Zomaris:Khanate Rising/Chapter 02
<mainstreet> ---BEGIN GAME---
<mainstreet> You've wandered around the city, made appropriate purchases, and found yourselves ready to hit the desert! It's approaching dusk now, so you can easily start to head out without feeling the fatigue of the sun.
- Fir consults with the map occasionally to make sure they are on the right path.
- Magwitch wants to keep a rough idea of where the other contestants are, if they are still in the city or out in the desert yet.
<mainstreet> Magwitch: You have no idea where the Three Stooges went, but your group of four is pretty much right there. You're heading into the desert.
<Fir> The walking shrub is now covered in a breastplate made of ice.
- Magwitch is intrigued by a frosty shrub in the desert.
<Capn_Mercy> "Cool." Mercy grins. "How'd you do that?"
<Fir> "You take 5 gallons of water, focus on it, shiver and say 'zireh', and then the armor appears. Or, if you're laying in the water like I did before we set out, then the armor grows around you and you don't have to take the time to put it on."
<Yevyre> "Sounds like spell stuff. Some paladins get spells, but I got the ability to shine with the light and purity of the sun instead."
<Fir> "I could make a breastplate for you, too, if I know you want one ahead of time."
<Magwitch> "Do you lay eggs?"
<mainstreet> You continue your walk into the night a bit.
<Yevyre> "I'm happy with my current armor."
<Fir> "Eggs? Those are like flowers for animals, right?"
- Magwitch twiddles the panache feather in their Hat Of Disguise and their appearance adjusts to a half-sized halfling. They mount up onto a compsognathus riding lizard who was parked outside the Moss Inn and ride quietly alongside the others.
<Magwitch> "Yes, exactly. Gametes. Animals lay them."
<Magwitch> "Or perhaps flowers are genitals. Seedpods are more like eggs."
<Fir> "I can produce gametes, yes. I wouldn't lie them down on the ground until after they have been fertilized and grown the seedpods."
<Capn_Mercy> "I'm not sure if I should be disgusted or not."
<mainstreet> Magwitch: You look out into the distance, and see a strange creature right in your path. It looks like a bird... no wait, a lion, no wait, a ram.
<mainstreet> You're actually not sure what it is at first glance.
<mainstreet> Capn_Mercy, Scarab: ^
<mainstreet> Fir: ^
<Capn_Mercy> Mercy holds her hand up over her eyes and peers. "It's a bird! It's a plane! It's...what *is* that?"
- Fir peers closer too.
<Magwitch> "It isn't another Plane, I'm pretty sure it's on this plane."
<Yevyre> "I would bet it's hostile."
<mainstreet> Fir: Bird... lion... ram... wait, there is one creature that's all of these. It's a Criosphinx.
<Fir> "Criosphinx," Fir says, nodding. "See, I can tell some of you animals apart!"
<Magwitch> "Woah. Impressive! Is it Evil?"
<Magwitch> "If it's Evil, let's eradicate it. If it isn't, let's leave it alone and go around it."
<Capn_Mercy> "I hope it's evil."
<Magwitch> "Me too!" the quarterling (half a Halfling?) has an infectious gleam in its eye.
<mainstreet> Magwitch, Yevyre: You Detect Evil and fail to get a response.
<Yevyre> "Hmm. I don't detect the stench of evil on it...them? Perhaps we could try diplomacy."
<Capn_Mercy> "You wanna *talk* at it? Laaaame."
<Magwitch> "The more challenges and challengers we leave viable in the desert, the more our opponents will need to overcome on their return journey. If they survive that far."
<Fir> "I could try, but magic animals don't like me as much as normal ones do."
<Yevyre> "Sometimes certain non-humanoid creatures can talk."
<Yevyre> "But if you would all prefer to avoid this one, I am fine with that."
- Magwitch 's interest evaporates rapidly. "It's not Evil. Alright, let's move along. Either it hasn't noticed us or isn't interested in a confrontation. Let's circumnavigate it and proceed with the quest."
<Fir> "Not a lot of cover in the open desert."
<Magwitch> "These dunes are high enough to conceal a Cryosphinx, so I think we might find dunes high enough to keep us hidden, possibly."
