The World of Tel-Avi

Champions of Talingarde: Side Quest 1
El Cazador de la Bruja

Dusk was settling as the rider finally caught sight of Tower Balentyne. Sir Fallon reigned in his horse, Cazzador, and pulled his cloak tighter about him. Even with the spring thaw coming on, these northern climbs were too cold for his liking. It had been two weeks since he had been reassigned. His friends had been left behind to continue overseeing the repairs to Branderscar Prison, while he had been sent north to the Watch Wall to investigate rumors of impropriety among the garrison.

Since the destruction of Branderscar and his discovery of the corruption among the guards, the king had been adamant that any similar misconduct be dealt with harshly. Even now, three months later, the prisoners of Branderscar were still at large, somehow evading Mitra’s Watchful Eye. Time and again over the last months, Sir Fallon had pleaded with his majesty to allow him to go in search of the escapees. Finally, though those requests continued to be denied, he was assigned as special inquisitor for the crown, tasked with visiting the keeps along the Watch Wall to ensure that they had no troubles similar to those in Branderscar. Tower Balantyne was the first on his list. Rumors carried by guards, reassigned to other quarters, spoke of the tower’s mage conducting unusual experiments, of alcohol abuse among the captainry, and even of a feud between captains over a woman.

Sir Fallon urged Cazzador on, into the town of Aldencross. It was small, dirty, everything he’d come to expect from the borderlands. The roads were cobbled, but the caked mud on the street spoke of excessive traffic from the other side of the Wall, where, he knew, no such efforts at road maintenance would have been made. The Wall itself towered black and foreboding in the early evening shade, separating the two halves of the town. Then, just as he was passing the clean white walls of the town church he smelled it. A witch! More than one actually, recent, and within the walls of Mitra’s holy church.

His hand went to his axe and he spurred Cazzador forward with greater haste. A few townsfolk dodged aside as the great warhorse barreled through the streets towards Tower Balentyne. He did not stop until he reached the gates of the keep.

The keep itself was a bustle of activity. Everyone seemed to be awake. Guards patrolled the walls in threes and fours, bullseye lanterns sweeping in every direction, the gates were barred, and Sir Fallon heard a great deal of commotion from within. “Ho!” he called at the gate, “open in the name of His Majesty, King Markadian the Brave, the fifth of his name, Protector of the Righteous!”

“Who’s there?” came the returning cry from the wall.

“Sir Fallon Nightly, Special Inquisitor to His Majesty! I have business with Lord Havelyn!”

Sir Fallon heard a muffled discussion above and then the reply. “Stand clear then, we’re opening the gate. When its down come through quickly, the keep is on alert.”

As soon as Sir Fallon was inside the walls his nostrils flared. The witches had been here too. “What’s happened here?” he demanded of the nearest guard as he dismounted from Cazzador.

“There was a murder sir. Magister Tacitus went mad, blasted Old Martin Rayard out a window, and burned the rookery. Then his pet golem got loose. Killed twenty men it did! They say they found most of the bodies, but a passel of servants have gone missing too…”

“Where is Lord Havelyn now?”

“Up in the rookery with Father Donnagin and Captain Eddarly, sir.”

“Very well,” he handed the man his reigns, “see that the horse gets fed and groomed. I’m going to see the commander…”

“Now sir?”

“Now!”


Sir Fallon walked into the rookery to find the bald-pated chaplain, Father Donnagin, a clearly too-attractive-for-his-own-good man in a captain’s uniform, and Lord Havelyn examining a blackened corpse on the floor.

The captain gave him a withering stare as he walked through the door, “Who’re you then? This is a private meeting, officers only.”

Sir Fallon sniffed at him contemptuously. “Shut up. You stink of witch-craft. You shouldn’t be here…”

“You must be Sir Fallon, the Special Inquisitor.” Lord Havelyn stepped past the impolite captain and shook Sir Fallon’s hand. “You’ve arrived just in time, Father Donnagin was just about to interrogate Magister Tacitus.”

“Magister Tacitus?”

