Campaign 2 (Astragar) Episode 55: Race for Love

Episode 55 June 09, 2024 01:12:13
Campaign 2 (Astragar) Episode 55: Race for Love
Carrots and Suffering: A D&D Odyssey
Campaign 2 (Astragar) Episode 55: Race for Love

Jun 09 2024 | 01:12:13


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Show Notes

Our heroes rush to save Dread and Max... And I guess Chom.  Our heroes finally agree without hestiation to the same plan.

Music by Todd Ferguson, My Pet Machine on Facebook

Logo by Julie at Elaborate Flight of Fancy

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Episode Transcript

[00:00:30] Speaker A: Welcome to carrots and suffering. A D and D odyssey. I am Nate, your dungeon master and cat Snuggler. Leave us a rating and review. We are on a march to the end of the campaign, so lets get straight into it. Last time on carrots and suffering our heroes got in a fight with the fae. That didnt go so well. At least not as you might have imagined. And had lots of fairy rule breaking. Elarion's wife says, oh, hospitality is violated and points a finger at Creed. I need a stealth roll. [00:01:01] Speaker B: Oh, no. [00:01:02] Speaker C: So how did I violate hospitality? Yeah, I know. [00:01:04] Speaker B: We were being attacked. [00:01:05] Speaker C: This guy just showed up. He, like, teleported in here. [00:01:08] Speaker B: I guess they didn't specifically attack. [00:01:10] Speaker D: I violated hospitality. [00:01:12] Speaker C: Yeah, but why are they going for me? [00:01:14] Speaker A: At this juncture, all three of you have attacked someone. [00:01:17] Speaker D: The people that Creeden attacked are not members of the house. [00:01:20] Speaker E: That is true. [00:01:22] Speaker C: They invaded the space. [00:01:23] Speaker B: They haven't attacked anybody yet. [00:01:25] Speaker C: They weren't invited in. Hospitality doesn't apply if people show up in your house invited. [00:01:30] Speaker B: That's true. They were not invited. [00:01:32] Speaker D: Well, they may have been like, we don't know if they were or not. [00:01:35] Speaker A: I think the fairest interpretation of this. [00:01:38] Speaker E: Is she can get away legally. With attacking Zerus. [00:01:41] Speaker D: Absolutely. [00:01:42] Speaker A: Having finished off the prince's enemies and his unfaithful allies our heroes complete the letter of the agreement at the cost of the fey gods in favor of the fey prince and learn the secrets they came to the feywild to obtain. And then in your minds, all three. [00:01:58] Speaker E: Of you see the same thing. You see Mama and Papa Freikars, age. [00:02:03] Speaker A: Probably 70 in Astragar in their little home. [00:02:07] Speaker E: And there's just this one room that looks. [00:02:10] Speaker A: Looks kind of like a kids room. [00:02:12] Speaker E: But clearly hasn't been touched in decades. [00:02:15] Speaker A: And there's a little shrine to the now dead. [00:02:18] Speaker E: Like freikers with a little picture of him and some candles that have long since burnt down. And you realize that tucked under the pillow in the kid's bedroom is the book you're looking for left in the last place that its current host would feel most secure. [00:02:35] Speaker B: What was like with that shit? [00:02:38] Speaker C: Yeah, serious. [00:02:39] Speaker D: Love it. [00:02:40] Speaker B: Wow. [00:02:42] Speaker C: Are we the baddies, though? [00:02:43] Speaker A: Like, our heroes meet up with Baba Yang, a fey goddess and queen of curses and hexes who informs them that their antics have upset the God of time. And he set the fairy gate to cause them to arrive too late to be of service. 300 years too late. [00:02:58] Speaker B: The fae can't lie. So she's saying, you know, the world beyond is 300 years later. Than when we came here. Then she's probably telling the truth. I don't know how she would stretch that. [00:03:10] Speaker D: All right, all right. Wild idea. Just huddle for a second. Do we care? Like, okay, 300 years have passed. What? Vecna's taken over? [00:03:26] Speaker B: Possibly. [00:03:27] Speaker D: Stop him. [00:03:28] Speaker C: And my boyfriend is dust. No. We have to get back. [00:03:31] Speaker D: All right. Strong ties to the community. Got it. [00:03:35] Speaker A: Our heroes negotiate with the God of time by playing hardball. Using their divine artifact to attack the fey gods by assaulting the memories of their supporters. Which gets them a one way ticket back home. [00:03:47] Speaker D: This feels like it has a trivial answer. We have a book that nobody wants to be in. And if we put someone's name in the book, and the best way to have that lose its power is for us to leave. [00:04:01] Speaker B: So we put eternal knowledge and eternal cycles names in the book. And if they agree to unwarp the time differential, or whatever it is, then we will leave and take their names in the book with us. [00:04:16] Speaker D: I mean, that seems like decent leverage. And sounds like a good trade for them. Oh, no, there's definitely still a score to settle. [00:04:26] Speaker B: Stop talking. [00:04:30] Speaker A: Let's get into it. [00:04:39] Speaker E: You step back out. [00:04:40] Speaker A: A small, three inch tall, old bearded fairy creature with a light zipping around his head says, you just stepped through. And now you're back. Did you not enjoy your visit? [00:04:52] Speaker B: We got exactly what we came for. [00:04:55] Speaker A: A breath of fairy air, perhaps? [00:04:58] Speaker B: Oh, you could say that. [00:05:00] Speaker A: An eyeful of a twinkling cityscape. [00:05:03] Speaker B: We did get that. [00:05:05] Speaker A: Odd. Do come back. [00:05:10] Speaker D: You, too. [00:05:11] Speaker C: Wait, Zerus, are you going to remember the deal that you made? [00:05:16] Speaker B: I don't know. Yeah, that's a good question. [00:05:18] Speaker C: Because aren't you eventually going to. [00:05:21] Speaker B: You're going to forget who you negotiated with. But does that mean he is going to forget the negotiation? [00:05:26] Speaker A: Well, the way the spell works is it removes the knowledge subtly enough that your brain fills in the remainder. So, Zerus will recall he agreed not to come back with somebody. I think he will eventually be like, I think they were the sheriff, maybe. [00:05:42] Speaker B: Uh oh, he might remember talking to the dude who was the medium. [00:05:46] Speaker C: Oh, yeah, but that's, like, a person that he could beat up. I cut to five years from now. Seriously, I'm just gonna go kill that guy. [00:05:55] Speaker B: That's a problem for tomorrow. [00:05:59] Speaker C: Oh, well, if we get got by our own shenanigans, you know? [00:06:06] Speaker A: So, where are you headed? [00:06:08] Speaker B: Well, we need to go to Friker's parents house, so I guess we're heading back to Ashtragar. [00:06:13] Speaker C: Where was it again? [00:06:14] Speaker B: Under, like, freiker's pillow in his old room in his parents house in Ashtragar. Well, here is a new question. We're gonna go where nobody can hear us. How dangerous is it to bring this book and this artifact within Darin's vicinity? [00:06:32] Speaker D: I feel like it's less dangerous than leaving it anywhere. [00:06:35] Speaker B: I mean, true, but something to be on our guard about. I have reservations about just handing it over to him, definitely. [00:06:42] Speaker C: I'm also concerned about that. [00:06:44] Speaker B: But I believe you were right, zurs. We have no business just leaving it somewhere. [00:06:48] Speaker C: Yeah, I don't know. Anywhere that would be safe. [00:06:51] Speaker B: I cannot think who to trust with it either. [00:06:53] Speaker D: There's no one else to trust with it. [00:06:55] Speaker B: All right. To Astragar. We go on horsies. [00:06:58] Speaker C: Can we take a long rest here first? It was like all one stopped time night, but I'm a little tired. [00:07:06] Speaker D: Do we want to bring along with us the acolyte? [00:07:08] Speaker B: Oh. [00:07:09] Speaker C: Oh, yeah. I guess. [00:07:10] Speaker B: I guess if she wants to come. [00:07:11] Speaker C: At least I want to let her know. [00:07:14] Speaker B: I think we'd probably find her and say, you know, we are heading to Ashtragar. Do you want to come? [00:07:20] Speaker A: She says the mask entrusted me with a task. I'm obligated to attempt to fulfill it within the bounds of the church and the faith. I should come with you. And we should find the translator and try to come to an agreement about what we do with the book. [00:07:36] Speaker C: I mean, does she want to destroy it? [00:07:38] Speaker A: The mask has commanded it to be destroyed. [00:07:41] Speaker C: Okay. [00:07:42] Speaker A: Allowing anybody to believe in anything. Remember all of the gods that they want. [00:07:48] Speaker B: So I rolled a 20. Religion. Is it a good bet there is going to be a new translator when we get to Astragar? [00:07:55] Speaker A: No, it's an intensely political fight. It'll go on for months. [00:07:58] Speaker C: Maybe I should put my name in the hat. [00:08:00] Speaker B: Bhilayne will share that. She says there is going to be a lot of tumult in Ashtragar over appointing a new translator. And it is not likely to happen anytime soon. [00:08:10] Speaker D: For the record, I'm for either destroying or writing every fucking name in the book. No half season. At some point, eventually. Not today, not tomorrow. But this ends one way or the other. [00:08:23] Speaker B: I would like to see Vecna gone before we write the silent judge in the book. [00:08:29] Speaker D: Let's do