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Thread: Third Prologue: Digging Deep/SIDEQUEST: TOWER

  1. #1
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    Post Third Prologue: Digging Deep/SIDEQUEST: TOWER

    For both Ulvenn and Hakon the last few years in their homeland of the Lands of Linnorm had been more bitter than bittersweet, full of grueling winters and colder betrayals---but some nights it seemed fate had never squeezed more cruelly than it did when the bolts slid home to their cell doors beneath the Twilight Academy.

    It was harsh indeed to be welcomed with fanfare as promising students at the magical college in the morning then caged like feral dogs before noon. To be needled and drugged till they lost all sense of time in that complex with nary a sliver of moonbeam or sunbeam. To be sent daily by the Mwangi sorceress Nisha through hallucinations of perils so vivid that waking life felt like a hazy dream. On top of it all to be ignored by the alchemist responsible for it all, the lizardfolk Dr. Bello hunched and scribbling over his notebooks. Nisha found the Ulfens fascinating and would listen rapt to any story they were willing to tell, even if it was made up, but to the doctor Ulvenn and Hakon were just pots for his ambitious experiments to grow in, and they knew it. He provided food and shelter for their bodies while dooming them to starvation and exile in their souls, save for conversations through adjoining walls that kept each other grounded.

    It was almost horrible enough to make Ulvenn long for one more day aboard Captain Tallak Murdok's ship, living in chains under the threat of two score lashes for every slight or infraction, real or imagined, from the tyrant who nearly killed both his mother and the man he revered as a father.

    Or to induce Hakon to wish he might step back in time onto Girt Ulfbain's longship, where the prayers and screams of the greatest heroes of his own youth went unanswered except for the hungry cries of carrion birds who gorged upon them.

    On those ships at least they had felt the wind in their faces and the mighty ocean rolling beneath their feet and connecting them to the rest of the world. And they vowed they would do so again.

    But because they had both been such great survivors and sailors, it was the height of foolishness for the Mwangi doctor's agents to pluck them from their cells and try to shanghai them to his homeland by boat. Especially together...


    OOC:

    Next post will be "present time" it's the post I will want you (Zeros and MTpaladin) to respond to with your escape strategy.
    Last edited by magrat4; 11-19-2018 at 06:52 AM.

  2. #2
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    Default Hakon and Ulvenn: The Greater Escape

    Captain Ubreki Dzapasi struts like a peacock across the deck of the Shimye-Magalla and flicks his many long dark braids accented with colorful feathers back over the epaulets of his red coat. He smiles down at the two blonde men scrubbing the deck with buckets of soapy water and rough mustard colored sponges the size of their weathered fists.

    Ulvenn and Hakon are collared at the neck by four and half foot chains tethered to steel pitons buried in the wooden floor. The noonday sun has heated the metal against their wind chapped skin to an uncomfortable degree. The chains are one reason Ubreki has no fear of an uprising, though he is clearly intimidated by them and stories of their barbaric land of raiders.

    The other two reasons are the Captain's “spook stick” and the gold charms that dangle from each ear, one of a feathered fan that creates a powerful breeze on demand, and one of a whip that can be commanded to animate and attack for a full hour.

    By now they know if Ubreki decides they are working too slowly, or speak in too insolent a manner, he will try to poke one of them with the carved ivory "spook stick." Sometimes as an extra incentive to behave, he punishes whichever of them is innocent instead, and berates the other, “Look what you made me do!” His drawling accent distorts all vows into a long “oooh” or “aaah” and words like “made” into two syllables.

    The spook stick is a wand that sends an icy numbing jolt into the flesh it touches when activated by a cry of “Verminder!” If the prisoners are not braced for it, the wand also saps their strength and leaves them listless.



    Ubreki brags that the wand also sends zombies and the like fleeing like rats from a sinking ship.

    Hakon and Ulvenn have agreed that it is better to be a rat deserting a ship than a rat in a cage, and today they will make good on their escape. And perhaps today they can finally punish the despicable, arrogant Captain for every last jab with that ivory stick.

    Through gossip with the hard drinking crew, the captives have learned where their weapons and other belongings are being stored, in a locked box under the Captain’s bed. They also know where the closest Varisian port is: Magnimar, a city of over 16,000 people where they might easily lose any pursuers.

    The Shimye is a simple oarship with a skeleton crew of twelve and two decks and two crow’s nests. The top deck is currently rather deserted due to the relentless sun and most of the crew sleeping off a night of wild partying, except for the two Ulfens and Captain Dzapasi and Bosun Wamba, the perpetually nervous lookout for disasters up in the highest tier crow’s nest.



    They probably will not get a better chance to stage an escape and they have been preparing for this day for weeks since they left Sandpoint. Today they reclaim their status as free men and show their captors the dreadful errors of their ways...