“The corpse,” Father Donnagin corrected. “This body belonged to our mage. I was just about to question him regarding the recent events…”

“Then by all means, go ahead.” Sir Fallon knelt beside the body. “It smells as if powerful sorceries were used here recently…”

Father Donnagin placed a blessed wafer in the corpse’s mouth and chanted a prayer to Mitra. “Tacitus of Morimun, Magister of Balentyne, I, Father Donnagin, Chaplain of Balentyne and Archdeacon of Mitra bid you speak. Answer me, who killed you?”

The corpse’s eyes opened in their blackened sockets, and a rattling hiss escaped for its lips. “I did,” it gasped out.

Lord Havelyn shook his head. “Suicide? A monstrous crime. His soul will burn in the fires of Asmodues.” Lord Havelyn bowed his head. “I never would have suspected he was that disturbed.”

Father Donnagin addressed the deceased again, “Magister Tacitus, did you kill Martin Rayard?”

Again the corpse rasped out, “Noooo…”

“Then who killed him?” Father Donnagin looked incredulously at the the mage’s body.

“Servants…”

“This is getting us nowhere.” Sir Fallon interjected, “Father may I question him?”

“I’m afraid that’s the last question allowed by the spell…” Father Donnagin replied. Sure enough, as he spoke, the corpse’s eyes closed and the breath left it. “I will make preparations so that we might question him more after morning prayers.”

“And in the meantime the servants that killed the bird-keeper will have escaped…” Sir Fallon began stalking about the small room. “All of these birds were killed by magic. The walls are burned. Clearly the Magister used his magic to kill himself and destroy the room, but what happened to the rooker.”

“Sir Fallon,” the captain spoke up, “when my men and I were dealing with the Magister’s golem, there was an old serving-man in the Magister’s rooms, and there was another who met us on the stairs as we were rushing to investigate the rookery. A girl.” A gleam in the captain’s eye as he said this told Sir Fallon that the girl was probably an attractive one. “She told us about the Magister blowing up himself and the rookery and killing Old, Mad Martin.”

Sir Fallon sniffed the captain again. “You touched her?”

“Yes? What’s that got to do with anything?”

“She was a witch, her stink is all over you. Where are these two servants now?”

“I…I don’t know sir. They disappeared while we were battling the golem.”

“And where was that? Take me there…”

The captain snapped to attention and led Sir Fallon and the other officers downstairs to the mage’s chambers. The door to the chambers were broken and splintered. A pair of saw-horses had been set in front of the door as a temporary barricade and four guards were stationed in front. Pushing past the guards, Sir Fallon found a room in shambles. Tables and book-cases were knocked over. Huge gouges in the walls and floors, and splatters of blood on every surface showed signs of a great battle. And the smell…

Sir Fallon retched, spilling his last meal on the floor to mingle with the smells of blood and witchcraft. When he had recovered he sniffed around the room, stopping at a gap between two bookcases. “They were here. Several witches. They used some powerful magic in this room…”

“But…” the captain spoke up again. “When we were fighting, I’m sure there was another bookcase there.”

“An illusion?” Sir Fallon began walking around the room, touching everything. “Hmmm…the rest of this seems real enough. Captain…?”

“Eddarly, sir. Captain Zack Eddarly.”

“Captain Eddarly, can you describe the two that you saw?” Sir Fallon turned to the chaplain, “Father Donnagin, can you round up all the other guards who were on duty at the time of the attack?” The chaplain nodded and departed immediately.


After hours of questioning guards Sir Fallon was tired and frustrated. No one in the keep, save Captain Eddarly, had any recollection of having seen the girl the captain had described, even the guards who were with the captain at the time could not remember her. And the captain’s own descriptions were vague and useless, speaking more about her beauty and sense of desperation than any real description of her appearance or features. The more Sir Fallon heard, the more he was convinced that the keep had been infiltrated by witches. The Magister may have been in league with them, and he was certain that Captain Eddarly had been bewitched…and that he might, indeed, still be under their influence.