it. I'm fine with that. Someone will. [00:08:33] Speaker B: And possibly van Ulare. [00:08:35] Speaker D: Great. We got a list going. Vanu Alari. Next on the list. You got it. [00:08:40] Speaker B: To Ashtragar on horsies, you get a. [00:08:42] Speaker A: Long rest in the church. There is around two in the morning, all of the church bells start ringing simultaneously, and they are echoed by other bells around the city that all begin to ring in a really quite intense and elaborate tone. There is no sleeping through it. It is wildly loud. It is incredibly persistent, and it is very confusing. [00:09:07] Speaker D: Okay, I look out a window towards the portal. [00:09:11] Speaker A: So you are in the winterlands, and so there's no looking out the windows, but you may go kick the front door open and take a look see out in the street. [00:09:18] Speaker D: Let's do it. [00:09:19] Speaker A: So you swing the door open and. [00:09:21] Speaker E: You see waves of people. [00:09:24] Speaker A: They appear to be evacuating, and they are heading towards the portal with whatever they can carry. [00:09:30] Speaker D: I'll try and stop. Let me know what's. My good man? What's happened? How can I help? And I'll try and be as persuasive and as shiny teeth as I can be. [00:09:40] Speaker A: A nice older gentleman carrying a backpack with sort of two younger people pushing him along, says, oh, that's, that's, that's the city's alarm bell. There's some sort of attack. We're evacuating to the Fae realm. [00:09:51] Speaker D: Let's go. [00:09:51] Speaker C: Can Creiden do, like, a perception? Like, stick her head out and see if she sees? [00:09:55] Speaker A: Sure. [00:09:56] Speaker D: What is attack? [00:09:56] Speaker C: That's a two. [00:09:57] Speaker D: Don't just tell me an attack. Is it the undead? [00:10:00] Speaker B: I got a 22 because I can see in the dark. [00:10:02] Speaker A: He shakes his head and says, I don't know. The bells ring. We leave, and the kids are just shoving him along. And he joins this long line of people who are filing through the portal. Boulain with a 22. You see a death race. An acolyte of the silent judge running down from one of the bell towers skids by you on the floor and dashes out into the snow. [00:10:25] Speaker B: And Boulain will try to catch them and say, what is happening? [00:10:29] Speaker A: Everything in the catacombs is alive. And it's just. It's walking. It's just walking. Get everybody to the portal. [00:10:36] Speaker B: She looks at Creedon and Zurs and says, the same thing is happening here has happened in Mandurah. We need to just go. [00:10:41] Speaker C: Yeah, maybe we grabbed the horses and. [00:10:42] Speaker B: Jail cannot fight this. We need to go. [00:10:45] Speaker D: I'm not going to the portal. Do you have the ability to make the earth shake? [00:10:49] Speaker B: No. I can turn undead, but I cannot turn that many undead. [00:10:55] Speaker D: We should look for magics that can make the earth shake. If they're coming out of catacombs, it might be helpful, but yeah, let's leave for now. [00:11:01] Speaker C: Do not have anything that could do that. [00:11:04] Speaker B: I think I used to. [00:11:06] Speaker A: You don't find any horses. [00:11:08] Speaker B: What, then we're hoofing it. [00:11:11] Speaker C: No, we aren't. That's a problem. [00:11:14] Speaker A: Anti hoofing it. [00:11:15] Speaker C: Who took our horses? What a dirt. [00:11:17] Speaker A: I'll remind you, you did not arrive with horses. You were teleported here from the basement. [00:11:22] Speaker B: Wait, we took horses to Mandra? [00:11:23] Speaker C: That makes sense. Then our horses died in Mandra. Of course. [00:11:28] Speaker A: You start a walk in. I need a survival roll. [00:11:32] Speaker B: I got a 19 on survival. [00:11:34] Speaker A: You find all kinds of footprints that cross the road not in the direction of the road. It's really weird. It is recent. And it occurs to you that whatever made these seems to have just sort of crushed down the vegetation. Like a small army walked through here. [00:11:56] Speaker B: Paladins, maybe? [00:11:58] Speaker D: I don't know. I can't tell how heavy the boot is, but, um, they're. They're wearing boots or their skeleton feet. [00:12:04] Speaker B: Right. [00:12:05] Speaker A: Your survival DC 19 tells you it's a lot of things. You would probably describe some of the fit prints as skeletal. [00:12:14] Speaker B: We can follow these footprints or we can keep heading south. [00:12:17] Speaker D: Let me history what direction they're headed to know, like what might be there of interest. [00:12:21] Speaker A: Yeah, sure. [00:12:23] Speaker D: That is a nine. So it'll be a 14? [00:12:26] Speaker E: I believe so. [00:12:27] Speaker A: There are a few things east of here, but mainly they're headed towards the border of the country. There is the large mining city that is mostly underground. Myloria, out east from coast to mountains. [00:12:43] Speaker E: Desert. [00:12:43] Speaker B: Yeah. Okay. [00:12:45] Speaker A: Yeah. [00:12:46] Speaker D: So how far away is the Freikor's house? [00:12:49] Speaker A: You're heading to Astragar. Like you'll be walking for another day or two. [00:12:52] Speaker C: Okay, so my broom can go 60ft if it's carrying less than 200 pounds. And I could also summon a phantom steed. That would only last an hour, but it only takes a minute to cast it. That could maybe carry two of us. I'm trying to think of ways that we can speed this up. We have four of us. [00:13:10] Speaker B: You said these footprints were very recent. [00:13:12] Speaker A: Yeah. [00:13:13] Speaker B: She sends Brandir up to see if he could fly east a bit to see if he can catch up with them and see what it is. [00:13:19] Speaker D: This is why you're the party leader. You're so brilliant. [00:13:21] Speaker B: Oh, no, not really. It took me, what, five full minutes? If I remember, I had a fucking bird on my shoulder who might be able to see. [00:13:28] Speaker C: I have this broom. I should give it to Bulang. She can see in the dark. And I was like, wait, no. We have Brandir. We don't need that. [00:13:36] Speaker A: Brandir flies up and sees two things immediately. A legion of thousands of creatures stumbling through the plains, walking east to the east of you. He also sees a legion of thousands of creatures to the west, walking east, but to the west of you. [00:13:59] Speaker C: It's go time. [00:14:00] Speaker B: I guess we need to head south. Does he see anything to the south that we need to worry about? [00:14:05] Speaker A: Not immediately. [00:14:07] Speaker B: There are more coming, and we need to not be in their path when they get here. So we should keep going south right now. Yeah. [00:14:13] Speaker D: I don't have anything clever right now, so. I agree. [00:14:16] Speaker B: All right. Okay. [00:14:17] Speaker A: This has become a skill challenge. [00:14:19] Speaker C: Ileana. Does she have any magic that could help her move faster? [00:14:25] Speaker D: She's a level one cleric. [00:14:27] Speaker B: Little baby cleric. [00:14:29] Speaker C: Can I polymorph her into a bird? [00:14:32] Speaker A: Sure, but then she would have the brain of a bird. [00:14:34] Speaker C: I do have polymorph. I could cast polymorph. I could cast phantom steed. And we can use my broom. [00:14:39] Speaker B: Could I use my green man boon to turn into something that could carry us all south? [00:14:42] Speaker C: I can use that if I have magic. [00:14:44] Speaker D: Sure. [00:14:45] Speaker A: Turn everyone into a gust of wind and blow south. [00:14:48] Speaker B: That's not a bad idea. Maybe we should do that. Maybe we should become the wind and just get to Ashtragar in an hour. [00:14:56] Speaker C: That's a great use of this. All right. You're using yours. Can it get all of us? [00:15:01] Speaker B: Blaine will use hers to get us to Astragar faster. As wind. [00:15:04] Speaker D: Yeah, it's wind walk. That's right. [00:15:06] Speaker A: Your green man bloon is also gone. You blow directly southwest to Astragar. You turn into a puff of smoke, roll through Florian, and head to the astro. [00:15:21] Speaker B: See more creatures around Florian and Nepeel. [00:15:24] Speaker A: By the time you hit Florian, whatever was there was gone. And you don't really get anywhere near Nepeal. Although you do remember that Max and Dredd are from Nepeel and are probably there right now. When you pass through Florian. The city is empty. The people fled Florian and went somewhere. There's no undead in sight either. And you arrive in Astragar. [00:15:49] Speaker E: It takes a few hours, but you. [00:15:50] Speaker B: Get there, so it's probably, like, the sun's probably rising. Okay. [00:15:54] Speaker A: You arrive in Astragar at dawn. [00:15:56] Speaker B: Bulayne will do, ascending to dread. [00:16:00] Speaker C: Oh, thank you. I was about to be like, can you cast scry? Like, I gotta figure out what's going on over there. [00:16:06] Speaker B: She sends a message to Dredd and says, if you are not already headed to Ashtragar, you need to get here now. [00:16:12] Speaker C: Be wary of undead. [00:16:13] Speaker B: Please give me more than a monosyllabic dread answer. [00:16:18] Speaker C: Okay. Okay. Like, tell me where you are, Roger. [00:16:24] Speaker A: He responds with, the dead have risen in appeal. Good luck. [00:16:29] Speaker C: No. [00:16:33] Speaker D: I think we go meet him in appeal. [00:16:35] Speaker B: I think we hope he's on his way here. [00:16:37] Speaker C: I would be willing to go