<Zagnar>: I go back inside and tell Broadaxe the missing party member is here and it is time to go. If I am told about the choice I will choose the faster carriage. Six hours of walking would not sound like much fun. Then I head back outside and mention the choice to the others.
Post by marionarsis on Jan 5, 2016 10:42:47 GMT -5
Random sees Zagnar and Khloemar standing outside the tavern as he walks up. He shrugs. So much for the plan on rendezvousing at the Temple, he thought.
It's then Zagnar goes back inside the tavern, before Random can say a word, so he speaks to Khloemar. "Hey, Khloemar, you know there's magic items down at Flyman's Magick Shoppe. You and Mal might be interested in them. They've got staves down there...So, while I was gone did you or the others question the locals, those mercenaries in there, getting valuable clues about Darksmoke's dungeon?"
(Khaghtchan) Winip indicates the darts and grins. "I'd be happy to ride shotgun with you, sirrah. Time is of the essence and if we can't defend ourselves on the road, what chance have we when we are in a labyrinth?"
At Malutassial's question, the same uncertain look the party noticed earlier again comes over Broadaxe's face. "The first half-dozen groups I led into the forest weren't attacked at all. I only had to navigate the changing, shifting forest--which is difficult enough. The last dozen groups I've led have all been attacked.
"Giant spiders, Dire apes, a manticore, a swarm of flying monkeys have all been sent against my groups. One group even had to fight through a pack of revenants. I'm convinced these aren't inhabitants of the forest, but rather foes Darksmoke sends against us, summoned from ... who knows where, to soften up the group. If it's Darksmoke's whim we fight in the forest, then we will have a fight."
He then adds proudly: "Only six fatalities have occurred in these dozen skirmishes. I'm proud of such a low casualty rate on my watch."
Later, Runkild, Winip, and Mal voice their vote to take a carriage (Broadaxe doesn't allow hedging votes and insists on an answer)
Random sees Zagnar head into the tavern, where the dwarf makes his vote known, and heads back outside, informing Random and Khloemar of the vote taking place. Random asks Khloemar a question, but the elven wizard either doesn't hear him or ignores it.
Broadaxe says to those in the tavern, "I think we have enough votes to safely say we'll take a carriage. Everyone, meet me at the top of the village, near the Temple of Darksmoke. I'll bring around my carriage and we can head into the forest, and make our way to Darksmoke's Mountain."
* * *
Moments later, as the party is preparing to leave, you notice one of the patrons of the tavern waving you down; it's the large red-bearded human male with twin swords crisscrossing his back you'd noticed earlier. He approaches you, his scarlet plate armor glowing in the wan light of the pub.
"Greetings. My name is Rochin del Graz. You're going to the mountain, correct? I offer you my services. I have experience, having been to that fell mountain and survived to tell the tale. I will be invaluable to you, I promise. My fee is 400 gold pieces, paid to me through treasures won in the mountain. If 400 gold is not taken from the mountain, the remainder, of course, comes from your purses."
(I'd like EVERY PC to vote on this--feel free to roleplay it--on whether he accompanies you or not.)
Post by marionarsis on Jan 6, 2016 15:08:42 GMT -5
Random, getting no comment from Khloemar, said, "I guess that means 'No.'" He shook his head and walked into the tavern. There, he heard the vote taking place for this fellow, del Graz, to join the party.
"What?" He was incredulous. "My vote is negative, as in 'No.' I don't fancy giving the loot or part of my own gold to this mercenary."
Random approached del Graz, learning he'd been inside the mountain. "You've been inside the mountain you say? Okay, what happened to the other members of your party? They all die? Tell us something of Darksmoke's domicile. Give me some good information, maybe I'll change my mind, but for now, it's 'No.'"
Rochin del Graz looks down at Random, a sly smile on his face at the bard's forthright manner. "Yes, you're correct. Those in my company died, all but me and one other. However, we did find our way to Darksmoke's second level, and a secret exit out of the dungeon from there, without having to backtrack. If you want more details than that, I'm afraid you'll have to agree to make me a part of your company, and agree to my fee."
Post by marionarsis on Jan 6, 2016 19:48:05 GMT -5
Random felt something wasn't right about this fellow. He was a mercenary, so money was his prime motivation, as it was to some degree large or small to everyone in the company, but with de Graz, well, he seemed the type to put money above the lives of others. Or so Random thought.
Believing thus, Random shook his head. "Sorry, de Graz, that's not quite good enough for me. My vote remains a 'No.'"
Runkild observes the exchange between the mercenary and his party mates with interest. He himself is not against accepting the newcomer -- figuring that he can always rob him after the fact -- but at the same time he is curious to know the reasons pushing someone who barely escaped death to try his luck again, even for some gold.
Del Graz addresses Malutassial while Runkild listens. "The other survivor was an adventurer that relied on his stealth and athleticism for success. He's had enough of Zind and returned home, as far as I know. Why were we the only survivors?" He shrugs. "Perhaps we were better suited for such an endeavor than our companions. The others perished the way you might suspect--falling victim to traps and monsters within the labyrinth."
OOC: The vote stands 1-1 at this point, with Zagnar and Random having casted votes.