're the worst person.

ASHLY: (laughing) I am, I'm sorry. The door, with my axe.

MATT: Door, yeah. Make an attack roll for the door.

ASHLY: That's a 20. Not a natural, just a--

MATT: Yeah, no; that hits. Go ahead, roll damage.

ASHLY: Okay.

SAM: I'm going to use Mage Hand to unbind his hands.

MATT: All right, go ahead and roll dexterity.

KHARY: Oh, nice.

ASHLY: That's an eight.

SAM: (whispering) 14.

MATT: 14? It takes you a little bit, but you do manage to get the manacles off the back of his body. You rolled a?

ASHLY: An eight. Damage.

MATT: An eight. As you come down with your battleaxe, you all hear the resounding (crash) as it slams into the wood, splintering and breaking it a bit. You can see a brief gap where you've managed to get two of the wooden boards to separate and start to splinter. You're starting to go full Shining on this door. With that impact, over the next moment, with repeated hits, you definitely can see your ability to cut through this.

ASHLY: Okay. Can I do it again--? Can I get through?

MATT: Yeah. As that's happening, the bindings are now freed, and Jusca brings his wrists up and rubs them. You can see where the strain has caused red, bloodied lines across from the tension where he's pulled against the restraints. Sallow, this long-bearded chin out of neglect. He looks up with a faint glimmer of hope and a smile to the rest of you, and says "Oh, tha-- thank you."

KHARY: He's still in the cage--

MATT: Still in the cage, yes.

KHARY: Still locked in the cage?

MATT: Yeah.

KHARY: Should I try to unlock that thing?

MATT: Go for it. Roll a d20. Plus your dex bonus, and your proficiency bonus. It'd be plus... six, I think?

KHARY: Six? So 17.

MATT: 17.It's going to take you a bit. You're starting to get through it, but these cages are designed to be hard to pick. You take the better part of a minute to do so. In the meantime, you--

ASHLY: So Matt? Hypothetically, if I rolled a critical failure trying to go Shining on the door, what would happen?

TALIESIN: It would be very us.

SAM: Intermission.

ASHLY: In theory.

MATT: In theory, your axe goes wide, and as opposed to hitting the actual wood manages to catch a heavy part of the metal reinforcement on the door frame. As it hits, that heavy impact sends reverberations through your arm and body, like the worst--

SAM: Tinnitus?

MATT: Tennis elbow you've ever felt. At that minute, a voice, familiar, creeps in again in the space around you. "What are you planning to accomplish? You've killed a few bottom-barrel goons, but you're in my domain now. I had first planned to make you into premium contraband when finished. However, I may just keep you all as my own personal pets." Make a wisdom saving throw.

SAM: Ugh.

LIAM: Caleb is silently making the jerk-off motion in the room they are standing in.


LIAM: Let's get this door open.

ASHLY: I have to make a saving throw, Matt?

MATT: Make a wisdom saving throw, please.

MARISHA: Oh, no!

SAM: You've got this.

ASHLY: Come on, baby; character development! 15?

MATT: 15? Okay. In the moment, the sense of intimidation that your previous employer, Lorenzo, had held over you, and all the memories of what transpired on the Glory Run Road not but a day before goes running through your mind, and you feel that cold sense of fear, that urge to run creep up once more. And you close your eyes tightly and shrug it off. For the first time in the face of this--


MATT: That driving surge of vengeful confidence beginning to burn in your belly once more.

ASHLY: I just got a little teary-eyed. And I say: Eat shit, fucko! Then I go for the door again. That is a 20 on the door.

MATT: With your second swipe, you bring both your battleaxe and your warhammer together in one giant swing, both splintering the wood, and the force of the hammer splintering and breaking the two main heavy wooden boards that hold the majority of the right side of the door by where the hinges hold it on. As you break through, the door breaks on the top side, and then swings open, the apparatus which keeps it there, wedged in that door, broken partway and now rendered pretty much useless. The chamber in front of you is now left open for you all to see where the three members, both Protto, Ruzza, and the third thug have vanished from the chamber. You see a table on the far end and a brazier burning with a low flame, and then the stairway below has a set of bars, like another trap door that is a gate that seems to have closed and locked behind them.

KHARY: I like your fire, Keg.

ASHLY: (panting) Thanks. I'm going through some shit. Can we get this gate open?

LIAM: Maybe. Nott, will you have a look at it first?

SAM: Sure. How you doing over there, Shakäste, with the gates-- the cage?

KHARY: I think I'm almost there.

MATT: All right. At this point, Shakäste, you do manage to finally get the final tumbler of this one lock to-- (tumblers clicking, creaking) It opens up, and with that the older gentleman steps out, takes one step towards you, and half-collapses into your arms. He's drained of energy. (thump)

SAM: But that goodberry…

KHARY: Yeah, that's the only berry you got.

MARISHA: Electrolytes…

MATT: He rights himself. He's not unconscious, he just kind of stumbles and then gets back up and leans against the wall, breathing heavily.

KHARY: Right. There are a couple of people that are in the chamber around the corner here that are also trapped. How are you with a lockpick?

SAM: (laughs) We're deputizing the guy we just freed?

KHARY: You know-- Hey man.

MATT: He looks at you for about ten seconds, blinking the one eye he can blink--

KHARY: Never mind. Never mind. Thanks for--

MATT: "I-- I make radishes grow."


SAM: We'll come back for them! We'll come back for them.

KHARY: Yeah. I say, You know what? Go to the chamber around the corner, stay there with the people who are there-- who are caged. We're going to let you all free in a bit, but we've got some business we've got to take care of. We're going to make sure these people don't do this again.

MATT: "Okay."

MARISHA: I say, Hey. When was the last time you've seen Lorenzo? Did he go this way? Has he come back?

MATT: "Sorry. I haven't noticed. I'm sorry. I try not to make eye contact. They don't like it when I do."

SAM: Did you see a blue tiefling or a green, sort-of-gradient-colored half-orc, and maybe an amazing-looking white and sort-of, kind-of-black, dark angel thing?

MATT: He looks to you, first kind of still taken aback by the goblin face, and the sharpened teeth, and the yellow eyes staring back. But he calms himself. "Uh, I think those were the new projects he took below."

SAM: Projects? I don't like that--

ASHLY: We've got to move.

LIAM: Caleb is already in the next room, steering clear of the trap and trying to inspect if that brazier is arcane in nature, or if there is anything dangerous other than the trap.

MATT: Make an arcana check.

LIAM: *Ja*.

MARISHA: While he does that, I'm going to go immediately for the gate and look at that, into the stairs, and see what the deal is.

SAM: Are you looking for traps or anything, or just looking?

MARISHA: I'm going to investigate it and see how I can potentially open it if it's locked, yeah.

MATT: All right, so Beau. As you approach the gate and go to look towards it, the brazier flame flickers.

MARISHA: I jump back, I jump back.

MATT: You do, just as a gout of flame juts out in your direction--

SAM: Aah!

LIAM: If only I had gotten to say natural 20 before that happened.

MATT: Well, you realize what it is just as it happens, and you're like "Oh!--"

LIAM: Oh, that's one of those--

MATT: (whoosh) A cone of flame just bursts forward from the brazier in your direction. I need you to make a dexterity saving throw, please.

MARISHA: Oh. I ah, I rolled a two. So nine.

MATT: You take ten points of fire damage as it just incinerates past you. And you take a step back, and the flame is now super small. Like it just expended a lot of its fire energy. In the brazier it's just this low flicker. And it begins to brighter again--

MARISHA: Aah! While it's going, I'm going to see if I can yank open the thing!

MATT: All right, go ahead and make a strength check.

MARISHA: (whining) Can I do athletics?


MATT: This is a straight strength check unfortunately, sorry.

SAM: Um, I'd prefer a nature check?

MATT: Just roll a d20, add your--

MARISHA: (singing) Don't fuck me…


MARISHA: Mm, 15!

MATT: 15?


MATT: (creaking) It begins to bend. You can see now where they've left it to lock behind, it latches when it's dropped. And where the latch has stuck in, it's been locked underneath. It's starting to pull apart. The metal is bending. It's not strong enough to break; it will take another round to do so, but it's starting to give.

ASHLY: I'm going to rush forward and help. Do the same thing.

MATT: All right.

LIAM: And am I aware of that the trap? What sets it off, since I got the natural 20?

MATT: Yes: proximity.

LIAM: Proximity alone?

ASHLY: Um… (nervous laugh)

MATT: So, go ahead and make a strength check.

MARISHA: (grunting)

ASHLY: Okay.

MARISHA: I'm still trying to help!

ASHLY: 21!

MATT: 21. Beau, as you're pulling, your muscles getting sore that the veins bulging in your arms and the neck as you're yanking as hard as you can.

MARISHA: (grunting) Keg, do I look buff?

ASHLY: (grunting) Yeah! Yeah you look great!

MARISHA: (grunting) Thank you!

MATT: Keg joins in with you and both of you-- Ping!

ASHLY: Do I look buff?

MATT: The latches break off and it slides open, hitting the back wall, leaving the stairs below open. This warm air is billowing up from beneath, at which point I need both of you to make a dexterity saving throw as the brazier now has regained its flame and then (whoosh) sends forth. Another blast.

ASHLY: 19.


MATT: All right, so *you* succeed. Beau, unfortunately you do not. So that's going to be 12 points of fire damage to you, Beau. Six points to you.

ASHLY: Aah, I still get burned!

MATT: You take half damage though. And you watch as the flame now turns to a small cinder and begins to (rumble) rise once more, regenerating its flame power.

SAM: Is it-- the brazier, it's in the wall? It's inside the wall?

MATT: There is a stone bowl of some kind that is in a small pedestal that looks decorative on the corner that contains a small ember. But the ember itself seems to be magical, and whenever anybody walks within a certain distance of it, it just sends a gout of flame in their direction.

SAM: Can I Mage Hand grab it and throw the bowl across the room?

MATT: Well first off, you both are in proximity; you have the stairs below, what are you doing?

ASHLY: Are we dexing it down, right?

MARISHA: We drop down.

MATT: All right, both Beau and Keg vanish down the stairs. Just as the flames (roar) over the direction they were, but it passes overhead without any harm. You've managed to pull out of the range of this brazier. Nott.

SAM: That looks like a big bowl, I don't know.

MATT: It's pretty large.

SAM: I don't think I can lift that.

MATT: And it looks like the stone bowl itself is probably built into the pillar, it would weigh far too much for your Mage Hand to move.

SAM: How do we get down there without the fire thing happening again? Ah, oh. Wait, Caleb are you in the room?

LIAM: I am in the room. There are a couple of options. I could dispel it; It would take me about ten minutes. I would no longer be invisible, we would lose time.

SAM: Ten minutes? No!

LIAM: The second option is that we just run for it.

TALIESIN: Well, I mean, if that's the options... I'm just going to just tap my staff and cast Dispel at third level.

LIAM: Yes!


SAM: Wait, what is it, what are you doing? Dispel? You can do Dispel?


SAM: What can't you do?

TALIESIN: It's a second level spell, right?

SAM: Why weren't you always playing this character?

MATT: Dispel Magic-- Dispel Magic is third level.


MATT: Dispel Magic is third level.

TALIESIN: Third level, all right. So, I'll cast that.

MATT: All right, you watch as the flame blinks out and is left dark--


MATT: Flameless. Just a pile of blackened ash and whatever source of this enchantment is rent useless.

SAM: Good job, Caleb!

ASHLY: We should have waited.


LIAM: There is a deep, deep sigh in the room, and then Caleb descends into the hole.

TALIESIN: Well, I mean, if they just asked I would've-- I don't know. Okay.

MATT: So you all continue down the stairs after your friends.

SAM: Let's go, yes!


LIAM: *Ja*.

KHARY: Yeah. The Duchess perches on my shoulder.

MATT: (humming) Just stops there. Wings tucked up, long beak, breathing really fast. (panting)

KHARY: Keep a sharp eye, darling.

MARISHA: As Deuces and Shakäste come down the stairs, I say: Does this look bad to you?


MARISHA: And I show them my scorched, really burnt arm, because it hurts real bad.

KHARY: It doesn't look good.

TALIESIN: That doesn't look *that* good.

KHARY: Yeah. Is there anything I can do to help you right now?

MARISHA: Yeah, that was kind of my question. I just didn't want to ask outright.