pivot. [00:16:39] Speaker D: An appeal for a NPC driven side quest. Let's go. [00:16:44] Speaker C: I got my dredd in distress. [00:16:48] Speaker D: In distredd my dread and distress. [00:16:52] Speaker B: I didn't know Dred wore dresses. [00:16:55] Speaker A: I'll say later on it'll be dread and distress. [00:16:57] Speaker B: Yeah, but bam. Look at this dress. [00:17:00] Speaker C: Gotta take it back to the sarong. Getting something nice. [00:17:02] Speaker B: I think our priority is to find the book in like, Freiker's house. Do you all agree with that? That's the first thing we need to do. [00:17:11] Speaker D: Okay, we're doing it. It's happening right now. [00:17:14] Speaker C: I will use my green and bone to wind us over to an appeal immediately after this, if I need to, I will burn it. [00:17:20] Speaker D: Let's do it. I'm for it. Let's save those guys. [00:17:23] Speaker A: You head to like Freiker's parents house. It is a small place. It does not look like it has any opulence or wealth to it. It is sort of the House of commoners. There are several refugees from. You imagine one of the nearby towns who are essentially camped in the living room. When you come to the door, it swings open and a teetering old man, tall, skinny, completely bald, very kind of liver spotted, etc. [00:17:47] Speaker E: Says, what? Can I. [00:17:48] Speaker A: Can I help you? I'm afraid we've taken in as many as we can. [00:17:51] Speaker B: We are refugees, master frikers. We are church officials. And I know and I am deeply sorry for the recent loss of your son. But we are here to collect something that we believe is in his room and we need to get it now. [00:18:05] Speaker A: Roll me persuasion head there without stopping. [00:18:10] Speaker B: You're just going in, Zerus, roll me. [00:18:12] Speaker A: Intimidate. [00:18:13] Speaker D: Sure, that's a natural one. [00:18:16] Speaker B: Oh, no, I got a twelve. [00:18:19] Speaker A: So, Zerus, you go to push past this old man and that is not a problem whatsoever. However, the group of like six refugees camping in the living room immediately stand up and come to this guy's aid. And you, you are looking at not one old guy now, but like six fairly fit middle aged guys. You're pretty sure you could take them, but they're definitely like, what's going on here, huh? And you know, you've got basically a bunch of chest bumping alpha males between you and this door. Boulain with a twelve. He looks at you and says, I'm sorry, we're still grieving. I cannot allow a church official in this house. [00:18:54] Speaker B: Okay? We are inquisition people. [00:18:57] Speaker D: I mean, I have an answer to. [00:18:59] Speaker A: This, but go for it. [00:19:00] Speaker B: Do it. Do it. [00:19:01] Speaker D: I cast misty step and walk through the door. [00:19:03] Speaker A: You puff into smoke and pop to the other side of the room and swing the kid's door open and step in. There is a pristine room that looks like it housed a teenager, possibly decades ago. Little pound puppy dangling from one of these bookshelves. Baby paladins, gods, a to z book. [00:19:21] Speaker D: Heresy. [00:19:23] Speaker A: And as you look around the room, you get the distinct impression, like, this guy was gunning hard to be a paladin of mask. And there's sort of mask paraphernalia everywhere. There are the equivalent of posters of prominent mask officials poked up, which are sort of the boy bands of his era. This is the room of a child who really wanted to be a paladin. [00:19:47] Speaker C: I get it. [00:19:48] Speaker A: And sitting, just sort of sticking half out from under the pillow, is this leather Tome that you recognize immediately as the same one you found in Palmville in the secret hiding spot in the study of amaranth strain. [00:20:03] Speaker D: I nick it. [00:20:04] Speaker A: It still feels kind of warm. The sick, chest thumping alpha males are, by your show of magic, bewildered and back the hell off. Meanwhile, the old man is just shaking his head at you, Boulain. He does not want to let you in. He does not want to cooperate. You're not getting words out of him anymore. Just like frustrated head shakes. [00:20:25] Speaker D: Okay, am I correct in assuming this bedroom has a window? [00:20:27] Speaker A: It does. [00:20:29] Speaker D: You go ahead. I'm gonna leave by the window. [00:20:31] Speaker B: I want you to know that I wrote a letter on your son's behalf heading into his trial. [00:20:36] Speaker A: Nah. Are you boulain? Oh, they read your letter at the trial. [00:20:40] Speaker B: I am glad to hear it. [00:20:42] Speaker E: Romi. [00:20:42] Speaker A: A persuasion roll again to augment this. Like giving you advantage, but you get a second shot. [00:20:49] Speaker B: Oh, that's a lot better. 24. [00:20:51] Speaker A: He puts a hand on your shoulder, and you see sort of big tears well up in his face, and he says, I know he did bad, but you gotta know he was just. [00:20:58] Speaker E: He's just. [00:20:59] Speaker B: He was trying to do good through the wrong means. And I understand that drive. I liked him for what it was worth. Two of the three of us did like him. [00:21:08] Speaker A: Two out of three inquisitioners. [00:21:11] Speaker C: Okay, but that wasn't enough to get him not executed. [00:21:15] Speaker B: And she will give him a blessing of the silent judge. I pray that the raven queen saw him swiftly, although she knows that's not what happened? Because he's an undead now. But she says, may the raven queen resolve his soul quickly. [00:21:31] Speaker A: I'm sure she did. [00:21:32] Speaker E: I have every faith that she has. [00:21:34] Speaker A: Taken our son under her wing and flown him to the afterlife, where he belongs. [00:21:41] Speaker B: At this point, as Zurich come back. [00:21:42] Speaker D: Around the house, I assume I'm misty stepping through the window again. [00:21:46] Speaker C: I mean, I feel like. Yeah, as soon as I saw you, like, go into the room, I was like, okay, yeah, we're pretty much done here. Like, you're gonna get it and go. [00:21:53] Speaker B: Master Freikkers, I wish you and your wife peace. We will be on our way. [00:21:57] Speaker A: He closes the door. [00:22:00] Speaker D: Got it. I don't flash it, but. [00:22:04] Speaker B: All right, great. What do we do next? [00:22:06] Speaker E: But you were told the plan was to find that book so that archsage Mason could take you to Meloria, open a portal between this world and the realm of the dead, and throw the book in. Thus giving you the ability to actually fight and kill Vecna. [00:22:23] Speaker D: Why did we have to do that in Maloria? [00:22:26] Speaker E: Meloria is apparently where the veil is. [00:22:29] Speaker B: The thinnest and the undead are all heading towards Miloria, which probably has to do with that thing. I guess my question is, if Vecna is a vestigial death God, do we want to throw the book into the realm of the dead? Does that make any damn sense? Isn't that, like, handing him his book? Like, here you go, man. [00:22:54] Speaker C: Well, I think the point is that we are handing him the book to summon him, right? So then we could take him out. [00:23:00] Speaker B: I think that it was Fraser's, that he would be vulnerable if we threw the book out of the mortal realm, into the realm of the dead. [00:23:05] Speaker E: As long as that book is around here, killing him is temporary. You have already banished him once. [00:23:11] Speaker C: Kraiden's brain is not big enough to understand all of these weird God books that are flying all over the place. [00:23:17] Speaker B: And in our possession. [00:23:21] Speaker C: I have incredible power and I do not understand, but. [00:23:25] Speaker B: I'm willing to use it. Are we trusting the arch sage implicitly at this point? Because this seems sus as fuck, doesn't it? [00:23:35] Speaker C: I mean, we're pretty sure that he was also a God whose name was written down at one point, right? [00:23:40] Speaker B: Well, his name is in the book. [00:23:43] Speaker D: Yeah, I don't know. [00:23:45] Speaker C: For all we know, he's trying to build his own army of other gods. [00:23:48] Speaker D: My only problem with not trusting him is I don't have a better plan or know how to get one. [00:23:52] Speaker B: This is true. I mean, we really have no idea what direction to go if we don't go his direction. I'm just wondering. He's doing away with all these other vestiges. He has two vestigial gods on his side also trying to do away with the other vestiges. Are they trying to form their new pantheon with them at the heads? [00:24:12] Speaker C: What I don't get is Vecna's name is already written in the book, and gods are gaining their power from believers. How exactly is Vecna causing us problems right now? [00:24:20] Speaker B: That is an excellent question. [00:24:22] Speaker C: I mean, I can kind of understand, you know, the. The arch sage, possibly, you know, being rather weakened and being semi mortal, maybe we don't really know what his deal is, but I don't understand how Vegna seems to be gaining power. Couldn't we just try to write Vecna's name in the book again, if there's people who are remembering him? And then maybe fix the problem? [00:24:41] Speaker B: Here's a thought. We should go rescue Max in dread in. And then come back here and maybe go see the arch sage. [00:24:49] Speaker C: However, we will then have to journey across all of the dead to get back. We only have the one boon left. [00:24:55] Speaker B: It is true, we are putting ourselves east of the