<mainstreet> You make your way around the Criosphinx safely, carefully, but it takes you a little extra time to do so.
<mainstreet> It's full dark now. You might be eaten by a grue.
- Fir holds a branch of holly up to her quarterstaff and whispers, "isiq". The quarterstaff begins to glow.
<Capn_Mercy> "You people and your magic. Feh."
- Fir starts humming, "It's magic, it's magic, it's magic makes the world go round..."
- Magwitch whips out their panpipes and begins accompanying the song.
<mainstreet> Actually, there's enough moonlight to see a *bit*. It's not totally dark. But still, grues. From the sand. Right?
- Fir decides she likes this Magwitch fellow, even if his outer self doesn't match his true body.
<mainstreet> Magwitch: Your pipes are truly an amazing example of what happens when we put amateurs on the panpipes.
<mainstreet> You proceed a bit further, then you find it. A dune has an apparent stone door sticking out the side of it.
- Magwitch blasts away with enthusiasm.
<Magwitch> Once the door comes into sight, Magwitch begins looking for tracks in the sand leading to the door.
- Fir checks the dune door for traps.
<mainstreet> Magwitch: You definitely don't see any tracks near the door. Hmmm... you look around, and you see nothing whatsoever.
<mainstreet> Fir: This door isn't trapped.
<Magwitch> "Doesn't look like anything has been near this door since wind last settled the sands here. So maybe this isn't the way to the tomb or maybe we're the first."
<Capn_Mercy> "Good. Do I smash the door open, or do we check under the mat for a key?"
- Fir attempts to pull the door open.
<Yevyre> "I have doubts that we'd be the first."
<Capn_Mercy> "Someone has to be first. Why not us?"
<mainstreet> Fir: The door slides open easily.
<mainstreet> You go through the door, and find a small stone chamber, about 20 feet square, with a single door on the other side. The names GERARD III and MELODY are carved into this door.
- Fir walks in, holding the glowing quarterstaff ahead of her.
<Magwitch> "Because if it's US risking our necks in the tomb, the others will just jump us and confiscate the Banner of Swiftness once we return to this door."
<Yevyre> "Perhaps. Weapons out, just in case," Yevyre says as she pulls out her fancy blade-on-a-stick
<Capn_Mercy> "Maybe I should go first. I'm better at avoiding traps."
<Yevyre> "If that is what you desire."
<Capn_Mercy> Mercy takes the lead, advancing several feet in front of the others. She examines the door for anything other than graffiti. "Are those the right names?"
- Magwitch examines the automatic door which can operate in the desert without becoming fouled by grit. They wonder whether it opens automatically every time something walks past, letting all the airconditioning go to waste.
- Fir detaches the bag of supplies from the quarterstaff and places the bag on the floor. "Molly, will you carry this for me? I need my staff free in case we start fighting." Fir appears to be talking to thin air, but the bag begins floating along behind Fir.
- Magwitch watches, intrigued.
- Magwitch starts muttering to itself enthusiastically.
<mainstreet> Capn_Mercy: Yes, those are the right names.
<Capn_Mercy> Mercy blinks. "Who's Molly?"
<mainstreet> Magwitch: Eh? It's a door. It slides open. Sure, grit is a thing, but remember this tomb is only a few months old. It's not like it's had years to screw the mechanism.
<Fir> "Molly is my invisible friend."
<Fir> "Don't worry, I didn't count her as getting paid separately from me. She wouldn't know what to do with money anyway."
- Magwitch beams with glee. "How fantastic! An invisible friend! I suspect we'll get on well." and begins giggling to itself.
- Fir checks the new door for traps.
<Capn_Mercy> Mercy blinks again. "...see, this is why I don't hang out with mages."
<Yevyre> "They can be...eccentric."
<mainstreet> Fir: Hmmm, yes, you see a Scythe Trap here.
- Fir hums, "Oh ohhhhhhhh, it's maaaaagic."
<Fir> "There's a trap here. If I disable it, do we want to leave it disabled, or set it back up for anyone following us?"
<Capn_Mercy> "CAN you disable it?"
- Fir begins work on disabling it.
<Fir> "If Ptah blesses me today."
<Magwitch> "I think we were told the traps all reset themselves. That's probably good. Otherwise the tomb is left defenceless against graverobbers."