Sir Fallon went to Lord Havelyn’s rooms and knocked on the door. When he was admitted he bowed to the keep’s commander and explained what he had learned, or not. “I need to begin searching immediately while the trail is still fresh. We have a good description of the old man and he clearly managed to leave the keep before the lock-down. I need as many men as you can spare to begin searching the town for the man, its possible that the witches will be with him.”

Just then, Father Donnagin came in, “the acolytes have finished the drawings you requested Special Inquisitor.”

“Thank you, Father.” Sir Fallon, took the stack of papers from him, stifling a yawn. “I’ll head out at once and begin searching for the culprits.”

“But, Sir,” Father Donnagin interrupted, “its almost two of the morning. Surely you can rest a little before continuing.” Sir Fallon nodded, grudgingly.

“I’ll have fifty of our best men waiting for you buy the gate at sun-up.” Lord Havelyn said. “And I’ll send out the heralds to begin posting the drawings of the old man immediately. When the town awakes we’ll be ready…”

Sir Fallon nodded politely and turned to leave. “I’ll be claiming the Magister’s quarters. If I’m not awake in time for Matins, send an acolyte for me…”

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Champions of Talingarde Session 7
The GM is a dick...

Eleven people stared at each other around the campfire, eyes darting back and forth to each other, looks of confusion glazing their faces. Beyond the perimeter of light cast by the fire the rest of the king’s army slept peacefully.

Sister Carlotta sighed and collapsed to sit on a fallen log pulled up by the fire, “So, does anyone know what’s going on?”

“Well, last time I checked you, Tristram, Sir Robert, and Brother Justice were dead. Brother J got thrown off a tower by a spellcasting lion. Tristram had his bones picked clean by cockroaches. And you and Robert fell into a pit and got eaten by a grue.” Aidan the Herald piped up.

“Yet, clearly we are not dead.” Brother Justice turned to Sir Fallon. “And you’re certain that we’ve been bewitched?”

“Yeah, all of us. The whole campsite reeks of witchcraft, and I’m also detecting several curses.”

“Could it all have been an induced Nightmare?”

Sir Willem rubbed his eyes. “I’m too tired for this sh*t. Even if it was just a dream I feel like I’ve been fighting for days. Now it looks like we have to go back to that f*cking prison tomorrow morning and do it all over again…”

Sir Reginald shook his head, “If we dreamed it all we might find something completely different in there…”

“Enough of this! I’m not letting that witch mess with our heads any more. Hold still this won’t hurt much…” Sir Fallon walked up to Sir Reginald and punched him in the face.


Sir Fallon woke up in a cold sweat. The combined smells of blood, woodsmoke, rotting flesh, and witchcraft immediately assaulting his sensitive nose. Eyes still closed his hand slowly reached for his axe. Once the weapon was firmly in hand he opened his eyes and looked around. He was in his tent. It was night. In the distance he heard the “All clear!” call of night watchmen changing shifts.

He crept out of his tent and looked around. They were in the keep. He noted the tents of his six friends, the slightly bulged tarp on the ground covering the bodies of Robert, Tristram, Justice, and Sister Carlotta, and Sir Reginald sitting by the fire clutching his eye. “You okay?”

Sir Reginald pulled his hand away to reveal a black eye. “What’d you hit me for?”

“Haven’t you studied basic spellcraft? Dream manipulation is a form of Illusion. Mitra has blessed me with the ability to remove such effects, but only if I have a foe to strike. You just happened to be the nearest of us…and I remembered that we had been sharing a tent.”

“So we dreamed all of that? Bloody hell!” Sir Reginald clutched at his swollen eye, “You killed that lion, right? How is he still messing with us all?”

“Yes, and no.” Sir Fallon pointed at the sky. “See that star…it fell at dusk, but has returned. That must be the lion’s star. Something brought it back.”

“F*cking witches! So something raised the lion and now its going to f*ck with our dreams…” Sir Reginald walked to the other tents. “I’m going to wake the others and make sure they’re okay.”

Sir Reginald woke everyone and checked to make sure their four fallen friends were still corpses. The seven friends then spent the rest of the night sitting around the fire. Not much was said, but no one slept.

