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List of Transcripts

Pre-Show[]

MATT: Welcome, and hello everyone to the next episode of Critical Role. A silly show where a bunch of us voice actors get together and play Dungeons and Dragons on Geek and Sundry's twitch stream. So for returning fans, welcome, and to all the new folks tuning in finally, welcome to you as well. So before we get into the meat, a few announcements and such, let's roll that intro.

TRAVIS: Silly?

[dramatic music]

MATT: And welcome back. So, a couple things I want to get off the bat to you guys. Our subscription giveaways this evening. For every hundred subscribers, we are giving away special care packages with D&D books signed by the Critical Role crew, as well as a signed photo, comics, other goodies. So the next one will be at 5,300, we will do another giveaway. Remember, you have to be in the chat room to be able to acquire one of these packages. So tune in to get something. Keep that in mind.

LAURA: Yeah.

MATT: Also, for those who may not remember from last week, we are in a very interesting month of Critical Role, as the party has been split due to a circumstance where, in the city of Vasselheim, the party, chasing after a hydra that seemed to be harrying the outside walls of the city and slaying it, got in the way and accidentally broke the laws of the Vasselheim by hunting and slaying when they weren't approved to do so. Being called skags by a band of hunters that works for the Slayer's Take guildhall. A guild that pretty much regulates most hunting of monsters and creatures within the vicinity of Vasselheim. So, as opposed to going up and dealing with charges at the seat of justice, they instead were given the option by the head of the guild hall to possibly join, but in order to do so, they would have to fulfill a contract and prove themselves worthy of being a member of the guild. And the guild master, our fantastic Huntmaster Vanessa Cyndrial, hand-picked two different groups, splitting up the twins, and they have all set out to return the next day to join, and figure out what their contract will be. So, this week we have playing: we have Grog. We have Vex'ahlia. We have Percy. We have the shortly arriving here Scanlan, who has been fighting L.A. traffic.

TRAVIS: He's here!

(cheering)

MATT: Quite literally shortly arriving, Scanlan.

TRAVIS: Like Superman, that was amazing.

MATT: And eventually to join the party as they slowly make their way there– mysterious head kiss. This is the best Thursday ever. We have joining us eventually at some point we have the very wonderful and talented Mary Elizabeth McGlynn. A fantastic, talented voice actress and director and amazing person.

MARY: Hello, sorry.

MATT: So look her stuff up online. She is also a great musician, singer, and this is her first time playing Dungeons and Dragons.

TRAVIS: Newbie!

MARY: Newbie!

MATT: Yeah, I'm super excited.

TRAVIS: I'm going to kill you.

MARY: Yes.

MATT: Probably. And in the middle of the other table, we have our other illustrious guest this evening. The so-called headmaster of Geek and Sundry herself, Felicia Day. Thank you for joining us, Felicia.

(cheering)

FELICIA: I like to refer to myself as Duchess, Grand Duchess.

MATT: Grand Duchess, also viable.

SAM: Golf claps.

FELICIA: Golf claps, very appropriate.

MATT: (laughs) So yeah, thank you so much for joining.

FELICIA: I'm so excited to be here. I'm a huge fan of the show, so I spend my Thursdays watching you guys.

SAM: Who is your favorite character on the show?

LAURA: Say Trinket, say Trinket

FELICIA: Not the one with the scatological problem.

SAM: I think of it more as a gift.

(laughter)

TALIESIN: That keeps giving and giving and…

MARY: The one who likes to talk to poo.

TRAVIS: Well that's a lot of us, actually.

MATT: Before we get into the nitty gritty, do we have any announcements we want to make? Anything in particular coming up? I believe, Laura, you're bolting at the end of the game.

LAURA: I'm leaving probably during the game, to catch my flight to go to GenCon for the Titansgrave panel. Tomorrow!

MATT: Yeah! Which for the record, I want to point out guys, this is how much Laura loves you. She was going to miss today's game but then bit the bullet, changed her flight, just so she could be here to play with everyone.

FELICIA: Golf claps.

LAURA: Well, after I saw my glorious Trinket yesterday, there was no choice really.

MATT: (laughs) The Trinket that devours, by the way. Every person that's hugged that bear has vanished, temporarily, within its physical form. It is a new wonderful addition to the chat room– I mean to the whole show, and thank you to the Critters for making that happen. It's ridiculous. It's– you guys are the best, I have no words. Anything else anyone wants to announce? Anything coming up?

MARY: I'm off to San Antonio tomorrow morning, very early, for San Japan. With Steve Blum. So come on out and have some fun in San Antonio.

MATT: Heck yeah. It's a great convention, I went there last year. They're really, really good, so all you folks out there.

MARY: We were both there last year.

MATT: That's right, we were.

MARY: Yes!

MATT: So go check out Mary in San Antonio. You guys should go. Also, we've had a lot of questions through twitter, from a lot of the fans, and I like the idea of transparency, and mentioning how first off, no game or game master is infallible and rules do shift and change and there have been a couple of minor alterations to the rules. Which, you know, you house rule things in a game and you test it out and balance can shift. For those who have looked at the gunslinger martial archetype that Percy plays with, I have made a few adjustments to it, balancing out a few elements there. DCs for different shots and–

TALIESIN: Definitely some foam darts that I'm shooting now. That's all I'm saying. I'm saying there is a lot of pump action and then a foam dart comes out.

TRAVIS: Really?

TALIESIN: With a suction thing at the end.

MATT: You don't get foam darts until level 18. That is a higher level ability. The noise happens at level 19– you level up to get the actual sound. So check out the gunslinger archetype, there's been some changes to it. Also, for the sorcerer points, we had house ruled a configuration where sorcerer points would be one point per spell level of spell cast. As the levels got higher it got a little overpowered in some combat circumstances, so we narrowed that down. Which is still a bonus over the actual rules which allow you to only cast one spell per round and a cantrip. We made it so that you can cast, with quickened spell, any spell and then a 2nd-level spell maximum in the same round. Slight variation.

LAURA: I don't understand anything you just said.

TALIESIN: Made no sense to me.

MARY: Two spells at once? Two spells.

MATT: That's okay. It's for the sorcerer, you don't have to worry about it. Minor house rule adjustments, so all you guys out there who GM and DM don't be afraid to adjust balance as you go, as long as you talk to the players about it. Anyway, that's it and that's all on my end. Shall we go ahead and begin?

TRAVIS: (loud maniacal laughter)

MATT: Calm down, Phillip.

TRAVIS: All right, but I'm not Phillip right now, he lost. I'm a winner.

LAURA: Phillip doesn't exist anymore.

TRAVIS: (cries)

LAURA: Phillip's legacy is 1,000 gold to repay.

TRAVIS: Phillip is training to an 80s training montage right now. In a beef locker somewhere.

MARY: Because everyone needs a montage.

TRAVIS: Yep.

Part I[]

MATT: Glorious. I think that is an important circumstance. All right, so getting this started. The party has found themselves in the city of Vasselheim; a very deity and religion based city, in a very harsh environment. It's far up north in this continent and the weather itself is very cold, the landscape is very harsh and rugged, and outside of the city itself, there is an extremely dark, oppressive, almost unnaturally fast-growing forest known as the Vesper Timberland. This is where you encountered the hydra, last time. You just barely trekked out of the city and found that creature. Who knows what else lies out there, but the city seems very well prepared to defend itself against whatever atrocities make their way towards the outskirts of the city. So, after Grog fought very gloriously in the Crucible and just barely lost due to a test of strength that just didn't fall in his favor, he sulked via ale and ladies back at the tavern.

TRAVIS: Yeah.

MATT: Now, after defeating the hydra, being called on their law breakage in Vasselheim, have been tasked to return the next morning, as separate groups, to figure out what contract is being given to them and what members of their team await them as they arrive. So, you guys have taken the evening to rest. The next morning has come about. You find yourselves awakening within your respective tavern rooms, the members of Vox Machina. What preparation would you like to embark in this morning for whatever mysterious trek awaits you?

TRAVIS: Do they have a weapons closet?

LAURA: In the tavern room?

TRAVIS: Oh shit, I thought we were in the guildhall.

MATT: Not yet. You can go there if you want to, but if there is anything you want to do before arriving at the guildhall, that's up to you.

TRAVIS: Scanlan.

SAM: Oi!

TRAVIS: Do you want anything from the tavern before we leave?

SAM: What time is it?

TRAVIS: What time is it?

LAURA: What difference does it make? I want to take a shot with my brother.

MATT: All right. So as you and Vax'ildan get together at the bar, you have the strongest form of nasty Vasselheim liquor that they could possibly muster. It looks somewhat murky, it has elements of blue and gray to it. The barkeep assured you that this is– “This is what you're looking for to wake up in the morning, trust me.”

LAURA: Does it taste like NyQuil?

MATT: As you down the shot, it's– not knowing what NyQuil tastes like because there is no such thing as NyQuil in this world.

LAURA: Right.

TALIESIN: Ye olde NyQuil.

MATT: The flavor would be reminiscent of licking a wagon wheel that has seen at least 100 miles of travel.

LAURA: Tastes like your feet smell, brother.

MATT: Of which, Vax immediately cringes his face. “Oh well, that is rather uncouth, dear sister”

TALIESIN: And not having Liam here, I'll just– like that.

TRAVIS: Get rid of it. Put it down.

MATT: The foot's healed now. The foot is healed. So you finish your shots, you say adieu to each other and–

LAURA: See you on the other side

MATT: “Indeed, stay safe.”

TRAVIS: Bye Vax! (laughs)

MATT: “Bye Grog.” And he gives you a silent finger as he leaves the tavern, in true Vax fashion.

TRAVIS: He always mixes those fingers up.

MATT: Any preparation on your guys' end?

SAM: I'm going to load up my– whatever this thing is.

MATT: Your Ioun Stone?

SAM: Is that what I have? That's the thing here. I'm going to load that up with an Invisibility spell. Is that a thing I could do?

MATT: Yeah, you can put up to three spell levels into that.

SAM: That's two in there, right?

MATT: You may have even been able to do before you slept the night before, so then you would have all your spells back. So we'll say you did that. So you have an extra Invisibility spell in your Ioun Stone.

SAM: And I can store three spells in there, right?

MATT: Three spell levels.

SAM: Three spell level– So only one spell at a time?

MATT: Or you can do three 1st-level spells.

SAM: Oh! Then never mind. I thought it was three different spells. I've already got an extra Lightning Bolt in there. I won't add to it, never mind.

MATT: Then yeah, that is a full Ioun Stone. That thing is pulsing with energy and going, “I'm good.”

SAM: I'm good, didn't understand.

MATT: Fair enough. Percy.

TALIESIN: Other than just tinkering on a few plans that I have rolling around. I don't really have the equipment to build anything particularly interesting before we head out.

SAM: Grog might have something in the bag of holding that you could use.

TRAVIS: Oh yeah! I've got lots of shit. We have a salt lick rock, we've got three firewood bundles, dried food rations…

SAM: How many fancy cloaks left?

TRAVIS: There's… two.

SAM: Well, that's something.

TALIESIN: And we've got that leather from that weird bat creature from the Underdark.

TRAVIS: Yeah, I'm sure it doesn't smell bad.

LAURA: Oh, yeah.

TALIESIN: Is there any metal canisters in there, of any kind?

TRAVIS: I mean, I've got my hooded lantern, but you can't have that. It's dark in places.

TALIESIN: No, I don't want that.

LAURA: I bet Tiberius has metal canisters, he's got so many canisters.

TRAVIS: Two pieces of armor. Just armor

TALIESIN: I may take a piece of armor and see if I can put together some sort of frag grenade thing.

SAM: A what?

TALIESIN: I just want to make a–

SAM: Is that a thing?

TALIESIN: You don't know me.

(laughter)

TALIESIN: Just make a canister, put some black powder in there, put the thing together. It doesn't even have a fuse, it's something I can toss and shoot to trigger.

TRAVIS: Ooh.

MATT: Interesting. I will say, due to time constraints, you would probably have to skip a decent breakfast to do this. So, be aware you may be hungry later on.

LAURA: I've got food.

TALIESIN: Done

TRAVIS: We've got dried food rations in the bag.

TALIESIN: I'll have a granola bar.

MATT: Go ahead and make an investigation check.

TRAVIS: Roll good, you're starting us off. Roll good.

SAM: I'm going to try to inspire him.

TRAVIS: Roll good.

TALIESIN: You're going to inspire me?

SAM: I'm going to inspire him with a little, (sings) Boom, clap, the sound of your gun, the beat goes on and on and on and on. Boom, clap– That's all I got

MATT: You can take your d10 bardic inspiration, as his song blares into your left ear as you search the town for a decent location to possibly construct this.

TALIESIN: 19.

MATT: Total of 19?

TALIESIN: Total of 19.

MATT: All right. Asking around and speaking to a few folks around Vasselheim, you eventually find a few folks that point you toward this long abandoned workshop that's been burned down, and it hasn't really been touched. As you go to it, you have to push some of the burned wood out of the way, but there is indeed a currently functional, if for a long time unused, forge and anvil available. In poor condition, but functional. Given about two, two and a half hours, you might be pushing your arrival time at the guildhall, but you could probably do it. Do you want to go ahead and give it a shot?

TALIESIN: I'm going to give it a shot.

MATT: All right. Do you want to use another one of your bardic inspirations on this?

SAM: Can I do that?

MATT: You can use it up to– I think it's like five or six times.

SAM: He's fine.

(laughter)

TRAVIS: Stingy motherfucker!

SAM: At this point I'm probably drunk.

TALIESIN: I don't get a montage then, never mind. It's all right, save it for later. We're going to need it for later.

MATT: So it takes you a while to rummage through the ground to get everything set up. You have the tools from your tinker's kit that you usually keep with you anyway, and you begin hammering away at the metal, preparing yourself a nice little spherical container. Using your black powder, which you're starting to get a little low on black powder between your bullets you've been constructing and other stuff.

TALIESIN: Got to get home, I know.

MATT: So something you can either, some point in the future try to scavenge up the materials for or make yourself. But just letting you know, you're starting to run a little low. So go ahead and make a– I'm going to say make a tinkering check with your proficiency bonus of four and we will say with your dexterity. Since this is very meticulous, to make sure this doesn't detonate during construction.

SAM: Wow, you could really use some inspiration right now.

TALIESIN: No, I don't. That is a 29.

SAM: Stingy works.

TRAVIS: Like two-nine?

TALIESIN: Like two-nine. Not two nines, but two-nine.

MATT: What did you roll?

TALIESIN: I rolled 19.

MATT: Yeah. That'll do it.

(laughter)

MATT: All right, so, in spite of the terrible materials at your disposal– As far as the forge itself, you barely get it lit, but you can manage to heat it at enough, at least, to ply a soft metal. There is an aluminum base type that you construct as the container, and then coat that with chunks of very, very hard steel that you think will work as shrapnel. You manage to complete it. You're not sure how effective it will be, but at least you know it will travel safe, and that is really more important than anything else with these type of makeshift explosives.

TALIESIN: I made a holy hand grenade.

(laughter)

TRAVIS: Awesome.

MATT: Indeed. All right, as the rest of you gather up, you've had your breakfast, you rested, you make your way towards the Slayer's Take guildhall. Approaching the front steps again, the wooden engraving on the front doors, you step into the main foyer area and are greeted again by Mertin, the gruff looking halfling, who is in the process of thumbing through some books. He has some dried fruit on the side of his chin. He's a little groggy, like he didn't sleep well the night before.

TRAVIS: He's a little what?

MATT: He's a little groggy.

TRAVIS: Lucky chap.

MATT: He looks up as you guys approach. “Very nice you all could finally make it, it appears you are only a grand total of 25 minutes late.”

LAURA: 25?!

MATT: “It's not too much of a problem.”

SAM: What's a minute?

MATT: “It's… All right, there is not too much going on at the moment. I will not mention this to the wife. I mean the Huntmaster. Don't mention to her that I referred to her as my wife.”

TRAVIS: Kord's strength to you, sir, you've got a little bit right here.

LAURA: Oh, that's lovely.

MATT: “I appreciate the heads up.”

TRAVIS: Not a problem, not a problem.

MATT: “I hate to lose papaya. So. Let's see, we have the four of you here. This is the required necessary group for the first travel this morning, I am excited to see what the mistress has available for you. First, and foremost, let me introduce to you one of your traveling companions for this. Another hopeful for the Slayer's Take. Let me retrieve her.” And you see Mertin walks off to one of the back rooms, opens the door and whispers out, “Hey quick, your team is here.” Opens the door, and walking out– if you want to describe yourself.

MARY: I walk out in a black cloak.

SAM: This is exciting.

MARY: My hair is white, and I have silver eyes, and a long staff with four dragons and a moonstone planet, as it were, in their midst. I walk out slowly and I look them all over, one by one. Saying, I don't know you, I don't know you– as my tail whips back and forth. I don't know you– almost hitting you with my horns. You, I know. I saw you at the Crucible, didn't I?

TRAVIS: Maybe.

MARY: Well done against the Hammer.

TRAVIS: Thank you, I often get confused with Phillip the Terrible.

MARY: Yes, I'll bet you do. You don't look that terrible to me, though.

TRAVIS: Grog begins to blush, a large blue color on his cheeks.

LAURA: What's your name, woman?

MARY: Zahra.

SAM: What?

MARY: Zahra. Zahra Hydris.

LAURA: Lovely.

MARY: And what's yours?

SAM: Me?

MARY: Yes.

SAM: Well, I'm known by different names in different places.

TRAVIS: Ain't that the truth.

MARY: Really?

SAM: Some call me Kingslayer.

(laughter)

SAM: Some call me Scanlan. Some just call me when they want a good time.

(laughter)

TALIESIN: Mostly we just call him Scanlan.

MARY: I'll keep the good time in mind. And you?

TALIESIN: Percival Fredrickstein Von Musel Klossowski de Rolo III.

TRAVIS: You can call him Percy.

TALIESIN: They just call me Percy.

MARY: I see you have many weapons on you.

TALIESIN: Yes, I dabble

MARY: You dabble a bit?

TALIESIN: I do dabble.

MARY: Yes. Any forging?

TALIESIN: Yes, actually. I just picked it up recently. I've been working on things. I pull out the holy hand grenade.

MARY: Ah.

TALIESIN: Getting better.

MARY: I saw one of those in Antioch once

TALIESIN: It's where I've seen them written of. It's something new.

MARY: We'll have to compare notes sometime.

TALIESIN: Absolutely, charmed.

MARY: I'd love to see your technique.

MATT: There is something mildly off-putting by her intense red skin, her relatively pointed incisors and the very prominent tiefling demonic blood in her body.

TRAVIS: You're a tiefling?!

MATT: Nevertheless, there is an elegance to the way she walks, and there is this look of silent judgment as she continuously passes her eyes over the rest of the group.

LAURA: Did you want to know my name?

MARY: Yes I would. Now I'm not so sure, but please. Humor me

LAURA: Vex'ahlia. It's a pleasure

MARY: The pleasure is all mine.

LAURA: Yes.

TRAVIS: Oh that's an icy hand grip, isn't it.

LAURA: I love being out here without my brother. I just love it.

MARY: You have a brother?

LAURA: I do.

MARY: Oh. How fascinating.

TRAVIS: I am Grog, the unintimidated.

MARY: It's nice to know your true name Phillip– I mean Grog.

TRAVIS: (whispered) I think she knows.

TALIESIN: I would like to run a quick perception test.

MATT: What are you trying to do?

TALIESIN: I'm trying to figure out if she's titled. She certainly strikes me as titled. I think she has blood. She may not have blue blood but–

LAURA: (whispers) She's got blood.

MATT: This would be more of an insight check.

TALIESIN: Insight check, all right.

TRAVIS: (whispers) She's a tiefling!

TALIESIN: Ten.

MATT: Best you can tell. From her posture, the way she walks, there is definitely a, for lack of a better term, a non-arrogant self importance to how she holds herself. But there is something about it that… there is a mild hint of insecurity there.

TALIESIN: Interesting. All right.

TRAVIS: Could I ask you what your weapon of choice is?

MARY: That would be my staff.

TRAVIS: Oh, right, yeah.

MARY: It took many years to forge it.

LAURA: You made it yourself?

MARY: I did.

LAURA: Damn, that's impressive.

MARY: Thank you.

MATT: At this point Mertin is looking angrily at a small pocket watch that he pulls out and looks at. “This is very unusual. Let me see who is supposed to be leading your group. Hold on just a moment.” And he gets up and exits the room briefly.

LAURA: Leading?

MATT: He comes back after about two minutes with a small handbook and reads through. “Yes, well, it is customary that as a part of these trials, there is a member of the Slayers Take is to accompany you on this journey to make sure that you–”

SAM: I volunteer to be leader of the group.

MATT: “That is not up for discussion. I am sorry, small man.”

(laughter)

SAM: I magically make a cup appear.

MATT: He looks slightly impressed, but only slightly. By the way, being called 'small man' by a halfling is a feat within itself. “All right, so, the assigned leader to be your guide slayer for this venture… Oh… really. Well, this should be curious indeed. She's late, it seems.” At which point, the door opens to the guild hall and in comes stumbling a human female.