SAM: She's very passive-aggressive.



ASHLY: I have a potion if you need it, Beau.

SAM: You have two potions, don't you?


ASHLY: I have two.



ASHLY: Do you want it?

MARISHA: Hang on. Let's wait for the--

SAM: For the clerics to weigh in?

MARISHA: For the healers-- The clerics to finish their council.

KHARY: I say suck it up buttercup. I'll take care of you later.

[hooting and laughter]

MARISHA: But Shakäste, I got you that nice arrow.

ASHLY: Do you want it now?

MARISHA: Yeah, now I want it.

ASHLY: Yeah, okay.

ASHLY: It's a greater healing potion.

MATT: So, greater healing potion, so that's 4d4 plus four.

SAM: Whoa! You have two of those?

ASHLY: Yeah baby.

SAM: Damn!

ASHLY: Aw yeah, baby!

MARISHA: Thanks, man.

SAM: Oh, man! Smoking is great.


ASHLY: Kids, you heard it here.

LIAM: Oh, good roll.

MATT: So 14.

MARISHA: Thank you! 14 points.

SAM: That's great.

TALIESIN: That's very good.

LIAM: Shakäste, would you, er-- Friend, would you do us the favor of… Stacy-- Is it Stacy or Anastasia?

KHARY: It's Anastasia, baby.

LIAM: Okay. I used to have a cat. I do not any longer--


LIAM: Would you do us the favor of having a peek around with your bird, friend?

KHARY: That sounds like a lovely idea. Grand Duchess, if you wouldn't mind taking a peek?

MATT: As you all begin to prepare the continuing descent, the stairs only travel down about 25 or so feet before a low, red-lit chamber, and steps that go on beyond. So you have a view down to where the base is. The Duchess begins to coast down towards that space. That's where we're going to take a break.

SAM: Ugh!


MARISHA: Lorenzo has a red room!

SAM: How long is this break, Matt? What is this, ten minutes? 12 minutes? How--

MATT: About 15 minute break. We'll be back here in just a moment, guys. For those who are watching and you want to go ahead and be part of the Wyrmwood giveaway, head over to the Critical Role Twitch channel at, enter the code word: GenCon. G-E-N-C-O-N, one word. We'll come back with the winner's name at the end of the break. We'll see you here in 15 minutes.

SAM: Everyone check out the D&D Beyond booth!

KHARY: Stretch your legs; hydrate!


AUDIENCE MEMBER: [inaudible]

ASHLY: We'll try!



Part II[]

LIAM: Where are all you cosplayers at? Do me a favor. I love you all, but if you're not in costume, sit down for a moment so I can see all the costumes.

[music fades]

LIAM: Up high, I see you guys up high. I see you down low. It never gets old. Fucking amazing. Great job, all of you.


LIAM: Also, question! Who has the adorably high-pitched laugh, somewhere over here? It's you? Keep laughing.

AUDIENCE MEMBER: (high-pitched squeak)

MATT: I love it! Oh no, she dropped her drink!

KHARY: Oh no. We'll get you another drink.

LIAM: Somebody get that woman a drink. It's on me.

KHARY: And maybe an antacid. I don't know, maybe that'll help with the laugh.



LIAM: I love you, too.

AUDIENCE MEMBER: No, but like, really love you!

LIAM: But that's what I mean, too!

MARISHA: Oh, thank you!

AUDIENCE MEMBER: [inaudible]

MARISHA: Lemonhead, I think is the name of the company? Lemonhead?


SAM: Love you, too!

[cheering, shouting]

LIAM: All right, let's get this TPK moving.


ASHLY: Oh no.

SAM: We got this.

MATT: All righty. Are we back?

ASHLY: We look back.

MATT: We good? All right. We on?

MARISHA: I think we're back.

MATT: All righty, welcome back everyone.

MARISHA: We're back.

MATT: Do we have a winner from the giveaway?

TALIESIN: Are we back online again?

MATT: I think we're back on the stream. I have not been given a winner. All right, we'll get it done in chat. Whoever won, congratulations. You'll find out soon.

SAM: Are we on the internet right now?

MATT: I think we are.

SAM: We're on?

MATT: We're on. We're live.


MATT: All righty. Bringing us back in, getting the music going.

ASHLY: I just got so nervous.

MARISHA: Yeah. Oh god.

ASHLY: Oh god.

MATT: Any other preparation you guys want to do before you descend the stairs?

KHARY: I would like to render Aid to three friends of mine.

SAM: You'd like to what?

KHARY: I have an Aid spell that before we go into the fray, I believe these two beautiful ladies have been taking a lot of the brunt of damage and deserve a little something extra. So I say they take Aid--

MATT: 2nd-level? The base level?

KHARY: Level two.

MATT: All righty, yeah. So that's five temporary-- or sorry, your hit point maximum increases by five for the next eight hours for Beau, Keg, and who else?

KHARY: I think I'll give it to myself as well.

MATT: There you go. So that's five more maximum hit points, and you gain five hit points.

ASHLY: And we gain five hit points?

MATT: Yeah, with that.

TALIESIN: So are you both healed now?


MARISHA: I have 41 hit points.

ASHLY: 46.

MARISHA: Out of now 51.

TALIESIN: I'll throw a Cure Wounds at each of you. Just to get that out of the way.

MARISHA: Deuces.

TALIESIN: Here we go. That's (counting) 12 points to you, and ten points to you.

ASHLY: Hell yeah. Thank you.

TALIESIN: And that's all my 1st-level spell slots. That's cool.

KHARY: Couple of tanks up in here.

MATT: The Duchess heads down into the chamber, and it opens into a T-shaped chamber facing your direction. The stairs here descend down into this area. The room is low-lit with a red glow emanating from two furnaces, one on each side there with faint red embers and bits of ash that flicker out with small bits of flame.

KHARY: Now I don't want my baby to go too far, okay? Just let her see what's--

MATT: Hovering right there?

KHARY: I'd say yeah. Just enough to stay in the shadow.

MATT: All right, make a stealth check for your Duchess. Roll a d20, add two.

MARISHA: Aw, buddy.


MATT: Duchess perches right in the middle of the floor, right there. She's sitting right there. You think Duchess is hidden. What else do you guys do?

KHARY: Well, here's the thing. If she's sitting right there in the middle, can she see better than if she were in the shadow?

MATT: From looking inside and seeing some of the chamber-- I'll give you a little more of a view of what's inside.

MARISHA: Silver linings!

MATT: There's this unnatural heat that fills the interior of this chamber. The air smells of coal and burnt flesh.

SAM: The map looks like a cock and balls!

[laughter, cheering]

LIAM: Spoilers!

MATT: Hopefully not, proportionally. That'd be a little sad.

SAM: Have you seen me? You can see me.

KHARY: From what I've heard, you know, it's all about girth, so.

LIAM: Scanlan's gone, man. Scanlan's gone.

MATT: You can see a number of metal brands hanging against some of the walls, where they are carried over to these furnaces to be heated as torture implements. Further into the central chamber you see a table. You see, in the middle of this rounded chamber, flanked by empty chairs, this stained, stretch leather-topped table, leather draping over on each side almost to the floor. You see heavy chains dangling at the front and the back of it, as this is probably a location where individuals are strapped to and tortured. Two sets of prison barred doors flank the opposite ends that seem to have larger containment chambers beyond there. They look to be heavy and very locked and barred. What would you like to do?

KHARY: I'd like for the Duchess to come back and perch on my shoulder, frankly.

MATT: Okay, Duchess heads back up.

ASHLY: Well, it's not like they don't know we're coming.

SAM: So we are inside the-- we've lifted open the hatch, right? There's no other doors going down to the downstairs, right? That's it.

MATT: This currently looks to be the only continued path downward, yes.

LIAM: Are the stairs wide enough for two people to go down? Three people to go down?

MATT: Individual.

LIAM: Individual. That blows.

KHARY: They're hiding, they're waiting.

ASHLY: I can go first.

SAM: Wait, no! Caleb is invisible. I mean, I don't want to lose you, but--

LIAM: *Ja*.

SAM: And you're noisy af.

ASHLY: Well, they know we're coming. This isn't going to be a surprise attack, I'm assuming.

MARISHA: Do you think they would grant you the graces that they did before and spare you if they saw you?

ASHLY: Now? I don't think so.

KHARY: Have they seen you?

ASHLY: Yeah.

MARISHA: Oh, Shakäste! There's a really long story.

KHARY: That's all right, you can tell me later.

MARISHA: She used to work for them.

ASHLY: But not anymore!

KHARY: Not anymore. Right. But have they seen you since you've changed your affiliations?


KHARY: Well then, nevermind.

SAM: What if this-- they know you, right, Keg? You could say, "All right, I'm coming down, Lorenzo!"

ASHLY: Is that what you think I sound like?

SAM: I'm a pretty good-- I'm like Rich Little.

ASHLY: Are you as good at impression as you are a detective?

SAM: Then I could send--

KHARY: Sidebar, Rich Little was an impressionist from the 70s and 80s, kids. Thank you.

SAM: I could send down an image of you that looks like you, and so if they attack right away they'll be fighting against just an illusion!

ASHLY: That's not a bad idea.

SAM: Thank you.

ASHLY: Thanks, Nott. What do we think about that?

LIAM: That's a pretty impressive illusion--

KHARY: I like the idea of sussing them out, since they're obviously hiding down there. Because from what the Duchess saw, she saw the chamber, but no one was in it.

MARISHA: I agree.

LIAM: You are able to do something so substantial?

SAM: Not of substance, if that's what you mean by substantial. Wherever you are.

LIAM: I'm right in front of you.

SAM: Okay.

LIAM: I'm right in front of you. I'm talking about--

SAM: (kiss)


SAM: I think I got an ear. I can do something that goes down and looks like Keg?

LIAM: As big as Keg?

SAM: As big as Keg, yes. Keg's not very big.

MARISHA: It can't make noise though, right?

SAM: Well, she'll make the noise. I'll make the video.

MARISHA: Oh, we're going to do a ventriloquist act.

SAM: Yeah.


ASHLY: Can you do that?

SAM: I can try-- I can certainly try!


SAM: But you know, that's step one. Step two is much different, because then what if they come out and attack? Then what do we do?

MARISHA: Well, last thing that we want is for them to have the element of surprise on us.

SAM: Ah, okay.

MARISHA: So as long as we can get them out.

SAM: Okay. Will I try?

MARISHA: It's going to suck either way, and I don't want to die, but we might die.

SAM: Okay.

ASHLY: So am I pretending to try and be stealthy? Am I going: Yo fuckface? Like, what's the vibe?

SAM: I mean the second thing is more you.

ASHLY: That's true. I mean, trying to be stealthy and failing is also very me.

SAM: That's true.

MARISHA: What was that thing you said earlier? Fucko? What was that?

ASHLY: Oh. Eat shit, fucko.

MARISHA: I liked that.

ASHLY: Aw, thanks!

MARISHA: That feels solid.

ASHLY: I was thinking about it for a while, like if I ever saw him again--


ASHLY: I'd be like: Eat shit, fucko.

MARISHA: I'm glad you workshopped it.

ASHLY: It felt pretty good when I did it.

MARISHA: Never throw out your first draft. You know, never show that.

ASHLY: I was working on that for a while.

MARISHA: That's great. That's good. I admire that.

SAM: But, you know if you see him again, though, you can't go back to old material. You need some--

ASHLY: That's why I was thinking fuckface. Well, is fuckface a step down from fucko?

SAM: Fuckface is different.

ASHLY: I mean it's in the same range, I guess.

MARISHA: That's true.

ASHLY: What would you say?

SAM: I would say: Eat shit, you rusty spoon! I don't know.

ASHLY: You rusty spoon?

MARISHA: You're deviating though, from the brand, you know?

SAM: Oh, you know he doesn't have any hair. Maybe you could be like: Baldy McGee!

ASHLY: Aw baldy! You fucking chrome dome.

SAM: Yeah!

MARISHA: Fucking chrome dome! Nailed it.

SAM: Making fun of someone's appearance is very good.

MARISHA: Works every time.

ASHLY: That'll really get him.

SAM: Yeah!

ASHLY: Nothing will get him except that.

SAM: Yeah!

ASHLY: I'm coming down-- an illusion of me is coming down the stairs. I'm going to try and ventriloquist the illusion to say, Hey chrome dome--

SAM: Uh huh.

