Our story began with an initial briefing by the phlegmatic Lt. Petrov wherin he displayed adequate-to-intimate knowledge of the doings of all of our Heroes. He had them introduce themselves to each other and (rather sardonically) brought to light the varied and rather unseemly reasons for each member’s joining of the group (barring the Dragonborn Paladin whom he barely acknowledged.) (And NO, it’s NOT sexual tension, you freaks.). This led Durbin to inquire if the whole team were “wash-outs”. To which Petrov gleefully replied that they were, in fact, all “wash-ins”. When the subject of pay came up, the Lt. informed them that the Civic Powers had graciously allowed the Specials the ancient right of “Findsies-Keepsies” and that they were expected to be largely self-funding.
Lt. Petrov proceeded to harangue* his new crew of Specials regarding the nascent blooming of the Rule of Law in his city and the scumbags who would see it threatened. Specifically, he tasked them with finding and stopping/killing one “Otto Krump” who seems to be responsible for a recent plague of oddly pure and cheap Firejade, a magical super-roid-type drug with nasty long-term effects. He also told them that making a splash in the life of the city was not a bad thing; that he was encouraging them to make a name for themselves (whether the Civic Powers felt the same way or not was unelucidated).
(* Harangue: a loud bombastic declamation expressed with strong emotion)
“Know The Street”
The Specials began a skill-challenge wherein they had to use a combination of Streetwise, Insight, Arcana, Diplomacy, and Intimidation to track down Krump and his operation. Cordova the Rogue found a likely alley in the Perfumed Quarter (home of tanneries, slaughterhouses, the tallow-works, and, inexplicably, the Guild of Lawyers) wherein Durban found an unlikely ally in the form of Flat-Iron the Filthy—low-level drug dealer, ne’er-do-well, and local character of note. Beginning as a buy of Firejade, things quickly moved to the “Fezzick, tear his arms off” school of Diplomacy. Flatiron gave up the probable location of “Krump’s guys, yeah just his guys, wouldn’t wanna cross OTTO, no!”, a small dose of Firejade, and a moderate amount of urine before scuttling off (Narrowly avoiding being “rolled” by Cordova.).
The Specials, deciding to gather more intel, elected to press on in the skill challenge rather than withdraw with the rewards they already had. Kelvanna the Annoyingly Wise managed to discern some of the mystical nature of Firejade (largely alchemical in nature, somewhat protean and adaptable) and confirm that Flat-Iron was probably telling truth about Krump’s base’s location (a former granary, now disused, in the Perfumed Quarter).
Some more footwork found that 1) the guards at Krump’s base held a floating craps game that was due to start a couple hours after sunset, 2) Krump has been posing as a “Legitimate Alchemist” acting as a supplier of novelties, jokes, and fireworks as a front though rumor has monsters on his payroll, 3) that Krump has abducted Eugene Krandle, son of the prominent Baron Olse Krandle, head of the Wrecker’s guild (aka the Pilots who navigate up and down the rivers) and the Baron has kept VERY quiet about it and 4) he somehow used Kruithiks to perform the kidnapping (kruthiks being a nearly mindless monster-animal that’s like a man- to horse-sized cross between spider and lizard).
Still unsatisfied, the Specials continued their reconnaissance (thank you spell-check!) (to quote the wizard). Although they suffered a few missteps, eventually they tracked down a barman who, it turned out, supplied the libations to the craps game. Unwillingly. With a very little persuasion, he suggested- nay, INSISTED, that he spike the beer for that night, ensuring that the gamblers would be hammered. “If’n yer gonna cause them boyos trouble, I’ma gonna he’p.”