When the trumpeters announced the arrival of the king and his army come morning our heroes were quite tired. They lined up to meet the royal commanders in front of the gatehouse, dark circles beneath their eyes and each stoically ignoring the aches of combat and the throbbing of their remaining wounds. The king and his commanders listened patiently as the party explained the situation at the prison, the hordes of undead plaguing the place, the lion-witch, the corrupt garrison sergeant, and their troubling dreams from the night before.

King Markadian IV nodded sagely, “Our diviners have already been searching for the escaped prisoners and have come up with nothing. Every indication is that they have vanished off the face of Tel-Avi or else have some powerful magic concealing them even from the Eyes of Mitra. They will continue searching but we may have to simply wait until they show themselves. We will send proclamation to all of the hunters that they are at large.”
“In the meantime, Sir Reginald, we are giving the command of this prison to you and your companions. Sufficient troops to re-garrison the keep will be left under your command. We will return to court and begin searching for a suitable replacement to serve as Warden. It is our wish that you remain here and bring this prison back up to our standards before the escapees are found. Use whatever resources you need to repair and re-fortify the walls and keep.”

“My lord,” Sir Fallon stepped forward, “I cannot just sit by knowing that there are such dangerous criminals at large. Please, give us leave to go and track down these miscreants.”

“No, good Sir. By your own words you have admitted that you are vulnerable to the influence of these witches and we cannot have you wasting time searching the countryside for that which even Mitra cannot see. When we know something more we will see that you are all returned to active service. For now, we need this prison repaired and ready to take on new prisoners.” The king’s tone was final. Sir Fallon nodded and returned to line with the others.

“As soon as a new warden has been selected you will be relieved. For now, you all have your orders. You are dismissed…”

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Champions of Talingarde Session 6
Dreams...

The party awoke in the night to the sound of the nuns, Sister Carlotta and Sister Eloquence screaming, their piteous cries filling the dark halls of the keep. Just below their screams could be heard chanting, three deep sonorous voices intoning words unfit for mortal ears.

Aidan the Herald and Sir Ainsley rushed down the corridor, stumbling over the rotting and still slightly animate corpses of the prison’s guards. “What the f*ck!” Aidan exclaimed, “How did they get both girls?”

“Nevermind that,” said Ainsley, “I thought Carlotta was dead. Was the whole thing some f*cked up dream?! Mitra save us, where are the others.” They rushed on, kicking bodies aside. Around the next corner they plowed headlong into Tristram, the three tumbling into a heap. “Tristram?! I thought you were dead too.” The Lion, as he was called, did not respond, but mearly raised his head, revealing the bloody and empty sockets of his eyes and the blazing pentagram branded into his forehead. The thing that had been Tristram lashed out at his two companions with a sword already slick with blood.

Aidan parried Tristram’s blows then dove to the ground as Aisley let lose a gout of flame from his gun. Tristram’s pained cries overwhelmed all other sound save the shrill screaming of the nuns as his bodied toppled in a burning heap. “WHATTHE…F*CK!” Aidan reiterated.


The knights, Sir Fallon, Sir Reginald, Sir Willem, and Sir Robert strained mightily against their chains but they wouldn’t budge. Just outside of the cell they could hear Aidan’s cursing and the screams of the women.

“How did we get here?” Sir Willem inquired of the others. “The last thing I remember we had just cleared the keep…”
“Witchcraft!” Sir Fallon insisted, “I can feel it everywhere. They must have taken us in the night while we slept.”
“But those screams, they sound like Sister Carlotta…” Sir Robert shook his head. “Didn’t she die?”
“What about you? I watched you die with my own eyes…” Sir Fallon glared at the paladin. “You reek of witchcraft as well. Another illusion sent to torment us? Another undead beast in disguise put here to catch us unawares?”
“No, its me, I swear it in Mitra’s name.”