ASHLY: This is going to go great. Let's do it.

MARISHA: Hey, fucking chrome dome.

ASHLY: Hey, fucking chrome dome!


LIAM: What are we doing?

MARISHA: We're workshopping a bit.

SAM: We're drawing them out, and then once we know their position, I guess we'll just run and gun?

LIAM: Let's stop making so much noise and try it, then.

SAM: Okay.

ASHLY: Let's do it.

SAM: All right, so you start with an, “I'm coming down,” or something and then you'll “come down”.

ASHLY: Okay. Should I do the chrome dome line? That's what we're going with? We workshopped it a little bit.

KHARY: I like the chrome dome line.

ASHLY: Okay.

TALIESIN: You worked so hard on it.

MARISHA: Could be on the movie poster. It's great.

ASHLY: So Keg shouts down. Hey, you fucking chrome dome!

TALIESIN: Language.

MARISHA: Nailed it.

SAM: I drop a bit of fleece and cast Silent Image and make Keg walking down the steps.

MATT: All right, you watch as this quiet, soundless image of Keg--

ASHLY: I'll go like this!

SAM: Rattle! Rattle! Rattle!

ASHLY: Clang! Clang! Clang! Clang!

SAM: It's a radio play!

TALIESIN: I'm going to use a little Thaumaturgy to make sure it's actually got some noise to it. I'll puppet it a little bit.

SAM: Ooh! With coconuts you can make it sound like horses!

TALIESIN: I don't have a coconut. I--

ASHLY: I think we're mixing. I think the streams are crossing.

TALIESIN: So yeah, I'm going to give it a little bit of sound.

ASHLY: It worked super well right?

KHARY: You got two husks and you're smacking them together.

ASHLY: I'm clanging down.

MATT: You're making the clanging sound.

ASHLY: Illusion Keg is clanging down.

MATT: Make a performance check.

SAM: Wait, me or her?

LIAM: Come on, Burch!

MATT: Her.

MARISHA: Come on!

ASHLY: (singing) Hello my baby, hello my darling, hello my ragtime gal…

MARISHA and AUDIENCE: Keg! Keg! Keg!

ASHLY: 11!


SAM: It's middling.

MARISHA: Above average.

MATT: You angle yourself at the top of the stairway to make sure that the sound of your armor shaking--

ASHLY: What the fuck.

MATT: At least disseminates into the air as much as possible. The image can only walk 15 feet, because that is the distance of the cube. So the illusion appears near the top-- or near the middle of the stairs--

KHARY: There's a bit of an echo right?

MATT: Descends and steps no more than ten feet out from that and stops.

SAM: Okay, and starts like, narrowing its eyes and looking around. Just sort of mean and maybe gets a cigarette. I don't know how she has so many of them. Does she roll them? I don't know.

ASHLY: It's just the same one.

MATT: At this moment, you hear (projectiles firing) and you see as a bit of the dangling leather over the table bows slightly. And from the opposite end, something darts across the hallway.

SAM: From which side?

MATT: One appears to emerge from underneath the table out this way. Another seems to shoot out from this side.

ASHLY: What shoots out?

KHARY: This is some Indiana Jones shit that's happening right now.

SAM: The image of Keg falls to the floor, clutching her shoulder.

TALIESIN: I can make it sound-- I'm going to use Thaumaturgy to make it sound like she's in pain. So--

ASHLY: (groans) Oh, it hurts!

TALIESIN: I'm holding the crystal up like a microphone.

ASHLY: Aw! Shit!

TALIESIN: Can you give me, like… three big deaths, three medium deaths, and three little deaths?


MARISHA: Oh, yeah!

LIAM: Oh! Winner!


TALIESIN: Some open mouth, closed mouth kind of shit. I'm just going to need a lot of-- I'm going to need a palette to work with.

ASHLY: Ah! Aw! Agh!


MATT: A moment passes before two more (projectiles fire). These strange, quick objects moving at a rapid speed, cross by. Another one hits the bottom of the stairs and clangs to a rest. This one you can actually see it. It appears to be a rather long, solid crossbow bolt.

SAM: Okay. I make Keg's hand fall off.


SAM: Ah, I don't know. I don't know what happened.

ASHLY: Aw! That was my good hand!

SAM: Aah!

MARISHA: Maybe it's a trap. Maybe it's definitely a trap.

SAM: Okay, step one went really well. What do we do now?

ASHLY: Are there any other crossbolt-y things?

MARISHA: Nott, can you Mage Hand and lift up the little leather skirt of the table, and see what's under there?

SAM: This seems a bit far.

LIAM: It's also-- It's not a trap, is it? Because there's no weight to your illusion. What would have been set off?

MARISHA: It's motion-sensored.

SAM: It could be someone under the table.

KHARY: No, it's not a motion sensor. They see it.

LIAM: No, it's a person firing.

KHARY: They see it. There's somebody watching.

LIAM: It's a person firing.

SAM: Yes it's someone--

MARISHA: It's Protto.

KHARY: Where are those shots coming from?

SAM: From under the table, and also from somewhere else.

MARISHA: Maybe it's Protto and that lackey.

SAM: Well we know that Protto shoots arrows, right? And then someone else could be the other one.

MARISHA: And then they had that hired hand with them.

SAM: Yeah, yeah, yeah. That's them.

ASHLY: Would we be able to see anything to make perception checks from here?

MATT: Not up in the stairway, you'd have to descend into the actual chamber to see.

ASHLY: Okay.

MARISHA: I still got firecrackers. Just throwing it out there.

KHARY: There you go. Now we're talking.



MARISHA: I take out a cherry bomb. I light it, I throw it.

MATT: (impact, sizzling noises)

MARISHA: Wait for it… Wait for it.

MATT: (explosion)

MARISHA: All right, go! Go! Go!

SAM: Wait, we're going in?


MATT: What are you doing?



SAM: Sure! I'll run down the stairs and I'll fire as soon as I see anything.

MATT: All right.

MARISHA: Do they seem distracted?

MATT: Nott runs down the stairs. Who's after Nott?

MARISHA: I'll tumble down the stairs, doing a barrel roll and some parkour shit.

MATT: Are you stopping where Nott is? You can move a little further or elsewhere, wherever you want to go.

MARISHA: Can I tuck behind the wall?

MATT: Over here?

MARISHA: Yeah, and crouch and peek.

MATT: Sure. Who else is going where?

ASHLY: I'll do the same. On the opposite wall.

MATT: Keg you go ahead to the opposite wall?

ASHLY: Yeah.

MATT: Yeah, you can get to just about there.

LIAM: Caleb will come invisibly down, but not leave the stairs. He will stay on the stairs.

MATT: About there?

LIAM: Yeah, halfway down. But you can leave him up there for the moment.

MATT: That will give you the basic idea. Shakäste?

KHARY: I'm going to stay back, and put the Grand Duchess over on Keg's shoulder.

MATT: All right, so the Grand Duchess is currently residing, we'll say over here by Keg. That will represent he Grand Duchess's current position.

ASHLY: (whispering) What the fuck?

MATT: I mean, you're staying back up in the stairway.

KHARY: You know what? You had a spider on your shoulder before; this should feel much better.

ASHLY: It's all weird.

MATT: You're staying up behind Caleb, up in the hallway?

KHARY: Right.

MATT: All right, so your vision, with the Duchess you can see beyond that but you do not have--

KHARY: A full--

MATT: The ability to actually hit something unless you move down below. Just a heads-up.

KHARY: Right.

MATT: All right. Caduceus?

TALIESIN: I think i'm going to-- Oh god-- We don't want all the magic in one place. That seems like a bad idea. I think I'll pull off and hug the wall to the left and get as far back from that corner as I can.

MATT: All right. (counting) At this moment, make a perception check, Nott.

SAM: Me?

MATT: Yep, as you came down the bottom of the stairs.

SAM: 12. Plus nothing, Taliesin.

MATT: You look down and see the empty chamber. No movement. Beauregard, you were looking around the corner. Make a perception check.

MARISHA: Oh god! Five. Right? That was a two, plus three. Five.

MATT: Keg, you make a perception check as well, since you're both at the wall.

ASHLY: Come on, baby. (singing) 20!


MARISHA: Thank the gods.

LIAM: What are you?!

MATT: Keg, as you hit the wall and glance around the side, you can see a humanoid shape ducked into the shadows underneath the table in the center, who has pulled a heavy crossbow from underneath the leather and aiming it at Nott, which does attempt to shoot. That is a 17 to hit. What's your armor class?

SAM: It hits!

MATT: It hits. For that, Nott, you take eight points of piercing damage as a bolt hits right towards the kneecap and actually sticks out the side, you almost falling to one edge.

SAM: I will dodge uncannily.

MATT: There you go. Reduce that to four. Caduceus, as you walked around the corner, you turn around to see and come face to face with Ruzza, who is back up against the corner, and looks towards you and goes, "What the fuck?!"

TALIESIN: Do I have time to do a thing?

MATT: No, now we roll initiative.


MATT: Unveiling. This guy's down there. Oh god, Caleb fell. Let's go ahead and do this, guys. You guys got a little cluster at the top of the stairs, goddamn it.

TALIESIN: Oh my god, this is so embarrassing.

MARISHA: Did you say roll for initiative?

MATT: Yes. All of you guys.

SAM: Sorry, Mr. Clay.

TALIESIN: This is not going to be good.

LIAM: Do you have a bonus?

TALIESIN: What do I got as a-- it's bad enough I'm looking up reactions!

[groaning sympathetically]

MATT: We have 25 to 20.

SAM: 22.

ASHLY: Okay, okay, okay.

MATT: 20 to 15.

LIAM: 15.


ASHLY: 15.

MATT: We have Beau. Than we have Caleb and Keg going at the same time. 15 to ten?

ASHLY: Oh no.

MATT: No? All righty.

LIAM: I don't like this music.

MARISHA: I know, so spooky!

MATT: Ten to five?

ASHLY: Taliesin, really? No!

TALIESIN: Five. I was also supposed to be against the wall, by the way. There you are, right there. Thank you. Five.

MATT: What did you get, Shakäste?

KHARY: Four.

MATT: Ohh. All righty. Oh man! First, with a natural 20 on initiative order, is Protto. What at first you thought was the thug's placement over there, turns out to be Protto, who immediately throws the table up and in front, using it as a block and as cover, and then aims over again with the heavy crossbow, firing once again at Nott. That's a 23 to hit.

SAM: That's a very big hit.

MATT: It's only four piercing damage, however. Really shitty damage roll.

SAM: Four piercing damage? Can I also uncanny dodge that, or no?

MATT: Yeah, we're going back to the next combat round. You technically have not gotten your reaction yet. So no.

SAM: You know what? I won't, just in case I want to react to something else.

MATT: Well, that finishes Protto's turn. Nott, you're up.

SAM: Did Protto duck or anything?

MATT: Yeah, Protto is currently now behind the table and using it as cover.

SAM: So I cannot see The Devil Wears Prada?

MATT: No, you cannot.

TALIESIN: I was waiting for that.

MATT: It was only a matter of time.

SAM: Okay, I will run over to the table, and poke over it, and shoot Protto.

[cheering and laughter]

MATT: As you rush up and glance over you can see Protto, back against the table--

SAM: Hello!

MATT: Pulling and stretching a bolt and goes "Huh?!"

MARISHA: Come on! Come on, girl!

KHARY: Come on!

SAM: 12.



SAM: I'm going to fuck you up-- Oh, shit!


MATT: He instinctually slaps his hand up and it knocks your arm and it causes the shot to go firing off into the distance.

SAM: I will reload and fire again!

MATT: All right, go for it.

SAM: That's 20.

MATT: That'll hit, that'll hit.

SAM: Aw, that's cocked. Okay, ten points of damage.

MATT: Ten points of damage. This one sinks deep intothe left pectoral muscle of Protto, piercing through the armor and then gets stuck. You hear this expiring bit of air from the throat and he seems like it's now having a hard time breathing. He's hurt, he's not at death's door but he's looking pretty hurt. All righty, Nott--

SAM: I'll duck down.

MATT: That ends your turn. Beau, you're up.


SAM: (chanting) B-B-Beau!

MARISHA: (air horn) I'm going to pop around the corner. Pop around, and I'm going to go towards where Nott is. Keep going. Do I see anybody to my left?