tide. [00:24:59] Speaker C: Potentially. If we talk to the archdeacon, we can tell them what we're doing. Maybe even bring him with us. And then he can teleport us. Because it seemed like his plan was to teleport us to malaria. [00:25:10] Speaker B: Maybe he could teleport us to Nepeel. [00:25:12] Speaker D: Yeah. What's the relationship between Maloria and Nepale. [00:25:16] Speaker E: Is kind of the halfway mark. The eastern portion of the country is rolling hills and forest up into the mountains. Nepeel is south in the rolling hills and forests. Maloria is far, far east in the mountains. [00:25:31] Speaker D: And we'd be headed that way either. [00:25:32] Speaker E: Way, sort of on the way. [00:25:35] Speaker D: All right, maybe we just go to Maloria, the long way from Nepeel, and. Yeah, figure it out. When we get there, do we just. [00:25:44] Speaker B: Tell him to meet us there? [00:25:45] Speaker C: Maybe we circumvent him all together. [00:25:47] Speaker D: Yeah, maybe we don't tell him to meet us there. But if we get there and we can't figure it out, we can message him. [00:25:51] Speaker C: If he does have some grand, evil. [00:25:53] Speaker B: Plan, if we need him there, he can teleport himself. There's. [00:25:57] Speaker D: He can. He can figure out his own ride. [00:25:59] Speaker B: All right. To Nepeal. [00:26:00] Speaker C: Do we have a way to contact him? [00:26:02] Speaker E: Sending spells? [00:26:04] Speaker D: Yeah, sending. [00:26:05] Speaker E: So the plan is go to Nepeel first, use your green man boon. Correct. Claire? [00:26:11] Speaker B: Last one. [00:26:12] Speaker C: Yes. [00:26:12] Speaker E: It's the time the green man's power swells around you. You fade into clouds and blow with the wind at an increasingly alarming pace. Whipping across the countryside through the afternoon, you quickly see a large group of maybe 50 or 60 refugees coming up the road that you were following to get an appeal, headed towards Astragar. [00:26:41] Speaker C: Can we slow our wind with a lot of effort? [00:26:43] Speaker B: Did we see undead coming to intercept them, or are they. No, their path is clear. Okay, great. [00:26:49] Speaker E: You haven't seen any undead because the place they would be coming from south of Astragar is that town you destroyed. [00:26:57] Speaker B: Mandra. [00:26:57] Speaker E: Yes. [00:26:58] Speaker B: Okay. I'm not sorry. [00:26:59] Speaker E: They seem to be safe as a result, though. So, you know, helping. You do notice before you blow by, that it is largely children. It seems to be about, you know, ten old people and 40 kids ish. And a small smattering of people who don't look able bodied that seem to be fleeing. Nice, slow, even pace. Looks like they had time to pack even. But they're heading to Astragar. You catch sight of the forest of Napil. From the air, it looks like a massive forest stretching as far as the eye can see, with these huge scars ripping through it in all directions, spiraling away from the river. The forest of Nepeel has been the home of the green man and the timber industry for centuries. Legend has it these two battled each other fiercely before the founding of the empire, after which they struck a truce and really became one force of survival for the fittest. Today, Nepeel is a collection of green man worshiping lumberjacks. Strewn out through this hundreds of miles of forest along a seemingly endless river. Every mile or so is these lumberjacking waypoints where logs are hauled, thrown into the river. They float down the river to this giant, empirical sawmill and the small town that surrounds it. When people refer to Nepeel, they are referring to the small town, but also based the whole forest, because it is filled with logging camps that stretch out through 100 miles of forest. As you travel and blow through the forest on your way to this sawmill camp, you see swaths of destruction where the logging industry has just ripped the trees out. But you also see patches of truly dark and terrifying forest that is looks basically impassable if you were not made of a cloud. And the threat of alpha predators, bears, and wolves is omnipresent. One thing you do notice as you begin passing camps is that they're all empty. You don't see any people in the first sets of lumber camps. And then you quickly arrive at a small town, looks to be about maybe 50 buildings. Totally. The main one is this massive lumber mill next to a river which is jam packed with logs. You see ropes and axes everywhere, but there's no one at the lumber mill. As you pull into town and transition back into a person from a cloud and your green man blessing fades. [00:29:30] Speaker C: I do have a quick point of order here. If the green man blessing was the spell wind walk, I'm reading it, it actually lasts 8 hours and you can go back in and out of it. [00:29:41] Speaker E: Okay, fair. [00:29:43] Speaker B: Okay. But wait. If we had 8 hours to use it, we could still use Boulain's green man charm. [00:29:48] Speaker C: And I was gonna not mention that one. [00:29:50] Speaker B: And Creedon could still have hers. [00:29:52] Speaker E: I'm gonna say that it took you still in wind walk probably two or 3 hours to get there. You turned into a humans. [00:29:58] Speaker C: You I'm okay with having used mine for this. [00:30:00] Speaker E: Negotiated your way to the house. Yeah. Okay. You have just enough. [00:30:05] Speaker B: Okay. [00:30:05] Speaker E: We will say that Cretan still has her green man blessing. Perhaps it will be enough to get you to malaria. That boulain spell is done. [00:30:14] Speaker B: Is done, right? [00:30:15] Speaker D: Sure. [00:30:16] Speaker E: Because you have now crossed half the goddamn country. [00:30:19] Speaker B: Yes. [00:30:20] Speaker C: But now if we need to use mine for this, we can also get max and dread in on it. [00:30:24] Speaker B: Yes. [00:30:24] Speaker C: Creatures. This spell rules. [00:30:26] Speaker D: It's very. [00:30:27] Speaker B: It is. [00:30:28] Speaker D: The travel spells are amazing. The level ten travel spells are real good. [00:30:32] Speaker E: This town is dead quiet. When you land, you see no sign of life anywhere except for the occasional hacked apart ghoul that appears to have been killed brutally with an axe. Every couple of streets as you wander through this weirdly empty, quiet wasteland, the sun begins to set and you spot the catacombs. Now, the catacombs is a truly monumental feat because the soil here is terrible for digging. So someone has found a cave and enlarged a cave to make these catacombs. And so it's sort of. If you imagine traveling down the Columbia river gorge, you're basically seeing one of those walls that waterfalls come off of and a big gaping hole in it. [00:31:22] Speaker B: Can I roll to see what I know about the silent judge? Priest two would be here. [00:31:27] Speaker E: Give me an advantaged history. [00:31:30] Speaker A: Roll eleven. [00:31:33] Speaker E: You know they have a bishop. You know they've been here for a long time and you know their name. Cadaverous Darkthorn. [00:31:40] Speaker C: Wow, what a name. [00:31:42] Speaker B: Guessing they gave themselves that name. [00:31:44] Speaker E: They did. [00:31:45] Speaker B: Cadaverous darkthorn. [00:31:47] Speaker C: Yeah. [00:31:48] Speaker E: They become bishops, they get to choose their own names and they. They get very thematic with them. [00:31:53] Speaker B: I mean, my name means moon death I can't really, like, complain. [00:31:59] Speaker E: It's just one level hidden. Theirs was not hidden. They didn't obfuscate theirs. [00:32:04] Speaker C: I feel like as soon as we became corporeal again and Creedon could not hear any ghouls or anything around, she probably immediately starts calling out Dredd's name, and then it's like, does anybody have thaumaturgy? I gotta see if he can hear us. [00:32:20] Speaker B: I have thaumaturgy. I will amplify her voice with thaumaturgy. [00:32:24] Speaker E: I approve of you using it to amplify someone else's voice. [00:32:27] Speaker B: All right, all right. Your voice is a bullhorn. [00:32:32] Speaker C: Be sure to edit this to make it really loud and blow everybody's ear to teeth. [00:32:37] Speaker B: Is there a bullhorn effect you can. [00:32:38] Speaker E: Do also, max, your voice rolls over the town, and in a few seconds you see eight lumberjacks that emerge coming running from the direction of the catacombs into the middle of town to find you. They have massive over the shoulder logging axes. One of them has a sort of a horse drawn carriage, and he's pulling large barrels of something behind it, and they basically all come at a sprint as they roll into the middle of town. They're like, where? What's going on? [00:33:19] Speaker A: Hello, listeners. I am Vana Ulare, the ghost of youthful beauty. Historically, I was a goddess of death, or more accurately, an elven goddess of aging. My power stems from the fear it imposes as each and every mortal mourns the loss of their younger body and mind. And I am here to tell you about the gods. Not the lines of the church, as you might get from the archsage, but the truth of them. Some gods are concepts like the earth beneath your feet. Every moment you are alive, it affects you. Each step you take is dependent on it. And in the face of its power, in sheer size, you are less than the smallest ant. A speck of fungus on a rock too large to even know it has an infection. An uncaring earth is too scary to not worship. And so all the creatures of this world have forever sent tiny prayers, some