FELICIA: And I run and I– Oh my gosh I'm so sorry I'm late, I'm so sorry– and then I trip, ridiculously, and I spill cut papaya everywhere. Oh my gosh, that is disappointing. That is just disappointing. Oh my gosh, you are so impressive, how lovely. Mertin, I brought you some papaya. I'm sorry. It's all over the floor right now. I– you know what, I will go get a broom, I'll clean it up right now–

MATT: “No, no, don't worry about it, I insist–”

FELICIA: Somebody might slip–

MATT: “Stay. With your group. We have important business to discuss. I appreciate the papaya.”

TRAVIS: (under his breath) She's the leader?

FELICIA: Well I just wanted to– this is my group. Yay!

(desultory yays)

FELICIA: So nice to meet all of you. You are large. You are not. You are so pretty.

LAURA: Oh, you are too.

FELICIA: Oh my gosh, I've heard about her, she is something.

LAURA: She is… yeah.

FELICIA: Anyway. Nice to meet you, nice to meet you.

ALL: Hi.

FELICIA: Hi, I'm Lyra.

ALL: Lyra? Lyra.

FELICIA: Yes, very nice to meet you all.

MATT: And you can see from her– she is dressed in a nice blouse, her just-past-shoulder-length, somewhat curly hair, is kept as much as a frazzled woman would keep. A large pair of glasses adorn the front of her face, and she definitely is not who you were expecting to be considered leading this group into its journey.

TRAVIS: Nope.

MARY: No.

LAURA: What sort of fighter are you, Lyra?

FELICIA: Oh, this is so exciting. This is– I'm getting out Mertin, they are letting me out! This is so exciting.

MATT: “This is probably a technicality. I'll have to make sure this was maybe not–”

TALIESIN: Please, yes.

FELICIA: Oh, no, I don't think so.

MARY: Do you find yourself sitting behind a wooden structure most of the day? Something flat like this? Like a desk or a table?

FELICIA: Oh my gosh! Do you have psy abilities?

MARY: Just intuition, I guess.

FELICIA: Oh, no. This is so funny. I've seen you from afar, but I'm very busy in the back room. You know, I'm very– I'm invaluable. Right, Mertin?

MATT: “She is. Useful. Yes.”

FELICIA: Yes. I'm very good at alphabetizing. Listen, we are going to catch up so much. I'm just really excited. They are letting me out, Mertin!

SAM: Have you led a group like this before?

FELICIA: No, it's so funny. You wouldn't be able to tell, right?

TRAVIS and LAURA: Not at all.

MARY: You seem very experienced.

TRAVIS: Veteran.

LAURA: Very in-charge.

FELICIA: Thank you. Thank you. I mean, listen. I just wanted to welcome everybody. No, no. They don't actually let me out a lot and I was– you know– when I got the scroll in front … it was just– This is my best robe.

MARY: You've got a little papaya juice on the front of it

FELICIA: Oh no, oh no, oh no! And then I'm like brushing it and accidentally– the robe falls off. (gasp) Oh my god! That was inadvertent.

MATT: You hear this awkward smack sound as Mertin has face-palmed, as unbelievably hard as he can, at the edge of his desk. “I shall retrieve the Huntmaster.” Then he gets up and leaves. You guys are left alone in the foyer for a moment.

SAM: So Lyra, you are already a full fledged slayer?

FELICIA: I am, in fact.

SAM: Have you slain?

FELICIA: I am a member of the guild. Well, if you want to be technical–

SAM: You seem like someone from The Guild.

FELICIA: Yes, I'm a guild member. It's funny because it's kind of a technicality. I don't know how that happened, but I'm here.

LAURA: What do you normally do? Bookkeeping? Storage?

FELICIA: Oh, well. It's a really long story. Can I tell you all about it?

SAM: Abridged. Abridged.

LAURA: Grog look, papaya.

TRAVIS: Rah!

FELICIA: I guess some of it's still clean.

SAM: He doesn't care.

TRAVIS: It's still good.

FELICIA: Yes, so.

LAURA: And Trinket, Trinket too. This is my bear.

SAM: Oh, do we get Trinket?

LAURA: Yes, of course we get Trinket! Scanlan Do we get Trinket on the trip?

MATT: As you turn, you see that the door after you pass, and the giant armored bear has made its way in and pushes past your shoulder abruptly. And immediately goes nose down and joins Grog, eating papaya off of the ground.

TRAVIS: Hey, get your own papaya.

LAURA: This is Trinket.

MARY: Fascinating. What kind of bear is he?

TALIESIN: A big one.

LAURA: A brown one.

TRAVIS: We start to wrestle. Gently. That's my papaya you– let go!

FELICIA: Does anyone have any allergies, if I take some to-go lunches?

LAURA: Oh, that would be lovely actually.

TRAVIS: Cats.

LAURA: Actually I think Percy is quite hungry.

TALIESIN: I actually am quite hungry. I was– I don't know if I am quite capable of eating papaya off the floor, but if there is, I don't know, something brunchy?

TRAVIS: I have some dried food rations. Would you want one of those?

TALIESIN: It will do in a pinch.

FELICIA: Here is a crumbled biscuit.

TALIESIN: A crumbled biscuit sounds– I like her already, that will do.

TRAVIS: I will remember this slight.

SAM: So have you slain– have you had any battle experience at all?

FELICIA: Well, it's funny. I'm actually from this city, but I was in Emon, and I was studying. I'm a wizard. You know, the wizardly arts.

SAM: Oh, I've heard of them yes.

FELICIA: Yes absolutely.

SAM: I dabble with them myself.

FELICIA: Exactly. My uncle is actually the diplomat from Emon here, in Vasselheim.

SAM: Oh, we are from Emon, as well.

FELICIA: That's so funny.

LAURA: Perhaps you've heard of us?

SAM: Vox Machina?

LAURA: Castle Greyskull Keep.

SAM: Castle Greyskull. Some know us as the S.H.I.Ts.

TALIESIN: Kind of a big deal.

FELICIA: No. No, but I would love to hear all about it. I'll put it on a scroll. Anyway, so I came here because my boyfriend, Aldor, is here. He is going to be my boyfriend. It's a long story.

SAM: We've met Aldor.

LAURA: We have?!

SAM: We have.

LAURA: Where did we meet Aldor?

SAM: Yes, we met Aldor.

MATT: He was the leader of the team that found you guys in the forest.

TRAVIS: That's right!

LAURA: (gasps) That guy!

SAM: We tangled with him. Our first run in with Aldor was not fortuitous.

FELICIA: Did he look good? Did he look healthy?

LAURA: I mean, he looked kind of like a dick. If you want my personal opinion but–

SAM: She means he was–

TALIESIN: Strapping!

SAM: Strapping, like a dick.

FELICIA: Well he is very large, and we won't talk about that area. I have seen it, but let's not talk about that either.

TRAVIS: What is your weapon of choice, Lyra?

FELICIA: Oh, I have a wand. I have a wand. It's right here. See? It's not very long.

MARY: What's it made of?

FELICIA: Oh, it's ash. Which– it's lovely. It's very nice. Do you want to know more about it?

MARY: I would love to.

MATT: At which point the Huntmaster arrives. Vanessa Cyndrial steps into the room and looks about the rest. “Very nice to see that you've all gathered your teams for the day, and I am also curious to see your first foray into leading a group of slayers yourself, Lyra.”

FELICIA: Well, I just want to thank you. Thank you, Vanessa. Thank you for entrusting me with this group. I have been reading up a lot, lately. I'm very excited to use the commanding presence of a guild leader, and prove my membership of the guild.

LAURA: I would like to thank you very much, as well.

TRAVIS: (muffled) Yeah, me too.

LAURA: For putting us in her capable hands.

MATT: “This was a… more of a choice of convenience, and a test universally. As you are a team of unproven fighters, in the eyes of the guildhall, and, well. We have a relatively unproven member, as well.”

FELICIA: Well. I mean, I'm a member.

MATT: “Technically, yes. However, I think that her knowledge and experience would be of very good use on such a trek.”

MARY: Yes, it should prove to be quite educational, I would think.

SAM: We'll learn a lot from hearing her talk.

FELICIA: Yay! Thank you.

SAM: You're welcome.

TALIESIN: You should try the biscuits. They are slaying me. That's all I know.

LAURA: What do you eat? Do you eat– does it get stuck in your teeth a lot?

MARY: Well, it does sometimes, but you grab a twig and just work it out after a while. Gives you a little something later to chew on.

TRAVIS: Twigs work great. Don't they? I like twigs.

SAM: Don't we have some guilds to prove membership to?

TRAVIS: Yeah, can we kill something now please, before we learn anything else.

MATT: She snaps her fingers loudly, and Mertin comes rushing from around the corner carrying something in his arms. “As you are on this journey for us, and for the guild, and your own personal name and title within our establishment, we would like to provide you with a semblance of protection, or at least a useful little package. A gift, from us to you.” She puts her hand on the table and Mertin comes over and hands you what looks like a small leather chest. It's made of sculpted leather. Rolls back, and pushes it forward. You can hear the clinking of glass as he does so, and on the inside you can see there are four glass vials, prepared with some sort of a swirling red, silver-ish liquid inside. You recognize these as healing-based potions.

SAM: Like Moderate Healing?

LAURA: Superior? Perhaps.

MATT: These would constitute as Greater Healing Potions, and there are four in total. You can distribute as you see fit.

SAM: I think the members of Vox Machina should get them.

LAURA: That doesn't seem really–

MARY: Is that what you think?

SAM: Well, just because I– I defer to–

FELICIA: As the leader, I enjoy being hospitable, and I agree with this small person.

MARY: Well Scanlan, if you feel you need it.

TALIESIN: I already have a couple, so I will gladly give one to somebody who is going to need it.

LAURA: I've got plenty. Take it. If you need it.

MARY: I have plenty myself. Thank you very much.

SAM: I will. More for me.

MATT: “Very well. Now that we have this situated. Has everyone gathered the provisions they require for this journey? Are you ready to embark?”

TRAVIS: I mean, we don't have a body bag for some of these chumps.

SAM: Did you eat enough, Percy?

TALIESIN: The biscuit was very filling. It was extremely filling.

FELICIA: You're very welcome. I can get some more. Can I just go to the kitchen and grab some– no?

MATT: “Anyway. This is a secondary gift. Temporarily lent out for your contracts.” Mertin brings up what looks like another satchel. It has a series of metal snaps across the top. These little buttons that snap together and enclose it entirely. It's an over-the-shoulder-type throw. As he opens it and you look inside, it resembles the bag of holding, but it's not quite a bag of holding. “This is used for the transportation of, how do you say, perishable aspects of your quarry. Things that you would harvest from the creature you have been assigned tend to, depending on the creature, rot away within a very short period of time. When placed within this, they should be sustained for a few weeks at the very least. So, please do be very mindful and careful of this. Should it be lost, there is a very small chance you will be able to fulfill your contract. So, who shall be taking this on the journey?”

SAM: You've already go the bag of holding.

LAURA: I'll hold onto it.

MARY: I shall.

TALIESIN: You're kind of stealthy aren't you?

MARY: I shall take it.

LAURA: I shall take it.

MARY: I shall take it.

LAURA: I will–

TRAVIS: Roll for it.

SAM: Why don't we roll for– Why don't we flip a coin for it?

MARY: Do you know Roshambo?

SAM: That would be great.

LAURA: Ha!

MARY: Congratulations, I'm so happy for you.

SAM: Oh, wait. Should we ask the leader of the group, here?

MARY: I'm so sorry.

LAURA: Sorry Lyra.

FELICIA: Oh that's quite all right. Thank you for actually including me.

LAURA: Of course.

FELICIA: As the leader of this party, I will agree with the roshambo.

SAM: (chuckles) So it is decreed.

MARY: Oh, I'm so sorry, I didn't mean for my tail to hit you in your rear end so sharply. Sometimes it has a mind of its own.

LAURA: It's like a whip.

MARY: I know.

MATT: At which point Vanessa is just watching with a grin on her face. “It is good to see you have already established a pecking order within your traveling companions. This bodes well for your journey, most certainly. To you.” And she hands you the satchel.

LAURA: (gasps) But I won. I won. Give it to me. What? Please.

MARY: I'm sorry, I don't think it was given to you.

LAURA: I already have it. I already have it on my shoulder. It's too late. I'm writing it down.

MARY: I certainly hope you don't lose it during our quest.

TRAVIS: Vanessa, I have a question. What happens if we don't come back with all of the members we left with?

MATT: “Well, then I suppose they would not be allowed into the guildhall.”

TRAVIS: Oh, good.

MATT: “Mostly for no longer returning to the city of Vasselheim, but that is not our problem. There is danger in this which I should get to, actually.”

SAM: Yes, please tell us. Where are we going?

MATT: “You have now received your gifts and your various required implements for this journey. A contract has just recently come to us from the Crown of Erathis, within this portion of the city. It has been approved for slaying. This will prove quite a challenge. Based on how highly you spoke of your abilities, I will warn you. The quarry is quite dangerous. Should you find yourself in trouble, I wish to remind you that it is better to live and fail, than to be foolish and die. Let me pass on to you the contract that has been selected for you.” Then she reaches out and hands this over to you, Percy.

SAM: Should Lyra?

FELICIA: Oh no, let me try. Oh no! Maybe you should read it.

MARY: I cast Mending on it.

SAM: You can do that? So sexy.

MATT: As she flicks her wrist a small spark of purple-ish dark energy shoots from her finger, slams into the side of the contract, and the tear in the contract repairs itself immediately.

FELICIA: Oh wow.

TALIESIN: Scotch tape would do it too.

MARY: The Scots have nothing to do with it.

TALIESIN: “Ordered and paid in advance by the alchemist Oswind Grund, the client… This contract, binding in honor of the elements, set upon the agreed members of the Slayer's Take guildhall the task of locating and slaying the below-mentioned entity and the recovering of the below-listed harvested anatomy items. Any anatomy items not recovered or not in functional condition will be deducted from the final payment, and will be refunded to the client. This client–”

MARY: I'm sorry, could you go over, again, what we are harvesting, please?

TALIESIN: Ah, we haven't gotten to that yet.

MARY: Sorry.

TALIESIN: Oh, it's all right. “This contract is good for three days, and should the contract not be fulfilled within that time period, then all payments are null and void, this contract is null and void, and the membership within the Slayer's Take is revoked, outside of the Huntmaster's willful forgiveness.”

SAM: This is the fine print, get to the details.

TALIESIN: “Quarry has been approved for hunting by the Holy Paramounts of the Crown of Erathis. The quarry: one adult white dragon–” One adult white dragon?!

LAURA: A white dragon? Would I know? I would know, because I've studied them.

MATT: Yes, having dragons being a very favored enemy for you. White dragons are one of the chromatic dragon circle. They are considered largely very spiteful, arrogant, a little more bestial, and very, very dangerous foes.

MARY: Yes, they are glorious.

LAURA: Didn't we kill a white dragon?

TRAVIS and TALIESIN: No.

SAM: Platinum dragon?

LAURA: No, I thought the ice dragon thing– wasn't she white?

MATT: Once upon a time, you battled, back at

Westruun.

SAM: I don't see race so I don't know.

FELICIA: What kind of element is a white dragon?

MATT: Ice and frost.

TALIESIN: Oh, that's right.

LAURA: Yeah, the woman and then she turned into a dragon.

TRAVIS: Yeah, Ashley killed her. I mean, Pike.

MATT: “This bodes well. If you have already defeated such a creature, then this should be a very simple task.”

TRAVIS: Yeah, no problem.

FELICIA: This is going to be easy.

TRAVIS: What do we have to bring back?

TALIESIN: They want eyes, tongue, heart, claws, and teeth.

LAURA: So anything else we get to keep ourselves?

TALIESIN: Two eyes, one tongue, one heart, six claws, and 20 teeth, is what they are requesting.

SAM: And do we get paid for such items?

TALIESIN: Yes. There are individual prices for each individual object. Eyes, 900 gold each. Tongue is 1,200 gold. The heart is 3,500. Claws, 250 gold each, and teeth are 50 gold each.

FELICIA: If there are any remaining organs, we can roshambo for it.

MATT: “Very good.”

LAURA: And scales, definitely. There will be plenty of scales.

TALIESIN: Plenty of scales.

MARY: Yes, there will be plenty of scales. Very good for armor and–

TALIESIN: Very good for armor.

TRAVIS: Does it say where this dragon lives?

TALIESIN: No.

MATT: “Ah, see. That is part of the job. To find one's quarry is why we are so specialized, in the Slayer's Take. You may now embark. Once we signify the pact of the contract.” And as she reaches out and touches the edge of it, you can see there are these arcane sigils that are on the contract itself. They glow and pulse briefly and she just walks across the group. First, to you Percy, as you were holding it. “Place your hand against the contract.” As you do they light up, and you feel a surge of warm energy go through your torso. At which point, you now see, at the bottom of the contract, your name inscribe itself, magically, into the contract. She then takes it and passes it to each one of you to the same point. As the spell binds–

LAURA: What about Trinket? Does he use his paw?

MATT: “I suppose he is part of your band.” And she reaches out the paper.

LAURA: Trinket. Shake.

MATT: Slams it out of her hand, knocking the contract onto the ground, and there is a brief moment where she pulls the paw back and the paper is wrecked a little bit, but there is indeed a paw that inscribes itself on the bottom of the contract for Trinket's insignia. “Now, I have a busy day to attend. I wish you the utmost of safety, good luck, and safe travels.”

SAM: Thank you, I guess.

FELICIA: Bye! I'll alphabetize the rest of those ingredients when I get back. Don't worry. It's going to be fine.

MATT: “I'd appreciate that, good luck.”

FELICIA: Okay, great. Bye-bye. Thanks again for giving me a chance.

MATT: “That's great. Please, go.”

FELICIA: Okay.

SAM: Are you the housekeeper here?

FELICIA: No, no. Listen. No, I am a guild member. On a technicality, but I am a guild member.

MARY: Tell me again, what have you slain?

FELICIA: Well, well, it's–

MARY: No, very abbreviated, just a short– can you say the word of what it is.

LAURA: Just the biggest one.

FELICIA: It was a worg. Who almost absconded with my boyfriend, Aldor. And at the last minute I interceded.

LAURA: You killed someone who was sleeping with your boyfriend?

FELICIA: No, no. It was worg. A worg!

LAURA: Okay.

SAM: Is that a thing?

FELICIA: It's a thing

SAM: We haven't encountered one of those, I don't think.

LAURA: It's a person that changes into animals, am I right?

MARY: No, it's something that– it projects itself into animals?

MATT: In certain book series, yes.

(laughter)

MARY: I'm a very prolific reader. And I've never read of worgs other than in that circumstance.

SAM: In Twilight, that's true.

MARY: That could have been the fairy tale section of the library.

TRAVIS: It also sparkles. Sparkles in the sunlight.

MARY: But only in the sun.

MATT: Worgs in this world are essentially a side breed of large bulbous, wolf-like entities.

ALL: Oh!

MARY: A bulbous dire wolf.

LAURA: Oh you killed a wolf?

MARY: A bloated wolf, basically?

FELICIA: It's a large wolf.

MATT: It's not quite dire wolf sized.

LAURA: No, yeah, that's great.

MARY: A gaseous wolf?

MATT: For instance– out of character here, outside of the world. In Lord of the Rings, the things that the orcs ride.

ALL: Oh!

LAURA: Oh, they're really scary.

FELICIA: It was quite a situation. It was either the worg or Aldor, and I would do anything to save Aldor. What did he look like, when you saw him?

TRAVIS: Oh god, here we go again.

SAM: He was a little dirty.

LAURA: I mean, he looked actually kind of frightened.

FELICIA: Was he wearing armor? Like, a red-ish sort of very fantastic armor?

SAM: It was hard to focus on his armor with all of his screaming and panting.

LAURA: And whimpering, really.

FELICIA: He is very brave. He must have been injured.

LAURA: No, yes, he seems like he would have been had he hadn't–

SAM: We tease because we love. He did fine. He fought well. He fought bravely, and he treated us fairly.

LAURA: Especially when he got burned by Tiberius.

FELICIA: You burned my…. kind-of-boyfriend?!

SAM: Not the face. Not the face.

LAURA: His face is fine.

SAM: I didn't do it.

FELICIA: We need to talk about this more on the road, but we should get going.

SAM: Let's certainly start talking.

MARY: Yes, let's do.

MATT: As you all leave, the Huntmaster expectantly waiting for you to exit the guildhall, you find yourself out amongst the streets of Vasselheim. With no particular direction in where to find the white dragon in three days.

LAURA: Three days?

MATT: Three days to slay it, yes.

SAM: Hey, Vex. Can any of us sense a dragon within six miles of here?

LAURA: That's what I'm doing. I'm checking that out.

FELICIA: Oh, yes. I can cast Locate Creature too.

LAURA: Oh, that works too.

FELICIA: Yeah, let's do it. Together.

SAM: Do we need some sort of– anything for you to cast the spell?

FELICIA: Oh no, I have all of my ingredients.

SAM: No, but do you need to know something of what you are trying to locate? Or does it work on name alone?

MATT: As per the Locate Creature spell, it can only locate creatures within 1,000 feet of the ritual that is completed. But it locates them with pinpoint accuracy.

LAURA: Oh, that's great. Well then we can use it in conjunction. Because I can use Primeval Awareness and find any dragons within six miles.

FELICIA: Oh you are very skilled.

TRAVIS: Can I try to grow my beard, real quick?