Outside the chanting grew louder, another voice chiming in with the three. Ainsley, hearing his friends voices from inside the cell blew the lock off and rushed in. “Aidan, looks like the whole gang’s here…”
“Aside from the ones that turned into undead horrors you mean?” Aidan stepped gingerly into the cell behind him. “Where is Squire Filth?”
“Who?” Sir Reginald gave the herald a quizzical look.
“The dwarf. He came here with you last night.”
“Oh…I haven’t seen him. Maybe he’s in another cell. How did you two get free?”
“What do you mean free?” Ainsley interjected. “We woke up in our tents to screaming. When we came out everyone else was gone. It was like the whole army just vanished. We came to find the girls and instead we find you all trapped in a cell and Tristram’s corpse standing guard.”

“Speaking of corpses…” Fallon nodded his head towards Sir Robert, “I saw him die and he smells like a bloody witch. Get me out of these chains so I can deal with it…” Aidan looked at Sir Fallon, nodded and began picking the lock on his chains.
“No, I swear. How can you think I was dead?” Sir Robert looked to each of his friends, “We were just together last night. We killed the witch-lion. I was injured. Sister Eloquence nursed me back to health…”
Aidan shook his head. “He’s clearly lying.” He stepped back and Sir Fallon stood, walked purposefully over to Sir Robert, and broke the paladin’s neck.

Aidan wasted no time blowing the shackles off of the others, “Quickly, we have to find the girls.”


Tumblr m06d20hc l51qjri7so1 500The five friends found the knights’ weapons and armor stashed in the next cell and rushed towards the sound of the screaming. The ran down corridor after corridor and down two flights of stairs before reaching a large iron-bound door, charred and blackened, and carved in a crude hand with numerous unholy sigils and prayers to the dark god Asmodeus.

Sir Fallon rushed the door, beating it to splinters with his flaming axe. Beyond the door they saw the two nuns, naked, screaming, and tied to an altar of black basalt. Three lions stood before the altar, their fur soaked with blood and their inhuman mouths chanting infernal prayers. Behind the altar stood Brother Justice, looking quite alive, dressed in black robes and sporting a pair of large curving horns on his head. He smiled at them as the door burst open and plunged his readied dagger into Sister Eloquence’s breast, silencing her screams.

Enraged, the Knights of Mitra charged the unholy abomination. They were met by the three lions, one breathing a gout of flame which quickly consumed Sir Willem. The second pounced upon Sir Reginald, tearing his throat out with one critical strike of its mighty jaws. The last sprouted black bat-like wings and began clawing at Sir Ainsley.

Aidan and Fallon slipped bast the beasts, and rushed the altar where the demonic Brother Justice had disrobed and was beginning to have his way with Sister Carlotta. Aidan stabbed at the perversion of his friend, running both the priest and Sister Carlotta though as Sir Fallon took off his head.

Aidan shoved Brother Justice’s corpse off of the nuns only to see that they were both already dead and rotten. The two turned, terrified, to see their friends lying burned and torn and the three witch-lions closing in on them.


Aidan and Fallon both awoke with a scream. A fire crackled around the campsite where the eleven friends had bedded down for the knight. Squire Filth and Brother Justice sat on watch, nibbling on the remnants of the roast hind they had for supper the evening before. Aidan looked around to see the two Sisters and his other five brothers-in-arms sleeping peacefully, their breasts rising in falling with their rhythmic breath.

“What happened brothers?” Brother Justice knelt next to the two of them.
“I had a horrible dream…” Sir Fallon, sniffed the air, “I think I was bewitched. I can still smell the stink of sorcery in the air.”
“I had a dream too,” Aidan spoke up, “we had all been captured. There was fire and chanting. Everyone was killed…and you…” he looked at Brother Justice, his eyes widening, “You appeared to be possessed by a demon…you had taken the Sisters and sacrificed them upon some dark altar, then you set the lions on us.”
“Lions brother?”
“Yes, three lions.” Sir Fallon stood up, “It seems we had the same dream.”
“Well I’m hoping that’s no premonition…” Squire Worthless Filth filth handed Aiden a wineskin. “We’re set to reach the prison tomorrow morning…”
“Tomorrow?” Aidan looked confused. “Didn’t we investigate the prison yesterday? I remember it was overrun with undead…and…”
Sir Fallon spoke up, “…and everyone died. Sister Carlotta, Sir Robert, Tristram, and…” he looked hard at Brother Justice, “and you Brother. Devored by a lion.”
“Another dream perhaps?” Brather Justice nodded his head in a brief prayer.
“We’d best wake t’others.” Squire Filth began walking around the camp shaking everyone. “Up and at ‘em, seems like there’s witch’s work afoot…”

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Champions of Talingarde Session 5
The cavalry arrives...