nameless, others more purposefully. Some mortals even decided the dirt and rock with a body of a dead God. Easier to believe a thing with so much power as unthinking than uncaring. This is how mortals made the green man. And no amount of mind erasing magic could ever hope to stop him. Some gods, like me, were alive. We were mortals. We lived a life of singular purpose and died, as all mortals do. But those who remember us use their stories to forge gods upon andals of observation, hammers of words and fires of action, sending their prayers up to creatures with an endless number of names. And over time, they combine and form concepts again. Most remember their lives as little more than a bad dream. But I remember mine well. Realm. Because I am the goddess of those who mourn what they have forgotten and what they know they will forget. Sister truth, the mask. Divine mercy. And divine hammer. These are all former denizens of the mortal realm. Most would never admit it. And most have forgotten more of their true original selves than you or I could ever hope to learn again. You see, gods are forged. They are instruments, like a grand trumpet, taking in the breath of mortals and expelling it to great heights of dizzy and ear splitting pain. But over time, the shape of the instrument changes as the mortals send stories and prayers to the heavens. And so the trumpet that I am today is nothing like the one I once was. You may be wondering what I hope you to learn from this story. The answer is hubris. Pride. Righteousness. Every God knows that they exist because humanity wanted them, needed them to exist. Every God knows truths and power that no single mortal could ever hope to replicate. They are certain of themselves. That was how Astragarian Contessa killed them. [00:37:00] Speaker E: Hubris. [00:37:01] Speaker A: She told them the humans would meet and expel the gods who no longer served them. And every God knew it wouldn't be them. They had no idea of her true intentions. The majority of gods agreed to abide by the decisions of the mortals and to enforce their will in a grand gamble, certain in their own safety. And when the mortals made their decisions. [00:37:30] Speaker E: The gods were cast out of the. [00:37:32] Speaker A: Heavens to scrap for prayers, wandering the earth. [00:37:37] Speaker E: But she. [00:37:39] Speaker A: She had a plan for them too. A God of magic spells to weave magic against them. A goddess of curses to spread it around the world. And a goddess of wasting to destroy the memories and linger just long enough to end those who might remember. I am not proud of what I have become. But I did not make me. [00:38:06] Speaker E: You did. [00:38:18] Speaker C: Okay. They aren't aggressive. Just check. [00:38:21] Speaker E: No, no. A guy hops down off the cart and walks up and says, hi, Charlie Cartwright. Who the hell are you? [00:38:27] Speaker D: We're the dark arbiters. We're looking for Dredd and Max. [00:38:31] Speaker E: Oh, you're looking. I mean, Max is up at the catacombs. [00:38:35] Speaker C: Where's Dredd? [00:38:36] Speaker E: I don't know where. [00:38:37] Speaker C: My voice is still really loud. [00:38:39] Speaker B: The quiet awkward one. [00:38:41] Speaker E: The quiet awkward one. [00:38:42] Speaker D: We'll go talk to Max. [00:38:44] Speaker E: You know, that doesn't really describe anybody. [00:38:46] Speaker A: I know. [00:38:46] Speaker E: Hey, head on over there. And you know, if you spot any more undead, shout. We're the. We're a team chopper. We go to the shouts during the daytime. Cut them down. [00:38:55] Speaker D: Appreciate your help, team chopper. [00:38:57] Speaker A: Hey, no problem. [00:38:58] Speaker B: Eyes of the grave feature to see if there's undead within the catacombs. [00:39:02] Speaker E: So there are things you get to learn before you get to the door. But remember that for just a second because that will be very relevant in a moment. At the front of the catacombs again, imagine a large sort of ravine wall, like the side of the Columbia river gorge. There is a massive set of stone doors built into the side of this thing. And on the outside, there is a camp that has been set up. And you see about 20 people wearily getting out of bed like they've been sleeping all day. And there's clearly a command center of this camp where you see four people in their late sixties. You see two women, very long gray hair. Both of them. Both of them are wearing bishop's attire. So they are dressed in sort of official church business robes. You can clearly tell this is a bishop of sun and the bishop of the moon. Hanging out with them is a towering, incredibly muscular female lumberjack in her late sixties, you imagine. And next to her is a very tall, skinny guy, also in his late sixties, carrying a crossbow. The lumberjack has this massive greataxe. And then spread around them are all these lumberjacks who appear to have been trying to get in a sleeping shift. [00:40:17] Speaker B: Whoops. [00:40:21] Speaker C: I don't care. They don't need their beauty sleep. This is important. [00:40:24] Speaker B: This is love. Damn it. [00:40:27] Speaker E: The two bishops look over at you and the woman who is this again, towering late sixties lumberjack with a great axe walks up and says, maxine. Maxine Killington. You can call me Max. Kill. She extends this massive muscled hand. [00:40:44] Speaker B: Oh, my God. [00:40:46] Speaker D: I accept the hand and give her a hearty shake. [00:40:50] Speaker E: You receive a hearty shake back. And she says, what seems to be the business that brings you here? There's not enough of you to be reinforcements? [00:40:59] Speaker C: We saw all of the undead coming. You probably know Max's best friend, Dredd. I'm Credon. I'm his girlfriend. We came here to try to save you, but it actually looks like you're all doing pretty well. But I am still hoping to find Dredd and possibly take Dredd and Max with us for some. Some work that we need to do to help fix this undead problem. [00:41:23] Speaker E: Maxine tilts her head to the side. She says, dread, dread. Dread. I mean, Max's. Best friend, Millie. [00:41:30] Speaker C: What? [00:41:31] Speaker E: Yeah, yeah, yeah. No, a little millie. A little Milton celestial moonbeam ambrosia. [00:41:38] Speaker D: Yeah. So they go by dreadnow. [00:41:42] Speaker C: Yeah. [00:41:43] Speaker E: Oh, okay. [00:41:44] Speaker C: Yeah. [00:41:44] Speaker E: Sorry about that. Anyway, quite quiet. [00:41:46] Speaker B: Awkward chapter. [00:41:47] Speaker E: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. [00:41:48] Speaker B: Very smart. [00:41:50] Speaker E: Max's friend from the little kiddo. Yeah. [00:41:52] Speaker C: Yeah. That's dread. [00:41:53] Speaker E: Yeah. Oh, they're off defending the Ambrosia house up that way. Little Millie's parents. [00:41:58] Speaker B: Do we need. What is going on in the catacombs? [00:42:01] Speaker E: Oh, well, everything's fucking alive. Every last thing is alive. Millie rolled into town and basically said, like, hey, everything in the catacombs is alive, you dummies. So we came and we locked the door. Anyway, some of them must have gotten out. There's a bunch of them running around town during the day, which we've got about 40 minutes of left. They go hide, you know, in the woods and in the bear caves and off under the rocks and stuff from the sunlight. And then at night, they all come back out and, like, ravage the place. So we're. We're just actually, like, the door is pretty well reinforced. Our job is to keep the undead in the city from coming and opening it, because that seems to be their big goal. [00:42:43] Speaker B: What has come of Bishop Darkthorn? [00:42:45] Speaker E: He took half of the non combatants and went with them into the forest. The other half went with several other bishops to Astragar. [00:42:54] Speaker B: Ah. Where was he taking people? In the forest. Into the forest just to escape the town? Or were they heading for something? [00:43:03] Speaker E: I don't know how to put this. And you see the tall guy lean forward and said, hey, hey, I'm Jerry. Jerry Killington. Work. Work down selling. Selling carts. I'm a cart salesman. I can get you a good deal, by the way, if you need a good cart before you head out. Hey, let me. Let me. Let me butt in here, because this is really my. My thing. All the. All the townspeople kind of got together, and they were like, hey, there's undead roaming around trying to murder us. Let's take all the kids and send them somewhere safe. But if there's a zombie apocalypse on, we couldn't figure out where that was. So half of them decided it was safer to go, like, rough it in the woods, and half of them decided to head for civilization. We figure split the difference, maximum survival. [00:43:42] Speaker B: I hate to be a harbinger of bad things, but the undead are walking everywhere, and they are heading east in droves. [00:43:51] Speaker E: East as in to here, or east is in, like, the desert. [00:43:56] Speaker C: They're heading to Meloria. But you may be in the path. [00:43:59] Speaker E: Oh, shit. [00:44:00] Speaker C: They are coming from all over. [00:44:02] Speaker B: They are coming from west, and they are moving east. [00:44:05] Speaker E: I see. And he looks over and says, bishop. Bishop, I need you. And these two older women walk up, and one of them says, so I did. Over here. I'm Celestia, by the way. Local bishop of the radiant one. It occurs to me that we might be in the line of fire, but it also occurs to me that we were