<Fir> "Oh! Well, that's alright then. But I'll have to disable them all again on the way out, I suppose."
<mainstreet> Fir: The trap laughs in your face.
- Fir kneels for a moment. "Ptah, please grant me your blessing today." She pops back up and tries again.
<mainstreet> Fir: This time you manage to prevent the trap from moving, and it's disabled. Nice job!
<Fir> "Safe now." Fir pulls on the door.
<mainstreet> Fir: The door may be safe, but it's still locked.
- Fir frowns cutely at the door.
- Fir begins to pick the lock.
<Capn_Mercy> "Hurry uuuuuup."
<mainstreet> *click* You manage to get the door open.
<mainstreet> You open the door to the First Chamber. You can see a passage about 20 feet wide and 30 feet long, with an open doorway on the other side. On either side of this passage there appears to be some sort of drop. At each side of the door you’re at, and each side of the other door, a seven-foot-tall statute of Maat is visible.
<Magwitch> "There's no hurry. Nobody's been here before us."
<Magwitch> "Well, not recently anyway."
- Fir edges carefully around the statue and peers down into the drop.
<mainstreet> Fir: The drop appears to be 40 feet deep and another 15 feet wide before coming up on the wall. There doesn't seem to be anything in the pit right now.
- Fir pokes the closest statue carefully with the end of the quarterstaff to see if the statue comes alive.
<Capn_Mercy> "What, no spikes?"
<mainstreet> Fir: You dive out of the way, just in time, as the statue activates and tries to slam you into the pit! It misses, and proceeds towards the other side. The statue on the other end moves to replace the statue that just left its corner.
- Fir scoots carefully away from the statues. "Maybe don't touch those."
<Magwitch> "Are they magical, do you think? Or are they gargoyles disguised to look like statues?"
- Fir pretends to look smart for a moment, then says, "What's the difference?"
- Fir looks on the path for any evidence that a group ahead of them might have caused the statues to move.
<Capn_Mercy> "The difference is that one of them is smarter than you."
<mainstreet> Fir: You don't see any evidence of this. You do, however, realize you're still in a room with statues that can move and seem to want to run you over. You might not want to allow this state of affairs to continue.
<Magwitch> "Well, if they are creatures, we can talk to them. Tell them we are here at the behest of the Count's son. If they are magical or mechanical automata, then that'd be pointless."
- Fir quickly checks the door at the far end for traps and locks.
<mainstreet> Fir: There's no door on the other end. It's an open doorway that seems to lead to a stairway down.
- Fir begins walking down the stairs.
<mainstreet> You begin to walk down the stairs.
- Magwitch 's baritone voice resonates across the hazardous room to Fir, "Is there a switch or bypass or anything you can see at that end of the room?"
<Fir> "Just don't touch them?"
- Fir begins looking around for a switch.
<Magwitch> "Or do any of you have any Knowledge of Religion that could shed light on Maat in particular? Personally, I'm not religious - just Spiritual myself."
<mainstreet> Yevyre: Your scarab knows that these statues will respect anyone bearing a holy symbol of Maat and not react to them. It also makes note that after the statues try to ram someone, they have to spend time getting back to their corners, so you can easily run past them while they're doing that.
<Yevyre> "The emissary tells me that they do not attack anyone bearing the holy symbol of Maat, and that they must return to their corner before attacking again. We could just move," she says while tagging along after Fir
<mainstreet> The statues do make an attempt to SLAM Yevyre! And they do, and she's thrown back into the hall with Mercy and Magwitch.
- Yevyre attempts to move faster this time
<mainstreet> Yevyre: You take advantage of the fact that the statues have to get back to their corners and make it across easily.
- Magwitch makes use of Yevyre's advice and moves with her while they reset.
<mainstreet> Magwitch: You take advantage of the fact that the statues have to get back to their corners and make it across easily.
<Capn_Mercy> Mercy barely has to hustle to make it. Apparantly, the lack of...erm, protective covering improves her speed.
<Magwitch> "On our way out, let's rub soap all over the floor in this room."
<mainstreet> You descend down into the depths of the tomb.