MATT: You do, you see the other thug immediately around that corner, who is also firing from that side across the way.

MARISHA: I go, 'Sup! (pow)


MARISHA: Okay, first roll. Natural 20!


MARISHA: Doubling the dice damage. Ooh, that's a seven! So 14 plus four, 18.

MATT: 18 points of damage to him, nice. All righty. So with a heavy clock to the side he gets thrown back into a torch that is in the wall. That kind of catches flame a little bit on his shoulder and he brushes it out. He is looking both distracted and pretty hurt.

MARISHA: That's cool. I'm going to take my off hand, I'm going to run and just take the edge of my arm into his throat.

MATT: Go for it, second strike.

MARISHA: Second strike, 14?

MATT: 14, does hit!

ASHLY: Oh, yes!

MATT: Actually, because he is just a lowly guy. He is not as well armored as his compatriots. So...

MARISHA: Not great damage: six damage.

MATT: Six damage. Whack to the throat! (gasping) He's now having a hard time inhaling. He's still standing but--

MARISHA: Okay, I'm going to take palm to his nose and try and bat his head back into that sconce behind him.

SAM: Good god.

KHARY: Come on girl.

MARISHA: Last hit, last hit. That's not good: 12.

SAM: That's great!

MATT: 12 does not hit, unfortunately.

SAM: Oh, that's not good.

MATT: You go to hit a third time and he's a little wiser and manages to push off. It's a sloppy parry but he manages to avoid most of the brunt of the blow and pulls back. That end your turn?

MARISHA: Yep, I'm going to stay here and just be on this guy.

MATT: All right. That brings us to Caleb and Keg.

ASHLY: Okay.

MATT: You guys can choose who goes first.

ASHLY: After you.

LIAM: Ah, *ja*, okay. I think--

ASHLY: Unless, I can go first if you want.

LIAM: I'm already gone. In my head I think, This is still going very well. I have not been hit; here we go. And I'm at the bottom of the stairs already, not at the top, so what I would like to do is move my full movement and then use my action to dash. And just stroll to the right of Nott, and I will just touch her on the shoulder as I go; and get as far as I can in that direction against the wall, if that's as far as I can get. So 60 feet.

MATT: You can get all the way over here.

LIAM: *Ja*, that's exactly where I want to be. And then I will scooch down, not fully sitting but like bending my knees down and doing like a squat. And thinking, This is okay. This is okay. That's the end of the turn.

MATT: All right.

MARISHA: You're in full poop stance?

ASHLY: So now me?

SAM: Squatty Potty.

LIAM: Typically.

ASHLY: Can I get to Protto?

MATT: Protto? (counting) You kick a chair to get there, but you can get right up against him.

ASHLY: I say, Hey, little shit! And then I whack him. That's a natural one.

MATT: You swing with the battleaxe and it actually gets wedged into the table. You have to put your foot on to manage to free it from the wood.

ASHLY: All right. Trying again. Okay, that is a 19.

MATT: 19 does hit. Go ahead and roll damage.

ASHLY: Yes. Okay, great. Okay. So that is seven damage.

MATT: Seven points of damage to Protto. With the warhammer, whack! to the side of his head, he's pushed up against the side of the now partially-splintered table, but he is still keeping his cool about him. He's hurt, but hanging in there.

ASHLY: I can't smack him again with the bonus action.

MATT: With your bonus action you can, yeah!

ASHLY: Oh, well then I'm going to fucking do that!

MATT: You're a dual wielder! You got this girl!

ASHLY: Ah, does that-- 15?

MATT: Does not. It just misses, unfortunately. Protto manages to just duck out of the way as your hammer slams into the bottom side of the table where he has been using to break for cover. And it causes this huge open hole, this gap, almost like a porthole in the top of the table where you can see through. As you manage to pull back your hammer he kind of looks up through it right at Nott. "Aah!"

SAM: Aah!

MATT: That finish your turn Keg?


MATT: All righty. You now hear once again, a familiar voice.


MATT: Crawls from the space that says...

MARISHA: (quietly) This fucking sucks, right?

KHARY: (whispering) I hate him.

MATT: "Do not kill them. They have not earned the mercy I give to their kaleidoscopic friends. Let them bleed, and bring them in chains. Oh, the horrors you'll see." And for Lorenzo's turn...


SAM: Oh, Lorenzo! He has such good mic technique.

MATT: Beau, you hear this momentary vibration of metal cutting through the air, before-- That is going to be a 20 to hit.

MARISHA: Yep, that hits.

MATT: That is 17 points of slashing damage.


KHARY: You have Aid.


MATT: And 16 to hit.

MARISHA: Miss! The second one.

MATT: So the first one strikes from behind. The pain shoots into your head and the second swing is a backhanded, wide throw with this glaive, now seemingly more jagged and almost larger than the one you saw before. You manage to duck out of the way and spin around, and there, hovering in the air about ten feet off the ground, you see what seems to be the essence of Lorenzo, but larger. You see in that same kind of thickened leather-studded bits of armor and bracers, a bulging, muscular, blue-skinned body. Where once was a bulging bald head with tattoo, two horns emerge from the front. Bits of a blackened beard on once was a hairless, humanoid form, now curling down the front of the chest and back of the head, one central plume behind. You see there before you what is Lorenzo, or at least, his true form.


[shouts and jeers]

MATT: And as you look up into the burning red eyes of this strange ogreish-like demon creature, which you do not recognize, all you hear is the chuckle. (malicious chuckle)

SAM: Jesus...

MATT: As he flies back, further into the chamber, about 15 feet up, his back to the ceiling of the interior, that's going to end Lorenzo's turn. It is now Ruzza's turn. Ruzza, who saw you first run over there, Caduceus, is going attempt to cast Confusion on you. So I need you, Caduceus, to make a wisdom saving throw.

TALIESIN: A wisdom saving throw. That's a 27.



MATT: As you watch Ruzza begin to slightly hum this incantation there is a musical element that is discordant and awful that seems to pierce through your ears and into your brain. For a second your vision blurs, the colors fade to gray. Up is down, the world makes no sense, and as you clasp your eyes tight once more, you manage to shrug off the magical effect. You look back at Ruzza who notices that the spell has faded and goes, "Oh, shit!"

TALIESIN: (laughing) Ah.

KHARY: He hasn't been the same since he left the Fugees.

MATT: And Ruzza is going to run the other direction to try and get away from you. That's going to end Ruzza's turn. That brings us now to the other thug. The one that is up against you.

MARISHA: Oh, I thought you said the other fuck and I was like, he is a fuck!

MATT: You know. That thug is going to--

MARISHA: Still heard it! Same thing. Keep going.

MATT: Is going to attempt to move away from you.


MATT: So take your attack of opportunity.

MARISHA: Hell yeah. I was going to say: sentinel, I don't want him getting away. Hm, 15. No 16! 16.

MATT: 16 will hit, go ahead and roll damage.


MARISHA: Yes! All right, not bad. Ten damage and he is not moving. Bish!

MATT: No. He is not moving, and he is unconscious.


MATT: He's not very good up close, and really wanted that range and took a gamble and it didn't work in his favor. But that's okay. All right, that finishes his go. Caduceus you're up.

TALIESIN: All right, let's see what I've got. Okay… I feel like you're going to be a problem. I'm going to cast Blindness. On this beautiful, beautiful singer.

MATT: All right, is that a constitution saving throw?

TALIESIN: That is a constitution-- let me double check. Yeah, that's a constitution saving throw against 16.

MATT: Natural 18 plus two, that's a 20. Unfortunately, no effect.


MATT: You're trading spells, both of you manage to shrug each other off. It's this massive duel of wits and willpower.

SAM: Damn.

MATT: Do you wish to move, as well?

AUDIENCE MEMBER: Don't die on us!

TALIESIN: Oh, it's happening. You know, I'm just going to scoot a little-- No, I'm fine where I am, I think. It's just-- Yeah, that's fine.

MATT: Shakäste. Your turn.

SAM: Shakäste!

MARISHA: (whispering) Shakäste!

KHARY: Well let's see, I have The RZA right here in front of me, right?

MATT: You do. Right at the bottom of the stairs.

KHARY: And I think everybody else is preoccupied with other people. I think maybe I should take a whack at this one. So let's see: we could go Sacred Flame or we could… I mean, she's standing right behind me.


SAM: (singing) Titi!

KHARY: Come on Nefertiti, let's see what you got.


MATT: As the form of this Egyptian-- This incredible ancient Egyptian woman from a world far from here apparates on the other side of Ruzza, go ahead and make your attack roll with a d20.


KHARY: No, we don't turn her on yet.


MATT: Got to get that (engine revving).

KHARY: So it's…

MARISHA: Plus seven.

KHARY: Plus seven, so 11.

MATT: 11 is not going to hit.

SAM: Nefertiti! Ugh.

MATT: That's all right. You still have your action if you wanted to--

KHARY: Let's see--



SAM: Whoa, the audience turned.

MARISHA: I know!

KHARY: Let's have the Duchess come fly back towards me and the other side of the chamber. Just to make sure that there's nothing-- Yeah, yeah, further. Yeah, over on that side, just to make sure, just because nobody's really investigated there yet.

MATT: All right. The Duchess swings over and takes a look. It looks like this side of the chamber is empty. There's nobody else waiting in the wings.

KHARY: Is that all we've got?

MATT: Well, you have your action still.

KHARY: Oh, we've still got an action.

MATT: And your movement, yeah.

KHARY: Okay, good. I want to-- let's find our way towards the Duchess, then. But just halfway there. A little further over; not so close to Ruzza.

MATT: Right, so you can move over that way.

KHARY: Yeah, back away. Yeah, there you go, that's more like it.

MATT: Ruzza does make a swing back with the sword towards you as you move out of her melee range. That's going to be a 14. What's your armor class?

KHARY: 15.

MATT: (whoosh)

KHARY: Can I make a defensive move?

MATT: It does not actually hit you, though.

KHARY: Okay, all right. You know what? Be glad, RZA. Be glad.

MATT: You do manage to move away from the strike, no issue, and you still have your action if you wanted to use anything else, like a cantrip.

KHARY: Yeah, let's go Sacred Flame at The RZA.

MATT: Sacred Flame, that is a natural 18 plus three on the-- so it does not hit, unfortunately.

KHARY: Damn. All right. Fuck you, RZA!

MATT: Guys, keep trading blows and dodging and keeping it going. Shakäste, that ends your turn. Back to the top of the round. It is Protto's turn.

MARISHA: This little shit.

SAM: Are you talking about me?

MATT: Protto is going to go ahead and drop the crossbow and pull out two shortswords.

SAM: Ooh, ugh. Mistake.

MATT: He's going to spin and dodge very quickly, quicker than you expected, around you Keg, still staying in melee range.

ASHLY: Do I get an attack of opportunity on him?

MATT: Does not leave your range, so does not provoke. He stays close enough, but whips around and is going to go ahead and make a strike with each blade towards you. That is going to be a 12.

ASHLY: Hell no!

MATT: It just clangs off your armor, no issue. The second strike is going to be a 14.

ASHLY: (cackling)

MATT: Then, as a-- no, he's just going to leave that there. That's going to end Protto's turn. Nott, you're up.

SAM: Am I in melee range of Protto?

MATT: No, you are not.

SAM: Okay. I am going to run away. Towards Shakäste, and as I go, I will turn around and fire a crossbow bolt at Protto with sneak attack because--

MATT: Next to Keg? Go for it.

SAM: Aw, fuck you! It's only a 12.

MATT: 12 does not hit, unfortunately. It goes wide. Scrapes against the stone in the ceiling, and ricochets into oblivion.

SAM: How much more movement do I have?

MATT: You have quite a bit more movement, but you'll be coming into melee range with Ruzza. But Ruzza cannot make an attack of opportunity against you because she already took one, so you can keep moving.

SAM: I'll use my bonus action to fire one more bolt at that stupid Protto.

MATT: Go for it.

SAM: That's a 22 to hit.

MATT: That'll hit. Go ahead and roll damage with sneak attack.

SAM: No sneak attack though, right? Matt? No sneak attack, or--

MATT: No, sneak attack! Yeah, because Protto's still next to Keg.

SAM: Okay, that's 17.


MATT: Protto's looking pretty hurt as he takes it right in the abdomen (grunts), and his eyes are going wide and (grunting) keeps looking up, "Boss!"