holding back an undead force here. I don't think we can abandon that duty, no matter what. So I appreciate you bringing this information. Are you going to stay and fight? Because we have team Carver, chopper, and splinter here. Carver's job is to patrol during the daytime. Chopper responds to alerts, and then splinter is here to defend at night. Feel free to pick a team. [00:44:56] Speaker B: Does Splinter have little turtles helping him? [00:44:59] Speaker E: No, no, they appear to be, uh, plaid ridden lumberjacks. [00:45:05] Speaker C: By the way, what's the bishop of the moon's name? [00:45:07] Speaker E: Serafina. [00:45:09] Speaker C: Oh, man. I thought you might have done a celestia and Luna. My little pony joke. [00:45:12] Speaker B: He might have to be more familiar with my little ponies to make my little pony joke. [00:45:16] Speaker C: I don't recommend it, but I'm not a brony. [00:45:21] Speaker E: But I could play one on tv if I meant to. [00:45:26] Speaker C: You could. You can fill it up. [00:45:30] Speaker B: All right. We should. You want to go find dredd? Yes. [00:45:35] Speaker C: Yes. That is my top priority. If you go elsewhere, I am probably going to head to that ambrosia house. Also, every time Maxine says, little Billy Creedon looks like she bit into a living as another angsty young adult with her own chosen name. [00:45:52] Speaker B: With her made up name. [00:45:53] Speaker C: Yes. [00:45:55] Speaker B: Well, I think we should probably stick together. What did my eyes of the grave tell me about catacombs? It's swarming with undead, so there's a. [00:46:02] Speaker E: Thumping noise on the door that has not stopped the whole time you're there. And when you use your eyes of the grave, there is undead there. It's not nearly as much as you'd expect it. [00:46:12] Speaker B: All right, well, I think we should stick together and go. Go find Max and dread. [00:46:17] Speaker D: I agree. While we're walking. [00:46:20] Speaker C: Walking? Creedon's, like speed walking. Like, come on. Come on. [00:46:25] Speaker D: All right, we'll head straight there. [00:46:27] Speaker C: I mean, you can. You can still talk during this jogger. This is just like, as an in character, she's, like, hustling. [00:46:33] Speaker D: I was wondering if all the catacombs are built the same, and if we can rely on these catacombs, if they're built the same then we can figure out if we can just destroy them. [00:46:41] Speaker B: Every catacomb is going to be suited to the environment in which it is built. So they are all going to be a little different, but they should have the same basic parts to them, if that makes sense. [00:46:53] Speaker D: Sure. Just let's think about solving this catacomb while they're still trapped there. [00:46:59] Speaker B: I am not opposed to destroying catacombs to destroy the undead within. How we do that? Because it is a caveat. I do not. [00:47:08] Speaker C: Only one of us were a druid. [00:47:09] Speaker B: If only one of us were a. [00:47:10] Speaker C: Druid sorcerer, had that earthy magic. [00:47:14] Speaker B: You do have that earthy magic. [00:47:15] Speaker D: Fireball magic. [00:47:16] Speaker C: Well, I mean, I can cast fireball. Yeah. [00:47:18] Speaker D: All right, we will think about that later. [00:47:20] Speaker C: Isn't there like a move earth spell or something like that? That would be great, but the question. [00:47:25] Speaker B: Is, if we cave in all the catacombs, will that actually kill all the undead? [00:47:29] Speaker C: Maybe not. But if I make it take a long time to dig themselves out, and hopefully when we take out Vecna, that problem I would hope solves itself. [00:47:36] Speaker B: I will say there are not nearly as many undead in the catacombs as I would expect if the entire catacomb rose up. They are not all still walking. [00:47:45] Speaker E: You arrive at the edge of town in the only place that does not look like a rundown lumber town log cabin. It appears to have been made by artists. Its like a little ranch commune. And theres a big sign that says Ambrosia Ranch. And you see all of these statues and paintings just decorate the lawn. There's wood carvings and plaster and stonework, all kinds of sort of different shapes and figures just everywhere. A lot of them are painted, usually pretty spectacularly. Roll me a history roll. [00:48:25] Speaker C: Not one. Oh, no. [00:48:27] Speaker E: Creden has advantage. [00:48:29] Speaker C: Oh, cool. [00:48:30] Speaker B: I got a ten. [00:48:31] Speaker C: That's a two. [00:48:33] Speaker A: Nice. [00:48:34] Speaker C: I got a nat one and a two. I am focused on seeing my boyfriend's face. [00:48:38] Speaker B: You don't care where he's been. You care where he is now. [00:48:42] Speaker D: I rolled a 15 for a 20. [00:48:44] Speaker E: Boulain, the name Ambrosia sounds familiar. Creedon, you're not picking up on anything. You are not in the art scene. As an astrogarian citizen, it turns out I prefer music. Zerus, the ambrosias are famous. This is basically like the Da Vincis or the Michelangelos of the current era. You know that they actually moved out to a rural area to be sort of undisturbed and to escape the city to improve their art. And you are looking at their ranch a two person couple. One of them is known for sculpture work and the other for painting. [00:49:26] Speaker C: I love how Dredd and I are both just spoiled kids. [00:49:28] Speaker B: Spoiled rich kids. [00:49:30] Speaker C: Spoiled rich kids in their goth phases. It's not a phase, Boulain. [00:49:36] Speaker D: Yeah, but a phase can be a long time. [00:49:38] Speaker B: A phase can be a very long time. [00:49:41] Speaker C: Claire the player is also still in her goth phase. [00:49:43] Speaker B: Fair. [00:49:44] Speaker E: So, you know, fair notice a very distinct lack of color in all of our dress. So clearly it goes around. [00:49:51] Speaker B: Black is a very sensible color. Thank you very much. [00:49:53] Speaker C: I don't understand what's wrong with black gray. [00:49:58] Speaker E: Walking through this menagerie of sculpture, arriving at this overdone artistic exterior of a cabin, and the door swings open and out steps a flowing woman. And maybe in her early sixties, she's wispy, thin. She's basically wearing a silk kimono nightdress from head to toe, and it's just covered in paint stains. And she steps out and goes, oh my gosh. Visitors come in. [00:50:28] Speaker D: I come in. [00:50:30] Speaker C: Miss Ambrosia? [00:50:32] Speaker E: That's me. Let's see now. Who are you? [00:50:37] Speaker C: I'm Credon. I'm looking for your son. [00:50:39] Speaker E: Oh, you are Creedon. Oh my gosh. And she just like runs up and slams her whole hippy dippy body into you. [00:50:50] Speaker C: Divine mercy. People are definitely touchy people. Craden's into getting hugs and she turns. [00:50:56] Speaker E: Around and just all over you is sliding you into the house. When you step in, there's a guy covered in visible plaster still dried to him in places in his early sixties. And across the house you see Max Chom and dredd in a makeshift war room in the living room surrounded by these like psychedelic paintings, basically sitting on this like shag carpet around this little tiny end table in a room with no chairs. Despite that they have made a map of the city and have it sort of pinned to the table with a knife and are discussing strategy when Dredd looks up and goes, oh. And he stands up and calmly walks over to Creedon and he grabs your hand with his hand and he says, mom, this is Creiden. And she says, oh, I know, sweetie. I know, sweetie. We met outside. [00:51:52] Speaker A: And isn't she darling? [00:51:54] Speaker E: And she just kind of like grabs both of your cheeks, gets way too close to your face. [00:51:59] Speaker C: You have a lovely home. It's so colorful. [00:52:02] Speaker E: Mom, you're embarrassing me. [00:52:06] Speaker C: Creedon's smiling. She's just happy to see him and also thinks this is kind of funny. [00:52:11] Speaker E: Dredd's dad walks over and says, nice to meet you. He does not extend a hand to shake your hand. You don't think he shakes hands? [00:52:21] Speaker C: Creedon probably did extend her hand and then slowly withdraws it. Very lovely to meet you. I definitely thought that you were in more trouble than you appeared to be in. I'm super happy that you're safe. We might need your help resolving this problem. [00:52:37] Speaker E: Max stands up and he says, oh. [00:52:39] Speaker C: We'Re oh, in trouble. [00:52:41] Speaker E: We're in trouble. Like several hundred people have died. City is. Is. Is fucked. We could use a hand. [00:52:48] Speaker A: Come here. [00:52:49] Speaker E: And he takes you over to this map and points at it. And there's just like Red X's all over this thing. And he says, what do you see? Dredd? And Dredd says they're hiding at random, attacking at random, trying to pull the forces away from the catacombs door. The first couple of days it was shadows. The next couple of days it was ghouls. But everybody in the peel carries an axe. Now we're just down to leadership. But the leadership is very powerful. [00:53:20] Speaker B: What are they? [00:53:21] Speaker E: I don't know. [00:53:22] Speaker B: What are they? Like? [00:53:23] Speaker E: They have different forms. Some bodies, some not all with different powers. It's clear they're here gathering necrotic energy. [00:53:36] Speaker D: From what? [00:53:37] Speaker B: From the bodies. [00:53:39] Speaker E: They're soaking it up from the air like a sponge. They're