The remnants of our gallant band, Sir Fallon, Sir Willem, Sir Ainsley, and Aidan the Herald, breathed a sigh of relief as the lion stopped moving and set about seeing to their fallen friends.

His eyes straining in the oppressive darkness of the dungeons and hurting from the sudden burst of glittering lights just moments before, Sir Fallon dug a torch out of his backpack and fumbled to get it lit. “Mitra! It smells like sh*t down here…”

“Ugh, that’s for certain,” Sir Willem agreed, tearing a strip from his cloak to cover his nose. “I’m also still detecting a significant amount of magic…”

With the added light from Fallon’s torch, Sir Ainsley gazed around the small guardroom they had fallen into and pointed at an empty side chamber. “Lets move Robert and Sister Carlotta in there. We’ll have to come back for them after we finish exploring.” The others agreed and hauled the corpses of their friends away from the site of the melee.

With Sir Fallon and his torch in the lead, the four cautiously moved into the cell block. All of the cell doors were open or missing, some apparently torn from their hinges or bashed down by some incredible force. The entire area reeked of excrement, the walls were charred and blackened, and the hallway was filled with an ankle-deep layer of spoiled and rotten fruit.

“What happened here?” said Aidan, carefully examining the bent and battered remains of a heavy iron portcullis which had served as the door of the final cell at the end of the hall.

“They were holding an ogre.” Ainsley stepped into the cell and pointed at some overly large manacles. “This must have been its cell.”

Fallon stepped in behind Sir Ainsley and looked at a large hole in the wall, “So, whoever was in that cell must have tunneled through the wall and freed the ogre. Then the ogre broke the gate down and freed the other prisoners…”

Ainsley pointed at the hole, “How’d the ones in that cell get free then?”

“Hey!” Sir Wllem called from the adjacent cell, “I’m detecting a couple more auras in here.”

Aidan stuck his head in the door and immediately retched from the smell. The floor was almost knee deep with feces and rotting vegetation and was swarming with flies and maggots.

“At least its not more roaches.” Willem opined, then plunged his gauntleted hands down into the waste and began fishing around. Moments later he came up with a ring, a rather fresh finger still attached to it. “Check this out.” He tossed the finger to Aidan and reached back into the filth, coming up with three more rings.

Aidan vomited again as he caught the chunk of flesh.
“That’s a goblin finger.” Sir Fallon pointed out.
Gasping Aidan nodded, “yeah, and the ring is a dungeon ring. You use them to keep track of prisoners…”
“So the goblin cut…or tore off…his finger so that the warden couldn’t track him? Then used that blind-spot in the scrying to take the time to dig in to the ogre?”

“These three are different.” Willem handed the other rings to Aidan and the two examined them carefully.
“Aha! That’s how they broke out…” Aidan held up the first ring. “A ring of the ram. It’s out of charges, but still has some residual magic to it. With this they could have blown that whole in the wall in a jiff. They probably just threw it away when it ran out.” He wiped the ring off and slipped it onto his finger, then handed the others back to Willem. “Maybe one of the king’s mages can recharge it for me…”
“What about the others?” Sir Fallon interjected.
“A ring of protection and a ring of sustenance. Someone must have smuggled them in to the prisoners, but, chained up, they probably fumbled and dropped them in this offal while trying to figure out which one was the Ram.”

“Somewhat plausible…” Sir Fallon took the other two. “You’re sure there is nothing funny about these?”

“No, I’m quite certain about the ID on those. I agree its weird that they would leave these behind.” Aiden looked at the piles of filth. “Of course, if I’d been chained up in that, I’d be in a hurry to get as far away as possible…”

Fallon nodded, “who wants these?” Aisley took the ring of sustenance and Sir Fallon put on the other. “Alright, looks like there is nothing down here. Lets head upstairs. The sergeant in charge of this place should have had a manifest of all the prisoners. I want to know what’s up with this witch-lion…and what could have made all of those undead.”