SAM: I'll keep moving as far as I can get around that wall.

MATT: You get right next to Shakäste, and you're now right up against the wall, kind of between the wall and Shakäste.

SAM: Great.

MATT: That ends your turn. That brings us to Beau.

MARISHA: Where is Prada? Devil Wears Prada, where is he?

MATT: Over there, next to Keg.

MARISHA: In the white thing?

MATT: Yeah, right on the opposite side.

KHARY: Just behind him.

SAM: End him.

MARISHA: I'm going to go kill this guy because he's pissing me off. I'm going to do my movement, I'm going to parkour off of the table that he knocked over, going to use Keg's shoulder to get the rest of the way over.

SAM: I imagine when Beau walks down the street, it's all parkour.

MARISHA: Front barrels into the door!

MATT: As you vault over, pushing that way, the floating entity that is Lorenzo, who's coasting about 15 feet above you, and his wide form, having a ten-foot range with that glaive-- you just leave his combat range and he takes a swing of opportunity towards you. That is going to be a seven plus eight, that is a 15 to hit.



KHARY: Parkour!

SAM: She parkours!

MARISHA: Macy's Day Parade balloon; it's not good right now. It's bad. Okay, I'm going to unleash on Prada.

SAM: Yeah, do it!

MARISHA: Okay, first one.

ASHLY: Fuck him up.

MARISHA: Ah, Gil gave me a natural one. (singing) Fuck you, Gil.

MATT: You swing towards Protto, Protto ducks out of the way, and your fist instead hits the edge of Keg's armor. Your hand goes back like that--

ASHLY: Ah, sorry! Sorry!

MARISHA: Ah! Why'd you put spikes on it?!

ASHLY: I look cool!

MARISHA: Fuck! Ow! Okay, next one. 17.

MATT: That does hit, roll damage.

MARISHA: Okay, nine.

MATT: Nine points of damage against him.


MATT: Down on the back of the head, and you can see blood spatter out of the nose and mouth across the stone. Looks back at you, like (grunting); still standing.

MARISHA: Flurry of Blows.

SAM: (kung fu movie accent) Flurry!

MATT: All right. How many ki points do you have left now?


MATT: All righty.

MARISHA: Okay. First attack-- that's cocked. I'm sorry, it was a good one too. Oh, it's the same roll though: 19! These are two off-handed, right?

MATT: Yeah, so it's the d6.

MARISHA: Okay, eight damage on the first one. And second one, same exact roll. 19 again.

MATT: All right; damage on the next one.

MARISHA: And same roll again, nine. Two nines, 18 total damage.

SAM and MARISHA: (pow pow pow)

MATT: The first hit clocks the side of Protto's face: this weird, scraggly halfling goatee matted with his own blood. His blade still out, he looks up at you, grits his teeth and is the middle of saying, "I'm going to gut you--" (fist impact), and is out cold on the ground.

MARISHA: Just throw in a few more!

SAM: All right, one down.

MATT: That your turn?

MARISHA: That's my turn.

MATT: Okay. And with that, that brings us to Caleb and Keg.

LIAM: Okay, this is still going very good, so I am going to slide along the wall that I'm on to try to get to the space where Beau had been before she started. Now that the little weasel is dead, *ja*, I'll stay against the wall if I can.

MATT: There?

LIAM: *Ja.* And then I'm going to lose Invisibility because I start to weave my hand around my arm and I am going to release Scorching Ray, three globs of fire up his ass in the sky.

MATT: All right.


MATT: From out of the ether, a for-quite-a-while-invisible Caleb suddenly blinks into view as these glowing embers begin to swirl around his hands, turning into a gouting burst of flame. Go ahead and roll for your strikes.

LIAM: Well, the first one was a natural *zwanzig*, so--


LIAM: The second is a 19, and the third is a 23.

SAM: Ooh!


LIAM: So 8d6 total. *Ja.*

MARISHA: Damage?!

LIAM: Well, the critical gets-- okay, so this becomes an eight. Okay, Hold on. *Ja*. Okay, so that's ten…Okay. *Und* that is eleven, okay. And then also this becomes 17… It's a total of 19 damage of Scorching Ray to his ass.

MATT: 19?

LIAM: Yeah.

MATT: All of them burst across the muscular, but somewhat still rotund, like a barrel of muscle and blue rhinoceros hide. You see the flames leave these darkened, blackened spots on his exposed belly from the center of this leather armor strapped like a harness around his torso. He just looks at you, "Glad you could join us."

LIAM: Eh, *Wie gehts?* That's the end.

MATT: Keg, you're up.

ASHLY: Okay, so he's how high right now?

MATT: He's currently ten feet above you against the ceiling.

ASHLY: There's no way I can just-- is there?

MATT: You could try off of the table for a strike, if you'd like.

ASHLY: Yeah, fuck it; okay. I'll try it.

MATT: All right, go ahead and make an athletics check.

ASHLY: Okay. Oh! Nine?


MATT: You go and put your foot up onto the edge of the splintered wood that is still damaged from the impacts you had earlier, and as you go to leap, the wood gives out from under you and the table collapses, so you're unable to quite get in range with him at the moment.

ASHLY: Okay. Then I'm going to go try to fuck with The RZA.

MATT: All right.



MATT: There you go. There's Ruzza right there, you manage to get into contact.

ASHLY: Okay, I'm going to smack. That's a 19 plus seven. I think that maybe hits.

MATT: That'll hit.

ASHLY: Okay, very good, and here we go. That'll be ten points of damage.

MATT: Nice.

SAM: Take that, Wu Tang Clan.

ASHLY: Did that athletics jump count as an action, I'm assuming?

MATT: Hmm?

ASHLY: Was the athletics check an action?

MATT: That was more part of your movement, so--

ASHLY: So I can hit her two more times?

MATT: Two more times, yeah.

ASHLY: Okay! 19.

MATT: 19 hits.

ASHLY: And that is 12.

MATT: 12 does not hit.

ASHLY: No, that's damage!

MATT: Oh, 12 points of damage! There you go. Oof, all right.

ASHLY: And then one more time, just for fun, and that will be a 16 plus seven, which I believe also hits.

MATT: That hits, yeah. Go ahead and roll damage again.

ASHLY: Come on! Big money, no whammies! Well, that was kind of a whammy: five.

MATT: All right, got it. Ruzza's taken a few hits and you're now starting to see blood streaks across the face from where the heavy flat side of your warhammer has smashed into her jaw. Some of the teeth seem to be cracked, and you see her spit one out onto the stone. "All right, I see your game again, Keg."

ASHLY: Hey, babe.

MATT: That ends your turn?


MATT: All right, it is now Lorenzo's turn.

SAM: Oh, shit. Caleb? Stay safe, Caleb!

LIAM: Help.

SAM: Oh, he's trying. He's working the angles right now.

ASHLY: He's really thinking. Oh man. The equations.

SAM: He's thinking about all of the great stuff available at D&D Beyond.

MATT: All right. And with that, after the scorching strikes that were against him, Lorenzo's going to coast through the air, arms out at the side wielding the giant, jagged glaive, grinning, smiling towards Caleb. (malicious laugh) And is going to arc down just enough to catch you on the outside of the glaive's range. Two strikes against you. The first one is going to be a 14 to hit?

LIAM: Hits.

SAM: Oh, he's so weak!

LIAM: Dead, the word is dead.

MATT: That is going to be 14 points of slashing damage. The next is going to be a 15 to hit.

SAM: Shield!

MATT: That is 15 points of slashing damage.

LIAM: Okay.

MARISHA: Are you still conscious?

SAM: (cooing) Shield! (coo)

LIAM: Who hurt you?


MATT: And with that, he's going to go ahead and shift further--

SAM: Oh no.

MATT: Back, just keeping an eye. Keeping his options open, making sure he's not too far from anybody. That's going to go ahead and end Lorenzo's turn, it's now Ruzza's turn. Ruzza is going to expend a level three Hold Person--


MATT: Against Keg.

ASHLY: Surprise, surprise.

MATT: And against Beau, who are the two that are currently most visible and bludgeoning her allies. I need you both to make wisdom saving throws.

KHARY: Come on, come on.

ASHLY: 18.




SAM: Matt, where is The RZA on the--

ASHLY: Next to Nefertiti.

MATT: This is a unique setup for the live show, so thank you for being patient.

ASHLY: It's the matchup you've all been waiting for.

MATT: Exactly. You manage to shrug off the effect. You feel it encasing your brain, your body begins to tighten for a second before you manage to have it have no effect. However, behind you over there, Beau's body seizes and freezes up.

MARISHA: (groaning)

SAM: Oh no.

MARISHA: It's oddly painful.

MATT: Ruzza's going to, as a bonus action, look up and say "All right, Lorenzo! I think it's time you really, er, really show them what you've got, buddy!" She's going to give a d8 inspiration die to Lorenzo.

ASHLY: Shit.

MATT: Ending Ruzza's turn; Caduceus, you're up.

TALIESIN: Okay. Yeah, okay. This'll be fun. I'm going to-- Let's try something weird, I like weird.

MATT: I like weird.

TALIESIN: I'm going to take a couple steps towards the wall and I'm going to get a little closer to that terrible little bard there. I'm going to put my back against the upward wall, so that I'm out of range of the big blue. Am I, like, 15 feet from the bard?

MATT: You are.

TALIESIN: Perfect. I'm going to cast Spirit Guardians. I'm going to start whispering into my big purple crystal and then tons of tiny little adorable, sharp-toothed fairies are going to come out and start biting and eating a lot. They're adorable.

MATT: All right, I believe that's a wisdom saving throw for Ruzza?

TALIESIN: That's a wisdom saving throw for *half* damage.

MATT: It's a 14 plus two, so 16. What's your DC?

TALIESIN: Ooh. 16.

MATT: So that's half damage from the Spirit Guardians.

TALIESIN: All right, that's fine; it stays up forever. Let's see, where's the damage? Oh, there it is! One, two. I don't have enough dice for this, that's great.

SAM: Here.

TALIESIN: Let me have a d8. So that's (counting) nine points halved of radiant damage.

MATT: How much total?

TALIESIN: Half of nine points of radiant damage.

MATT: So four. Four points to Ruzza.

TALIESIN: As long as he's in the range of it, he's at half speed.

MATT: She's at half speed. Got it. Cool. Spirit Guardians is up. That's your action?

TALIESIN: That is my action. As a bonus action, sorry, I'm learning this.

MATT: I don't think you have much in the way of bonus actions.

TALIESIN: I thought I had a thing I could do! Sorry, one second. I don't have much. As a bonus action, I'm going to-- can I see Caleb?

MATT: You can, yes.

TALIESIN: As a bonus action can I cast Healing Word as a level two spell?

MATT: You cannot, because you've already cast a level one spell. Only a cantrip.

TALIESIN: Only a cantrip now, okay. Nevermind, then.

MATT: That ends your turn? Shakäste. You're up.

SAM: Shakäste!

KHARY: I would like to--

SAM: Rage.


KHARY: I would like to Command Lorenzo to freeze.

MATT: So what is the Command word on that one?

KHARY: So I can tell him, you know, as far as-- that means you can't do nothing. You just got to stand there, you've got to do nothing.

MATT: Well you've got Halt, which means they don't move and take no actions. Okay, is that what you're doing?

KHARY: Freeze, baby. Just like in the 1970s television with Starsky & Hutch. When they say freeze, you don't do shit. You just sit there, and do nothing.

MATT: It's a natural 15 plus one; it's a 16. What's your DC?

LIAM: 15.

MATT: Resists the command. I'm sorry! You still have your Nefertiti.

KHARY: All right. Let's see, we're so close to-- let's see if we can knock out The RZA.

MATT: Go for it. Make the attack roll.

MARISHA: She sucks.

KHARY: Fuck me and my Mom! Why?!

SAM: You've got to do it in Egyptian!

KHARY: It's a what? I rolled a three.

LIAM: Three plus--

MATT: Yeah, that's not going to hit.

KHARY: It's a ten! It's a ten.

MATT: Nefertiti's still trying to apparate! She hasn't quite taken her full form yet. The spiritual energy hasn't coalesced enough to have an impact, but she's on her way.

MARISHA: She's going to be the MVP, man. I can feel it. When it works, it's going to be glorious.

MATT: Would you like to move?