MARY: You can grow a beard?

MATT: Yes.

SAM: Sometimes.

TALIESIN: Not really.

TRAVIS: 33.

SAM: That's better, that's better.

MATT: At this point, and you guys noticed it and didn't make a mention, because for some of you this was just a very dire morning. But since Grog woke up this morning he had a very, very nice coat of somewhat bristly, translucent– not very attractive facial hair, but facial hair by definition.

LAURA: It's like fishing line coming out of his face.

TRAVIS: I'm a damn pirate now. Watch out.

TALIESIN: Like a 14 year old whose father doesn't love him enough to teach him how to groom himself.

TRAVIS: (laughs) Jesus… Oh. Wow.

SAM: That's dark.

TRAVIS: There's a story there.

LAURA: Percy's seen some shit.

MARY: Yeah!

TALIESIN: There's no parental issues over here. None.

LAURA: So, can I do that then?

MATT: You can. You, along with Trinket by your side, you find a small space–

LAURA: I can't find his exact location, but I can…

MATT: You can gather the general–

MARY: How far away are we, from the wood, at this point?

MATT: You are still in the city of Vasselheim. You are in the Quadroads district, which is the most central portion of the city– it's the Erathis driven area. You are about a 15 minute walk from the nearest walls that exit out into the Vesper Timberlands.

TRAVIS: 15.

FELICIA: Do I know anything about where the dragon might be?

MATT: You have no idea. This would be one of those occasions where your best bet would be research or asking around.

TRAVIS: Dragon! Drag–!

SAM: No, don't do that.

LAURA: So can I–?

MATT: So, you take a moment, you ground yourself, and you place your hands on the dirt and take in the general feel of all natural creatures and unnatural beasts that you are attuned to in the vicinity. You focus on the essence of what is dragon and dragonkin, dragon kind. And find that within the six mile radius, there is nothing that catches your attention.

LAURA: Shit.

SAM: All right. Lyra. Lira? Lyra.

FELICIA: Lyra. Thank you for asking because some people just don't care.

SAM: Yes, well I want to get it right. Who– you've been living here for quite some time, I imagine, as a guild member.

FELICIA: Well, I grew up here, with my uncle– Uncle Randy. Do you want to meet him?

SAM: No. Unless he is knowledgeable about dragons. I was going to ask you where should we go to ask who might know things about the woods, about the wilds, about where dragons might keep?

FELICIA: That's a very good question. I would say Aldor, but he will not talk to me.

SAM: That's unfortunate.

FELICIA: It is, really. Do you want to talk about it, because I could use some advice.

SAM: We can have some girl talk later, but right now, focus on the dragon.

LAURA: Zahra, what about you, do you know about dragons?

MARY: I don't know where the dragons are, but– I'm so sorry. I do not mean to interrupt– but I can use Beast Speech, so if we come close to anything, I could ask, potentially, to understand. Maybe get an idea, or–

FELICIA: There may be somebody at the Abundant Terrace who might know something about the woods and direction. That might be a good place to start. It's a section of town where they concentrate on– yes. So we can go there.

LAURA: All right, let's do that.

TRAVIS: Let's go there. Please, god.

MATT: All right, so in following Lyra towards the Abundant Terrace, which is on the western side of town. This area is very different in visual style. As soon as you approach this small hill that leads into the terrace proper, it is almost entirely farmland. In this strange, harsh environment there is something about this entire district that is structured to be the source of vegetation and crops, and to be essentially feeding a large portion of the population here. You also see there are a series of small temple towers and statues that are focused around a particular deity. I want you guys to go ahead and roll religion real fast.

LAURA: Roll a d20, and add your religion.

MARY: Starting off well.

LAURA: Great first roll.

FELICIA: That roll is not good.

SAM: 23.

TALIESIN: 22.

MATT: Which, you know this information. But before you can even say it, as you are eager to mention, you sense that there is worship of Melora here. Melora which is considered the goddess of wilderness and the sea and is one of the five– soon to be six if Pike's temple raises– deities that essentially rule the belief system and lifestyle of the city of Vasselheim. So through the blessing and touch of Melora in this district they are able to treat the land as magically fertile territory to grow. You gather upon stepping inside that there's a cluster of dirty looking, but very, very cluttered and busy taverns, inns and general stores, like the entire portion of the district that isn't farmland is jammed into this one little corner. Go ahead and make an investigation check.

TRAVIS: Six.

FELICIA: 21.

SAM: 22.

LAURA: 20.

MATT: Percy?

TALIESIN: 17.

MARY: 17.

MATT: 17, all right. You guys split up a bit briefly to try and find more information. One of the groups that coalesces is Vex, Scanlan, and Lyra. The three of you come upon a place called The Midnight Breath Tavern. You step inside and speak for a bit and eventually you meet the co-owner, a gentleman named Dagon, who is an older human who has what looks like a reddish, but somewhat patchy red and brown beard, a couple scars on his body, but nothing battle worn– more just a person who has existed in this harsh landscape for a while. You guys are asking around and talking about dragons, mentioning dragons, and somebody points in his direction and says, “Ah, dragon. You're gonna want to talk to Dagon about that. He's the one who sees dragons.”

LAURA: Sees them?

SAM: Let's go.

FELICIA: That's nice.

TRAVIS: I walk over to Dagon–

SAM: You're not with us, are you?

MARY: No.

TRAVIS: What?

LAURA: You're not with us.

TALIESIN: You're with me. We're still wandering about like idiots.

MATT: You guys are wandering about.

MARY: Are we outside?

MATT: You guys are in the process of asking around. You'll meet up with them in just a moment.

FELICIA: Vex, you're very attractive. Use your wiles.

LAURA: Oh, thank you.

SAM: Her wiles kill.

LAURA: Dagon, is that your name?

MATT: “That's my name.” He's cleaning a glass.

LAURA: I've heard many things about your knowledge of dragons.

MATT: “Correct.”

LAURA: Yes.

MATT: “Y–You've seen it? You've seen the dragon?”

LAURA: I have seen dragons, and they suck.

MATT: You hear a couple of snickers down the bar and he goes, “Shut the hell up!”

LAURA: Unless you like them. Do you like them?

MATT: “No, no one around here likes a dragon proper. At least, none that I've come across. No, I swears it. I swears it. I saw this one. I was up north, about two days' travel northwest of here via the Glasswalk Road. That's two days' travel horseback, mind you.”

LAURA: The Glasswalk…? The Glasswalk… Road?

MATT: “The Glasswalk Road, yeah.”

LAURA: Yes, of course.

MATT: “I was heading to Muldire to, you know, visit my brother and some of my family lives up in that northern area. It's freezing cold, too chilly for my tastes but– I was going to visit and no more than two days up there, a nasty blizzard blows in out of nowhere, just starts wrecking the entire roadside, slick with ice. We decide to go ahead and make camp, me and a couple of the others who were journeying with me. We head off the road, set up a small camp, throw up some tents, and thankfully, at least within the canopy of the forest, it's easy enough to escape the barrage of the elements, but it was a very, very cold night. Our fire began to go out, and we were a little worried.”

LAURA: And then there was a dragon?

SAM: Yeah, get to the dragon. I'm sorry.

MATT: “Hold on, let me tell my story.”

FELICIA: That was very rude. I am so sorry.

SAM: I'm sorry, I'm so sorry.

MATT: “It's all right, I'm used to it.” And a voice over there says, “Yeah, he is!” “You. I will kick you out. I will kick you–”

LAURA: I believe that you saw a dragon and I believe that it was white because you were in a blizzard. Right? Am I right?

MATT: “I'll get to that. Patience. Now, we're sitting there–” And you get the feeling around you that, there's like eight other people in this tavern who are all face in their hands, like this story has probably been told dozens of times. Over and over again. “So partway into the night, we're trying to keep warm when suddenly we hear this terrifying roar, that streaks across the sky. We could hear it over the blistering sound of the snow and sleet battered against our tent. I rush outside to take a look. Not sure what to find, but instead, I see what looks like a pack of four dire wolves converging on our camp. Large, nasty beasts–”

LAURA: Very much like a worg, if you will.

MATT: “Worg-like, a little larger, yes.”

FELICIA: How large? Do you want to tell– How large proportionally would you say the…? No? Okay, keep going.

MATT: “Well, no. I mean, if you want to get into– if you're talking worg versus dire wolf, worg is still pretty large. About a good three, four–”

FELICIA: I know, I've seen one. You know what happened with me? I got into the guild because…

TRAVIS: Oh god, here we go.

LAURA: Well. Actually. Dragon.

MATT: “So, this pack of dire wolves are converging on me. I myself am fearful, but I know that, if I'm gonna make a stand, now is the time to do it. So I reach over and draw my dagger, and prepare myself to defend–”

LAURA: That's a giant dagger, if I've ever seen one.

MATT: “Thank you.” He re-sheathes it, a little blush to his cheeks. “I prepared myself to accept possible defeat at these terrifying beasts. Then a secondary roar breaks out. This time not from around, but above. Incoming, streaking out of the clouds above, I see, believe me, a dragon. Wing-span huge, claws and teeth gnashing–”

LAURA: I would never have guessed that's where that was going. White dragon?

MATT: “White as the snow that encased the skyline. It streaks down and snatch! Takes one of the worgs in its jaws. Lifts up the worg, screeching about angrily. It throws it into the air, and from its mouth cascades a blistering, freezing cascade of ice and sleet. The worg itself freezes in mid-air.”

LAURA: Whoa.

MATT: “Before it can plummet, the creature then closes its jaws, snatching down on that worg, and biting it in two. Only one fell stroke. As the pieces of ice clatter to the ground, the rest of the worgs scatter. I believe that dragon saved our lives that night.”

LAURA: That's great. How did you make it back, without dying?

MATT: “Well apparently the dragon had its fill and the dire wolves went off. So we packed up and went right on back. Never made it to Muldire.”

LAURA: Did the dragon keep flying in the direction of the Glasswalk Road? Or did it go east or west? Or which way?

MATT: “I have no idea, actually. We just ran. We turned tail and got the hell out of there as fast as we could.”

SAM: That was quite a story, quite a story.

FELICIA: That was stirring.

MATT: “You believe me? You believe me on this?!”

LAURA: We believe you.

SAM: Not only do we believe you, but we want to tell others of this. In fact, I'm a bit of a performer. I may write a song about your exploits.

MATT: “Could you?”

LAURA: Actually, could I roll for perception or insight to see if he's telling the truth on everything?

MATT: Go ahead and roll insight.

SAM: Roll! Two.

LAURA: Oh yeah, two. No, 17.

MATT: 17.

LAURA: No, is that a 17 or an 11?

TRAVIS: 11.

MARY: That's 11.

LAURA: 17.

MATT: 17. All right. He's not the most complicated man. So, reading his intent is easier than a lot of individuals you've had to keep an eye on previously. He is eager to tell the story and is in full belief. The frustration, and the only things that detract from his child-like excitement at telling this tale, is his moments of side looking frustration to the other members of the tavern that do not take him seriously, it seems. Dagon does seem to be truthful in, at least, believing what he is saying to you.

FELICIA: Thank you so much for your information– I take a gold coin and I'm just like, is this enough? Yes, that's good. Thank you. So we– we'll be going. Yeah?

LAURA: Can I perception and see how heavy that bag of gold actually looks? I just want to know.

MATT: Make a perception check.

LAURA: Okay, I'm going to roll the gold dice. 24.

MATT: 24. As she reaches into the pouch– there is a rather large, visibly bulging pouch to her side that is, in no way shape or form, even attempting to be covertly hidden.

SAM: She's got a Scrooge McDuck bag?

(laughter)

MATT: Seemingly.

MARY: Does it make her limp? So sorry.

FELICIA: Oh goodness. Guys. We are going to have to get some warm clothing. It seems like that. So let's go shopping.

LAURA: I love this plan.

TRAVIS: Oh God.

SAM: Dagon. Dagon?

MATT: “It is! Dagon. Remember the name Dagon for your song.”

SAM: I will definitely write a song for you.

MATT: “I can write it down for you.”

SAM: No, I can remember that. Will we have any trouble finding this place? Will we need a guide? Someone who's possibly been there before? Would that make the journey–

MATT: “Oh, I ain't going back! Y'all's crazy if you're going back there. I would say just look for where the blizzard is coming from. That seemed to be the harbinger of the beast.”

LAURA: Go to the blizzard.

TRAVIS: Two days on horseback, or two days walking?

MATT: “Two days on horseback. Up the Glasswalk.”

FELICIA: Oh my gosh, we'll have to get horses, too. Well, let's go.

LAURA: Does the guild give you money for..?

FELICIA: Um.

MATT: As far as you know, horses are provided to full-fledged hunting members. You got the feeling, in your very, very brief preparation for this, that part of the test was to secure your own transportation.

LAURA: Lovely.

FELICIA: I think we are on our own. I mean, I think it's part of our perseverance to prove that we are worthy of being– I mean I am in the guild, just to be clear.

SAM: You're a member?

FELICIA: We are just going to have to– Yes, I am a member. Did you hear how I got in? It is really a fascinating story.

SAM: No, I heard it was sort of a technicality.

FELICIA: Oh, well it was but–

SAM: I can't wait to hear it.

FELICIA: Maybe around the campfire!

SAM: Yes.

FELICIA: You could sing!

SAM: I could, if you told me the details. You know what, I do forget a lot. Maybe you could just write them down quietly to yourself and just give me a note later.

FELICIA: Okay, as long as it's a love story between me and Aldor– I'll tell you how to spell it. Okay! Well, let's go meet the rest of the group!

SAM: Thank you, Dagon.

LAURA: As we're leaving, I walk up behind Lyra and I put my hand on her shoulder, and then I reach down and grab her bag of gold and I (clears throat) and look down to it and say, you might want to keep a better eye on this, darling. There are very very nasty people around.

FELICIA: Oh my goodness.

SAM: You're traveling with some of them.

LAURA: I didn't take anything, I'm simply letting you know.

FELICIA: That is so nice of you! I'm going to buy you the prettiest cloak as thanks.

LAURA: Thank you so much, darling. You have lovely eyes.

FELICIA: Thank you! I've never had a friend before! This is so great!

LAURA: Maybe when we shop you can tell me all about Aldor.

FELICIA: Oh my gosh, he is so handsome.

MATT: As you guys step out of the tavern, you walk up to the other members of your party: Zahra, Grog and Percy.

TALIESIN: Oh, thank god.

MARY: What have you discovered?

SAM: Northwest. Cold.

LAURA: Blizzards.

SAM: Dragon. Blizzard.

LAURA: It ices things.

SAM: Two days. We need horses.

MARY: Two days?

LAURA: We'll definitely need some sort of protection against ice attacks.

MARY: Right.

TRAVIS: I have a question. I'm not good with numbers, but it's a two days' journey there? And a two days' journey back?

LAURA: Yeah.

TALIESIN: We do have an airship.

TRAVIS: Is that four, and we have three days to do this in?

TALIESIN: Don't we have an airship?

LAURA: How are we going to do that exactly?

TRAVIS: I mean, I'm not the brightest in the bunch, but.

MATT: You know that contracts are complete upon the quarry being slain.

ALL: Oh!

FELICIA: We have three days to get home. It's hard. You were reading it a little bit fast

MARY: Two days to get there and one day to slay it?

LAURA: Thereabouts, yes.

MARY: Is that about it?

MATT: Once the creature is actually slain, and the pieces are harvested, then the contract is completed. Then you can take your time returning.

TRAVIS: Thank God.

MARY: Great. We can ride it down the mountain.

TRAVIS: Really?

MARY: No.

SAM: We need to get some horses up in this joint?

FELICIA: We need horses, we need cloaks, we need furs, wools…

LAURA: We definitely need warm things. Actually, I have warm cloaks for the party and half of our party isn't here so we can have them.

SAM: Will you need some cold weather clothes, Zahra?

MARY: I believe, it would be nice.

SAM: And Lyra did you bring anything?

FELICIA: Well I can go by my uncle's house and get pretty much anything.

SAM: Yeah? Oh wait! Would he have enough for us?

FELICIA: Oh! Well goodness he's a trade ambassador to here. It's funny. We have a lot of warehouses. It's so funny.

SAM: Let's go do that!

LAURA: Seriously? Wait, so does he give discounts to family members?

FELICIA: Oh I can just, you know. I can persuade him to– because he's nice and–

LAURA: Lyra, I think we're going to be best friends!

SAM: Way to bury the lede!

MARY: Lyra, does he have access to horses?

FELICIA: Um. I don't–

MATT: You haven't ever had any sort of discussions with him in regards to horses. You know there are a few liveries throughout town, but you don't think you have any family ties to them directly.

FELICIA: Not directly. I mean, it's trade more than that, but I know some places.

SAM: Is this your Uncle Randy?

FELICIA: Uncle Randy! Yes, you know about him?

SAM: He's legend. His legend has been sung far and wide.

FELICIA: He's so fantastic. He's so kind-hearted. He took me in when I was– anyway we'll talk about it over fire camps!

TALIESIN: Come on, everybody.

LAURA: So can we find horses in the area?

MATT: You briefly look about and you find a livery not too far from the outskirts of this district. As you enter, the gentleman who runs it there is eager, “Have you come to buy some horses? Well, certainly.”

SAM: Rent them. Let's rent them for a week.

MATT: “The thing about renting is, in this area if you're riding out with horses, a lot of them don't make their way back.”

LAURA: How about we rent them, and if they don't make their way back we'll pay you the difference?

SAM: We'll leave you a hefty deposit.

MATT: “That could possibly work, yes.”

MARY: May I cast Suggestion?

LAURA: Oh, try it. Do it!

MARY: Are you all right? Am I all right to–

SAM: Go for it.

MARY: I cast Suggestion.

MATT: Okay, so while you guys are in this conversation, you stay back and make a few symbols with your fingers, whispering under your breath, you complete the Suggestion spell. What's the DC of your spell? It should be on the top of your spell page. The top of your actual sheet that has all your things listed.

LAURA: DC 17.

MATT: All right. What do you want to suggest?

MARY: You shall lend us the horses, knowing that we shall take very good care of them. We may keep them for as long as we like.

MATT: As you're having this conversation he looks over at the group and goes, “You know what? You all look like a very trustworthy group. I wouldn't wanna breed any sort of ill will for future business.”

LAURA: Right. I mean, Uncle Randy after all.

MATT: “Tell you what. I'll give you the horses, rental, half price. I trust you'll bring 'em back. Don't worry about any sort of deposit. I believe you're trustworthy folk.”

SAM: Wow. Thank you, sir!

LAURA: That's lovely.

MATT: “So for six horses, we're look for a rental price of around… Say, 50 gold for the lot, rental.”

TRAVIS: Done!

LAURA: Wait, well–

SAM: We can save a little if I shared a horse with you.

FELICIA: Oh. Wha– no. No, I'd rather have my own horse. Thank you.

SAM: Okay.

LAURA: You can ride with me, Scanlan.

SAM: No, thanks.

(laughter)

LAURA: But, Trinket–

TRAVIS: Shut down!

LAURA: Does he ride– is he as fast as a horse?

MATT: (chuckles) Trinket would probably be struggling to keep up with you guys.

LAURA: Well, how–

SAM: Should we leave Trinket?

LAURA: No!

SAM: I always want to leave Trinket!

LAURA: Why do you always wanna leave my wonderful bear?!

SAM: Because he only almost dies every time.

LAURA: I know, he almost dies every time I put him in battle. It's ridiculous.

FELICIA: I think he's adorable, and it would be really nice to have him along.

LAURA: He is adorable, isn't he?

FELICIA: You guys, it's so beautiful to see the friendship that you have. If I had that with another person– say, Aldor– it would be–

SAM: Aldor is–

TRAVIS: Oh God. Do you have any Clydesdales or giant horses for me?

TALIESIN: Have you thought of getting a cat, by any chance?

FELICIA: Hm?

TALIESIN: Just a suggestion. I don't know.

MATT: “I think we could… probably facilitate. I can't say that it'll have much of a shelf life, depending on how much you ride it, but–”

TRAVIS: That's what people say about me. That's fine.

MATT: He pulls out a very, very nice looking warhorse that looks like it's designed to carry very heavy soldiers. Still unproven as to whether or not it will be able to carry you, but we shall see.

TRAVIS: Yeah!

MATT: And once again, the horse travel wasn't two days of straight gallop. It was–

LAURA: Oh! Okay.

MATT: A casual trot, in which Trinket could probably keep up, but you guys might have to take a break every now and then, because he's still a bear.

LAURA: Okay. Well, it's doable.

TRAVIS: Make him earn it!

TALIESIN: At the bear-est mean.

MATT: Oh.

TALIESIN: I've got, like, five more. I've been saving them up for this entire game.

SAM: I missed…

TALIESIN: Nothing. No– it's nothing.

TRAVIS: Oh, puns yeah.

MATT: For every bear pun that happens, an angel loses its wings.

MARY: So do we give you our gold and–

SAM: Yes, yes. Here's our gold.

MATT: Certainly, certainly! I'll get you your horses.

LAURA: Wait, who's– who's paying?

TRAVIS: The party is.

LAURA: But it– half our party isn't here, so–

TRAVIS: Vex.

FELICIA: I'll just– Don't, don't– I'll just do it!

SAM: Oh, thank you!

FELICIA: There you go. Thank you! Bye-bye, nice to meet you!