With no further rewards likely, the Fearsome Fivesome began the bloody work of the night…
“At The Granary”
Ayen the Ranger and Cordova scouted the area pretty throughly. Cordova spied on the party through some windows and nearly ruined the whole evening when she tripped over an empty whiskey bottle while trying to be stealthy. Luckily, the drinkers were in good spirits and vice versa. Deciding to bring things to a head, Ayen rushed into the courtyard in front of the granary and surprised the entire crowd of revelers (minus one fellow who was off urinating) with a well placed flame burst up the wazoo (let’s hear it for half-elf dilettantism!). This proceeded to cause about six inebriated drunken yahoos to burst into flames (as the name would imply) thus creating the world’s first serving of “Marinated Flash-Fried Rack of Rabble”.
One of the remaining two (sober) guards was caught flatfooted and slackjawed as this took place, while his peer started running for the other side of the courtyard. At this point things started getting hairy. Durban’s mighty frame was hurled ignominiously through the air when the decrepit cart scale he was walking upon went SPROING! and shot him skyward. Aierly the Paladin vomited a fine spray of acid across a truly ridiculously large area and nailed one of the guards (t’other dodged/held up his cloak in time). Kelvanna played Knivesy-Spoonsy with her mystical zones of flying sharp things. Cordova managed to distract the urinating drunkard with a remark about his undone fly (in retrospect of COURSE his fly was undone!) before whanging him over the head into unconsciousness and rifling his pockets for 5 gp. The scaredy-Guard took a whack at a couple of folks with his cross-bow before jumping into the CityWorks grainlifter and moving up in the world. Ayen St’Hyen the Samurai Ranger boldly leapt once more into action, skipping past the wagon ruts in the ground and up the lifter on the other side of the platform. He effectively cut off the fleeing guard, but then got kicked in the face and knocked off the platform. Meanwhile, Durban the Mighty begged for the other guard to poke him as hard as he could with his halberd. The guard obliged. Aeirly responded with an axe hit that did… an abSURD amount of damage and took this guy from cocky to crying.
Ayen raced to attack the guard again, but was too late: the guard activated a one-time teleport escape hatch that Kelvanna felt went “down”. The last guard was quickly surrounded by large scary people with sharp things, while dripping fluids he normally kept inside himself onto the ground. Aeirly Intimidated the guy into abject terror whereupon he told them that he didn’t know anything about what lay ahead, just that he’d never been past “the Loading Zone” and that the other guard probably teleported down to “The Lab” of which he knew nothing, beyond the fact that that was probably where Krump was. Then he fainted.
At this point, our Heroes took a short breather, and examined their surroundings. A search revealed 100 95 gp (see above clobbering of urinating drunk) and two potions of healing. Hooray for Asset Forfeiture
So what happened next? What was behind the door in the granary office? What is Krump’s connection to the kruthiks? Why did Baron Krandle stay silent about his missing son? Will Durban actually get to HIT something with his long, hard stick (STILL not sexual, you FREAKS!)? Tune in next time to the Hyvalla Police Blotter to find out.
1) I need to resolve the deal with charging. Right this second I’m mostly inclined to Scott’s interpretation (ie, literal acceptance of the words in the book) but have to stick by my ruling due to the “double-move=same-type-of-move rule”. 2) Ayen needs his character sheet updated to reflect the “Toughness” feat he gets automagically from the two-blade stance. 3) I am almost certainly going to move the electronic component of this to the Obsidian Portal “Hyvalla Nights” site. It’s pretty bare right now, but I will probably get it up to snuff in the next week-and-a-half. I think y’all will find it astonishingly useful AND fun once we get going. The Wiki aspect in particular appeals to me. You all will be encouraged to add to the reality of the world by adding entries. We’ll talk about this more after I get the site up. It should also be noted that Obsidian Portal uses OpenID so you can make your account based on your LiveJournal login. If anyone has trouble setting up an account, let me know. (I haven’t checked all this out 100% but it passes my cybersniff test, so let’s assume that we’ll go with this for now). 4) I am LOVING this concept. The whole “y’all are washouts” thing was completely an accident. You all just picked origins that fit together like a finely honed origin story. And now you’re a cross between “The Shield” and “The Untouchables”. FAN-tastic. 5) Jewel Staite is so hot it’s silly. Not sure that’s relevant but thought it needed to be said anyway.