KHARY: It's going to be amazing. Would I like to move?

LIAM: Egypt is just so far away!

KHARY: Yeah. Just back away. Back into that corner there. Yeah, back to The Duchess. Son of a bitch.

MATT: All right, so that ends Shakäste's turn. Top of the round: Nott.

SAM: Is anyone engaged with The RZA?

ASHLY: I am.

MATT: Currently Keg is, yes.

SAM: I will attack The RZA. Not good, 16. Oh, no-- yeah, 16.

MATT: 16 hits, yeah.


KHARY: Come on!

SAM: That's 17 points of damage.

MATT: She has to make a constitution saving throw to see if she can maintain. That was almost a 16, but turned into a three. So the Hold Person wore off.


MARISHA: Thank you, girl! Thank you!

SAM: Us ladies have to stick together.

MARISHA: Girl power!

SAM: Is she still alive, The RZA?

MATT: Yes, though hurt very badly.

SAM: I'll shoot one more time, why not? That is 17 to hit.

MATT: That does hit, yes.

SAM: Just seven that time.

MATT: Seven points of damage?

SAM: Yep.

MATT: All righty. Ruzza takes the next bolt-- the first one strikes right in the sternum area and sinks in rather deep. Instinctively, she reaches up and grabs it, (grunt of pain), looks over in the direction where it came from, and at that moment, the second crossbow bolt goes right into the throat. She opens her mouth, trying to make a sound, and instead nothing but blood pours out of the corner.

SAM: I'll just say--


ASHLY: Hell yeah!


SAM: Bards suck!


SAM: I'll just back up even further.

MATT: You'll back up a little bit, you said?

SAM: Back up even further, away from any danger.

MATT: Over by Shakäste?

SAM: Yeah.

MATT: Or all the way to the furnace?

SAM: Oh, in the testes area up there. The little closet thing that's-- yeah, that's good.

MATT: There you go. That ends your turn; that brings us to Beau.

MARISHA: Okay, I'm going to turn around, and can I quickly flip the table that Protto had flipped over-- flip it back onto its legs?

MATT: Yeah, sure. You manage to--

MARISHA: (impact) Then I'm going to--

MATT: That is your action. Because you have to grab it, and it's a whole motion to get it up there.

MARISHA: Mm-hmm. I'm going to jump on it. (singing) Jump on it! Then I'm going to take my bonus action to do Patient Defense. I'm going to look at Lorenzo and be like: Your new look sucks, man! Then do Patient Defense.

MATT: Patient Defense, good. All righty. Caleb and Keg.

LIAM: So I am bleeding profusely everywhere, and I am going to stumble in the direction-- I think that's Keg, she's short. I will go that way as far as I can, and as I go I say: This is going very well.

MATT: You have ten more feet, you can go in either direction.

LIAM: If I go to the right, will I clear out of that flying guy's line of sight?

MATT: You have two more spaces. You can go near Caduceus--

LIAM: Yeah, I'm going to cut directly right towards Caduceus and just before I disappear out of view, I'm going to say: Hey, how's your day? And I will send a Fire Bolt at Lorenzo.

MATT: Roll for the attack.

LIAM: *Ja.* Eh, it's not that great. It's a 16.

MATT: All righty. That does hit, exactly.

TALIESIN: Well, this has been exciting.

LIAM: Okay. That's good. That's also good. So 14 points of fire damage.

MATT: Flames burst across, you see the leather cracks in one part of the harness. He just grins back at you.

LIAM: *Ja*, and then hopefully I'm disappearing around the corner and leaning my face against the wall, like that.

MATT: That ends your turn. Keg?

ASHLY: I'm rushing and I'm jumping on top of the table.

SAM: This table, man.

ASHLY: It's the centerpiece of our attack plan. Is that enough--

MARISHA: Oh my god, Keg. This is just like Titanic. Just me and you, floating on this--

ASHLY: Keg is... in love? It's gone past just arousal. Can I reach Lorenzo from the table?

MATT: Possibly, yeah. You give a little jump as you swing; he's just in reach with the table's help.

ASHLY: Okay, here we go. 18.

MATT: 18 hits.

ASHLY: That's six.

MATT: Six points of damage, nice.

ASHLY: Here we go again, on my own. That will not hit. And one more time, for the cheap seats; that will not hit. Okay, go ahead.

MATT: Aw. But you still get one swing that cuts through and carves through part of the outer leg and calf of Lorenzo. The leg gets pushed back a bit from the impact as he's floating. His large, almost-corpulent form, though of solid muscle, just sitting there, enduring it. His face focus comes from where Caleb was back towards you and says, "Well, glad you could join the party, Keg." That ends your turn?


MATT: That makes it Lorenzo's turn.

SAM: He's going to decide to turn over a new leaf, and--

TALIESIN: Manage a Bed Bath & Beyond. It's going to be nice.

SAM: Yeah, sure.

MARISHA: He gets into real estate.

SAM: Yeah, gets his license on the second try.


ASHLY: There's so much thinking when Lorenzo's turn comes up and it's very scary.

MARISHA: Do I get a thing?

MATT: No. You've got to jump to hit him, but he's not within your melee range when you're standing.


TALIESIN: Why are we standing next to each other?

SAM: You guys tried--

TALIESIN: Oh, wait, once he's within 15 feet of me, he gets half speed. Oh, no, he's not walking.

MATT: Spirit Guardian still slows his movement, I believe. Does it say walking speed, or just walking?

TALIESIN: Once he enters the field he also, I believe--

MATT: Has to make a wisdom save, which is a 12 plus four, 16.

TALIESIN: 16 is the--

MATT: So take half damage, roll for damage. He still takes damage. You also watch, as Lorenzo coasts through the air, some of the wounds that he suffered seem to be slowly sealing up.

ASHLY: Oh, come on!

SAM: God, this guy. Matt, there's an audience here that deserves a certain amount of death and payoff.

TALIESIN: 18, so half of 18. It's radiant damage. Is radiant damage doing anything to him?

MATT: Nothing more than just terrible radiant damage.


MATT: It blasts him, and as he pulls into the area, he goes, "Ooh. That's not going to do," and vanishes.

MARISHA: No! Why?!

MATT: Caduceus, it's your turn.


LIAM: I'm having Raishan flashbacks.

TALIESIN: I'm having a little regret that I didn't pack that Faerie Fire, man.


TALIESIN: Who knew? I was drinking tea last time I got to pick spells.

MARISHA: Faerie Fire is one of the best fucking spells, man!

TALIESIN: I'm curious about these rooms back here, those grates that you've still got covered over. What's over there?

MATT: I don't know, do you want to go see?

TALIESIN: Yeah, I want to run over there--

SAM: Wait, you're looting?!

TALIESIN: I'm going to run over there.

MATT: That's your movement can get you that close. You can use your action to make a perception check if you want to glare through.

TALIESIN: It'll get me that close? I would like to be a little further away so that I am not in blast radius with two other people.

MATT: There?

TALIESIN: Yeah. Looks to be a little better. Darn it, yeah. I'm going to use my action to--

MATT: Make a perception check with disadvantage because there is no light source inside that chamber, and you do not have darkvision, which I remembered.

SAM: (stage whisper) Liam, don't you have a potion or something?

LIAM: *Ja*.

MATT: Make your roll.

SAM: I mean-- (cooing)


MATT: 15. Looking through, it's hard to see, but you can make out a few shapes; they look to be humanoid figures that are still gagged and chained on the far-back side of the interior there.

TALIESIN: Okay. I'm going to turn back around. That was my action to take a look in there?

MATT: Yeah. You're peering in very closely to try and make out the details of an area with no light source in the middle of combat.

TALIESIN: Aw, man. Okay, that's my turn.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: Weirdly, the map looks even more like my penis now.

MATT: You should really get that checked out, Sam. All right, finishing Caduceus' turn. Shakäste, you're up.

KHARY: All right, I guess Shakäste and The Duchess will move into the chamber and check the other side of this chamber now that it's--

MATT: Whereabouts do you want to go?

KHARY: As far to the other side of this penis as we can get, yeah.

MATT: That's about as far as you can get with your movement.

KHARY: Have the Duchess follow me as well. Go ahead and go to the end of the chamber there--

MATT: Right over here?

KHARY: Yeah, and perch there. Can she see inside?

MATT: Make a perception check for The Duchess with a disadvantage.

KHARY: Yes it is, it's at disadvantage.

MATT: Actually, no. We decided that the Duchess design had darkvision, so just a straight roll. Whatever you rolled.

LIAM: Seven plus...

KHARY: 11.

MATT: It's hard to make out anything in there.

KHARY: Hard to see in there.

MATT: There is a chamber in there, but there's not enough light to make out the details of it, unfortunately. Does that finish your turn? You can move your Nefertiti, if you'd like.

KHARY: You know, why don't you hang back. Is there any light in that chamber that Thaumaturgy could maybe illuminate?

MATT: There is a candelabra that has low light over there that is giving a faint glow and there are two torches in the sides here that are also giving off this low red-orange--

KHARY: But nothing in the room?

MATT: Nothing in the room, no.

KHARY: We might as well Thaumaturgy to see if we can make a little more light in the room.

MATT: As you do so, the flames flare up, and the long shadows stretch from beyond the bars into the chamber and you can see an unconscious figure on the far back end that is also in full manacles: chained, and gagged-- facing away from you. You can't see any more details than that.

KHARY: That's really all I've got. I can't start working on these locks at all, can I?

MATT: Not with using Thaumaturgy as your action, no.

KHARY: All right, there you go.

MATT: That finishes your turn. Back to the top-- Nott, what are you doing?

SAM: Me? I'm going to peek around the corner; do I see anything or anyone to attack?

MATT: You don't see anybody in there. You could make a perception check if you want to use that as your action. It's up to you.

SAM: No, I will stay tucked in my little closet. Is there a way I can hide but still see around the corner? No?

MATT: Maybe? Roll a high stealth check, maybe. We'll see.

SAM: Nope. I mean 15, it's decent.

MATT: Good to know.

SAM: I'll just hold my action until I see something.

MATT: Okay, good to know. What are you holding?

SAM: A crossbow bolt, ready to fire.

MATT: You got it. Beau.

MARISHA: I'm going to do the same thing: I am going to crouch down and I'm going to pull two ninja stars, and I'm going to hold my action until I see Lorenzo.

MATT: You got it. Caleb, Keg.

LIAM: (slurring) Caleb's face is pressed into the wall and he says: I am so glad that we have two clerics, they will--


LIAM: They will get to you lickity-split. You're going to be fine. But you know, maybe in the meantime I will pull that potion out of-- where is it? That's not it. No, that's licorice; hold on, that's-- In our game, it's a bonus action to quaff a potion? Am I remembering that right?

MATT: Yeah, we're keeping that rule for our game.

LIAM: So I'll shove that in my gullet. That's totally the wrong die. Oh, that's okay. Seven points back. Okay, I'm cured!

MATT: Absolved of all dam-- no.

LIAM: I don't know where anything is or what's going on and I feel real bad, so I'm going to try to crawl up the steps a bit, through the blood in my face. *Ja*, I'll crawl up the steps and then, hey, I will just throw a Fire Bolt where he was. That probably won't work, but let's do it.

MATT: Roll for an attack with disadvantage.

LIAM: *Ja*. Natural 20.


LIAM: That is a total of 12.

MATT: It just burst into stone.

LIAM: We did it, you guys.

MATT: Keg.

ASHLY: Would a perception check give me any indication of what Lorenzo is doing?

MATT: It's possible.

ASHLY: All right, I'll give it a go.

MATT: So you use your action to make a perception check.

ASHLY: That is 18?

MATT: You just, looking over your shoulder, see some sort of shift across the stone, like the pattern just moves and quakes ever so faintly unnaturally against what would be the rather still though warm air.

ASHLY: Right next to me?

MATT: No, in the back of the chamber right here. That's your action.

ASHLY: Okay.

SAM: Use your bow and arrow.

ASHLY: I have a javelin.

SAM: Ooh!

ASHLY: I could try to javelin.

SAM: Yeah!

ASHLY: Shall I try to javelin?

SAM: Yeah!

ASHLY: Okay, here we go! 17?

MATT: Well it was your action to try and perceive where this--

ASHLY: But can I bonus action?

MATT: You can't take a bonus action attack unless you've used your attack action before it, unfortunately.