MATT: “Thank you kindly.”

TALIESIN: Oh! You're so kind! That's excellent.

TRAVIS: Thanks, Lyra

MARY: Well done, Lyra. Very good.

FELICIA: Now, I need to talk with you. Can– can we go out? Are we leaving yet?

(laughter)

MATT: Yes. The stable boy is bringing the horses over, the rest of you begin like putting your materials up and strapping them to the saddles. And what did you want to do?

FELICIA: Listen, missy. I am a leader of this, and the fact that you pulled out a spell and did not say– and it is just– it's just not even the way I want to conduct my team. So. You. If you're going to use underhanded tactics you need to clear them with me first because I am the leader.

MARY: My spellcasting is actually overhand, but…

FELICIA: Wha–?

MARY: I understand. And I shall keep that in mind, and I do apologize.

FELICIA: Really?

MARY: Yes, I apologize very deeply. Very, very sincerely.

FELICIA: I was just a leader! I did it.

TALIESIN: Oh, well done!

FELICIA: Yay! We're going to have a great journey!

SAM: That was impressive. You put her in her place.

FELICIA: I did!

SAM: Asserted yourself, but you were–

FELICIA: Firm, but polite, right?

TALIESIN: You were firm, but fair.

SAM: Firm, but fair. Yes.

LAURA: I am very, very nervous that somebody is going to die when we fight this dragon.

TRAVIS: Oh, I hope it's me.

MATT: So. Horses ready and mounted up? You guys gather all the rest of your materials, you ride up back through the Braving Grounds to the northwestern exit to the outside wall. Anything else?

LAURA: Ooh! So, protection against ice magic. Does anybody have stuff that works for that?

SAM: Didn't we need to go to Uncle Randy's?

LAURA: Lyra do you know any–

FELICIA: Well, we were going to go and get some…

MATT: That's right.

FELICIA: Yeah, we're going to go to the warehouse that's on the edge of the district.

MATT: Okay.

FELICIA: Where we're going, we're going to get some furs and all that sort of stuff.

MATT: Easy enough. You guys follow Lyra down to the outside of the Quadroads. There is one warehouse she goes to, she knocks on the door and as it opens up, you can see a rather comely looking gentleman with a nice soft, almost a purple-blue beret. Little bit of a heavyset neck bulge that rests over the top of his little doublet. And he opens it and he looks up. “Eh, what can I– oh Lyra.”

FELICIA: Hi! Oh my gosh. How are you?!

MATT: (groans) “What do you want this time?”

FELICIA: Well, it's funny. Because I finally got an assignment with the guild! Can you believe it? It's like whoa! Uncle Randy's going to be so–

MATT: “No, I can't believe it.”

FELICIA: Oh. Really?

MATT: “But good for you.”

FELICIA: Thank you! So anyway, me and my friends– these are my friends now.

SAM: You know what? She's sort of our leader.

TALIESIN: Hello.

SAM: If you must know, Randy.

FELICIA: Right?!

MATT: He gives a very, very long, judgmental, mistrusting look across all five of you.

LAURA: Should we call you uncle?

MATT: “Please, don't.”

(laughter)

SAM: You know what, Mister Randy? We had our doubts about your–

FELICIA: Oh, no that's not– No no no no, he's not my uncle. No– my uncle is not here, he's just– this is just one of his–

LAURA: Oh!

FELICIA: Managers. Yeah, very important.

SAM: Oh, okay.

FELICIA: He's going to be– Uncle Randy is going to eat his hat, isn't he? I got a leadership position! Anyway, can you help us out?

MATT: “What do you need, Lyra?”

FELICIA: We're going into the cold– we're going into a blizzard, can you believe that? And you know how much I hate the cold, but we do need to be provisioned, so what do we have in the crates that we can help…?

MATT: He closes the door.

(laughter)

MATT: A minute goes by.

SAM: Did you–

LAURA: Um, I thought–

MATT: Two minutes go by.

FELICIA: Oh, he's going to hook us up. He's going to hook us up, really.

SAM: Really?

FELICIA: Uh! (Knocks)

MARY: I use Mask of Many Faces and I disguise myself as Uncle Frank.

LAURA: Uncle Randy?

MARY: Uncle Randy!

(laughter)

MARY: Frankly, my dear! I am Uncle Randy.

TRAVIS: Bob? Peter?

TALIESIN: Don't talk to Frank anymore.

MATT: All right. You have not seen Uncle Randy.

MARY: Oh, balls!

MATT: Which is the only downside to that.

MARY: Balls and a half!

MATT: Um. You could–

(laughter)

MARY: There's no pictures on the wall anywhere I could look at outside?

SAM: Just go on Facebook. Facebook!

MARY: A great big, beautiful… this is where he sells things! Great.

MATT: Unfortunately, no. But if there's any other form you'd like to take you're welcome to.

MARY: (whispers) Bollocks.

TALIESIN: Oh, bloody hell. I'm going to knock loudly.

FELICIA: Well, this is just very– this is egg-on-face situation.

TRAVIS: He's looking for stuff, right? He's–

MATT: The door opens at this point, almost pushing you back on your heels. You catch yourself as he comes out carrying a large pile of what look like relatively well-kept furs and thick leather cloaks, and shoves them into your arms. “Be safe, little one.” (bff) Closes the door.

SAM: Bye.

TALIESIN: We'll try to get her back in one piece.

FELICIA: Thank you. That's sweet. See? I came through, guys. I came through.

TALIESIN and SAM: You did!

FELICIA: Just remember, that I came through.

SAM: We'll write a good comment card when we get back.

LAURA: Definitely.

MARY: Can I get the one that's slit up the back so my tail doesn't–

SAM: All right, we're loaded up. We've got horses, we've got healing potions, we've got–

MARY: Loaded for bear, as it were.

LAURA: We're great. Trinket's wonderful.

MARY: Yes, he is!

MATT: He nuzzles up alongside Vex.

SAM: Shall we set off?

TRAVIS: Go? Yeah.

MARY: Yes, let's do.

SAM: Do you want to go, one more time to the Braving Grounds, Grog, and just–

LAURA: No.

SAM: Try your hand against– no?

TALIESIN: Why don't we slay the dragon first, and then–

LAURA: Yeah.

TALIESIN: Then he can punch things.

LAURA: Since we're on a time crunch, Scanlan.

SAM: You're right. You're right, there is a–

MARY: Everyone is good on weapons?

LAURA: I'd say yes.

TRAVIS: I haven't finished my training montage yet. Got to run through the snow, got to do pullups on trees.

MARY: (sings) Gonna need a montage.

TRAVIS: Inverted sit-ups–

MARY: (sings) Even Phillip had a–

MARY and TRAVIS: (sings) Montage!

SAM: All right, we go west along the Glass… Hand… Road.

TALIESIN: Glasswalk Road.

MATT: You embark on the Glasswalk Road, which forms right on the outskirts of the Braving Grounds. You are let through the front gates of the outside of the Vesper Timberlands, and this is the first time you've actually seen a formal road that is carved and at least traversed enough that the Timberland hasn't completely consumed it. You can still see various tree roots and branches are progressively, almost angrily, pushing in towards this gate, but you get the feeling based on the cuts that whoever goes through here– at least some people go through here, they keep it relatively well-kept for travel up north. You ride out into it and the canopy almost completely encloses it, so it's like a tunnel of very dense tree, vine, and leaf structure. You push forward out into the cold air and begin to ride for the remainder of the day. A good eight or nine hours hit before the chill begins to grow. The sun begins to find itself setting across the far mountains, and the forest around you grows darker and darker still.

LAURA: Probably need to make camp.

FELICIA: I think we should make camp! I– should we make camp? Yes! We should make camp!

MARY: I shall take first watch.

TRAVIS: I have a firewood bundle that we can make a fire with.

LAURA: There's also lots of wood around, Grog.

MARY: Yes.

TRAVIS: And I have an axe. Let's do that instead. Can I find a really tiny tree and start hacking away at it?

SAM: Tiny?

TRAVIS: Yeah, tiny. We don't need to kill, like, Grandpa Tree. We kill Baby Tree.

LAURA: Keyleth would be proud.

TRAVIS: Don't– how about don't tell Keyleth?

LAURA: I miss my brother.

MATT: Okay. You guys get off of the main road, as that's probably not a very good area to be out in the open. You find, after about a five to ten minute walk, a small opening and along the way you find a tree that looks viable. There's a small slope of hill that heads up to an upper platform area maybe about five to ten feet up, and a small opening that you think would be a fitting place to put a fire that wouldn't be in danger of setting the nearby vegetation aflame. You go ahead and start looking for firewood. Go ahead and make an athletics roll.

TRAVIS: 16.

MATT: All right. After a good 15, 20 minute period– relatively brief for most folk– you come back with a nice, hefty stack of firewood from the driest small tree you could find.

LAURA: Good job, Grog.

TRAVIS: Hey, Zahra?

MARY: Well done.

TRAVIS: Impressed?

MARY: Yes.

(laughter)

SAM: Kord's strength to you, sir.

MATT: Throwing the wood down, you begin to set up small stones into a fire pit establishment, and begin building a fire as the entirety of the sun disappears behind the distant mountain range. At this point, the temperature has gotten extremely cold, and most of you begin to pull up your winter cloaks and get your bedrolls ready for an evening's bit of rest. Is there anything in particular that you guys want to do before the night and sleep take you?

MARY: I would like to go out. Has the moon risen?

MATT: About two hours into nightfall, you can see a gentle bit of moonlight begin to appear off the distant horizon to the northeast, from your position. It's hard to see because the trees are so thick, but you take a moment to walk through, and you can see little bits of the moonlight peeking.

MARY: I just bask in what little rays I can for ten, 15 minutes before retiring.

MATT: All right. Anything else you wish to do?

FELICIA: I'm going to change my stone, my Transmuter Stone, to be resisting ice or cold.

LAURA: Ah, that's really good.

TALIESIN: Clever.

MATT: Good call. Good call, indeed.

LAURA: I need something like that. Do we have any magic stuff that makes us resistant?

MARY: I have a Ring of Protection. May I do that around the camp?

MATT: The Ring of Protection is an actual ring you wear.

MARY: Oh! I have a ring.

MATT: Yes, and it protects you.

MARY: And it protects me.

MATT: Yep. (laughs)

MARY: You see? I'm learning everything. Not all at once.

LAURA: I have one, too.

MARY: Oh, you do? Oh, yours is nice.

MATT: Very helpful.

LAURA: Yeah, but we don't have any ice-resistant things, outside of that damn–

TALIESIN: Or fire spells. Fire spells would be very–

FELICIA: Oh, I have a fire spell.

TALIESIN: Excellent.

FELICIA: That's how I took down the worg. So, anyway, we were in the forest–

MARY: How powerful is it? Because I can conjure something and it would be very– too large for this particular–

FELICIA: I mean, I think a Fireball would not help here. I can do Firebolt, but there's really no use until we get there.

LAURA: Are we starting a fire?

FELICIA: I can start the fire.

SAM: Do we not have a fire going?

LAURA: Yeah, of course we do.

MATT: You guys look over and Grog is sitting there, rubbing wood together.

LAURA: Grog, one second. Here–

TRAVIS: No, I'm probably getting so close.

(laughter)

TRAVIS: Fine. Take all the joy out of everything.

MATT: The ranger, who is very well-experienced in surviving in woodland areas, starts the fire that had taken you a good five, six minutes of aggressively fighting against the water-soaked wood of this woodland. (snaps) She lights the flames.

TRAVIS: I warmed it up first.

LAURA: Thank you, Grog. You did. You really did.

TRAVIS: Yeah. You're welcome.

MATT: All right. Anyone keeping watch?

TALIESIN: I'll keep watch.

MATT: All right, so you're taking first watch.

TALIESIN: I'll take first watch.

SAM: She had already– Zahra had volunteered.

FELICIA: Zahra had first watch.

TALIESIN: I'll take second watch, then.

FELICIA: You can take second watch.

MATT: All right, so Zahra takes first watch. Percy takes second watch.

LAURA: Can I watch with Zahra?

MATT: If you'd like to.

TRAVIS: Third watch.

MATT: Third watch for Grog. All right.

SAM: No watch.

FELICIA: I'm– I would take watch, just for the record, but I just get so peckish–

TRAVIS: You just sleep. You need your beauty rest.

SAM: I'm sleeping, yes. Thank you.

TALIESIN: You're going to be clear for leading tomorrow.

FELICIA: I really need my head clear, and I just cannot function without sleep. There was one time, when I–

TRAVIS: Oh, man. No, no, yeah.

MARY: I think– shall we?

LAURA: Yes.

MARY: First watch, Percy.

LAURA: No.

MARY: Oh, is it you and I?

LAURA: It was us.

TALIESIN: I'm second watch.

MARY: I'm so sorry.

MATT: All right. As the rest of you make your bedrolls, prepare and gather around the fire, eventually drift off to sleep. Vex and Zahra are left awake.

MARY: You need help carrying your purse? Your bag?

LAURA: Oh, no. It's quite comfortable against my side, actually.

MARY: Could I feel how heavy it is?

LAURA: It's not heavy at all. We don't have anything in it, darling.

MARY: Oh, all right.

LAURA: Where do you come from?

MARY: (exhales) I come–

LAURA: We just don't see very many tieflings around here.

MARY: No. I come from very far away. It took quite a long time for me to get here. I come from the land of Feren.

LAURA: Feren.

MARY: Yes. Very far-off, mountainous, dark. Very dark.

LAURA: And you left because…?

MARY: My father was killed, and I was left on my own in the woods, so I left.

LAURA: That sounds familiar.

MARY: Oh, it does?

LAURA: Yes, actually.

MARY: Why? Why is that?

LAURA: My mother was killed.

MARY: She was?

LAURA: Yes.

MARY: By whom?

LAURA: A dragon. (sighs) I wonder if it was white.

MARY: I wonder if it was.

TRAVIS: Shit. I mean, (snores)

MARY: What about your father?

LAURA: My father's alive.

MARY: And what is he?

LAURA: An asshole, actually.

MARY: Really? Mine was an asshole too.

LAURA: Really?

MARY: He was. He was a dark wizard. He was awful.

LAURA: Oh, wow. Mine's just a jerk.

MARY: He kept me in a cage.

LAURA: Zahra.

MARY: I know.

LAURA: Getting a bit personal here around the fire.

MARY: Sorry. I thought we were bonding.

LAURA: (laughs) Here. Have some food.

MARY: Thank you. God, what is this?

LAURA: Disgusting. Grog found it. I don't know.

TRAVIS: It's wood.

MARY: Is it wood? All right, well at least it's elm.

LAURA: Oh.

MATT: As you guys munch and awkwardly make your way through conversation through the evening, eventually your watch comes to a close, and you guys are able to rest. Percy, you take up second watch.

TALIESIN: I do.

MATT: About three, four hours go by–

TALIESIN: (whispers) Oh, bollocks.

MATT: Without incident. Eventually, your watch comes to a close. You find yourself just past the middle of the night period of the evening. Who has the third watch? Is that–

TRAVIS: I do.

MATT: Grog. All right.

TALIESIN: Wake up, Grog.

TRAVIS: What? Mom? (screams and flails)

LAURA: Ugh. Grog.

TRAVIS: Sorry.

MARY: Is he always this loud?

LAURA and TALIESIN: Yes.

MARY: All right.

TRAVIS: All right, keep sleeping! (whispers) I mean, keep sleeping. You're safe while I'm out.

FELICIA: Aldor! What? Huh?

(laughter)

MATT: As the rest of you maintain or continue your sleep. Grog keeps a very watchful eye in the darkened woods around. Grog, go ahead and make a perception check.

TRAVIS: Shit. Me?

MATT: Yeah.

SAM: Oh, he's the worst.

TRAVIS: I see everything. Yes! Minus… 16.

MATT: 16. That's good. All right. As you're keeping your eyes around for any sort of dangerous or encroaching villainy, the fire itself is slightly mesmerizing in its pattern, and you look off to the right. You hear the slight snapping of a twig about 15, 20 feet off from the camp.

TRAVIS: I go to check it out by myself.

LAURA: What? (groans)

MATT: Okay. You stand up, lifting your axe and begin to take a few steps away from the camp. As you turn around one of the nearby tree trunks, the first thing you're greeted by in the darkness– do you have Darkvision?

TRAVIS: I have low– Wait, the Dwarven Belt of Beard Power gives me– I have Darkvision out to a range of 60 feet.

SAM: Wow.

MATT: You do. So as you turn the corner, you get about a step before you notice, about 15 feet away from you–

SAM: Your beard tingles.

MATT: There is a very large fur-covered, wolf-like creature that is (snarls).

MARY: Is it a worg?

MATT: Snarling at you with bony protrusions from parts of its body. It stands, from ground to top of its shoulder, almost up to your entire height, and it is currently snarling, and behind it you can see there are two very gingerly stepping humanoid figures in the darkness.

TRAVIS: (chuckles) I yell out, PLAYTIME!

MATT: As you all wake up–

MARY: Where is he?

MATT: We're going to go to our break.

(cheering)

MATT: All right, so we're gonna take a quick break here for us to go ahead and feed real fast on the wonderful food purchased by our beautiful chatroom.

(cheering)

MATT: And we'll be back here. We're also going to show a really cool video as we recently put up our challenge to the Critter-verse– of all the Critters that watch the show, the– (chuckles), the Cancer Cream Pie Challenge. Those of you who haven't seen it can go look it up.

LAURA: Cream cancer.

MATT: Cream cancer.

MARY: Cream cancer.

MATT: Yeah.

TALIESIN: Cancer of the cream.

MATT: Cancer of the cream, if you will. A bunch of our fans took up the challenge, and there's a wonderful video compilation of that. We'll go ahead and put that up here in a moment, but we'll be back shortly to see what dangers have been unveiled in the nearby forest.

TRAVIS: Yar.

MATT: See you momentarily.

Break[]

[break]

Part II[]

MATT: Welcome back. So, a couple things we wanted to mention before we jump back into the game. I'm sure you guys have noticed our new format. We're trying out different– new visual styles for the show to match the mood and up the quality of it. We're working out some kinks and appreciate you hanging with us in that, and things will progressively get better as we push forward from here. We hope you like the new format. This is all put together by our wonderful Overlord and his crack team of twitch experts. Also, wanted to mention to you guys the '5k and a bear' t-shirts that are up because of the ridiculous Trinket–

LAURA: Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!

MATT: 5k arrival from last week's episode, is available for one more day. So if you want to get that, get it soon, because once it's gone it's gone. So make sure to go check that out if you're interested. Other than that, are we good to go ahead and continue? Perfect. All right. First and foremost, I would like everyone to roll initiative.

LAURA: Oh God.

TALIESIN: Yay!

LAURA: How did I just immediately forget that's what we were doing?

MARY: How do I do that?

TRAVIS: You take a d20.

MARY: Okay.

TRAVIS: And roll it.

TALIESIN: Eh.

FELICIA: (retches)

TRAVIS: Look at that. Add initiative, which is…

MARY: Oh. Heh. I don't know how that's possible, but yeah!

TRAVIS: Shit. Better.

FELICIA: Oh, it's a pen.

TALIESIN: There should be a laser in there somewhere.

FELICIA: Oh yeah!

TALIESIN: So that way you can vaguely say, move me there.

FELICIA: I love it.

LAURA: Oh! I have to put my glasses on today.

FELICIA: Yeah, it's far away.

SAM: You mean your magic glasses.

LAURA: My magic glasses of seeing.

MATT: Indeed.

SAM: This is so exciting!

MATT: All righty. So.

SAM: Mary and Felicia don't know. This is fun, come on.

FELICIA: Thank you.

MARY: This is amazing, guys.

TALIESIN: It's okay.

MATT: Cool. So. Initiative rolls for everyone–

TALIESIN: Blind Matt Mercer.

MATT: There will be a mild surprise round here except for Grog, but we have initiatives from here. Percy, what you got?

TALIESIN: 16.

MATT: 16 for Percy. Felicia?

FELICIA: Four!

(laughter)

TALIESIN: Whoa!

FELICIA: Thank you, Thank you.

SAM: Eight!

MATT: Okay, Lyra and Scanlan.

LAURA: Eight.

TRAVIS: Holy crap.

LAURA: Yep.

MARY: Five.

LAURA: Oh God. Why did we all roll terribly.

MATT: You guys. (laughs)

TRAVIS: We'll be dead. We'll be dead before we leave.

MATT: Oh this is wonderful, you're all going to die.

SAM: You're all going to die, man!

TALIESIN: That's never a good sign.

LAURA: I should have grabbed some of that dessert that's here.

TRAVIS: 16.

MATT: Percy, you were 16 as well?

TALIESIN: 16.

SAM: I just had a couple. They're great, and I'm sure Liam could get us some more.

MARY: Maybe your brother–

MATT: All right. So. In this regard, Grog.

TRAVIS: Yeah?

MATT: You are actually going first. Everyone else, you're currently in the process of waking up so there's going to be a round before it gets to the rest of you.

LAURA: Trinket! Wake up!

MATT: Trinket wakes up. Grog.

TRAVIS: Eh?

MATT: You look, and you see the big, dire wolf-like creature is currently staring at you across the way, and you see other entities, humanoid, coming towards you. As your Darkvision allows you to take up their features you can see these are very heavily fur covered, dense leather armor protected, roving band of straight up orcs that are currently converging on the campsite from the center of the woods. What are you going to do?