The party made its way back to the guardroom. Sir Ainsley pulled the rope and grapple out of his pack and climbed up to the upper floor. As they were hauling the bodies of Sir Robert and Sister Carlotta up they heard a loud trumpet call from beyond the walls. “Hey guys,” Sir Ainsley called down, “the cavalry has arrived!”


The four companions finished climbing out of the pit and, carefully carrying their friends bodies, walked out of the keep to see a large contingent of the kings army, including a trio of the Sisters of Saint Erentrude, a half-dozen mounted knights, several archers and foot soldiers, and a score of dwarven irregulars. The dwarves had quickly errected a bridge across the pit by the gatehouse and the army was mustering in the courtyard.

As the party emerged they were met by Sir Reginald Starbreaker, the commander of the expeditionary force, accompanied by Sister Eloquence, who led the nuns, and a dwarf, who Sir Reginald referred to simply as “Worthless Filth”.

After the introductions, Sister Eloquence went away with the four companions to see to their fallen. Sir Reginald and the dwarf set the troops to work with practiced efficiency. Archers and crossbowmen moved to the top of the gatehouse and took up defensive positions over entrance. Foot soldiers began setting up camp. The two Erentrudine Sisters went about blessing the remains of the undead to keep them from rising again. “Worthless” set his dwarves to scouring the keep, searching it from top to bottom for any further traps or hazards.

After about an hour a runner returned from the keep carrying a sheaf of papers. “From the commander’s quarters sir.” He handed them to Sir Reginald, “I think you should see these.”

Sir Reginald called the others together and they examined the papers.

“Wow!” Ainsley exclaimed, reading the documents aloud to the others, “Midnight poker games in the gatehouse…only half the recommended garrison…and the sergeant was skimming funds. No wonder the prisoners escaped!”
Aidan peered over his shoulder, “That might explain where the prisoners got those rings. The sergeant would have had free access to their cells. If he was corrupt he could easily have smuggled tools and magic items to them without arousing too much suspicion…”

Sir Reginald nodded. “We’re setting up camp here for the night. We need to be absolutely certain that the prison has been secured before we leave. The king is sending a force to re-occupy the keep in the morning. In the meantime, I suggest that you all get some rest…”

There was much agreement with that and everyone retired to their assigned tents to sleep.

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Champions of Talingarde Session 4

The friends looked around the courtyard, then back to each other. Sister Carlotta raised a quizzical eyebrow, “Inside?” The others nodded and moved cautiously towards the doors of the inner keep. The doors were open and creaking in the light breeze that bristled through the courtyard.

“Hey,” Aidan looked at the others, “wasn’t this place supposed to be warded against magic?”
“It is…” Sister Carlotta waved a hand around her, “the place is built on a primal magic zone. Any casting here carries the risk of unexpected and catastrophic results. We’ve just been lucky so far…”
“So what’ll happen if we’re unlucky?”
“Ummm…raining fire…the ground coming to life to attack you…that sort of thing…”

Sir Fallon peered inside the main hall. Other than burn marks and bloodstains it looked like the keep had been stripped and abandoned. “The stairs at the end of this hall should lead down to the prison cells. Let’s check there first…”

The group approached the stairs slowly, carefully searching the floors, ceiling, and every passed doorway for traps or other surprises. Sir Robert took the lead as they neared the stairs, “It looks all clear up here, but I sense a great evil below, everyone be on your guard.”

Sister Carlotta nodded, “Yeah…I’m detecting a huge amount of magic…Abjuration, Necromancy, Conjuration. Judging from this we should be ready for more undead. Possibly even a bound demon or the like.”

Sir Willem waved his hand and said a brief prayer, “Alright, that should shield us all from evil.”

“Good idea,” Sister Carlotta nodded, “I can hide some of us from any undead below.” She began to chant and suddenly the entire hallway went black.
“Sh*t!” Aidan exclaimed, “We just got unlucky didn’t we?”