ASHLY: Tits McGee. Okay. Huh?

SAM: Why don't you heal? (pigeon coos) Heal.

ASHLY: Heal? I'm maxed.

SAM: Okay.

ASHLY: I will hop off the table and move toward Nefertiti. Can I get closer?

MATT: You can go there if you want. Or there.

ASHLY: I'll go there, yeah, there.

MATT: Okay. That finishes your turn.

SAM: (pigeon coos)

ASHLY: I communicate that information to the group as well.

MATT: Yeah. As Keg walks over saying, pointing that direction telling the group.

ASHLY: Yeah.

MATT: What do you tell them?

ASHLY: I think there's something spooky happening on the stone over here.

SAM: Oh no, ghosts!

MATT: As Keg walks forward pointing in that direction, a familiar voice rings out right before you and says, "Oh little girl, you're making crafting this nightmare too easy." With that, there's this curl of blueish arcane energy right before you. Your hair begins to blow back from the force as a cold temperature begins to gather directly ahead. With that, in a brief instant Lorenzo appears before you in his large demonic form and unleashes--

MARISHA: Do I have range?

LIAM: Confetti!

MARISHA: I think I see him!

ASHLY: At least he's not floating.

KHARY: Oh shit.

[horrified gasping]

SAM: Wait, I did not see Caleb in that cone.


MATT: A Cone of Cold.

MARISHA: We get our held actions for when we see him, though, first?

MATT: You do, it happens simultaneously.

MARISHA: (nervously) Okay.

MATT: Go ahead and make your attacks.

MARISHA: First one is an 18, second one's a 17.

MATT: Well you only make one attack-- no two attacks. I've allowed that house rule. Held attacks get the extra attack feature, so go for it. So both hit.

MARISHA: Both hit. First one. 13 damage.

MATT: Nice.

MARISHA: Second one-- wait! No, I'm wrong. These are throwing stars.

MATT: They're throwing stars, yeah. Sorry.

MARISHA: Wrong die, I was doing my melee attack. First one. Okay. Seven damage. Second one: five damage.

MATT: A total of 12 damage from those two strikes. Nott you also got one as well.

SAM: Missed. Rolled a nine.

MATT: With a what?

SAM: Rolled a nine.

MATT: Okay, yeah no.


SAM: What? What is that number? Why are you saying that?

MATT: Okay, I need Caduceus, Beau, Shakäste, and Keg to all roll constitution saving throws, please.

SAM: You got this.

KHARY: Roll this?

LIAM: Yeah.


SAM: Come on, guys.

ASHLY: 13.

MATT: What was that?

ASHLY: 13?

MATT: 13? You just succeed.



MATT: 14. Nice.




MATT: Beau and Shakäste, you each suffer 44 points of cold damage.

ASHLY: No! No!

LIAM: Were you at 33? You're unconscious.

MARISHA: Beau is unconscious.

LIAM: Both.

KHARY: Shakäste's unconscious.

SAM: Ugh!

KHARY: I should have stayed.

MATT: Nefertiti vanishes. That's 22 points of cold damage to both Keg and Caduceus.

SAM: Oh boy. Guys...

TALIESIN: 22 points?

MATT: You see the body of the thug you had killed earlier, the body of Ruzza, and the body of Protto. Frozen statues, corpses on the ground turned to sheer flash-frozen ice. There, on the ground covered and encased in pieces of frozen air and moisture from the vicinity, the unconscious and dying bodies of Beauregard and Shakäste.


TALIESIN: I'm good.

MATT: Lorenzo, glancing back down at Keg, who manages to shrug most of this off, says, "Don't worry. You're all next." And begins to back away. You do get an attack of opportunity.

ASHLY: Yes, I'm going to fucking take that attack of opportunity. That's an 18!

MATT: That hits.

ASHLY: Seven damage.

MATT: Seven damage. All righty. With that, it goes to Caduceus' turn.

TALIESIN: Okay, let's see what I can do with this. First thing I'm going to do is use my bonus action--

SAM: A little gardening.

TALIESIN: To pot a very nice plant. Oh man, it's so hard to do this. Okay, I'm going to use my bonus action to Spare the Dying to you, so we got that.

MATT: Spare the Dying is an action.

TALIESIN: No, Spare the Dying for me is a bonus.

MATT: Oh! Because-- that's right.


SAM: What does that do?

TALIESIN: No more death saves. I'm going to run over to Beau; I'm going to tap her and use-- Where's my 1st-level spells? Is it Cure Wounds?

MATT: Cure Wounds is the first level.

TALIESIN: But I can cast it at a 2nd-level if I have a 2nd-level left?

MATT: You can.

TALIESIN: I'm going to cast Cure Wounds, but because she's unconscious she gets all the hit points back, not just--


ASHLY: Oh my god!

MATT: At what level?

TALIESIN: You're at 21 hit points.

MARISHA: Huh? What?!

TALIESIN: You're at 21 hit points.


MATT: What level did you cast it at?

TALIESIN: Level two.

MATT: So it's 2d8--

TALIESIN: Plus five.

MATT: So 16 plus five-- yeah, that's-- Jesus, 21. 21 hit points!

MARISHA: (gasps) What does Spare the Dying do?

TALIESIN: It means he doesn't have to make death saves at least for the moment, but probably could use some healing and I've already used all my actions.

MATT: Ending Caduceus' turn. Shakäste, you are stable. You can still move if you want.

TALIESIN: I'm going to back up against the one in the corner so I have a little bit of cover.

MATT: There?

TALIESIN: No, the other corner. Yeah a little coverage, there we are.

MATT: There you go. Caduceus' turn's up. Shakäste, you don't have to make any death saving throws because Spare the Dying, so you're fine, but that's your turn. To the top of the round, Nott, you're up.

SAM: Oh god, me? I guess I'll poke around and just take a shot. I can't do anything else! I'll run in closer so I'm within 30 feet and then fire. I miss. Bonus action fire. 18.

MATT: 18 hits. Roll damage.

SAM: That's nine points of damage.


SAM: Then I'll run back to my cubbyhole.

MATT: There goes Nott. That brings us to Beau! What are you doing? You come to consciousness. You're prone. You have to use half your movement to get up.

MARISHA: I get up. Still have 20 feet of movement left. Can I make it to Lorenzo?

MATT: (counting)

MARISHA: God, I'm so mad. How far away am I?

MATT: You are ten feet from Lorenzo.

MARISHA: God, that sucks! I'm going to use a ki point to get there. (grunts) Step of the Wind. Hope that was a good call. I'm going to unleash on him, because I'm fucking pissed. First attack. Uh-huh! Yep! 24.


MATT: Roll damage.

MARISHA: All the rage and fury. I'm going to spend my last ki point to do Stunning Strike.

MATT: I'm going to use my metal Shapeways dice for this one. That's a plus six constitution modifier on this one, but it rolled a natural four.


ASHLY: Hell yes! Oh my god!

SAM: He's stunned?

ASHLY: He's stunned.


ASHLY and AUDIENCE: (chanting) Beau!

SAM: You're a golden god!

MARISHA: I go full Ip Man on the next attack with advantage. So everyone has advantage. Oh god, I thought it was a natural 20, but a 21 total!

MATT: Yeah, that hits.

MARISHA: Wait, did I do damage for the first one?


MARISHA: No, okay.

SAM: We need you guys every week.

MARISHA: I'll use this for the first roll, which will be seven points of damage. Yeah? Second roll. Ugh, that was a one.

SAM: How do you want to do this?

MARISHA: Five points of damage, and then my last bonus action attack with advantage. Same roll, 13 on both. No, a 16. I'll take that 16, plus seven? That hits, and then eight damage. Pop-pop-pop! He's stunned for a round. Everyone has advantage?

MATT: If anyone wants to physically attack him. Yeah, in melee. Or actually, for stunned, attack rolls have advantage, yeah.

MARISHA: Attack rolls.

SAM: Lay it on.

MATT: That's my fault for not having him fly to the ceiling last turn.

MARISHA: I turn around and with all the rage, popping blood vessels, I say: (shouting) Fuck him up!


MATT: Caleb and Keg?

LIAM: Okay. I would like to push myself up the stairs as far as I can, while still being able to have a bead on him.

MATT: Any higher up the stairs and you won't be able to see him.

LIAM: Okay. Then I will collapse onto my ass on the stairs and make that symbol shape thing that Fjord used to make, and go: Ey, buddy. I will send out another Fire Bolt.

MATT: You have advantage on the attack roll.

LIAM: *Ja.* That is a 16.

MATT: 16? That hits, that just hits. Sorry, I was doing math in my head.

LIAM: No worries. That's six points of fire damage, and I will now push myself up out of sight, up the stairs a little bit. It's going very well. Shakäste will get to you any second.

ASHLY: I would like to fuck him up, if I may? If I could?


ASHLY: All right, here we go! Don't fuck me! Yes, 20, bam. Bing bam boom.

MARISHA: They all have advantage, so roll twice.

ASHLY: Oh, you are right. Okay, that was still better. That's seven points of damage to start. Nope. Yep. 19, and I crit on a 19!


ASHLY: I forget what I do when I crit. I just double it, okay. Oh, that's sad. Six. Bummer. Okay, here we go. Nope. 14 doesn't hit, does it?

MATT: 14 does not hit. Unable to penetrate the hide with that third strike. It hits the outside of the muscular blubber on his giant torso and it shimmies and shakes and then tightens. All right, that ends your turn?

ASHLY: That's that.

MATT: All right, it is now Lorenzo's turn. Lorenzo shrugs off the stun at the end, but can do nothing else on his turn, and is still locked. As soon as he gets his ability to speak back, goes, "Oh, y'all being tricksy. I like it." That's going to bring us to Caduceus.

TALIESIN: I'm going to run over to Shakäste and while I'm running, I'm going to use my bonus action to down a potion of healing, which is-- let's see if I'm doing this right. That's seven hit points that I regain. I should mark that as used. Then once I'm there, I have to use an action to feed him a potion, correct?

MATT: You do, yes.

TALIESIN: Okay. Here's the question: does the potion also get my bonus?

MATT: No, because it's not your healing spell.

TALIESIN: I figured not, but I thought it was worth asking.

MATT: (nasally voice) It's worth an inquiry. Most definitely!

ASHLY: I wish that was Lorenzo's voice.

TALIESIN: I'm going to give you a potion, and let's see what I roll. That's (counting) 15 hit points. You're awake again. I'm going to use the rest of my movement to get some cover behind the table, I suppose, is the closest cover I've got right now.

MATT: You could push it. The table is righted now, so it's an empty space.

TALIESIN: I'm getting partial cover.

MATT: Okay. I'll give you some cover on that. Finishing Caduceus' turn, Shakäste, you are conscious now.

TALIESIN: Smoke them if you got them, man.

KHARY: I will use Mass Healing Word.


KHARY: Let's see. Up to six creatures of your choice that you can see within range.

MATT: What's the range? 60? You can see everybody but Caleb. You can heal everybody but Caleb, because he went way up the stairs. You don't even know where he is. You came to consciousness and Caleb's gone.

KHARY: All right. Who's in need here?

LIAM: This is going very well!

SAM: You can't see me.

KHARY: I say: Everybody that I can see, except Caleb, gets mass healing!

MATT: 1d4 plus your wisdom modifier, which is four. So roll a d4.

MARISHA: Big money! That's good!

LIAM: Seven total.

MATT: How much?

ASHLY: Seven?

MATT: Everyone but Caleb heals seven hit points.

TALIESIN: Seven points! Oh my god. I'm feeling a little better.

MATT: Are you going to stay put, Shakäste? Or are you going to move somewhere?

KHARY: Nefertiti is still floating, is she not?

MATT: No, you lost her, unfortunately.

SAM: Worst prop ever.

KHARY: Still love you!

MATT: That's all right. You can still move if you want to; it's up to you.

KHARY: We should move away. I'm going to move back into the testicle area. No, go around. Yeah, there you go. Then into the testicle.

LIAM: Now cough.

KHARY: Bring the Duchess with me.

TALIESIN: Just cup around.

MATT: All righty. That ends your go. Top of the round: Nott, you're up first.

SAM: I'll do the same thing. Poke out. Shoot. Is Lorenzo engaged with anyone?

MATT: He is engaged with both Beau and Keg.

SAM: Okay. 19 to hit.