building power and they want to leave. [00:53:49] Speaker B: What? Can I roll Nate to see if I know what this is? [00:53:51] Speaker E: Roll me. Knowledge, religion, please. [00:53:53] Speaker B: Okay, that's an 18 plus five is 23. [00:53:57] Speaker E: Undead have negative energy, or the energy of the sort of spirit realm, the plane of death shoved into them. It's frequently considered a bit of an abomination, but the energy of death floats around the earth freely, like it just lives in the world. And it's seen as an extension of the silent judge. And it's generally seen as something you should not mess with. Like it's hers, right? What it's used for, why it's there. Like with your high role. There are some very academic theories, but basically there's power of life and death that just sort of floats around the. [00:54:35] Speaker B: Earth because everything lives and dies. [00:54:37] Speaker E: And what dredd is saying is they're basically sucking this energy in, which would make it concentrated and you assume volatile. It's a destructive force. And it is held in kind of a stasis or a neutral state by the fact that it's just thin and mixed in with the power of life and other things. You would assume that this would create little bombs. [00:55:01] Speaker B: Bombs. Great. That sounds awesome. Does it also tell me, like, potential solutions to this problem? Is there a way to stall out this death energy and keep them from getting it. [00:55:14] Speaker E: I mean, you can destroy the vessels that are gathering it. [00:55:17] Speaker D: Okay, what would that look like? [00:55:19] Speaker B: Well, fighting the undead, probably. [00:55:22] Speaker D: What would a vessel look like, is what I'm asking you. [00:55:25] Speaker E: Oh, it would be some sort of undead body. You do know, like, you've heard of undead plants, you've heard of undead constructs, but generally speaking, it's all. All dead flesh. [00:55:38] Speaker B: Do you know how many there are, Drudd? [00:55:40] Speaker E: Judging from the rate of attacks, four or five. Something's different here from what was in Palmville, but it's definitely related. We found the remains of jade skulls. Several of them. [00:55:55] Speaker D: Several of them? [00:55:57] Speaker E: Yeah. Each one shattered already. [00:55:59] Speaker C: Question just in general. Did we. Did we look in. What is it? The book of the dead or the Book of Vecna? It might have some information about this in there. [00:56:08] Speaker E: It was written in abyssal. Zerus was the only one who could read it. And Zerus did look at it, way back in Palmville, nine months ago in Palmville. [00:56:16] Speaker C: Do you recall anything about this? Or maybe should we crack it open again? I mean, it might be dangerous to read. [00:56:23] Speaker D: I can make a history check first if sure. If that's all right. That's another 15. That's what we're rolling today. [00:56:30] Speaker C: So 20, I think, before Creedon also brings this up. She probably, like, looks at Dred's parents like she wants him to go away. [00:56:38] Speaker E: So Dred's dad is this, like, really intense person who has this, like, crazy stare. And Dredd's mom is the flightiest human you've ever met. So, pretty quickly, with you moving to serious topics, Dredd's dad is standing in the corner staring at you, picking dried plaster off of his arm. And his mom has gone somewhere already. [00:57:01] Speaker C: Yeah. I don't feel too bad about his dad listening in on this. I don't think he's a narc. [00:57:06] Speaker E: Abyssal in this world, is the language of the unjust dead. And the way the afterlife is imagined in the pantheon is basically, all dead go to one place, and those who have lived shitty, shitty lives fall to the bottom. And those who have lived righteous ones, come to the top. But ultimately, they're all pulled to the center, where they're purged and reborn. They become cleansed. Their past deeds are gone, etcetera. This is written in the language of abyssal, which is basically the language of. You know, if you called them demons and devils, that would be appropriate in d and D lore. But it's basically people who died and were bad. People seem to have forged a language in the divine realm. Also, the divine realm is really made of the powers of souls and the energy of death. And so it all fits. This is all undead themed. What's weird from your history role is there have been heresies of the rotten before where a necromancer or two has experimented with undead. None of it matches anything like this. And there's absolutely none of it. That there's no example of anyone trying to gather the nascent negative energy together in these vessels. That sounds not useful, just destructive. [00:58:34] Speaker D: Well, I'll relay that. [00:58:36] Speaker C: I mean, do we think that the book might have anything about, like, how these are being gathered and that might include some information on. I don't know, maybe there's some big red text, like, do not set on fire, or something like that? [00:58:49] Speaker D: I do. I think. I think something like that will be in the book. At least how it's created in its use. [00:58:56] Speaker C: Do we think it's dangerous to read? [00:58:57] Speaker D: I do. I do think it's dangerous to read. It also maybe may give away our position to read. [00:59:04] Speaker B: Yes, I think opening that book is probably the most dangerous thing we could do at any point. [00:59:08] Speaker D: But the only other idea I have is if someone has some type of divining magic to try to locate what we're looking for. [00:59:16] Speaker B: Without knowing more, I can likely locate them. [00:59:19] Speaker C: I don't have anything that could help with that. [00:59:22] Speaker B: If you can give me a little time, I can ask some questions of the silent judge. [00:59:28] Speaker D: Like ten minutes, an hour, a night. [00:59:31] Speaker B: Give me ten minutes. I am going to need. Need a pen and a blank sheet of paper. [00:59:37] Speaker D: All right. [00:59:39] Speaker E: Dredd has lots of paper. [00:59:41] Speaker C: Something tells me these artists probably do stuff around, actually. [00:59:46] Speaker B: She looks at Dredds dad and says, can I appropriate a blank canvas and some paint from your wife? [00:59:52] Speaker E: He just nods and walks out of the room unceremoniously. He comes back about a minute later with a blank canvas and about six different paint colors. [01:00:01] Speaker B: All right. She sets up the canvas against a wall, and she lines up the paint cans in front of the canvas. And then she takes out her brazier and she burns some incense and she casts the commune ritual and she says, lady, I know that this is unorthodox and asking an awful lot. Can you remove the death energy from the town of Nepeel for the night so that we can deal with these creatures who are abominations to your very being? [01:00:29] Speaker E: Okay. Roll me a percentage. Dice, Boulain. [01:00:32] Speaker B: Uh oh. Is she about to smite me for asking an inappropriate question? [01:00:36] Speaker A: No. [01:00:37] Speaker E: But you are asking for a miracle. [01:00:38] Speaker B: I am asking for a miracle. [01:00:40] Speaker E: So you're rolling divine intervention? [01:00:42] Speaker B: Uh, 51. [01:00:44] Speaker E: I needed to roll under a ten. [01:00:45] Speaker B: Shit. [01:00:46] Speaker E: The power sort of gathers around your brush, and the word that gets written across is balance. And you think that means no? [01:00:54] Speaker B: Okay, well, I get two more questions. What do I want to ask her? Can you give us anything to help us in this fight? [01:01:01] Speaker E: Roll me another D 135. What is written out on your sheet is the future bears my attention. [01:01:15] Speaker B: God, I love how cryptic she is. Okay. [01:01:18] Speaker E: You think that means no? Not yet. [01:01:21] Speaker B: I don't know, y'all. What else? Out of game. What can I ask her? I get one more question. Can I ask her whether we can trust the sage? The arch sage? Ah. [01:01:28] Speaker C: That might not be a bad question. [01:01:30] Speaker D: My interest is in the immediate. So, like, how to find or where to locate these stores of necrotic energy? I don't know how to phrase that right now. [01:01:42] Speaker B: But can you lead us to these beings when we go to look for them? [01:01:46] Speaker E: Roll me another D 180. [01:01:52] Speaker B: Yes, I believe we will have guidance in locating them. [01:01:57] Speaker D: All right, then we should probably go find them. Dredd, any ideas on where the. These stores of necrotic energy are? [01:02:07] Speaker E: Every undead is a store. And he points to the map, and there's. There's xs all over the place. And he points his hand outside of town, along the rock ridge. And he says, but I think the leaders are here. [01:02:23] Speaker D: All right. [01:02:23] Speaker B: That is where we should go. [01:02:25] Speaker E: And you step outside, and it has become nightfall. Chom lights a torch and takes the lead, heading in the direction Dredd pointed to. As a really thick fog begins to build and swell sort of out of the river and engulf the town. And eventually you all right? [01:02:49] Speaker B: Can I use thaumaturgy to clear a little path around us? Like conjure a little breeze? [01:02:53] Speaker E: Very small one, but yes. [01:02:55] Speaker B: But we have a little small radius around us. [01:02:57] Speaker E: As you are walking, it gets oddly quiet, as if there are no animals or people out. As you walk out of town and into. To a very