TRAVIS: You look like someone I just saw recently. I would like to Rage, and I will charge the dire wolf puppy-thing and swing at its head with my great-axe.

MATT: All right. So you immediately go into a Grog-style charge. You guys can hear Grog yelling in furious anger, echoing through the nearby wood in the direction you heard his initial shout that woke you up. Grog, you rush forward towards the dire wolf. Go ahead and make your two attacks.

TRAVIS: 26.

MATT: That hits.

TRAVIS: Ah! 25.

MATT: Both hit!

TRAVIS: That was really good.

MATT: Nice. Go ahead and roll some damage.

TRAVIS: Thank you. Ten and 18, is 28.

MATT: Great. So as you rush forward, your axe hits into the side of the dire wolf. Slamming into its shoulder, you can see as you draw the axe out of the wound, you've left a nice hearty gash into the muscle tissue that holds its arm to its shoulder. The other one, as you bring your axe around the other side it slams into the upper part of its back. It sinks a good three or four inches into it and the dire wolf (rrgaaah) just reacts to the pain with a guttural screech and then looks up at you, releasing its lips apart for these nasty looking, sharp, long dire wolf fangs revealed as it prepares itself to pounce back. That ends your turn?

TRAVIS: Yeah.

MATT: As part of this round, the dire wolf is going to return, as the two nearest orcs charge in to flank Grog.

MARY: Oh no.

MATT: This guy is going to move… One, two, three… six… can't quite– there. Is going to use its action to dash in here and loom over. So as you're waking up you see this orc come lumbering around one of the trees–

FELICIA: (gasps)

SAM: Oh no! You? You're eating!

MATT: – with this giant club and just gets in front of you. As you're freaking out, another one flanks around and comes up towards Percy.

TALIESIN: Hm!

MATT: Another one rushes up behind Scanlan there. And you see, behind– another growl and a series of heavy footfalls as– not quite an ogre, not quite an orc; like some sort-of ogre/orc crossbreed, comes walking behind one of the other trees to go up behind Percy on that side

LAURA: Oh God!

SAM: Oh my Grog.

FELICIA: Oh no!

TRAVIS: (laughs) Oh my Grog.

MATT: And from the far end over here another orc moves forward one, two, three, four, five… six– And he's going to use his action to finish his movement here on Percy, as well.

TALIESIN: Oh God!

LAURA: Are they attacking Percy?

MATT: Yes. Currently there's only two attacks on you from this ogre-like creature and this orc. Oh, that's not going to be very good. That would be a nine?

TALIESIN: No.

MATT: What's your AC?

TALIESIN: 18.

MATT: 18, that is not going to hit. And then we also have– that'll be a 22.

TALIESIN: That's going to hit.

MATT: All right, so the giant ogre-ish type creature comes rushing towards you. Swings with its giant club and slams the ground next you as you manage to roll out of the way and get up to your feet, and as you do the orc to the other side swings with what looks like a heavy axe and it nicks you in the side of the shoulder blade, dealing 12 points of slashing damage.

TALIESIN: Hm!

MATT: We have– this guy just barely gets to Scanlan. Scanlan, as you're standing up one of the orcs rushes up behind and you see he's holding another large, double-handed great axe–

SAM: I sing– (sings) No I don't want to get hurt, by you. Doo doo doo doo.

MATT: All right, go ahead and roll the d10 to reduce the attack modifier on that one.

TRAVIS: (laughs) Where does this come from?

MATT: Rolled a 24 by the way.

SAM: Okay, so I reduce that by two.

MATT: 22.

SAM: Yes, so he'll still hit, but he got a song out of it.

TRAVIS: (laughs) Lucky bastard.

MATT: Well there you go. All right, that will come to another 12 points of slashing damage. As the axe swings down, you manage to just pull out of the way so it hits the armor and deflects, but it leaves a huge gash in the front of the armor and just the sheer weight of it kind of shook you for a second.

SAM: Ahh!

MATT: That'll bring us to Grog, who is currently being heavily flanked. First the dire wolf is going to snatch at you because it's not happy with your series of attacks, and with Pack Tactics it has advantage because it's within five feet of other allies. So, its bite attack against you with advantage is a– natural 20.

LAURA: Oh no.

FELICIA: Oh no.

MATT: Using my new Critical Role dice.

LAURA: We're all going to die.

TALIESIN: Thanks chatroom. Thank you.

FELICIA: Yes, chatroom.

MATT: It's 21 points of piercing damage from the jaws which is reduced by half because of your Rage.

TRAVIS: Yes, so 11?

MATT: Yep. That finishes the dire wolf's turn. The two other orcs are also going to swing at you from the sides. They have advantage because they're flanking you. That's going to be a 17.

TRAVIS: Misses.

MATT: And then with advantage on that one: 16. Also misses. They're just swinging at you with no effect. That completes the surprise round. The orcs have pounced onto your campsite. Back at the top of the order we have Percy. What are you doing first?

TALIESIN: Going to cry a little. So, I have three orcs basically– or two orcs and a god-knows-what?

MATT: Yeah, it's too small to be an ogre but it's too big to be an orc. A very unholy union of the two probably created this spawn.

TALIESIN: The first thing I'm going to do, is I'm going to take a Fire Shot to the right to that giant monstrosity and spend a Grit point to try to shoot him in the foot.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: – makes a constitution saving throw. Okay, these rules are new, so pardon me if I'm a little iffy. So shot with Pepperbox is– wow, what's wrong with me? 28 to hit.

MATT: 28 definitely hits. He has to make a saving throw or be knocked prone?

TALIESIN: Well yeah, there's damage plus a saving throw. He has to make a constitution saving throw.

MATT: All right.

TALIESIN: Eight plus my proficiency modifier plus my dexterity modifier.

MATT: Four plus six, so it would be 18?

TALIESIN: It's actually ten. 18, yeah, you're right.

MATT: Yeah, he does not make that. So you shoot, he gets knocked prone. As you shoot his foot out from under him, he stumbles to one knee and then you just kick out and push him onto his back. That's the first shot.

TALIESIN: And it does six points of damage– I'm sorry, it does 12 points of damage plus three points of fire damage.

MATT: Nice.

TALIESIN: And now my other shot. Marking that off. I'm going to shoot him while he's down.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: So, do I get a bonus to hit there?

MATT: You have advantage because he's prone.

TALIESIN: Okay, I get advantage. So I'm actually using–

MATT: He's right there in front of you and he's not able to really dodge effectively, so I'm going to give you advantage on this attack.

TALIESIN: Okay, so I'm using Sharpshooter then.

TRAVIS: Get him Percy!

TALIESIN: Thank God. Natural 20! So, this is going to suck for him!

MATT: Which regenerates your Grit point you just used, by the way.

TALIESIN: Does it? I'm back to three?

MATT: You get a Grit point whenever you crit.

TALIESIN: Every time I crit, that's right! Math! Okay, so I get double points right? That's how this–

MATT: Roll the dice and double the number you get.

TALIESIN: Okay. Oh, that kind of sucks. Seven, 14, 24, 25… 30 points of damage.

(cheering)

MATT: While it's on the ground, it looks up at you and snarls. You removed your boot from where you kicked it down. You bring the gun down, aim it, and give it a glare as you fire with the Pepperbox. As you do, you blast part of its jaw off and you see it– You see blood starting to trickle and pour down the front of its chest and it's trying to get up angrily, reaching for its club which is currently in the half snow floor of this forest interior. It's looking pretty rough, but it's looking very intent on getting vengeance on you.

TALIESIN: Out of idle curiosity, if I try to make a break for it they would get two attacks of opportunity against me, right?

MATT: Yes. Yes, they are harrying you pretty heavily right now.

TALIESIN: Ooh, that doesn't make my life any better does it. No, never mind then.

TRAVIS: Do it, Percy!

TALIESIN: Actually, you know what? I'm pulling an Action Surge. Two more shots.

MATT: Go for it.

TALIESIN: I'm shooting him two more times while he's on the ground.

MATT: All right.

TALIESIN: Same thing with a plus ten to hit with a Sharpshooter.

MATT: Yep. He still has–

TALIESIN: Disadvantage?

MATT: Advantage to your shot because he's still on the ground.

TALIESIN: 23 to hit.

MATT: 23 hits. Go ahead and roll damage on that.

TALIESIN: Let's see. Sorry, trying to do this… five plus 16, so 21 points of damage.

MATT: 21 points of damage. All right, with that shot as it's getting up and reaches for its club, it gets hold of it and starts bringing it in an arc towards you. You lower the gun again, this time shooting for the other side of its face. With an echoing blasting sound you see the remainder of its lower jaw and head just blown out the back of it. Its eyes roll back.

(cheering)

LAURA: Instakill!

TRAVIS: Damn! One turn!

TALIESIN: And now, I'm going to take that last shot and swing up and shoot at the one that's to the right of–

MATT: This one?

TALIESIN: That one right there.

MATT: Okay, go ahead and roll to attack.

TALIESIN: Oh, God. Natural 20!

TRAVIS: What the fuck?!

FELICIA: What the heck?

LAURA: This is the best night for Percy, ever.

TALIESIN: I'm just sitting in the corner going

(maniacal laughter)

TRAVIS: You were sleeping. Are you doing all this naked, since you were woken up so quickly?

LAURA: Yes, definitely.

TALIESIN: I'm in the pajamas with the butt flap, and the butt flap is down.

MARY: Yes!

TALIESIN: The butt flap is down!

TRAVIS: I applaud.

MATT: All right. Good to know, because that will affect your armor class.

TALIESIN: And that's eight, 16, 26, 27, 28, 29, 31, 32 points of damage.

MATT: 32 points of damage.

TRAVIS: What the what?

LAURA: That's insane.

TALIESIN: It's a crit.

LAURA: Can we all get inspiration from seeing Percy just massacre?

FELICIA: It's like a John Woo film right now.

TRAVIS: Yeah, right? With the doves–

MATT: You all are a little distracted by the other ones that are currently pushing in. You hear the explosions and you see off to the corner, but you have too many things around you right now. Okay, so as you pull back the gun, the orc that's in front of you that's currently holding its one handed axe with two hands is rearing back. You fire right towards its face. It tries to duck out of the way and you smack into its shoulder. With an explosion you can see its leather armor splinters, and its fur kind of burns and curls back from the flame of the blast, and beneath you can see that most of the muscle tissue and exposed bone is visible as you've blown a giant crater in its shoulder.

LAURA: Gross!

TALIESIN: That was brilliant. I'm done. Sorry.

MATT: Grog, you're up.

TRAVIS: I'm up. I would like to go into a Frenzied Rage now that I've got all my playmates around me. And I would like to take one giant swing in a half circle, trying to get all three at one time.

MATT: All right, so attack for each one. Go for it.

TRAVIS: So that's a 22.

MATT: That hits the orc. Dire wolf.

TRAVIS: That's a 23.

MATT: Hits. And for the last orc.

LAURA: Hell yeah.

TRAVIS: 26. 25!

MATT: Okay, roll damage three times, and it's in order. This orc over here?

TRAVIS: 15. 12. And 17.

MATT: All right. As you (whoosh) swing the axe around, it clips across the chest of the orc who is almost pushed off his feet from the sheer force. The axe swings, slams into the front throat, chest area of the dire wolf with so much force that it cuts clean through leaving this open wound where its main veins just begin to pour its lifeblood.

FELICIA: Ew.

MATT: The dire wolf just gurgles for a second before slumping onto the ground, motionless. With the inertia carrying through its body it slams into the other orc, who actually has a small buckler shield that manages to catch. It shatters most of the leather and metal that encompasses the piece, getting stuck into his forearm and he yells in your face with this kind of guttural shout and he pulls his own arm off the blade of the axe as you withdraw it.

TRAVIS: Ooh.

MATT: That concludes your turn. It's now their turn. All you low initiative rolling motherfuckers got to wait!

(laughter)

MARY: (sings) Mother! Motherfucker!

MATT: Let's see. First and foremost, the two guys that are– in that motion, the two orcs that you just slammed rear back and then retaliate very heavily against you. They both have advantage because they have you flanked. That'll be 22.

TRAVIS: Hits.

MATT: And a 14.

TRAVIS: Misses.

MATT: Yes. All right. So the one with the buckler and what looks like a longsword strikes you for eight points of slashing damage, of which you take four.

TRAVIS: Great.

MATT: That ends their turn. The one orc that's overtop of you, Lyra, goes (rggh!) and swings in a wide arc down towards you. That's going to be a 14.

FELICIA: I have a 13.

MATT: Aw, okay. So, as its two handed axe swings down on top of you, you take six points of slashing damage.

FELICIA: Ouch!

MATT: You instinctively freak out and back up out of the way and it actually doesn't hit you, it slams into your bedroll. But the sheer impact shakes you and you can feel the sweat beginning to pour from your forehead. That's going to bring us to this guy here, who's attacking Scanlan. That's going to be a 12.

SAM: Miss!

MATT: He swings towards your head. Thankfully he's not used to attacking things so small. You duck quickly out of the way.

SAM: Fuck you!

(laughter)

MATT: And that's– Oh, and the two on Percy, who are now looking for retribution. They're looking a little shaken by the whole experience. The one that you shot in the shoulder too.

TALIESIN: I'm just screaming in their face like a manic pixie. (screams)

FELICIA: Manic pixie dream gunslinger.

TALIESIN: Thank you.

MATT: That'll be a 20.

TALIESIN: I walked into that.

MATT: 20 to hit.

TALIESIN: I'm going to spend a Grit point and– Wait, if my armor class is 20, does that mean they still hit?

MATT: I thought you were wearing your pajamas with the butt flap?

ALL: Oh!

SAM: Details, details.

LAURA: That's so mean.

TALIESIN: One day, far in the future, I'll figure out a way to make you pay for that.

(laughter)

TALIESIN: For now, fine. That hits.

MATT: Sometimes you– This is what I heard.

TALIESIN: Damn it.

TRAVIS: The visualization was worth it alone.

MATT: And 22 for the second attack.

TALIESIN: That hits.

MATT: So both of them strike at once. You don't quite know which way to dodge, and as you try to duck out of the way both blades hit you simultaneously on the sides.

LAURA: Oh no!

MATT: You take four points of damage from one. Rolled really low. That one rolled pretty high, you take 12.

TALIESIN: 12 total?

MATT: The total would be 16.

TALIESIN: Okay, 16.

MATT: You take 16 points of slashing damage from the two of those orcs. Now we come to Scanlan.

SAM: Okay, I turn to the orc who just missed me and I cast Dominate Person.

TRAVIS: Yes!

SAM: With my– through my Hand Cone of Clarity, of course.

MATT: All right. So, as you finish your casting of the spell you can see the anger in its face suddenly drop and subside, and it gives you this expectant look.

SAM: I command him to protect our goliath, with his life if he needs to, and retreat from me instantly.

MATT: Okay. It nods and looks over towards where Grog is and with this kind of slack jawed expression turns and looks like it's ready to make its way towards Grog next round. Do you want to move at all? Or are you staying here?

SAM: I will move a step towards Lyra.

MATT: All right. Yeah, he's not currently threatening you because he is controlled by you. So you step back with the fire to your back, you can feel the heat flickering behind you.

SAM: And I will just be backup for her, and I also will inspire her.

MATT: All right.

SAM: With a little– I turn to her, and I start singing. (sings) And I raise my hand to Lyra and say that you could use some Scanlan today. Tonight I give you a d10.

(laughter)

MATT: So with that you have a d10 inspiration dice that you can add to any d20 roll you need to make. It could be an attack, could be a saving throw.

FELICIA: Okay, great. Thank you.

MATT: You can roll and if that's not enough, you can add a d10 to it.

FELICIA: Okay, great. That's so nice.

MATT: So that ends Scanlan's turn. Vex, you're up.

LAURA: Okay. I'm going to cast– How many people are on Percy?

MATT: Two currently, flanking him right there.

LAURA: I'm going to do Hunter's Mark on the damaged one.

MATT: Okay.

LAURA: Should I get– Yeah, the one that's damaged.

MATT: The one that's damaged the most is going to be this one.

TALIESIN: Yeah, that's the one.

LAURA: Yeah! And I'm going to shoot him. Through my– I'm going to shoot him through my Flaming Bow.

MATT: All right.

LAURA: And I also am going to have Trinket attack him twice. How about that?

MATT: You can do that.

LAURA: All right.

MATT: All right, so Trinket runs around the tree.

SAM: Never happened before.

MATT: An unexpected circumstance. So as you turn around, you go ahead and you point at the orc to the side with a flicker of slightly shimmering white energy. You can see your attention focus and clarity crystallize on this one orc who glances over at you, returning the gaze.

LAURA: 19 attack.

MATT: 19 attack does hit. And as the arrow is released from your bow–

LAURA: Yes.

MATT: Go ahead and roll damage.

LAURA: Plus the d10 for the flaming. 17 to hit, and then Trinket's attacks?

MATT: Yep. Roll twice for Trinket. As the arrow (sploof) hits him on the chest area and (boom) bursts into flames, igniting part of his shoulder. As he looks down you hear this guttural growl from around the corner. As he glances over Trinket comes jumping out of the shadows from behind the tree.

LAURA: Trinket! I never know what to look at because I never attack with Trinket.

MATT: Attack bonus.

LAURA: Okay. That's 22 for one.

MATT: 22 hits. Roll for the second attack.

LAURA: The second one is a 16.

MATT: 16 just barely hits.

LAURA: Oh my goodness!

SAM: Trinket's doing something.

LAURA: I know! You guys! Does that mean he can bite twice?

MATT: Yep.

LAURA: Okay, he's going to do that. Oh wait, no. One is going to be bite and one is going to be claws.

SAM: And he dies.

LAURA: Oh, I didn't do Hunter's Mark on the previous one. Four for Hunter's Mark.

MATT: Four additional damage for Hunter's Mark.

LAURA: 13. No 12, for one attack. And then– What did I just do? I did it wrong. That was wrong.

TRAVIS: What?

LAURA: I'm sorry. I'm sorry. Is 11 for the first one.

MATT: 11 for the first one. All right.

LAURA: And then the second one. This is so new and exciting. And 12 for the second.

MATT: All right. So, as Trinket rushes around the corner with one claw (whacks) hits him in the back of the shoulder sending him onto the ground. The orc now, shoulder in flames, is on its back. Trinket leaps on top, reaches down and with its jaws around its head just bites the head off.

ALL: Ohh!

MATT: As you see the head flip into the air, catches the head in his jaws and crunches down on it.

LAURA: Yes! Have a meal, buddy!

TRAVIS: Oh yeah, you want to cuddle with that?

LAURA: Hell yeah I do!

MATT: Zahra, it's your go.

MARY: All right. Is that an orc right behind me?

MATT: This is Vex right there.

LAURA: That's me.

MARY: No, I can't see where I am.

MATT: You're right here.

MARY: Okay. Who are the three strongest orcs right now?

MATT: This one and these two here all look pretty untouched. This one is actually untouched. Four. One, two, three, four.

MARY: And I can only Hex one creature, is this correct?

MATT: Correct.

MARY: All right. I'm going to Hex the one by– in the back, sorry. I'm going to Hex him.

MATT: Him? All right.

MARY: And I'm going to incant Agonizing Blast, and cast Eldritch Blast on those three orcs.

SAM: I've never heard of any of these things.

MARY: Because there's three blasts that come from, yeah?

MATT: Well, Eldritch Blast is three different beams, and that's just Eldritch Blast for your turn. Or you can do Agonizing Blast, you choose one or the other.

MARY: Oh, I thought Agonizing Blast was a–

LAURA: Cantrip?

MATT: Oh. It's one of your abilities?

MARY: Yes.

MATT: Oh, it just improves the Eldritch Blast?

MARY: Yeah.

MATT: Oh yeah, you can totally do that.

MARY: I want to do that.

MATT: Okay, so you turn around–

MARY: I'd like to do that with my Staff of Dragons.

MATT: You hold the staff forward and for a second your eyes, which are normally a vibrant bright white suddenly close with this darkness and then reveal a pale blue like the moon in the sky. As you do, this hue of light blue energy begins to emanate from this orc right there. He looks down confused as you pull your staff up and slam the ground with it. As you do, these three streaks of pale, blueish green energy streak out towards it.

MARY: Ha!

MATT: Go ahead and roll three attacks.

MARY: Oh my god.

MATT: Adding your bonus– your spell bonus to each one.

MARY: 13 plus 11.

LAURA: So 24.

MARY: 24.

MATT: That hits.

MARY: That was a good one. 30.

MATT: 30. Okay.

SAM: What?

MARY: And 21.

MATT: Are you adding the plus–

MARY: Oh and plus two to each of them.

LAURA: That's damage.

MARY: Oh, I'm sorry. So it's Eldritch Blast, it gets plus 11.

MATT: Right. So what was the last one?

MARY: 21.

MATT: They all hit, so go ahead and roll damage for each, and each does additional Hex damage, because it's three different hits.

MARY: Yes. And the damage is 1d10 plus seven times three?

SAM: Too much math.

MATT: Yeah, go ahead and roll that three times. 1d10 plus seven, 1d10 plus seven, 1d10 plus seven.

MARY: Okay. Oh, help me.

LAURA: That's not a d10, that's a d12.