MATT: That hits!

SAM: Let's finish this. That is 17 points of damage plus Fury of the Small, make it 22. Then I'll shoot again! Nope, miss.

MATT: That bolt impacts and now that you guys are close enough, both Keg and Beau: as the bolt hits, the wear and tear in Lorenzo's form is really starting to show. Wounds are-- they're still closing with each round that comes back to his go, but the wounds' closing seems to be slowing, or at least the wounds are getting more and more deep and dangerous. He's looking quite haggard and wounded.

ASHLY: Fuck yes!

MATT: Beau, you're up.

MARISHA: All right, seeing where Nott just put a bunch of bolts in him, I'm going to flat hand, palm the bolts right deeper into him.

MATT: Go for it.

MARISHA: First one. That is successful, 18.

MATT: Yeah that hits, roll damage.

MARISHA: Eight damage on first one. Second one, that was cocked. One more time, same attack, 19, with another four, that's eight damage. Then I'm going to just do one more with my offhand, I'm going to try and break his nose because that feels personal. 16?

MATT: 16 just hits.

MARISHA: And that's seven damage.

MATT: Nice. He's looking real hurt.

MARISHA: That's it.

MATT: Keg?

SAM: Yes.


AUDIENCE: (chanting) Keg!

ASHLY: Okay, here we go! Not a great start. 11.

MATT: You go to swing, now being wounded and looking-- a glare of desperation in the burning red eyes of Lorenzo. You swing and he grabs the hilt of your weapon as it swings downward, and holds it aloft and in your face and goes, "Try it."

ASHLY: Okay! Fuck! Nine.


MATT: No. The other hand grabs the other weapon, and you're just locked in that moment now.

ASHLY: Last one.


ASHLY: Please! 17.

MATT: That'll hit, roll damage.

ASHLY: Okay, come on, come on, come on! Six?

MATT: All righty.


ASHLY: (singing) I really wish I'd saved that action surge.


ASHLY: No! I wish I had saved it.

MATT: You wish you had saved it. She used it last session and they didn't take a short rest. Sorry, guys.

ASHLY: Sorry, sorry!

MARISHA: That was so almost awesome!

MATT: Caleb.

LIAM: I mean, of course they're going to come for you because you could have fucked off days ago but you're a big team player now! Oh, I better try to hit that guy again. I will scooch down again. Oh, he's holding both of her blades. Okay, well, I probably won't hit, but let's do it again, pew pew! That is a six-- 14.

MATT: 14 does not hit.

LIAM: Or is it? Hold on, let me double check, because my iPad died and I can't see my shit. It's okay, everybody. It's 16.

MATT: Roll damage.

LIAM: It's 11 points of damage.

MATT: 11 points of damage.

MARISHA and ASHLY: Come on, come on.

TALIESIN: That's a lot of calculator.

MATT: (quietly) Fuck. How do you want to do this?


AUDIENCE: (chanting) Caleb!

LIAM: Oh, well fuck me running, it worked. I watch it leave my finger and take an impossible spiralling trajectory through the air, and he's so preoccupied with that charming dwarf woman with the stubble, it takes him in the back of the head and it starts to burn through the back of his skull and eat away through the back of his head and burn through his eyes!


ASHLY: What the fuck?!

MATT: You watch as Lorenzo, in desperation, begins to take flight. Both you and Beau try and swing for his form, but it doesn't matter at this point. As he attempts to try and make for an exit, the flames curl across the body, leaving ash; dissipating as the outer sides of his form begin to fall away into dust and blackened shale. As both of your weapons and fists swing upward, they hit what feels like rock and scatter it like ash against both sides of the walls. The torso falls and tumbles to the ground, one arm still dragging Lorenzo towards the stairs in this last minute bit of desperation before it tumbles onto its back, the flame curling and burning away the rest of his face and jaw. The hand left there limp before that, eventually, is taken too, leaving nothing but charred charcoal behind.


LIAM: You shouldn't have killed my cat.


MATT: One tactical fuck up on his part and that stunning strike turned that completely around.


TALIESIN: Monks, man.

KHARY: I need a drink.

TALIESIN: Hey, welcome back.

ASHLY: Keg just falls to her knees and starts crying.

SAM: I go get some of the ash off the ground and give it to Mr. Clay and say: Maybe you could make some tea with this?

TALIESIN: Do I get any sense of what this is? I'm going to do Detect Undead, I'm going to see if I can understand what he was.

MATT: Go ahead and make an arcana check.

LIAM: Also, in the meantime, DM, I--


MATT: Definitely don't want to make tea from this.

TALIESIN: I figured.

MATT: There are certain creatures that are, you would assume, distantly related to giant kin. You're used to seeing the ogre-ish, mighty beasts. This was something entirely different. You've heard terms thrown around, like "ogre mage," but this is commonly referred to in children's nursery rhymes-- the kind that are meant to scare kids from going out at night-- as an oni.

TALIESIN: I don't know if there's much we can do with this. This is a bit-- yeah, no, you don't want to drink that. Let's sweep that away, why don't we?

MARISHA: Beau is going to immediately run over here to this undiscovered prison ballsack region.

SAM: There's four balls on this dick.

MATT: You glance inside that additional chamber and you can now see, within that chamber, there is a singular figure on the opposite side of the wall, chained up. Your eyes adjust and you pull the candelabra close and you can see the familiar dark gray leather and white hair of a chained and unconscious Yasha on the far end.


TALIESIN: I'm going to try and start figuring out how to open that other gate that I'm next to.

MATT: Go ahead and make a check. Do you have thieves' tools?

TALIESIN: No, I was just going to hit it with my stick until the lock broke, or hit the lock with Sacred Flame or something fun. Just blow it.

MATT: You take a while with it before you realize this particular type of metal seems to be made to endure such spells.

SAM: I can help a little, if--

TALIESIN: Oh, really?

SAM: Oh yeah.

TALIESIN: Oh yeah, no, I want to watch. This looks like fun.

SAM: I don't do well in crowds. Natural 20.


TALIESIN: That was so cool. Wow.

MATT: That little boost of confidence was just enough for you to find every tumbler within one quick attempt, and with a swift (click and creak) it hangs open to the inside.

TALIESIN: After you.

SAM: Oh, thank you. I'll go in there.

MATT: There you see three figures. You see one that appears to be an older woman, chained and gagged. This is a familiar pattern with all of these. You can see they've dealt with magic users and people who have special abilities in the past, so as a precaution they do this to every prisoner they can. There you see on the ground as well a familiar blue-haired, horned ally as well as a taller, more rugged half-orc friend.


LIAM: I have a question. I don't know if the situation calls for it-- I rolled a voluntary wisdom save for--

MATT: Thank you for reminding me.

LIAM: *Ja,* but I rolled an 18, so it's a 21.

MATT: Okay.

SAM: I'll just run over to Jester and give her a hug and just say: Case closed.


MARISHA: They're all unconscious?

MATT: They're all unconscious, yeah. At this point you can see, coming down the stairs behind you, Caleb, the older fellow that you had saved earlier with the swollen eye. Behind him, the dwarf and the child. He seems to have been able to free them from the cage, and they come down and say, "Is it over? Is it safe?"

LIAM: It's better than it was.

KHARY: It will be. It's absolutely better than it was, but I think you should thank these people who came down into the catacombs. This is the second time that I've come across these people and they've gone from fresh air into dark, dank air for no other reason than to find people and to help them out. They're special as far as I'm concerned and you should remember them. So what do we call you?

SAM: Us?

KHARY: Yeah, you! I mean, you're obviously--

MARISHA: I think we're all still The Mighty Nein.


MARISHA: The Mighty Nein seems pretty amorphous at this point.

LIAM: You know, we thought it would be a joke in the beginning, it kind of stuck. It doesn't make any sense. I'm going to go sit on the table that got knocked all over the place during that fight and sit and just stare at the three unconscious and feel very tired.

MARISHA: Shakäste, did you say something about making all this better than what it was?

KHARY: Well, that's what I've been trying to do. I've been doing it a long time on my own; it feels good to know that there are other people out here doing the same.


KHARY: You know? It can get a little crazy talking to a little bird all the time.

MATT: (buzzing) onto your shoulder.

ASHLY: What did you say to me, Nott? Some people are just good?

SAM: Maybe? I may have been drunk at the time.


ASHLY: I was, too.

TALIESIN: I mean, really? People aren't good. That's not how this works. I mean, things that you do are good or bad, but people are just people. You guys keep doing good things, and all I've seen is you doing good things. I'm not sure what the confusion is about.

SAM: Well, we used to be-- no, you're right.


TALIESIN: Yeah, I know.

KHARY: Every once in a while, I run into people, and I find that a lot of people do a lot of talking, but I've always found it's the people who hush and do good things are the best ones. I'd say that you're in that class. If you ever hear the word “hush,” know that I'm close. I'm going to take these people and get them back to where they belong.

SAM: Thank you, Shakäste. Oh, here. I stole a bunch of gold from you last time.


SAM: But that's when we were bad people, and now I guess we're good now? So here. It was about 20, 25 gold.

KHARY: Whether you realize it or not, I gave you that gold. People don't take money from Shakäste.


KHARY: Spend it on something you like.

SAM: Thank you.

KHARY: Thank *you.*

SAM: You're very handsome.

ASHLY: Are both cages open at this point, or just the one?

MATT: One is open, the other is still closed.

MARISHA: We still haven't found your partner. He's not here yet, right?

ASHLY: It was a pie in the sky thing. I'm sure he's long gone.

MARISHA: Let's open the other cage.

KHARY: You never can tell.

ASHLY: All right. I can't.

KHARY: I'll go ahead.

SAM: Oh! I'll assist.

KHARY: 17 plus--

MATT: Yeah, that'll do it. It opens up, and on the inside of the chamber there is just Yasha.

ASHLY: It's all right.

KHARY: I'm sorry.

ASHLY: Let's get your friends out of here, huh?

MARISHA: What are you going to do?

ASHLY: Sorry?

MARISHA: Are you going to keep looking?

ASHLY: I don't know what I'm going to do. I've only been thinking about killing that son of a bitch now. I don't really know what my life is going to be like. I'll probably go on a nice drunken bender for a while, and then when I come to, I'll figure something out.

LIAM: Do either of you want to come with?

MARISHA: At least for a drunken bender. Tonight, you want to stay with me?


MARISHA: You can sneak out in the morning, if you want. It won't be weird.

ASHLY: Yeah, that sounds good. Yeah, totally! Cool, cool, cool.

MARISHA: What was it Shakäste just said? Get yourself something nice?

ASHLY: You know what is happening. Keg is aroused.

MATT: Gathering up the rest of those who were captured by the Iron Shepherds, Shakäste shepherds them off to their proper locations, free and far from the confines, outside of the Dwendalian Empire. The rest of you, with your friends in tow, make your way back towards Shadycreek Run and to the rest of the morning light, which now begins to slowly curl over the distant mountains. A long evening, exhausted and tired. You look forward to enjoying comfort, alcohol, and whatever else transpired thereafter.

ASHLY: Sex. It's sex. It's lots of sex.


MATT: All right. Well then, we're going to finish tonight's episode there.


KHARY: You know what, hold on! Take a bow! Come around and take a bow. That's how you do it.

TALIESIN: Somebody got laid! I'm so excited.


MATT: Thank you all so very much for coming and for watching. Man, he was supposed to get away.


MATT: Ugh! Well done. Hey, sometimes I kill a party member, sometimes you kill mine. I guess it works out well. But no, in all seriousness, guys, this is perpetually, continuously becoming a more and more surreal experience. This wonderful game with wonderful friends.


MATT: There aren't words to describe how much this crazy phenomenon of family means to us, and thank you for your support, your engagement, your support and engagement of each other. This is a testament to a new era in storytelling that we all get to share in.


MATT: Thank you, Khary, for coming and joining us for the live episode.


MATT: Pretty much came straight here from being in the UK this past weekend, so he was barely home and then flew back out to be here with us. Hiding the whole day so nobody would see him, so he could make the surprise drop. Thank you so much. Ashly, thank you for coming along with us for this crazy journey.


MATT: I'm just rambling now. You guys are amazing, thank you for coming. Hope you have a wonderful night. We have our panel tomorrow. Go check out The Invulnerable Vagrant at Gen Con. Love you guys, and is it Thursday yet? Good night.