<mainstreet> The Second Chamber is the actual burial site of Count Gerard III. Located here is the sarcophagus of Gerard III, a table with a handful of canopic jars, an altar to Maat, and the Lord’s Banner of Swiftness. Another doorway can be found on the opposite side. The walls are covered in writing of some sort, and there is what appears to be a mysterious cutout on one wall, like a space for someone to stand… Oh. There’s a mummy there.
<Magwitch> "Does anyone Detect Evil somewhere nearby?"
<Magwitch> Magwitch's baritone voice booms out, "Sucks to be you!" and tries to bestow a Misfortune Hex upon the thing (range 30, Will 18 negates).
<mainstreet> The Mummy doesn't seem to care about that hex attempt.
- Magwitch then uses a non-action to move behind the others.
- Magwitch then uses a Move action to suggest, "If we can just get the Banner and leave, then this Mummy will still be here for the others to face."
<Capn_Mercy> Mercy glares at the mummy. "How *dare* you ignore being hexed! YAAARGH!" She launches herself at the bandaged creature, attempting to lop its head off for being so infuriatingly nonchalant.
<mainstreet> Mercy slams that hammer into the mummy, and it seems to feel the blow!
- Yevyre approaches the mummy more cautiously, yet with righteous fury burning in her eyes, and attempts to sweep the mummy's legs out from under it
<mainstreet> Your laughable trip attempt doesn't even approach the mummy's feet.
- Fir says, "Molly, drop the bag and go grab that banner. Bring it here." Then she mutters "simsek" and makes a zig-zagging motion with her finger while pointing at the mummy. Lightning appears from nowhere in the underground room and strikes the mummy.
<mainstreet> The lightning sizzles and slightly scorches the mummy.
<mainstreet> The mummy starts to glow a bit. You all realize that its wrappings are actually a scroll.
<mainstreet> The area feels... wrong... somehow. You all feel a little... off.
- Magwitch decides to Call Lightning too. "Lightning!" the short one calls.
<Capn_Mercy> "Ugh, I feel awful! I HATE FEELING AWFUL!"
<Capn_Mercy> She brings the hammer down, figuratively and literally.
<mainstreet> *BANG* That has to hurt! At least, if the Mummy actually felt pain. Do mummies feel pain?
- Magwitch thinks if they've come back to haunt after death, they've got to be /sore/ losers!
<Yevyre> Rapidly losing her patience, Yevyre decides to simply attempt to slice the mummy into ribbons
<mainstreet> Yevyre slices. And dices. And that mummy ends up in several pieces on the floor.
<mainstreet> Scarabs pour out from the wrappings!
- Fir calls down another lightning on the swarm, hoping the electricity strikes through as many of them as possible.
<mainstreet> The swarm sizzles quite a bit!
<mainstreet> The swarm regroups, and charges onto Yevyre!
<Magwitch> "Lightning!" the short one shouts again.
<mainstreet> sizzlesizzlesizzle moar lightning
<Capn_Mercy> "The mummy was actually bugs!? I HATE--" She's interrupted by one of the scarabs landing on the ample space atop her bosom. Silence, as the two stare at each other...then, Mercy screams in panic and runs some distance away, shaking off her vicious attacker. "GET IT OFF GET IT OFF GET IT OFF"
<Yevyre> "Wait, don't just run around! There might be more traps!" Yevyre says and runs after Mercy
- Fir calls more lightning and checks to see if Molly has the banner yet.
<mainstreet> Fir: *siiiiiiiiiiizzzzzzzzzzle* Yeah, that's a lot of charred scarab there, wow. You got it!
<mainstreet> Fir: Molly has the banner and is giving it to you now that you're not busy.
- Fir hands the banner to Magwitch because it's heavy.
- Magwitch stows it in their bag of holding.
<Capn_Mercy> Mercy recomposes herself. "...I don't like bugs."
<mainstreet> You take another look around the room. Since you have the banner already, you see: the passage back where you came from, is the sarcophagus of Gerard III, a table with a handful of canopic jars, an altar to Maat, and another open doorway to continue farther on, should you so choose.
<Magwitch> "Does Detect Evil detect any more Evil? If not, mission accomplished!"
- Fir reattaches her bag to her quarterstaff. She admires Magwitch's bag. "That sure held the banner nicely."
<mainstreet> ---END SESSION---