    OOC:

    What I need to know in your opening post is this:

    --what “preparations” your characters have made (just use your imagination, I will not contradict you as long as it’s not something outrageous like “charmed a kraken to do our bidding”)

    --what your plan is

    --what role each of you will play





    **As a reward for doing this prologue, there will be loot, which your PCs will also have after this Prologue closes and (if they don't get used up) in the combat scene that is ongoing in the main thread as well. So far that includes two of each of these items:

    a wand of chill touch (there are two of them)

    a feather token fan (see here: http://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic-items/...ken/fan-token/ ) and

    a feather token whip (see here: http://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic-items/...en/whip-token/ )
    Last edited by magrat4; 12-06-2017 at 03:33 AM. Reason: fixed wording twice

  3. #3
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    Default Prologue: Digging Deep

    Thoughts of freedom and of revenge fill Hakon’s mind. Half of him wants to just gather what he can of his items and leave with Ulven while the other half wants to make sure to repay in full every lash and chilling touch that this foul captain gave throughout the voyage.

    Hakon was sure to keep an eye out for where the ring of keys that unlocked them from their bonds and possibly unlocked their belongings would be at all times and where they would be at any given part of the day. He has also put the ships layout to memory to the fastest routes throughout the ship. With the help of their sailing knowledge being Ulfen, only the best sailers in all of Golarion, Ulven and Hakon have been able to determine exactly the remaining distance to the shore if the time arose or if they would wait until they make port and would make their escape then in the busy port and maze of the city alleyways.

    Over the course of the voyage at every moment when the Captain and Bosun were not looking, Hakon constantly tested his bonds, chains and where the chains were anchored to. Over the course of his childhood in the frozen north of the Linnorm, Hakon quickly learned that iron became very brittle at very cold temperatures. The stresses of the experiments at the laboratory had awakened something hidden deep within his history, something from within his very being. He now had these powers and feelings that only resembled the great powerful sea dragons of the sagas.

    When the moment came he would freeze the chains that held him and Ulven in bondage, making them brittle enough for the two of hem to breaking themselves free.

    Now the plan for getting the gear was another story. That was Ulven’s job. Hopefully Svidhoggormarr (Svidhog for short) was there in his belongings. He was Brine Dragon that had gotten himself in a similar situation as Hakon. Getting himself bound and trapped inside a beautifully carved coral figurine in the shape of a dragon resembling a seahorse. Svidhog would be their ticket out of here, quickly dashing them out of sailing speed of the ship. Currently with its skeleton crew, would never be able to catch up to them.


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  4. #4

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    Never did Ulvenn think that he would be held in chains again, yet another insult... Things never seem to quite go how he would hope. Not crafting with Memnok, not schooling in Oppara, even the work with the Brotherhood... But at least all his misadventures have given him the skills he needs to get out of such circumstances.

    Once there was a little thief named Eugene that Ulvenn had called friend, a younger man, but a better thief than Ulvenn managed. Ulvenn picked up some pickpocketing tricks, how to slip a weapon off a man's belt and hide it in a motion so fluid that it took Ulvenn a half-dozen times before he could see how the thief pulled off the trick. But it served Ulvenn well now, a pair of daggers hidden in a make-shift pocket in his worn rags, a trick he learned when smuggling and stealing for Memnok.

    When the captain wasn't watching Ulvenn and Hakon discussed their preparations, and Ulvenn taught Hakon a handful of the signs he used in the Brotherhood, simple signs such as 'Wait, Attack, Hide...' and the like. Not enough to carry out a conversation, such would take too long, but enough that they could communicate in silent when the time to escape came about.

    A skeleton crew would never be able to catch up to them, but a burnt ship beneath the waves would never tell who survived. He had noted the locations of the torches and lanterns, used to illuminate the ship during the late hours. During their moments of planning Ulvenn and Hakon noted the best places to light the place aflame so as to not obstruct their route to their possessions and to leave an easy escape once the ship was burning and the captain was dead.

    ((What does the ship look like at night? Hakon and Ulvenn still on deck or what?))


  5. #5
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    Ulvenn stops scrubbing the sterncastle deck under the harsh sunlight and squints around the ship, imagining how it looks lit up at night with ship's lanterns sending flickering shadows.

    Seventeen glass hooded oil lamps are attached above decks alone, counting the ones on the railing on both the left and right sides of the ship, all currently dark. Plenty of fuel for a hungry blaze. If they needed to use a longboat they could avoid setting the main deck alight.

    Ulvenn and Hakon mentally review the ship's layout.

    Every night at sunset (with the rare exception of nights of celebration---and there is no such celebration scheduled tonight) they are chained and locked in the brig at the stern, just the pair of them and one sleepy guard. Above the brig is the infirmary but the two are not connected.

    Above the infirmary is the galley and they are connected by narrow stairs. Rumor has it there is a secret staircase from the galley to the captain's luxurious cabin. Their personal belongings are concealed under his bed.

    Topside at night there will be a total of three crewmen prowling back and forth each of the five decks and hollering out an "all clear" to one another every so often: poop deck, sterncastle deck, quarter deck, main deck, and forecastle deck.