MARY: Sorry. Sorry!

MATT: It's all right.

SAM: She's a guest.

MARY: I'm a guest.

LAURA: Oh, you know what, I was rolling eights instead of tens. That's okay.

MATT: Too late now. Next time.

MARY: Two plus seven. Two plus seven is ten.

SAM: Nine. Nine.

MATT: All right.

MARY: Two plus seven is nine, thank you.

LAURA: Ten.

MARY: Ten plus seven is 17.

MATT: All right.

MARY: And five plus seven is–

TRAVIS: 12.

MARY: 12.

MATT: 12. And then add– roll a d6 three times because each time you blast them you do the additional Hex damage.

TRAVIS: Holy crap what are you?

MARY: Two.

MATT: All right two.

MARY: Six.

LAURA: Fuck.

MATT: Eight total.

MARY: Five.

TRAVIS: Whoa!

MATT: 13.

LAURA: It's like a Hunter's Mark all on your own.

MATT: So, after the beams streak out– all three blast simultaneously into the torso area of the orc that's standing by Percy. It's glaring at you with this look of surprise, and fury, and frustration and before it can even try and mount any sort of attack, the three beams strike it in the chest. You can see this scattering of brackish liquid as the back of its torso is blown out like a shotgun blast.

MARY: Yes!

MATT: And it falls to the ground with this gurgle in its throat, and for a second you swear you see the glistening moonlight colored energy that you had Hexed upon it almost sucks the soul from its body and then it dissipates into the air above it.

MARY: Thaumaturgy makes my eyes go fire.

(laughter)

SAM: Wow.

MATT: A big blast of flame. Great. So that will end your turn there.

TRAVIS: You did really well.

LAURA: How is she so cool?

SAM: She just changed the game.

MATT: That will bring us to Lyra.

TRAVIS: She can stay.

FELICIA: Is that 30 feet?

MATT: Five, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30. 30 foot is right there. From you.

FELICIA: Who are the bad guys? This one, this one, and this one?

MATT: This one, this one, and these two there.

FELICIA: Okay. So I'm like– (screams) Oh, that was cool. Okay. (pff) And I use my Chain Lightning. You have to do a save on that. That just automatically hits.

MATT: That just hits, yeah.

FELICIA: Okay, so it's 10d8.

SAM: To whom?

FELICIA: To one guy, and then it can hit up to three people within 30 feet.

SAM: Are they within 30 feet?

MATT: These two are not but this guy is.

FELICIA: Ten, is 21. Plus 21 plus 24. 21 plus 24 is-

SAM: 45.

FELICIA: 45 points of damage to that guy, and then it goes to the other guy.

MATT: This guy there. These guys are a little too far away, unfortunately. This guy is not.

FELICIA: Oh, okay. Get that guy.

MATT: As you freak out you back up and as an instinctual maneuver you put your fingers out, and there is a loud crackling sound as a condensed thunderstorm blasts forth from Lyra's hands. The orc that's threatening her and actually managed to try and strike you gives you this look of sudden pity before its entire upper body is fried instantly from the electricity that just destroys– You can see all its flesh is now curled back and cracking from the sheer amount of energy that's flowing through it. The bolt then streaks off and slams the one that you dominated that was currently running in the other direction– all of a sudden gets hit in the side. However, maintains the Domination.

(laughter)

MATT: He did take half damage to that one. But this one is blown off the map. The other one over here is looking pretty rough now. It's hobbling forward currently with one of its legs ruined.

LAURA: (laughs) That poor orc!

MATT: It's pretty rough. It's been a rough day for him. Do you want to stay where you are or do you want to move?

FELICIA: I'll stay where I am. Wow, that worked!

SAM: Wow, that was amazing! I turn around and sort of barf because I just saw a guy's upper half get incinerated.

(laughter)

MARY: Suck it up, Scanlan.

MATT: All right. Top of the round. Percy, Grog.

TALIESIN: You first or I? I'm going to start running towards Grog.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: How far can I get? About that far. And while I'm running I'm just going to take– Oh hello, where are we? There we are. I'm just going to take two pot shots at him as I'm running by.

SAM: My dominated guy is not going to live to see his–

TALIESIN: And just because I don't really care I'm going to take the negative– the Sharpshooter plus damage negative to that. So.

MATT: Okay.

TALIESIN: 16.

MATT: 16 does hit.

TALIESIN: And I'll just do both right now. And–

FELICIA: Oh my god!

LAURA: Did you get another 20?

FELICIA: Yes!

TALIESIN: I got another 20!

FELICIA: That's a very good dice. That's a very good die.

TRAVIS: You can spread them out over several games. You don't have to–

LAURA: We have to fight dragons soon. A dragon.

TALIESIN: Thank you. This is phenomenal, I know. I've got such terrible things that are going to happen to me because of all this good luck. So that's– I'll do the first one really quickly. That's 20 points of damage for the first shot.

TRAVIS: Leave none alive, my boy.

MATT: First shot smacks into its thigh, and you can see where once there was an actual functional thigh area is now a splintered femur that is exposed through one side of his leg. You can see it's barely keeping itself standing. It roars out (raaah!) in pain as you fire again–

TALIESIN: 32 points.

MATT: With the final bullet in your Pepperbox's chamber, the sixth bullet, you fire the last round–

TALIESIN: You're going to make me change the Sharpshooter thing by the end of this round I get the–

MATT: No, no, no. Sharpshooter works well for a reason.

TALIESIN: It's kind of spectacular. I keep rolling 20s! I keep rolling 20s!

MATT: That's what the dice does, man. It's worked poorly in your favor before.

TALIESIN: Really poorly, normally!

MATT: It's great when it works awesomely. So with this look of confusion as this orc that's trying to do the bidding of this gnome that–

SAM: Protect our goliath!

MATT: It's trying desperately to go and protect Grog but on the way there it gets its leg blown out, and then suddenly it turns and the shot enters one side of its temple and out the other and there's just this very quick (shpt) sound as it falls to the ground motionless and is no longer a living organism.

SAM: Good job Percy. I sort of had that guy covered but it's all good. It's all good.

TALIESIN: I'm coming, Grog!

MATT: Grog, you're up.

TRAVIS: For the gentleman that I'm facing right now, I would like to take my first swing.

MATT: All right.

TRAVIS: Well all right, 24.

MATT: 24. That hits.

TRAVIS: And that is 19 points of damage.

MATT: Whew. All right.

TRAVIS: I'll take my second swing at him.

MATT: Same guy?

TRAVIS: Same guy.

MATT: All right, go ahead and roll for that.

TRAVIS: 26.

MATT: That hits.

TRAVIS: (laughs) Also 19 points of damage.

MARY: After the Hammer, orcs are nothing.

MATT: So, the first strike you slam into his upper torso area and it actually digs about four or five inches in. He reaches up and grabs– drops his weapon and grabs the axe and tries to pull it out of his body. You, however, reach up with your fist and slam it down on the axe shoving it about five or six more inches. You can see his actual shoulder and arm fall away from his torso as his eyes roll back and he falls limp against the blade.

TRAVIS: With my third attack, I'd like to turn to his friend, grab him by the throat and go– It's death, or target practice for my friends. Talk.

MATT: Go ahead and make an intimidation roll.

TRAVIS: Yay. 19.

MATT: All right. The orc, looking at its current fate and the rather rapid destruction of its entire band– (speaks Orcish) Anyone here speak Orcish?

MARY: I speak Orc. So, my friend–

LAURA: What did he say? What did he say?

MATT: You hear him say, “Death may come, but the rest will find you. You come into our wood. It's only a matter of time before you're eaten.”

LAURA: Tell him we're just passing through.

MARY: We are simply passing through. We are in search of something. If you choose to help us, we may let you live.

TRAVIS: Yeah, 'may'.

MARY: And it is not one of yours.

MATT: Go ahead and make a persuasion roll.

MARY: What do I roll?

TRAVIS: 20.

MARY: What do I add to it?

SAM: Plus your persuasion.

TRAVIS: Nine.

LAURA: Heck yeah!

MARY: 24!

TRAVIS: Okay.

MATT: As you're speaking to him in his own language, his–

MARY: (speaks Orcish)

TRAVIS: Bless you.

MATT: (laughs) You guys hear these horrible guttural sounds, almost as good as Keyleth's Giant.

TRAVIS: Almost.

MATT: Almost. You can see a look of fear and his eyes dart about the rest of the party as they all begin stepping out of the firelight and into the darkness surrounding him. He gauges the scenario. Looks down at the dead dire wolf. He gives you another look and you still have the flaring blaze of your angry Thaumaturgy eyes. He says in Common, very broken Common– “Very well. I live. I serve.” You can see his blood now trickling down to the corner of his mouth.

LAURA: What, is he going to fight with us?

FELICIA: Can I see if he's truthful? Insight?

MATT: Make an insight check.

FELICIA: Aw, that's not my strength.

MATT: You can certainly try, though!

FELICIA: Oh good, I rolled a four!

SAM: Plus two!

FELICIA: Plus two!

MARY: That's a six.

MATT: He looks…. constipated? That's the best way you can read it.

LAURA: Can I try as well?

MATT: You're welcome to.

TRAVIS: Constipated?

MATT: You're concerned, briefly, for the diet he usually eats. Vex, you wanna go ahead?

LAURA: 16, is what I rolled.

MATT: 16? Ah, there is definitely an intent for self-preservation, but there is that fight-or-flight look in the eyes as well.

TRAVIS: Let me kill him.

LAURA: Well, let's find out about our dragon first.

FELICIA: Oh! I can cast Friend on him.

MARY: No, because he'll know you're casting magic and then he'll come back at you.

LAURA: Will he?

MATT: He will.

FELICIA: Is that why it never worked on Aldor?

MARY: Yes, and he'll come back and attack you afterwards and it can only be used for–

LAURA: How do you know?

MARY: Friends! Well, I can cast Friends.

MATT: Friends, however, has to be on something that's not hostile, and you get the feeling that even though he's currently docile, he's probably a little hostile.

FELICIA: Okay, okay. I guess we'll just go without.

MARY: Suggestion only works– but Mass Suggestion works for a long time.

LAURA: Why don't we just ask him?

SAM: Yeah! We got him! We can kill him in a second if we have to, so–

MARY: You know we can kill you.

LAURA: There's a dragon. Where is it?

MARY: We are looking for a dragon. Specifically, a white dragon, and we know it is to the north–

SAM: West.

MARY: – west.

MATT: “This beast, I see– in the sky. Takes those who do not hide. Look for the tallest mountain that way.” And points up the north area, a little ways off the road and in the direction you're traveling. “It… takes refuge top of the mountain. There is no path. Just hiding.”

MARY: How tall is the mountain?

MATT: “High.”

LAURA: Do you know of a secret passageway to get up to it?

MATT: “Only fools would try to scale a dragon's mountain.”

LAURA: Yeah, well we're pretty stupid. Do you know of a path?

MATT: He gives you a look of momentary indifference and kind of… no.

FELICIA: I don't believe him. I do not believe him.

SAM: He's giving you sass.

LAURA: He is giving me sass!

MARY: Yes. Can we– what do we roll to–

SAM: While they're talking, I'm going to loot the other bodies.

MATT: Okay. As you glance around the corpses, you find not too much on them, though it looks like they've gathered from raiding other people they're passing on the road, or just scavenging about. You find 274 gold.

FELICIA: Vex, can you do your detect dragon? Here?

LAURA: I can actually!

FELICIA: Because I'm not quite there, at a thousand feet, but–

LAURA: I can most definitely detect the dragon. So, you're saying that we need to not be out in the open, because the dragon is attracted to things that are not hidden?

MARY: Yes.

MATT: “Hungry, it will take you. But that's your choice.”

MARY: Have you ever seen it up close?

MATT: “No.”

SAM: Would you like to?

LAURA: You want to come with us?

MATT: “No!”

LAURA: Then stop giving us sass!

MATT: “You say you'll keep me alive but you walk towards death. One or the other way, I end up at the bottom.”

MARY: We talk towards glory.

LAURA: Did you see how fast we killed your friends? We're pretty amazing.

MATT: “Then go. Go and see your dragon.”

MARY: Do you know of any more information on this dragon? That's all? Any weaknesses? Anything?

MATT: He gives you a look like, he's on empty. He's given you everything he's gonna give you.

TRAVIS: Well, now you're on empty, I take my greataxe and I chop off his head.

ALL: Oh!

TALIESIN: Guys…

SAM: No. Wait. Stop.

FELICIA: Now this is just not right!

MATT: As the whole group gasps, Grog just shoves him back and (whoosh whoom, pff pff). The head rolls, hits a patch of snow and stops. The body falls back and you see kind of dark blood begin to pour out of the rest of the body and into the snow.

SAM: Grog.

TRAVIS: What.

SAM: You should have checked with our leader before you did that.

LAURA: Yes. Most definitely.

FELICIA: Okay. I think we're going to have to have a talk circle. Right now.

MARY: Okay. Before that, do any of the orc have any iron on them at all?

MATT: Looking around, there are bits and pieces of, whether it be iron weapons– you can see, scavenged a few– like some of the axes that were being used have an iron or similar type metal that is crafted in those, though it's usually pretty beaten and not very well maintained.

MARY: It doesn't matter, I just want the iron. Whatever I can, I–

MATT: I'll say you can harvest the iron blades from three axes.

MARY: Thank you.

MATT: They're in relatively poor condition, but you can mark that.

TRAVIS: Sorry, Lyra.

SAM: All right. Are we doing a talk circle?

FELICIA: I think we need to discuss the fact that that was just very inappropriate and I am here as a leader and I think that that was just not right, we are better than that.

LAURA: We are. But here's the thing–

SAM: You did kill one of them too, though.

FELICIA: Yes–

MARY: Lyra, we are going to kill– we are on our way to kill something.

FELICIA: Well, it's– we had a deal.

LAURA: Well, he probably would've led his friends to us to kill us.

FELICIA: As a leader I choose not to pursue this any more, but I will register my disapproval, and I think we should just proceed, I'm very, I'm very vexed.

TALIESIN: That's very fair, that's very fair.

FELICIA: Thank you.

MARY: Scanlan, can't you sing a song to make her feel better.

SAM: I could sing a song to make her feel better.

MARY: But you don't want to.

LAURA: (sings) Scanlan make you feel good.

SAM: At least she's not talking about Aldor, so I'm okay with it.

FELICIA: Oh, did you want to, we haven't talked yet.

SAM: I– we should go.

TALIESIN: You should write a song about Aldor.

TRAVIS: I go over and I pick up the orc's head and I walk it over to Lyra and I go, here, I'm sorry, you can keep this. It won't happen without me asking again.

FELICIA: No, that's quite all right, it's–

TRAVIS: No, really, look, it's still got stuff in it.

MATT: As he shakes it, you see spattering across the–

FELICIA: No, okay– that's quite– I think we should just proceed– we should proceed, everyone.

LAURA: I'm gonna try to see if there's a dragon within–

TALIESIN: And I say we could just cut out the tongue, it's not–

TRAVIS: Just the tongue?

TALIESIN: Like that yes, yes.

TRAVIS: I rip the tongue out of the head.

FELICIA: That's a good idea, Vex.

MARY: Do we need the pelt of the dire wolf?

TRAVIS: I put the orc tongue in the bag of holding. And the orc head. Both.

MARY: Just asking.

MATT: All right.

TALIESIN: With the lip, now we– you're slowly–

TRAVIS: The lip is in my belt, baby.

MARY: And I would like to extract the canines from the dire wolf.

MATT: From the dire wolf, all right. I would like you to go ahead and make a nature check.

MARY: What's that?

MATT: That's to attempt to harvest the creature's canines.

LAURA: What's that? Sorry?

MARY: Sorry, what do I do?

MATT: Roll a d20 and add your nature check bonus.

MARY: Oh, that sucks.

LAURA: Can I Primeval Awareness the dragon?

MARY: 12.

MATT: Okay. As you begin taking a small dagger out from the inside of your Cloak of Useful Things you break one of the tooths in the process, unfortunately. You manage to get one of them, at least, so you do have one dire wolf canine you can add to your items.

MARY: I would like to put my hands on the dire wolf and just thank it, for no other reason than I respect its life.

MATT: Very well.

TALIESIN: I don't think he's going to answer.

MARY: You know, it's not for you, Percy.

TALIESIN: Oh well, I'm just saying.

LAURA: The dragon, then.

TALIESIN: I'm trying to be helpful.

MARY: I understand.

MATT: All right, you take a moment and concentrate and, for a six mile radius– currently no dragon.

LAURA: Still? It's still– oh right, it's towards a mountain.

SAM: We've got another day's travel, it's got to be 20 miles away.

TRAVIS: Should we keep sleeping, or should we just pack it up now and go?

SAM: Is it nighttime?

MATT: It's still– it's probably like a good two, three in the morning.

SAM: Oh, let's go back to bed.

TRAVIS: Would you say a new day has passed? So can I try for my beard again?

MATT: We will once you get a full-on rest.

TRAVIS: Shit.

FELICIA: Let's fully rest. I'm going to make a leadership decision that hopefully everybody agrees with that we need more sleepytime.

LAURA: Is it okay to keep sleeping right here, are they going to come search for us? Probably not more than one search party.

TALIESIN: Probably not.

FELICIA: Probably not.

TALIESIN: I'm in my pyjamas, I'm going back to bed.

FELICIA: I think that's a good call that I agree with as the leader of this group.

TALIESIN: What she said.

MARY: Are we always going to call it sleepytime?

FELICIA: I mean, that's.

MARY: I'm just asking, I like to put labels on things. It's an OCD thing.

FELICIA: Whatever you would like to call it. Or just, yeah.

MARY: No, you're the leader, I shall accept whatever name–

FELICIA: Yes, sleepytime is the official name for it!

(laughter)

MARY: Sleepytime it is. Thank you so much.

TALIESIN: I'm going to sleepytime, good night, all.

TRAVIS: Is it– is it still my watch?

MATT: It is.

SAM: You did your job.

FELICIA: You did your job.

SAM: I'll take the next watch.

TRAVIS: Thanks. (snores)

MARY: May I?

FELICIA: And we can heal up, right?

MATT: Yes, so the rest of you guys, you go ahead and take your full evening's rest, at which point your hit points and spells are restored. And Grog, go ahead and make a percentage roll.

TRAVIS: Yeah! Come on, you big bearded bastard! 58.

MATT: 58, nah, unfortunately.

MATT: But you've still got that nice scruff, a good like, y'know, half an inch to an inch of whatever that is pushing through.

TRAVIS: Dire wolf blood all over my feet didn't stimulate the growth at all?

MATT: Unfortunately no.

TRAVIS: All right.

MARY: That blood looked quite black.

MATT: Eventually you all complete your evening's rest, the rest of the watches go without incident, in the morning you wake up and the cold air was pretty rough for a lot of you. Thankfully the fire was there to help, but you're– you get the feeling that the further north you travel, the weather's going to become an issue, even with the warm clothing you currently have on. All right. So you guys step back to where your horses are currently–

LAURA: Oh. Our horses are okay?

TRAVIS: Oh shit, we forgot about those.

MATT: Thankfully, your horses were far enough away from the area where you were, the focus was not to make any noise when they came upon you, so the orcish party knew better than to attack the horses first.

LAURA: Oh, that's good.

MATT: The horses are still a little spooked from the evening's events, but nevertheless. You get back on your horses, you continue up the Glasswalk Road. You had a question?

MARY: I use Beast Speech to calm them. Tell them everything shall be fine.

TRAVIS: You have just got all sorts of shit.

MARY: Everything will be wonderful and thank you for leading us where we need to go. We shall try and make sure that no harm comes to you.

MATT: And immediately with that, the horses who were currently rattled, and some of them are being unresponsive to your attempts to mount them, settle down, come to a calm point and allow you all to get atop them without an issue.

TRAVIS: Being fully asleep, I cast fart.

(laughter)

MATT: All right.

TALIESIN: The irony is, I was going to recommend Dust of Tracelessness, but that works too.

LAURA: Oh, that works too. Can you–

TALIESIN: They would never follow that, so.

MATT: Dust of– Cloud of Deterrence.

TALIESIN: Cloud of Deterrence, thank you.

MARY: What do you want to do, my love. Dear. Whoever you are.

LAURA: Oh yes, Dust of Tracelessness. He's got this stuff, we can cover our tracks.

TRAVIS: Should we sleep?

FELICIA: We slept already, we're on the horses.

SAM: It's the next day.

TRAVIS: Oh, it is?

LAURA: Yeah.

TRAVIS: Oh. We ride.

SAM: We ride!

MARY: And so we ride!

TRAVIS: And I take the Dust of Tracelessness and I, in the back.

SAM: Do we ever run out of that stuff?

LAURA: Never.

TRAVIS: No, it's an infinite supply.

SAM: Wow.

FELICIA: That is very convenient.

TRAVIS: Yeah, it is, it's really nice.

MATT: (laughs) And so as you're on your warhorse, which, as you can tell the more and more you ride on it the more and more it's starting to slow. Thankfully you're keeping pace with Trinket, it's having a hard time keeping a goliath on its back for extensive riding.

TRAVIS: Could I give it– could I give it a health potion?

MATT: Let's just say it's probably going to be a little sway-backed by the end of this adventure.

LAURA: Oh, poor thing.

FELICIA: Poor little horsie.

