Friday, April 27, 2012

Flashpoint Session 3

I'm going to do it a little differently today and just put up my notes with a few details about what the characters ended up doing where it matters.

Captain Juliana Stockwin sends Lieutenant Archer to help Midshipman Wellard, and the other officers, with ordering everyone about before turning to each person to find out what they can do. She informs him that a few of the Halflings are experienced carpenters and are to be put to work as such.

- Lieutenant Archer must make a successful Profession (Sailor) roll at DC 15 to do everything in the right order and a Perform (Oratory) roll at DC 10 to explain it all correctly. He has three tries to do both correctly (have him roll two differently coloured dice).

She knows of Proteus Antonio’s reputation, and has heard only good things about him. Since his clothing isn’t fit for a storm, she sends him to see the purser, Mr. Cudlip, about a proper uniform and if there is nothing in the slop chest then he is to grant Proteus one of his private supply. She will pay gladly once they reach port.

Proteus didn't hear her correctly and, when Mr. Cudlip informed him that the slop chest was indeed empty, and asked if he were to be allowed access to the private stash, he lied about the truth and said 'yes'.

- Proteus can make a performance check to aid Archer’s roll, an Acrobatics roll to take up the position of a topslman who hit the deck during the storm, and he briefly meets Keelan (half-elf), a Profession (Sailor) roll to help the carpenters re-settle the mast and tie the upper rigging, and he can make a Perform (Oratory) roll to assist the others in doing it as well.

Since Proteus isn't a great climber or acrobat, he blanched a bit about going up to the topmast in the storm but did as he was told, singing sea shanties to quell his sea sickness. He didn't learn Keelan's name just yet but did learn that the half-elf liked to grin wildly and seemed a bit crazy mad. Archer knew that Keelan just liked to mess with the new guys.

Captain Stockwin then turns to Lenny and asks if she's got any experience. Lenny has been on a river boat a few times, that's about all, so she's sent to work the bilge pumps to keep the ship from going under and, when needed, help hoist up the new topmast. Too many grating experiences have left the ship leaking, let alone the water that’s come in through the deckboards when the waves spatter the deck.

- Lenny must do three Constitution checks (DC 10) to work at the bilge pumps and has up to three Strength checks (DC 10) to hoist the mast.

Captain Juliana sends two marines to take Hallik to shut him in her sea trunk and then to escort Arexia and Mellarius aft to wait with the non-carpenter Halflings in the crowded wardroom. She will attempt to do the same thing with Lunjun unless he argues (he didn't). She then turns to give Lhye a hard look, then shrugs and shakes her head, before asking what he can do.

She covers her misgivings about him being a tiefling (from Cheliax, no doubt) by stating that her insistence is that he is a familiar and therefore can obviously do something. He admits to being able to cast Mending and so she sends him (with Midshipman Wellard as an escort and advisor) into the orlop deck and below into the bilge to check for leaks. Come to think of it, she should've sent a marine rather than a midshipman, but oh well, hindsight is always 20 / 20.

- Three Perception checks to notice all of the leaks.

Once the storm returns in proper, Midshipman Wellard leaves him under marine guard in the captain’s room and comes back out on deck. During this time, Lhye opens the sea chest, seduces Hallik whom he loves, and the two have a party on the captain's hammock. At least Lhye has the presence of mind to keep Hallik's wrists cuffed. The spell wears off on Lhye's end, leaving him embittered and vengeful about the whole drugging-and-attempted-enslavement, but rather than stopping he makes a point of keeping Hallik on the cusp so that when the potion's effects cease on Hallik, he's least likely to throw him aside. Funnily enough, Hallik doesn't, though is obviously deeply ashamed afterwards of rutting with a tiefling!

After the whole event, Lhye demands Hallik acknowledge him as a superior being, taunts him a bit, then uses Prestidigitation to help clean them both up, and Hallik puts himself back into the sea chest to re-think his life. Ah, to be a proud Chelish who's bedded a tiefling. True, many of them do it, but not all of them think they would.

Lhye is pretty curious about why Hallik would publicly kiss him in a restaurant, even if there were few people there, and assumes that Hallik was in a lot of trouble with the slavers and desperate to get them some slaves.

Once they leave the dock, the storm begins in earnest once more and everyone must roll an Acrobatics check or lose their action (requiring a Reflex Save DC 10 or take 1d4 subdual damage due to falls or more severe knocks). They who succeed on their Acrobatics check may make an additional one to save a fellow sailor from going over the edge with a touch attack (Keelan rescues Proteus in this way on the topmast; Archer rolls a 1 and is nearly swept through the scuppers but makes a Reflex save to stay onboard).

There’s a 10% chance every half hour that someone would be swept off or take a fatal fall. There’s about four hours of this before, finally, it disappears. (In the end, this felt like too many rolls so I left it).

They have until morning to make all haste away from Cheliax but through the drizzle Keelan sees a ship coming up fast. There’s something off about it and soon they realise that the grisly ship has a twitching water witch stapled to the bow, only with her hands free and casting Control Winds, and that it’s flying the dread flag of Nidal. Since even the figureheard is of vastly higher level than them, Captain Juliana concocts a plan.

Captain Juliana takes Proteus and Lieutenant Archer aside and entrusts them with vital papers that must go to the Admiral-Consul in Augustana and a strange and obscure relic that must go to the temple of Shelyn in the same city. Archer tries to convince her that she should leave with such documents but she rejects the idea because she hasn't given up on her ship yet. Whether they manage to escape or not was largely determined by how many successes they got earlier.

Publicly, she states that she wishes to ensure the prisoner, Hallik, and refugees get to safety (offering a substantial reward for those who get Hallik into custody). Then she bundles up all of the civilians on the ship's boat, and instructs them to paddle away in the thick, gloomy rain, while she attempts to draw the Nidal ship after them on a merry chase.

Underwater Escape
Unfortunately, the Nidal ship heads towards them and looms out of the rain before them. Aquatic elves rise up to grip the edge of the boat and offer to help them in Aquan. One is a druid of another race who grants water breathing and endure elements to all and leads them deep underwater through a small stone archway that Lhye and Lunjun interprets must be a fabled Elf Gate. They come out in the water not far from the shore of another island.

Limestone crags called sea stacks project above the sea, bright blue lizards the size of a dog sun themselves on the stone, a peregrine falcon hunts overhead, and goat tracks can be seen on the sand. The shrubs and trees on the island tend to have small leaves with a thick waxy layer and most of the rest of the flora includes mastic tree, myrtle, arbutus, heather, cypresses and the occasional oak tree with many herbs such as basil, with medium sized green leaves, marjoram, oregano, with small dark green leaves, parsley, and thyme.

Proteus identifies it as Piccola Island, that is about 20 or so miles off the coast of eastern Cheliax, which is protected by a witch of some description. He slays a couple lizards for lunch (which Lhye cooks) and Lenny lassoos one so it's now on a leash. Wellard does a Harrow reading (Proteus admires her deck, as does Lhye, but neither are allowed to touch it) that is mostly rather airy fluff, except for the final three cards in the negative side.

The Idiot. The Sickness. The Lost.

She claims that these represent Hallik's kidnapping, the sickness and death that follows him (perhaps the Nidal's ship or his own corruption) and that a fate worse than death awaits him, especially if he (or they) stray off the path though it may possibly be that nothing can save him.

Due to this, Proteus offers to look after Hallik and with Archer's assistance, claims that he's freed Hallik, but Hallik looks rather dubious at the prospect of freedom so when Archer states that he could always surrender, promise not to try to escape, and be covered by the Articles of War, Hallik accepts.

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