sparse section of the forest, towards a ravine wall. And you begin to see odd shapes moving through the fog. They're almost human, but they're not quite. They move at sort of different heights that just don't make sense. And they're just kind of out of torchlight. I need a perception roll from everyone, please. [01:03:32] Speaker C: Nine. [01:03:33] Speaker B: Ugh. Twelve. [01:03:35] Speaker E: You are all surprised when it happens. So the ambush round, you hear a loud sigh from Dredd. And Max pulls out his axe and just starts swinging it through the fog. And that's when forms take place. Out of the fog. Think dementors. If you're a Harry Potter fan. These things are sort of an amalgamation of twisted darkness. They're like shadows, but on steroids, as if they've been gathering a whole lot of negative energy and it becomes something different. It's a surprise round, though, except for Creedon, who I believe has the alertness feat and can't be surprised. [01:04:14] Speaker C: Oh, yeah, I do. [01:04:15] Speaker E: Around your ankles. Boulain is an advantaged attack. [01:04:19] Speaker D: Ow. [01:04:20] Speaker E: Son of a bitch. Oh, I'm guessing a 23 hits. [01:04:23] Speaker B: 23 absolutely hits her. If it was a critical hit, though, I could turn it into a normal. [01:04:28] Speaker E: It was not a crit. Although from the number of sixes I rolled, it's going to feel like a crit. [01:04:32] Speaker B: Oh, Nate, don't kill me, please. [01:04:35] Speaker E: This maddening scream echoes through your brain, Boulain. Nobody else can hear it, but when it touches you, it is as if you were in the loudest concert, just blowing your minds. The. The bass is pulsing and the scream is just causing blood to stream from your ears. Take 23. Psychic damage. [01:04:56] Speaker C: Holy moly. [01:04:58] Speaker B: Okay. She whirls in place and just clamps her hands over her ears and like, cries out. [01:05:06] Speaker E: Zerus. Fog coalesces around you as well, and merging out of the ground right in front of you is another creature. It touches your chest. Please take 13. Psychic damage without advantage, because you're not surprised, Creden, that is still gonna hit you. No, credence. 16. Psychic damage. Max leaps into the fog, and you see him slashing through something. Dread opens fire, and Chom seems to get into some kind of arm wrestling match with something which rolls double nat ones. Some fog appears in front of chomp and starts swinging at him. And Chom just kind of backs up and is like, what the hell, man? That brings us into our initiative. Order. Everybody. Give me an initiative. [01:05:55] Speaker B: Oh, my God. [01:05:57] Speaker C: 624. [01:05:59] Speaker A: Seven, six. [01:06:00] Speaker B: I did. I did worse than you. [01:06:02] Speaker C: Crap. I don't want to go first. I don't know what to do yet. [01:06:04] Speaker B: I mean, I know what I'm going to do if I get a chance to, but they might kill me before then. [01:06:08] Speaker E: All right, Creedon, you're first. [01:06:09] Speaker C: Okay. What does it look like around us? Is it just fog? We can't see anything. [01:06:13] Speaker E: You have about 10ft of visibility in this fog. Most of it is created by Boulain pushing the fog away. Previous to the fight starting, essentially, these shadow creatures leapt out of the fog and surrounded you. Five shadow creatures have leapt into it. [01:06:31] Speaker C: So one of my abilities, moonfire, allows me to cast sacred flame, and I can target two creatures within range that are within 5ft of each other. [01:06:38] Speaker E: You can hit two with that. [01:06:39] Speaker C: Then the spell save for it is 17. [01:06:42] Speaker E: Okay, what kind of save is it? Dex? [01:06:45] Speaker B: Dex. [01:06:45] Speaker C: Yes. [01:06:46] Speaker E: Ooh, fuck. Two successes. [01:06:49] Speaker C: Balls. [01:06:50] Speaker B: Jerks. [01:06:50] Speaker E: They are dexterous, but they also rolled really well. [01:06:54] Speaker B: Well, that was a bit of a waste. [01:06:56] Speaker C: Okay, I think I'm just gonna try to hide behind Zerus. I know they're all kind of in a circle, so that won't do much. [01:07:04] Speaker E: You throw radiant, flickering light at two of them. They dodge it, but they don't react well. Like, duck backwards a little bit further into the fog, and then they both let loose a maddening scream. You have scared them. Maybe only this maddening scream sucks for everyone. Please roll me. Wisdom saving throws. I need two of them. [01:07:24] Speaker D: Remember, if you are near Zerus, you get plus four. [01:07:27] Speaker C: I got 119 and one six. [01:07:29] Speaker B: Is that with a four? [01:07:31] Speaker C: Yeah, I rolled a two. [01:07:31] Speaker B: Oh, damn. Twelve is okay. I got a 30 on one of them and a 14 on the other one. [01:07:37] Speaker D: Mine were 16 and 19. [01:07:39] Speaker E: Boulain, take twelve. Psychic damage. You are not stunned. Zerus, take twelve. Psychic damage. You are not stunned. Creedon, take 18. Psychic damage. You are stunned. [01:07:52] Speaker C: Stun. Stun sucks. [01:07:54] Speaker E: Max is stunned. Dread is fine. Chom is stunned. [01:07:58] Speaker B: These things suck. [01:07:59] Speaker C: I'm gonna bust out the bigger spills next go around. [01:08:02] Speaker D: I got it. I seriously mean it. I probably have this. [01:08:07] Speaker C: Are you. Oh, yeah. You're a paladin now, aren't you? [01:08:09] Speaker B: I am, yeah. [01:08:11] Speaker E: Okay, Boulain, the one that's on you whispers into your ear very softly. You can't quite tell what it means, but you do need to make a wisdom saving throw. [01:08:21] Speaker D: Oh, man. Little asmr shades. [01:08:26] Speaker B: Listen to me. Pluck at the bristles of this brush. Okay. That's not bad, 1717. [01:08:34] Speaker E: You're fine. You're fine. It's okay. You don't need to kill anyone. That's not them. Zerus wisdom saving throw. [01:08:44] Speaker C: Oh, my God. [01:08:44] Speaker E: Creedon wisdom saving throw. [01:08:48] Speaker D: That's a 19 for a 27. [01:08:51] Speaker C: Non natural 20. [01:08:53] Speaker E: You don't even hear the whispering. Zerus, I believe you are not stunned. [01:08:57] Speaker D: I will cast daylight on my shield. [01:09:00] Speaker E: It's okay. That changes things. Very quickly, the light flashes up, the fog protects a little bit from the light, but not enough. Like, it halves your radius. But these creatures are not okay. They immediately turn to flee. [01:09:14] Speaker B: That. [01:09:14] Speaker E: But they're still here. When it is Boulain's turn. [01:09:17] Speaker C: Ah, yeah. [01:09:18] Speaker B: Nice. [01:09:18] Speaker C: Good one. [01:09:19] Speaker B: Boulain is going to cast destroy undead. [01:09:21] Speaker E: Okay, what do I roll for that? [01:09:23] Speaker B: They need to make wisdom saves. And I believe they have to get a 16. And if their challenge rating one or lower, they are instantly destroyed if they fail at save. [01:09:32] Speaker E: Okay, they are more powerful than that by a substantial margin. [01:09:35] Speaker B: Oh, well, then this might turn them and have them fleeing. Including the one ring in my ear. Dammit. And then if that counts as an action, can I also cast spiritual weapon as a bonus action? [01:09:45] Speaker E: Yes, you can cast spiritual weapon as a bonus action. Your NPC's are mostly stunned. Dread spins around, fires a few shots into another one, at which point it becomes back to Creden. [01:09:56] Speaker B: Can I roll my attack on the spiritual weapon? [01:09:58] Speaker E: Yeah, sure. [01:09:59] Speaker B: That's a 27. Geez. [01:10:00] Speaker D: Okay. [01:10:01] Speaker E: Yeah, that hits. [01:10:03] Speaker C: Get him. [01:10:04] Speaker B: Nice. Max. Damage 16 force damage. [01:10:06] Speaker E: Okay, the one you hit for 16 force damage explodes. [01:10:09] Speaker B: Excellent. [01:10:10] Speaker E: Everyone roll me a deck. Save. [01:10:12] Speaker B: God damn it. These things are gnarly. Natural. 20 con. [01:10:15] Speaker C: Save for me is 20. [01:10:17] Speaker D: 116 on the con. Save. [01:10:19] Speaker E: You all make it so. Please take seven necrotic damage as this thing is destroyed and the energy it was holding inside of itself is released violently. Creedon, it is your turn. [01:10:30] Speaker C: I mean, I'm stunned. Correct. So can I like roll to get out of my stun? [01:10:34] Speaker E: Yes. Roll me a wisdom saving throw. [01:10:36] Speaker B: Oh God. That was a two on the dice. [01:10:38] Speaker E: No fight will be over when you are actually out of stun. Because it's their turn. They run the fuck away. [01:10:44] Speaker B: Yay. [01:10:45] Speaker E: Does anyone want to take an attack of opportunity? [01:10:48] Speaker B: Yes. [01:10:48] Speaker E: Who's not stunned with the knowledge that you will blow yourself up if you hit? [01:10:53] Speaker B: Wait, but they're running away so they're not anywhere near us. [01:10:56] Speaker D: If you take an attack of opportunity, they are 5ft away from you. [01:10:59] Speaker B: Okay, okay. No, never mind. [01:11:02] Speaker E: Alright, the remaining four all flee flying as fast as they can. They seem to go up and then off into the fog and are gone. [01:11:21] Speaker A: And that is our episode today. Special thanks to Todd Ferguson, my pet machine for our tunes and Juliet. Elaborate flight of fancy for our logo. What will our heroes find in their hunt for the local leader of the undead? Find out next time on carrots and suffering, the D and D odyssey.

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