    The prisoners weigh the advantages of striking now---a little tempting with just the arrogant captain and neurotic bosun in view (the former on the main deck and the latter in the crow's nest)---while the others sleep off their carousing, or waiting until nightfall and cover of darkness to strike.








    **There are four lanterns on the brown wooden railing in the foreground in this picture, and directly opposite them on the other rail are four more I couldn't fit into the background. I hope this picture shows you all the rooms/details you need to know.


    OOC:

    It is daytime now, everything is happening in real time. Will you be waiting for nightfall?
    Last edited by magrat4; 11-27-2017 at 08:02 AM.

  6. #6
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    Default Prologue: Digging Deep

    Under the hot sun and stuck doing the mind numbing, monotonous task of scrubbing the deck, Hakon tries to keep his his mind occupied and not lose focus.

    They could act now and and quickly take out the captain together then take out the Bosun next without trying to wake up the crew, risky but possible.

    Night offered the cover of darkness and plenty of hiding places, allowing each of them to sneak and not be detected. If only they could get out of the brig and up to the captains quarters. Difficult but not impossible.

    Both options posed the same amount of risks to benefit for the reward. Although Hakon had no problem waiting until nightfall to kill the captain with an ice sickle in his throat after Ulvenn wakes him up with jolt from the “spook stick”.

    As the two of them cross paths to refresh their sponges, Hakon mumbles to Ulvenn, “When should we do this? There is only two of them now but the Bosun is up in the nest and will be a heck of a time to sneak up on. Especially if he’s checking on the captain every now and then. Yet if we time it right during the night we could make it straight up from the brig to the captain’s cabin and put the deck alight with the lanterns when we leave.”

    Hakon waits for Ulvenn’s response. Hakon is still apprehensive about taking the lead. He had always stayed out of the main fight when he was with his band of warriors until they were betrayed and murdered by Girt Ulfbain.


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    Last edited by magrat4; 11-28-2017 at 12:11 AM. Reason: If you can, put dialogue in bold. If it's too much trouble in Tapatalk, I may add bold later. NBD ;

  7. #7

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    "I favor the night," Ulvenn whispers back, slicking back his sweat-drenched hair from his face, "Strike when the guard puts us to the brig for the night. A quick knife to the throat keeps him silent, and if its the captain then all the better. I have no doubt you can fight well, but even a skeleton crew has us outnumbered, and outnumbered without my claws... It just gets that much harder."


  8. #8
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    Default Prologue: Digging Deep

    “Agreed. We’ll wait for night fall”


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    At night before the brig door is locked the Captain gives them more than the usual number of ivory wand jolts to try to exhaust the pair of prisoners. He seems afraid they might fly into the rage for which their nation of berserkers and raiders is famous, and snap their chains and bars like old kindling.

    But Ulvenn and Hakon have anticipated as much and are sufficiently braced to keep their strength intact.

    "A sickly green sliver of a moon, I do not like it. Bad omen," Captain Dzapasi murmurs to the Mwangi sailor taking first watch.

    The seaman lifts one shoulder in a shrug and continues whittling a wooden set of pan pipes with his knife. The door closes behind his captain and the man locks it behind him and grouses, "You mess with the dark witching, what do you expect the sky gonna give you, rainbows? Might as well be scratchin' a lion's stokkie with a short stick." He shoves the keys into a pocket and sits back down and works by the light of the oil lamp on the small table bolted to the floor. His stool, also bolted to the floor, is about fifteen feet from the cell bars of the padlocked ten by ten brig.

    Bello's subjects are not chained to one another or to the floor during the night, merely in leg irons and still wearing the collars now unattached. Their cell has a chamber pot (empty) and two ratty bedrolls without pillows.

    Their jailkeeper glances over at them now and then, trying to seem casual, but by the occasional tension in his neck they can tell that each scrape of chain along the floor snares his attention anew. He binds the finger-sized tubes together with string and tries a few soft notes on the pipes once he is finished with them. To Hakon's ear he has not done a bad job.

    The night watchman loops the string holding the pipes around the hilt of the scimitar at his belt and picks up the lamp, swinging it toward the cell. "Lizardman doctor tell the bossman you are special, one in a million. You do not look so special to me. You look sick. But I am no doctor."


    OOC:

    All you. No encounter mats for Prologues, don't need them. If you need dimensions for something or some detail I've left out within reason, it can be made up.

  10. #10

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    Ulvenn studies the man, much like a hunter might a deer, noting the best places to strike... and the man's apparent apprehension. He gives off a hacking cough and half-crawls, half-pulls himself over to the bars, "Me either mate, no doctor, no' much of anythin' anymore," subtle bits of his sailor speak coming through, "Need a drink though," he rasps... its not that hard to fake it right now being as his throat is half-way there anyways, "Think you could help?" he keeps his posture loose, his breathing somewhat ragged. He needed the jailkeeper to let down his guard and come close, maybe even just look away in pity (or disgust, either work), or at the very least leave the room so they could get to work, 'I wonder if Hakon's magic could freeze the padlock enough...'


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