MARY: It may need to ride you.

MATT: It's okay for now.

TALIESIN: At some point you should give it a break with the carpet.

LAURA: Yeah.

TRAVIS: I can't ride the carpet.

SAM: We don't have the carpet.

LAURA: Why did we–

SAM: Do we have the carpet?

TRAVIS: We gave the carpet to them.

LAURA: The other team has the carpet? Those bastards.

FELICIA: I don't know them, but that's very– that is upsetting.

TRAVIS: Yeah. That is.

MATT: You guys continue traveling for a second day–

LAURA: Why? Because Tiberius can fly, why the hell did we give them the carpet?

(laughter)

LAURA: Sorry.

MARY: Oh.

SAM: It's all right, we don't need the crutch.

LAURA: All right.

TRAVIS: Second day.

SAM: We're fine.

MARY: Day two.

FELICIA: And so anyway, so, when I first met Aldor–

SAM: Uh-huh.

FELICIA: – he was hired to be my bodyguard and it was so obvious that he was so capable when he walked in the room–

SAM: How did he react when you first told him of your feelings?

FELICIA: I mean, it was not a good evening, but he was paid to be there so he couldn't leave, so that was, well, that was good for me–

SAM: Always works for me.

FELICIA: It's not, it didn't work today, but it could work tomorrow or the day after.

TRAVIS: Oh my god. Can we make an agreement. I kill you, you kill me?

MARY: Yes.

FELICIA: And suddenly he disappears, it's so funny that–

SAM: Well, you– men are complicated.

MATT: A few hours of– a few hours of travel and–

MARY: Percy, any extra guns?

TALIESIN: What?

MARY: Sorry.

MATT: Learning the ins and outs of the extremely tumultuous history of Lyra and Aldor, you eventually come to a point where the clouds are beginning to darken, and in the distance you can see what looks like a very heavily obscured curtain of snowfall to the north-northwest. You get to a point of the Glasswalk Road where a snowstorm is starting to pour over this vicinity. You guys stop for a second and repackage yourself with your fur and heavy winter clothing, and even still it's very, very chilly. I'd like everybody to make a constitution save.

LAURA: Are we still in the forest?

MATT: You are nearing forest, yes. So yeah, you would be considered in forest area.

LAURA: Okay.

TRAVIS: Aren't I good like above 20,000 feet in really, really cold environments?

MATT: Yes, you have advantage on this.

LAURA: Natural 20! Sorry, that was my first one.

FELICIA: You're so warm.

MATT: (laughs) So warm.

LAURA: It's bad thing to roll a natural 20 on.

TALIESIN: We're cuddling you for warmth, apparently. You're like an oven.

LAURA: It's Trinket, you know.

MARY: 15.

MATT: All right.

FELICIA: 20.

SAM: Four.

TALIESIN: 24.

SAM: Hey, that adds up.

TRAVIS: Is this a constitution saving throw or just a modifier?

MATT: It's a constitution saving throw, so you roll twice and take the higher.

TRAVIS: Oh, wow. 23.

MATT: I think, I'm pretty sure that's how that works. I'll check here with the goliath as the mountain-born– oh, you're just naturally adapted to it, so you're fine.

TRAVIS: (laughs) I've got my chest out, my nipples aren't even getting hard. It's amazing.

TALIESIN: Oddly, your face is a bit cold because it's so bare.

TRAVIS: Your instinct– that was a low blow. That was a low blow.

MATT: All right, so all of you manage– Scanlan, mark yourself, you have one level of fatigue.

LAURA and MARY: Oh no.

SAM: What's that mean, what's that mean?

MATT: Fatigue, let me go ahead and make sure–

MARY: Too much listening to– oh, sorry.

FELICIA: Does he look cold? I'm going to give him my stone, I'm going to give him my stone of resisting cold.

TRAVIS: That was bullshit, Percy.

SAM: What about you?

FELICIA: It's okay. I'm a leader, and a leader sacrifices–

SAM: I can't let you do that, Lyra.

FELICIA: No, really, just take it. You listened to me so good. It's like we're besties.

SAM: I feel– I feel a connection, I do. You know when you were telling me about Aldor–

FELICIA: It's not sexual at all.

SAM: No– I– uh.

FELICIA: I'm not attracted to you at all, like literally if it happened I would be ill, but it's really nice–

SAM: Believe me, you sexually? You repulse me.

FELICIA: Thank you!

SAM: Yeah, no, really.

FELICIA: Oh my god, I'm so with you right there.

SAM: Oh yeah.

FELICIA: But really, as a friend you are so nice.

SAM: I feel a connection too!

FELICIA: So here's the stone.

SAM: I have had some Aldors in my life, too.

FELICIA: I want to hear all about them.

SAM: Yes, mainly they were whores who kicked me out early.

FELICIA: Oh.

SAM: But they– in a similar way they disrespected me, didn't see the true Scanlan that I could've been.

FELICIA: I mean, I was– listen. The one time we were together it was after I gave him armor, but he was not servicing me–

SAM: Wait, together?

FELICIA: Yes.

SAM: You've been with him?

FELICIA: Of course, I told you–

MARY: Oh look, we seem to be coming to something interesting in the road.

FELICIA: Were you not listening?

SAM: I thought you meant that as a metaphor.

FELICIA: No, it was his birthday and I bought him some very expensive custom armor that he– you said he had it on, which is– he obviously has feelings for me to wear that armor. It was 10,000 gold–

LAURA: (gasps)

FELICIA: – and he just, he was very attracted to me that night and we had intercourse so. My uncle was very upset with me.

TRAVIS: Intercourse.

FELICIA: And after that, he never saw–

SAM: Somehow you made that less sexual than I could've ever imagined. Is there– Grog, what's the term for when your penis is inverted? The opposite of a boner?

TRAVIS: Belly button.

SAM: Yeah, that's what I've got now.

FELICIA: Anyway, I was really certain after that moment that we would be together forever and I never saw him again.

SAM: You know men are fickle and when I– I'll have a talk with him.

FELICIA: He kept the armor, so he has feelings. Let's just move on.

SAM: Let's do it.

FELICIA: Here's the stone.

SAM: Let's not dwell.

MATT: You take the stone and your fatigue fades. You find yourself adjusting well to the cold climate, thanks to your gift from your new leader and–

SAM: I love her.

MARY: Leader-slash-lover?

MATT: All right, so as you guys pull off the side of the road and use the cover of the forest to help from the snow that's beginning to hit even harder, you gather there is in this vicinity an ever waxing-and-waning blizzard that pours through. You can see a localized area that is not really moving. You wait like a good 20, 30 minutes to see if there's any movement but the blizzard is not shifting from its location.

FELICIA: Should we try to do the spell, locate dragon again, just to make sure it's at the top of this–

SAM: Good leading, good leading.

LAURA: Sure, I will try it again.

MATT: All right. You sit and concentrate for a moment and… nothing. Nothing– wait. You sense this very, very small blip at the edge, it's moving quickly.

LAURA: There. There's a dragon.

FELICIA: Where is it, which, which–

LAURA: It's fast, wait.

SAM: Which way, east, north, south?

MATT: It's getting closer, you can sense its energy up in the air.

LAURA: It's up in the air.

MATT: At that point you hear this distant guttural howl, just a–

LAURA: We should hide just in case. How about we hide?

MATT: (raaah!) comes bursting out over the air. The wind begins to pick up and the snowfall begins to become ice. The rest of you guys have to kind of duck yourself out of the way–

LAURA: No way.

MATT: – everyone make a reflex, or sorry, a dexterity saving throw.

MARY: What's that?

FELICIA: I am very good at that.

SAM: I don't even know what this is, what is this?

FELICIA: That's a nine.

MARY: 12.

TRAVIS: Eight.

SAM: 13.

FELICIA: 11.

TALIESIN: 16.

LAURA: 24.

MATT: All right. All of you guys manage to find cover under the nearest tree where the bough of the forest is at its strongest. You avoid most of the brunt impact, Grog unfortunately takes a good portion of slamming ice-stone damage. Negligible for most damage you're used to, but you still take four points of bludgeoning damage from the falling ice.

TRAVIS: All right.

MATT: The sleet. As you guys are currently in this position, you can see barely through the very very heavy snowfall a shape that (whoo) moves over in the distance that circles around and then heads back in a western direction.

SAM: Can we get its attention?

MARY: I cast Beast Speak and say, where do you live?! I'm kidding.

TRAVIS: I was like, really?

TALIESIN: Thank you for that addendum, because we–

LAURA and MARY: Not really.

MARY: Not really.

LAURA: All of us are like, ahh.

MARY: I have a sick sense of humor.

LAURA: Can I see which direction it's going back towards the mountain?

MATT: Yeah. You look over in that direction and you can barely make it through bits as the storm intensifies and begins to subside a little bit, you can see what looks to be the gentle outline of a mountain range maybe about ten miles off from the road. To the west of the road, into the forest itself.

LAURA: Great.

SAM: We've got this.

LAURA: We got to go in the forest.

FELICIA: Okay. Let's go!

MARY: It should provide us with some cover from the snow as well.

SAM: But who knows what lurks in those woods?

MARY: This is true.

LAURA: Well, I can also, you know, see what kind of creatures are around.

SAM: All right.

MARY: Oh, yes.

LAURA: No, I can't. I can't see animals. Just kidding.

FELICIA: Well, we don't really have a choice, we have to get the dragon.

SAM: Let's plunge in.

FELICIA: And we have a time limit.

TRAVIS: You're the team leader.

FELICIA: We have– we need– now there's really no other way to go, we have to go through the forest?

MATT: Currently.

FELICIA: Currently.

MATT: Unless you guys have any other plan, right now there is about ten miles of forest between you, near the roadway, and this mountain range, where apparently the dragon has returned to.

FELICIA: Great, okay. Well, there's nothing else to be done, we just have to go as fast as we can.

LAURA: All right.

MARY: I could cast Invisibility and Fly, I could fly us all somewhere.

FELICIA: I don't really have any other–

LAURA: Oh, you can't fly all of us, can you?

MARY: I think I can fly up to nine, I thought.

LAURA: You can fly up to nine people?

SAM: What?

LAURA: Tiberius can only fly up to three people.

SAM: What kind of devil are you?

FELICIA: Oh, should we fly? We–

SAM: Wait, can you fly?

FELICIA: I can't fly, no, but maybe Zahra can fly.

LAURA: If we're flying, though, I'm just going to put this out there. There's nowhere to hide if the dragon comes back out.

MARY: I understand, but I can also cast Invisibility.

LAURA: Well, that's awesome.

FELICIA: But that doesn't last as long, or–

MARY: I can target one additional creature for each slot above third, what does that mean?

MATT: It means, if everything you cast is at maximum level, it would be fifth level, which means you could target three creatures with Invisibility.

MARY: Three creatures with Invisibility and three creatures with Fly.

LAURA: But is it at the same time or is it a concentration?

MATT: It's a concentration either way. I will say, as soon as you start thinking about flying and getting there, you look up past where the trees are. Flying in this weather would be a terrible idea.

FELICIA: That's a terrible idea.

MARY: All right.

FELICIA: You know what I was thinking, it might not be good. It might not be good. Let's just ride, we have the horses, we can't leave the horses behind. We only have–

TRAVIS: Right, okay. We start riding.

SAM: We could, we just rented them. 50 bucks, so.

FELICIA: Don't remind me of that, that was just a thing. All right, onward! Let's–

TRAVIS: I'm still in the back doing the dust of uhhh.

FELICIA: Yay, go.

MATT: Dust of uhhh?

TRAVIS: Nay-nay.

MARY: We ride!

MATT: As the flower girl picks up the back end, you guys trudge on horseback into the heart of this section of the Vesper Timberlands. It is a very dense forest and you find that any straight-road path is not going to function, as you're constantly having to weave in and out from the thick tree trunks and heavy foliage that has taken over the floor. Plus a layer of snow that tends to encapsulate the area, your movement is relatively restrained than this pace you're normally used to going. You have– what bonuses do you have because of the forest terrain?

LAURA: I have–

MATT: To the group's movement, if any?

LAURA: Yes, movement is fine for all of the group.

MATT: Thankfully, though, you have Vex guiding you on this path and where it would be a very difficult experience pushing through this forest, especially with the time limit you have, she is able to find the quickest paths to dodge any of the heavy areas that are dense with dangerous snowfall.

LAURA: I would also like to perception ahead and make sure that nothing is going to sneak attack us again.

MATT: Understood, understood.

FELICIA: Very good call.

MATT: All right. In that regard, I would like you to go ahead and make a perception check.

SAM: Oh boy. Something out there. Nope.

LAURA: That is lower than my passive perception, though. Which is 21.

SAM: Your passive perception–

LAURA: – is 21.

MATT: Right.

SAM: Wow.

LAURA: And plus five– no, that's it, just 21. But it's a 12. For right now.

MATT: It's a 12? Okay. You keep an eye out as you continue to move forward.

LAURA: Oh, but I get to roll twice though, because it's my favored terrain?

MATT: That's true, you do. Advantage on that.

LAURA: Okay. Shut up.

SAM: When the cameraman laughs.

MARY: When the cameraman is laughing at you, you know it's a good roll.

LAURA: It's– no, that's not that bad– It's 15.

MATT: That's an improvement.

LAURA: It's a slight improvement.

FELICIA: Better than 12.

LAURA: That's right.

MATT: 15 is indeed–

MATT and TALIESIN: – better than 12.

MATT: The things you learn watching Critical Role, ladies and gentlemen.

SAM: (sings) The more you know.

TRAVIS: Learning.

MATT: So in following Vex through the forest, weaving back and forth, about an hour of travel in you– I know you gotta get going soon. How soon do you have to go?

LAURA: We're calling a car, and it's however soon it gets here.

MATT: All right. Pushing forward, you eventually manage to avoid what looks like a long frozen lake in the center of the forest with a series of heavily iced-over stone ruins.

LAURA: Don't walk on this lake.

FELICIA: Oh, good call, good call.

MATT: You move around and in the distance you swear you see the glimmer of some glowing entity in the midst of these ruins and you manage to keep enough of a distance. Everyone make a stealth check on this. So roll a d20 and add your stealth bonus.

FELICIA: Add it, or take away? Because it's negative.

MATT: For you it'd be taking away from your stealth roll.

FELICIA: Great, that's great.

SAM: Clang-clang-clang.

FELICIA: 11.

MARY: 13.

MATT: 13.

SAM: 13.

LAURA: 16.

MATT: Grog? Stealth.

TRAVIS: Stealth is 14.

SAM: 13.

TALIESIN: 24.

FELICIA: 11.

MATT: All right, so. Though clumsy in form, the group is able to pull you far enough away where they cover your bases on this, and this glowing entity doesn't seem to take notice of your passage as it slowly fades into the stone ruins once again. You press on towards the mountain–

SAM: Should we go check that glowing entity out?

MARY: What was it?

FELICIA: Do I– oh, do I know? I have an arcana, or would it be nature, or?

MATT: For this, I would say go ahead and make a religion check, actually.

FELICIA: Oh, good, three. I don't know, it's 11.

MATT: It's spooky and you don't like it.

FELICIA: I don't like that so let's keep going.

LAURA: We should avoid it.

SAM: Okay. If you insist.

MATT: Pushing forward about another hour and a half, two hours, you eventually make it through the forest, dodging a few other areas where clustered vines and almost thick brambles begin to close off portions of the passage. Without Vex's help on this it would be a very difficult element to traverse, but you manage to find areas you can cut through, and where the weak points of these various interwoven nets of vinework are. You push through until the forest comes to an end at the base of a giant tree-covered mountain that is currently coated in snow and ice. Looking about, you can see that the highest spire is obscured by the very blizzard clouds ahead. There is heavy snowfall in this vicinity and your vision is semi-obscured past a certain area. Only because of Vex's keen sight are you able to make out the details of that mountain disappearing into the blizzard.

TRAVIS: This is very much like home for me.

LAURA: Do we see any– anything along the bottom, the edge of the mountain that looks like it could open into a cavern of some sort?

MATT: There are a number of large rocks and boulders that seem to have tumbled off the mountain and embedded themselves in the ground in sections. You do see what looks to be a cavern of some kind that is in the– at the base of this mountain, it's about 20, 25 feet high and about 35 feet wide.

MARY: Should we maybe go in?

FELICIA: Does it look like we can climb the mountain, or is it just too sheer?

MATT: Go ahead and make a perception check.

FELICIA: Oh, good, this is my best. Oh! Nope, it's a nine.

(laughter)

MATT: You– you've read about mountains.

(laughter)

MATT: And you've seen many pictures of them. Seeing one up close? They're a lot bigger than you thought they'd be.

FELICIA: Very large mountain, guys, I'm not sure– as a leader I'd like to invite you guys to evaluate whether we could possibly climb this mountain.

TALIESIN: I would like to evaluate whether or not we could climb this mountain.

SAM: You're delegating, that's good.

LAURA: Yeah, delegate.

TRAVIS: So I'm proficient here, right?

LAURA: Can we check?

MATT: You– I'd say for this and since you know mountain ranges pretty well, go ahead and make a wisdom check on this, yeah.

TRAVIS: Shit.

MATT: Just add your wisdom modifier to the roll.

TRAVIS: Which is zero. (laughs) 15.

MATT: 15. As you're kinda taking a moment to inspect it, you, your people, your actual race being mountain-born people, you look at it, and it could be scaled. It would be a dangerous climb and you would need some semblance of simple climbing tools to do so.

TRAVIS: So we got to make it come to us.

FELICIA: Well.

MARY: We could.

LAURA: Oh, that's smart, Grog. That's really smart!

FELICIA: We have to lure the dragon down.

SAM: Or one of us could climb it and–

TRAVIS: Jump off?

SAM: – bring it down as bait. I could do that.

FELICIA: I don't think that sounds like a good idea. There's a cavern over there, should we inspect it? Maybe there's some inner workings to get to the top.

TALIESIN: I think this conversation would be greatly improved by some sort of cover.

LAURA: We'll get into cover maybe just to be safe.

MARY: I agree, I vote on going to investigate the cavern.

FELICIA: Let's go to the cavern. Well, it's not a democracy, but that's okay, I am totally open–

MARY: And I agree with your–

MATT: You hear this heavy sound of wind rushing suddenly.

FELICIA: Oh god, get in the cavern, get in the cavern! Get in the cavern!

TALIESIN: Cavern now!

MATT: Let's see. Oof. Okay. (laughs) Vex. On horseback, you look over, and the snow that's hitting your face– you see a dark shape begin to form in the snow. It gets larger and larger and larger, and you realize it's not something that's swelling or growing, it's something that's coming at you very fast and it's very large. You immediately try and turn your horse around, but it's too fast, and it slams into the side of you, sending you off the horse and tumbling to the ground. You feel a heated pain in your side you haven't felt in a long time from the impact.

LAURA: Ah! What?

MATT: You guys watch as a boulder about that big, of rock and ice–

SAM: Oh, shit.

MATT: – just smacks into the side of you.

SAM: Oh, shit.

LAURA: You're kidding me, right? That sucked.

MARY: Where did it come from?

SAM: It was just a random meteor.

MATT: You take 30 points of bludgeoning damage.

LAURA: You're kidding me!

FELICIA: What the–

MARY: Wow!

MATT: And you're knocked onto the ground.

FELICIA: Oh my god, Vex! (screams)

MATT: The rest of you, who are currently on horseback, see this, and from the direction of the forest you see a large, very large humanoid figure begin to step out of the edge of the forest.

LAURA: It's a giant? Oh, no.

MATT: This low voice kind of bellows out. You can see on it thick, snow-covered fur, patchwork hide armor. The skin itself is a dull bluish-grey in color, white eyes, a giant metallic horn, what looks like some sort of creature's horns that are affixed to the sides of its helmet. A giant axe in its hand. This is indeed– and you recognize it immediately– this is a frost giant. You see it reach down and grab another boulder and begin to toss it in its hand. As the rest of you see this, you hear another bellow.

LAURA: You speak Giant, you speak Giant, right?

MATT: Does anyone speak Giant here?

TRAVIS: I do.

MATT: You hear a voice come echoing from the cavern behind you, saying, “Intruder! "Take him down!”

LAURA: Oh no, no no!

SAM: What do we do, guys?

MARY: Talk to him, for–

MATT: A second frost giant steps out of the cavern behind you.

LAURA: Shit.

MATT: And that's where we're going to go ahead and end the session for today.

(yelling)

SAM: We're in between two giants and a dragon?

FELICIA: Without–

MARY: Hagawaga… hawafenor!

LAURA: I'm damaged.

FELICIA: Very damaged.

MARY: She's damaged.

MATT: Yes, on the ground. You marked your damage, because that carries over to next week.

LAURA: I did.

MATT: All right, guys, we'll– because I know you had to leave soon and that would be a good place to stop it for this point and this week, we're going to continue this session next week.

TRAVIS: We're screwed!

MARY: No we're not!

LAURA: I'm dead!

MARY: No we're not.

MATT: Starting a battle with two delightful frost giants.

LAURA: I feel like we did such a good job on the last one.

TRAVIS: Two giants!

LAURA: Oh my gosh.

MARY: All right.

MATT: So first off, guys. Welcome to Critical Role, Mary.

(cheering)

MARY: Thank you so much. It was such a bloody delight.

LAURA: You have to be careful with my dice.

SAM: Do they break?

MATT: Very, very well done.

LAURA: I've got gems in here.

MARY: I hope we'll survive.

FELICIA: You never know.

SAM: Wow, that was amazing. Mary and Felicia are so good.

MARY: Thank you.

LAURA: Oh my gosh.

TALIESIN: Yeah.

SAM: So talented. You killed people and stuff.

TRAVIS: Brilliant.

MARY: I mended a piece of paper.

LAURA: You did! And you–

MATT: Blasted the torso out of an orc.

MARY: And I killed an orc–

LAURA: And you made a guy like give us things for super cheap, which is like the best thing in the world.

MARY: I love a good sale, I do.

LAURA: I do too!

MARY: I love finding a bargain. We should definitely go shopping.

FELICIA: Oh, I'm fine with it. I'm fine with my trust fund, because my parents are dead, yay.

MATT: All right, we have our–

Post-Game[]

ZAC: We have some donations to go through, so guys, just like last week because we're getting so many donations we just don't have time to read all the messages, so we'll just read off who the donation was from and say thank you, and then I will send an exported list with all your messages in an e-mail form to all of our hosts so they can see them. But it's just so many, which is amazing.

LAURA: Yay!

MATT: You guys are ridiculous.

TRAVIS: Yeah. You guys are rad.

ZAC: We just don't have all night to go through them. Oh, can I make a personal request?

MATT: Sure.

ZAC: Can you kill Felicia next week?

MATT: That's not up to me.

LAURA: That's just not appropriate.

FELICIA: What's that about?

TRAVIS: Wow. Wow.

MATT: That's really unnecess–

ZAC: In the game, in the game.

SAM: No no no no no.

MATT: Oh, in the game!

ZAC: In the game.

MATT: Oh, in the game.

FELICIA: Funny, like–

MATT: I was like, I got to think this through, man. She's right there.

LAURA: I really have to go!

MATT: I know.

TRAVIS: Bye Vex!

MATT: Bye Laura!

MARY: Love you!

LAURA: I love you!

MATT: Everyone going to GenCon–

LAURA: Yeah!

MATT: – go say hi to her.

MARY: Yeah, go say hi at GenCon, woo!

ZAC: You know what, if you wanna like Skype in from GenCon, let me know.

LAURA: Well–

ZAC: You got it on your phone, right?

SAM: To what?

LAURA: I do– to what?

ZAC: Us!

LAURA: Just for the heck of it?

ZAC: Just for the hell of it.

LAURA: But I'll be on a panel!

ZAC: The whole time?

LAURA: The entire time, it's a really long panel.

MARY: One long panel, it's unusual.

ZAC: That's crazy. Good luck.

MATT: That would be terrifying.

TALIESIN: Panel-con.

LAURA: All right, bye!

MATT: Bye, Laura!

TALIESIN: Bye, dear!

ZAC: So it looks like we start right around here.

MATT: Here, awesome. Gdi35 donated $50 to 826.

ZAC: Woo!

MATT: Thank you so much, that's incredible. Let me see.

ZAC: I dunno where–

MATT: Oh, QBUltima5 donated $20 to 826, thank you so much. WheelieFactoid has donated $25, thank you again Wheelie, you're amazing and consistent, it's incredible. Darastar donated $25 to charity, Supalot– supalot, that's delicious– donated $50. Thank you so much, Supalot, that's great. Javabookgeekgirl donated $150, that's ridiculous. Thank you so much. KleetaZX, xicxic, XCXC, I'm sorry if I butchered that, but it's spelt to be butchered so I'm doing my best I can.

ZAC: You're doing great, Matt, you're doing great.

MATT: Donated $50. Thank you so much. We have Markinthepark donated $50 as well, thank you.

MARY: Woo, Markinthepark!

MATT: Awesome. Kurtcole donated $100, that's fantastic, Pippin42890 donated $250.

TALIESIN: Whoa.

FELICIA: What?

MATT: Towards the charity, thank you so much.

ZAC: And this is their first time watching live.

MATT: First time watching live, welcome to all the guys who watch for the first time.

(cheering)

MATT: So welcome. Fantastic, we have Jeannie2343 donated $50, thank you so much Jean, or Jeannie, however it's said. Norkalad donated $100, also their first livestream, thank you and welcome!

FELICIA: Yay, first livestream!

MATT: All right, we have SirBugglez donated $25, which is awesome. Foxyforsythe donated $23.89.

SAM: Buggles?

MATT: Thank you, I like that specific cent-number, makes me happy. LastCalled2013 donated $50 towards 826, AstrocistofVaruul donated $25, incredible, incredible. Immune0 donated $25, thank you Immune0, that's fantastic. TheDuggenator8. Yeah Duggenator.

FELICIA and TALIESIN: Yeah Duggenator!

MATT: Donated $25. Gaiaca donated $25, thank you Gaiaca. Mylastnameisapalindr–

ZAC: Palindrome, I'm guessing.

MATT: Mylastnameisapalindrome is probably it. Donated $25, thank you, and awesome that's your last name. Magikthefireborn donated $20, thank you very much Magik, that's fantastic. Joerker, Joeker396 donated $111.11.

MARY and FELICIA: Wow!

FELICIA: One one one one one.

MATT: I like the ones.

SAM: Many ones.

MARY: One one one one one.

MATT: Make it rain. DaredevilKB donated $25, thank you Daredevil, love your show on Netflix. Zern donated $30, thank you Zern, that's amazing. 7bitRyan donated $50 and there are many comments here about Lyra and Aldor storytelling, which I think will haunt the party for quite some time.

FELICIA and MARY: Yay.

FELICIA: Oh, I'm excited, write fanfic.

MATT: Kariduck donated $25, thank you Kariduck, and MZV5005 donated $25, thank you guys so much for your donations for 826. It's astronomical, your support for the show and everything you guys do. Also a big thank-you to our fantastic artist Kit Buss for knocking out some fantastic profile art!

FELICIA: I love my portrait so much.

MARY: Kit, I love you so much, so much.

TALIESIN: I haven't seen it yet.

SAM: They have portraits already?

TALIESIN: Yeah, they've got portraits up, we get to see them when the feed's up.

FELICIA: I have a portrait, it's really fantastic.

MARY: Here, I'll show you.

MATT: You guys should tweet out your portraits.

MARY: Yes, I will now.

FELICIA: Oh yeah yeah! I will, I have to get it set up.

MATT: You can see it.

MARY: Here.

SAM: Whoa, awesome.

ZAC: While Ryan's getting you guys' gifts ready, I wanted to do a really quick announcement for tomorrow's show. Tomorrow we are having a new show pilot kind of idea premiere, with Hector doing HeroClix with Alison Haislip tomorrow, it's gonna be a lot of fun.

FELICIA: It's really fun!

MATT: Nice. HeroClix is fun.

ZAC: Yeah. Hector's got Doctor Doom and Gandalf on lock, and he challenged anyone to try to beat him, so.

MATT: By the way, I would watch that movie in a second.

ZAC: Right?

MATT: I'm just saying.

ZAC: Doctor Doom and Gandalf together. I'm really excited. And then after that–

MARY: Liam!

ZAC: We have one of our fan favorites, Robot Teammate, coming in to do musical improv tomorrow night as, and then Gather Your Party with everyone else, so.

MATT: (hoarsely) Disadvantage.

ZAC: Tune in tomorrow night, guys. All right, I think Ryan's got some gifts for you guys.

MATT: Yes, continue Critmas. Once again, I'm gonna reiterate it. The outpouring of this fantastic community, what you guys do for each other, the support you guys have in playing together and supporting each other is incredible and I– every week we're perpetually blown away and feeling unworthy for all the gifts you send, and it's amazing.

TRAVIS: Get out of my seat!

MATT: And it is appreciated, you helped decorate both the set and our living spaces now with all these amazing gifts, so we can see and be reminded of you guys all the time. So thank you again, so much, for all your incredible gifts. I love– I can't get over Grog's cask of ale that's just.

FELICIA: That Grog ale is amazing.

TRAVIS: It is my favorite thing. It's my little baby.

MATT: I know.

TRAVIS: I love it.

MATT: So sweet.

LIAM: Is that your woobie?

TALIESIN: Hey now. That's not nice.

TRAVIS: Grog's ale, keep away from giants.

MATT: Hey congratulations chat room, by the way, for choosing the contract tonight, adult white dragon was definitely the tougher of the selections.

TRAVIS: They chose that shit?

FELICIA: Wait, what? They picked the harder one for us? Thanks, guys.

TRAVIS: We love you guys. It's not like we want to live or anything.

FELICIA: You want Lyra to die, that's what you want.

MATT: There were only a few requests.

FELICIA: Zac.

ORION: I was thinking the whole time, I was like– dicks.

TRAVIS: Dicks. Why can't they pick like, you know– I don't know, goblins or like really angry dogs?

MARY: When you see what we do to orcs.

ORION: I don't know what would be worse, a dragon or a beholder.

TRAVIS: Oh, I'm thinking of that. That instant death-ray.

FELICIA: Thank you! They all are Critical Role dice, which is pretty amazing.

MARY: Yes! That's awesome!

MATT: All right, guys, real fast we'll get to these gifts here–, we have a few gifts to open for the group here, from a Vincent Langolas. Open this. Oh yeah!

SAM: Are they in the box of holding, there in the box? Somewhere.

MATT: So, guys, for those who don't know, Vincent has been–

SAM: Oh my god.

MATT: –progressively pumping out amazing episodic fanfiction of Vox Machina, and sending us all of it, the stories are really really awesome. If you are inclined to, I recommend if you haven't already put them online, then share them with the rest of the Critter community, they're really awesome.

FELICIA: There's a place called wattpad.com where you– a lot of people do post fanfic.

MATT: Oh, awesome.

FELICIA: I actually am on there for my book, it's promotion, but when I started poking around there was lots of fanfic, a lot of Supernatural fans around there writing fiction. But like, it could be a place that people could post.

LIAM: Have you written any?

FELICIA: Not yet, but I do want to. I have to pick, it might be just Nancy Drew fanfic, I'm not sure.

MATT: Well, I have Vax and Vex's copies here, I'll get these both to you, Liam, to handle there.

SAM: One Dwarf Too Many.

MATT: I'll hold on to Pike's, Ashley's currently absent, but we'll–

TALIESIN: This is chapter three?

MATT: Actually, why don't you hand these out, if you could, thank you so much. This is the next chapter in the One Dwarf Too Many saga.

SAM: One Dwarf Too Many.

MATT: One Dwarf Too Many.

SAM: As read by Sir Ian McKellen.

LIAM: Here's Percival's.

TALIESIN: Thank you.

MATT: That is awesome.

TALIESIN: I need to get these bound at some point. I feel like I don't work hard enough every time one of these comes.

MATT: All right, so from Joe, aka jockguy89 to Matt Mercer, “Epic dungeon master needs an epic d20.”

MARISHA: Oh snap!

SAM: It's made of dice.

TALIESIN: It's gonna be an engagement d20.

MATT: Oh, oh I get my own flashing d20 now.

FELICIA: Is it flashing?

MARISHA: Is that what it is?

(cheering)

MATT: I've seen these, I've seen these, I wanted one. This is one that if it lands on a 20, it flashes a bunch of LEDs on the inside.

TALIESIN: It gives you an alarm when you know he's gonna kill a party member.

MATT: It's like this red glow beneath the shield, I just kinda look up silently. It's going to be great. Thank you so much, Joe, that's really really sweet. I'm going to use that. Here we have a letter. All right, Sir Drey, about 21 hours ago, block. “Hello there, Critical Role, my name is Drey, and my friends and I have created our own Pathfinder D&D group after religiously watching the show every Thursday.” Awesome! “We used Tabletop in which I purchased a battlemap, but we have really old metal figurines, I was wondering if by chance you could point us in the direction of where to get better figurines? I've checked Amazon and a few other comic stores and couldn't find any miniatures. It'd be really a big help if you could point me in the right direction. I know you might not answer back due to busy schedules, but thank you guys for putting on the show and entertaining us Critters. Sincerely, Drey.” Thank you, Drey. A lot of these minis come from– if you can't find it at comic stores nearby there's good websites like Miniature, I think it's Miniature Market. There is–Troll and Toad is one of my mainstays, Troll and Toad has a good selection of minis you can order. eBay is also a good source.

TALIESIN: Hero Forge.

MATT: Hero Forge, you can customize your own character minis, which is really great, and have them 3D printed out for you. And then, there is…. You can order on Amazon some of the packs of D&D figures. You don't know what's in there, it's one of those kinda you know surprise figure boxes, which is kinda fun in itself. I've bought way too many of those. But you can find those on Amazon, usually. Just look for Dungeons and Dragons miniature boxes and Pathfinder boxes as well, they have a whole slew of that, so. Those would be your best bets.

MARISHA: They're like miniature grab bags.

MATT: Apparently. Oh, what? All right. “Matt, can read on air.” And then I can read that off the air. That's the private conversation. Here we go, this is filled with money! No, it's not. It's my favorite fan.

MARY: It's a check!

MATT: I want to take a moment to say, I appreciate that most of our letters we get are hand-written, and that is such a rarity these days and it kinda makes this little archaic happiness in my heart sprout. So, “Matt, so far from my experience, DMs typically have a ton of dice, so I thought why not make a little bug to help with the struggle.” Bag! Bag to help with the struggle. Oh. Read that 'bug'. I'm also bad at writing hand, reading handwriting. I love handwritten letters, I'm just terrible at them, I apologize.

MARISHA: I got really excited, I thought it was gonna be like a dice bug.

MATT: Right, or just like a whole bunch of roaches start pouring out, I'm like, this was a great idea. (screams) “I made one for everyone but started to run out of materials and only sent this one out. Hope you enjoy the candy inside.” Ooh. “Let's really hope it doesn't melt. Sorry if it does. Rebecca Christian.” Thank you so much, Rebecca! That's really sweet. What did Rebecca– Oh! That is– that is a chainmail dice bag.

ALL: Whoa!

MATT: That says DM on it in gold chains.

(cheering)

FELICIA: That's really hard to make, chainmail. It really takes a long time.

MARISHA: Takes forever.

FELICIA: Yeah, takes forever.

MATT: It's full of coins. Let's share some gold coins.

(cheering)

MATT: Catch?

FELICIA: No, no!

TRAVIS: Throw it at her!

ORION: Actually, just throw them all to Sam.

MATT: There you go. Sam! There you go.

ORION: Hey Matthew?

MATT: Also acts as a bag protector.

ORION: Nice sack.

MATT: Thank you. Oh my god, you guys are so sweet, thank you so much. That's awesome. And then did we find out who these are for? Ryan? Ryan?

RYAN: Yes?

MATT: Did you find out who these are for?

RYAN: Those are for you to distribute, they're from jpcguy.

MATT: Jpcguy! Awesome, thank you so much! We got two sets of elven dice to distribute here amongst the party. Oh, these are really cool.

TRAVIS: I got dwarvish dice to distribute, too.

ORION: I already got a set, jpcguy already gave me one, so I'm good.

MATT: Awesome. Thank you so much, that's amazing.

TRAVIS: These were from Eric, redzanwatt, “Grog, thank you to all Critical Role for the joy you bring me and showing me the amazing world of D&D. These dice would fit in nice with the dwarf beard I hope you finally grow. Your fan, Eric.” Very cool, Eric. Thank you, man.

FELICIA: When are you gonna grow hair, Grog?

MATT: The dice pool we've slowly gathered over this time. So, not to worry.

TRAVIS: Can I show this off real quick?

MATT: Yeah?

TRAVIS: So I'm a crazy Dallas Cowboys fan and somebody sent me an autographed picture of the original three, like, Troy Aikman, Michael Irvin and Emmitt Smith.

ALL: What?!

MATT: I don't know who those are but I'm so happy for you!

TRAVIS: It's instantly going on my wall next to my Dallas Cowboys–

ORION: I don't watch sports, but I know these names because that's when I used to watch sports, and those are cool names.

TRAVIS: Thank you. Thank you thank you, I don't know, the Cowboys are my team.

ORION: That is ace.

TRAVIS: It just came from Nostalgic, I don't even know! Who sent it? It gave me this!

MARY: Nostalgic in Ohio.

MARISHA: Thanks, nostalgic.

FELICIA: In Ohio.

SAM: Wow, for a fan of the Cowboys to get that, that's amazing!

FELICIA: How did they know that?

TRAVIS: Internet?

SAM: I am a fan of obscure Picasso art. And sketches. Maybe Hundertwasser sketches, or something.

(laughter)

LIAM: You're human? You can have these.

FELICIA: Oh yay! Oh, these are beautiful.

TALIESIN: These are fabulous.

MATT: These are awesome dice.

FELICIA: I had a whole, I used this color dice.

ORION: I have one more, we have a message, a letter from our friends over at Gamechanger.

MARISHA: Oh, Gamechanger!

ORION: “Dear Critical Role and Geek and Sundry team, huge thanks to all of you for having us on your show, promoting our charity and supporting the DX15 campaign.” Which is the Deus Ex campaign we were doing. “Your support truly made a difference in the campaign and Taylor and Jim had an awesome time in your studio. So cool!!!” Three exclamation points. “We would love to work together in the future and hope that someday all of you or some of you can join us at the hospital and deliver gifts and joy and inspiration to the young patients and show your gaming– show how gaming plays such a critical role in their treatment.” I accept that challenge, I will do that. “Much love, from Gamechanger, Jake Hearst and Jim Carroll.” Flipside– Oh, Zac, pay attention. “We bought Final Fantasy Type 0 for a giveaway during the Deus Ex thing, but never got a chance to promote it. So we would like to offer it to you and the team members could give it away to your audience any way you'd like.” Zac. “So no strings, just a thank-you gesture, token of appreciation, and love to all the Critters out there.”

TRAVIS: That is amazing. Thank you, guys.

MARISHA: Thanks, Gamechanger! And we have some fun stickers.

MATT: Thank you guys again so much for supporting Gamechanger and our charities and our show and everything you guys do, it's truly– I've never been progressively and continuously moved by a community like this, and you guys make this so special, so thank you.

LIAM: It's a happy little spot on the sea of the insanity that is the internet.

MATT: I know.

MARISHA: It's true.

MARY: Yeah.

FELICIA: And thanks to the mods who keep the chat, I watch every week unless I'm out of town and like, the fact that everybody in the chat is somebody I'd like to say hello to is pretty great. So thank you for that, all your work.

MARY: Thanks for being so supportive for those of us– I mean, we had so much support coming in this week from all the Critters, so thank you very much.

MARISHA: Oh my gosh, you guys, get ready for the fanart.

ORION: If Felicia's in that, it's gonna be fun.

MARISHA: It's coming, it's coming, I'm so excited.

MATT: Oh man.

TRAVIS: With Aldor running away.

MARY: Aldor.

FELICIA: No.

MARY: Noooo!

MATT: I have to say, like, for your first time playing Dungeons and Dragons, can I just say Mary picked that up quick.

(cheering)

MARY: Thank you! I had some amazing help and support from you guys.

MARISHA: Your like Jedi mind trick there at the beginning, I was like, oh!

LIAM: Could somebody draw a picture of Scanlan and Lyra talking about the birds and the bees? That's a request I have. Please.

MARY: The rest of us sorting through Percy's guns.

TRAVIS: Click, no. Click, no. Click, no.

MATT: Tiberius back, sitting in the background with Bad News. He's not even in the group, but he still can't take it. Thank you guys so much, again, and I'm excited. I had Greg Tito from Wizards of the Coast, Dungeons and Dragons, send a care package, which we'll distribute once we've got the whole group together again. With a bunch of fun little gifts for the Critters that we want to give away in the future, some gifts for you guys in the group, and a bunch of really really cool minis that I get to try and kill you guys with in the future, so thank you very much, Greg Tito.

MARISHA: Thanks, Greg!

MATT: And everyone at D&D for sending us that care package, you have officially helped facilitate a TPK at some point in the near future.

LIAM: We're a big fan of what you do.

MARISHA: Yes, we love you, Wizards of the Coast.

MATT: Obviously. My little DM bag. I love it.

TRAVIS: Joe, a.k.a. jpcguy89, thank you for the dice as well. I found his thing.

MATT: Thank you so much, buddy.

ZAC: Oh, it's his birthday!

(cheering)

MATT: Happy birthday, Joe!

MARY: Happy birthday to you!

ZAC: I was just talking to jpcguy.

(cheering)

TRAVIS: Happy birthday!

FELICIA: Yeah, happy birthday.

LIAM: Zum Geburtstag, ja.

TRAVIS: What?

LIAM: That's German for happy birthday, darling.

TRAVIS: Oh. Fancy secret agent.

MATT: Shut up, Nightcrawler. Well guys, thank you so much again, I think we're pretty much good for the evening, so we'll see you guys next week Thursday.

TRAVIS: Two giants and a dragon, really?

MATT: Yeah, you guys are fucked.

ORION: Tune in for these ladies too, please.

TRAVIS: They'll be back next week.

FELICIA: Next week I'll be back, hi.

ZAC: Felicia might die!

FELICIA: I might die.

MARISHA: And then after that it's Wil Wheaton and Will Friedle, so.

MARY: Tiefling!

MARISHA: They'll be here as well.

MARY: My tail is whipping in happiness.

MATT: Good night guys, good night.

ALL: Bye!

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