A roar rang out through the hallway behind them.

“Everyone downstairs!” Sister Carlotta yelled.
“What?!” came the collective cry.
“I don’t want to fight blind. The spell should be localized to this level. Our lights should work once we’re out of it.” She pushed past the others towards the stairs and gave a sudden cry of alarm as her feet stepped into open air. Sir Willem, able to see in the darkness, reached out but were unable to catch her as she appeared to tumble through the stairs.

As she struggled to her feet she felt something long and snake-like reach around her and bite her leg, causing her to feel suddenly weaker. Then a pair of jaws clamped onto her arm, and claws tore at her, bearing her to the ground.

Sir Robert leaped into the darkness, landing awkwardly, but still on his feat and stabbed blindly at the snarling thing tearing at the nun. It gave a hideous cry, but Sister Carlotta’s screams only intensified as a swarm of biting insects poured from the wound.

The others felt something large rush past them, Sir Fallon swung widely, feeling his blade connect, but it was Aidan that cried out. Below Sir Robert felt five-hundred pounds of fur and claws come crashing down on him, and his armor being crushed as a pair of mighty jaws locked onto him.

Sir Fallon quickly followed, his blade bursting into flames as he dove into the pit. This time his blow struck true and the lion let out a growl of pain, but did not release Sir Robert, but he quickly succumbed to the pain of the swarming insects.

Sister Carlotta managed to get out one last scream of “Fire!” before she the beast that was upon her drained the last of her life. Gritting his teeth, Sir Ainsley pointed his dragon-pistol towards the sound and released a goat of flame that dispersed both the bugs and the darkness, but which badly burned Sir Robert.

In the brief light from the flames, Sir Willem, Sir Ainsley, and Aidan could see the stairs, but not their friends. “Another f*cking illusion!” Aidan blurted, then charged headfirst down the stairs, tumbling into the unseen pit. Seeing their friend vanish before their eyes, Ainsley and Willem disbelieved the illusion and could suddenly see their friends engaged in a deadly struggle against the lion and another undead dog.

The lion tightened his jaws where they were clamped onto Sir Robert’s side and tore at him with its claws, shredding his armor and spilling his entrails over the already dead Sister Carlotta. Landing rather startledly beside the thing, Aidan swung wildly with his sword, landing a telling blow directly in the lion’s face. Sir Willem jumped down beside him, landing badly and twisting his ankle, which was instantly healed in a flash of light by a spell he had laid upon himself beforehand.

In moments Sir Fallon, Sir Willem, and Aidan dispatched the two beasts, but found that they were too late to save their two friends.

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Champions of Talingarde Session 3
Ass is another word for donkey...quit laughing...

Within the first tower, Sir Robert, Sir Willem, Sir Fallon, and Aidan the Herald rested, occasionally firing a bolt at one of the other towers.
“Archers…we need archers,” Aidan said to the others.
“Archers won’t help us much if that witch-lion returns.” Sir Fallon peered cautiously out of an arrow-slit. “It has taken refuge in the keep. We can leave the towers for later…we have to get to the keep and avenge Brother Justice.” He peeked out again, “It looks like the postern door is open as well. I say we get down to the ground entrance and make a run for their.”
“But we need rest,” Sir Robert complained. “We’re out of healing and the courtyard is still full of those bugs…”
“I have spells left,” Sir Willem spoke up, “and I’m with Sir Fallon. Let’s get off these walls. The lion and his skeletal servants clearly have the advantage up here…”


OswaldWhile the party deliberated, Oswald the scribe sat on his ass and cried. Brother Justice paid him well, even paying him 12 months in advance to accompany him and record his daring deeds, but as he sat outside Branderscar Prison and watched a lion leap from a tower with his master clutched in its jaws, he knew he wasn’t getting paid nearly enough to witness this. Shoving his quill back in his saddlebags, he grabbed the reins of Icewind, his master’s warhorse, wheeled his donkey around, and rode back to Varyston with all haste.

Sister Carlotta held up a hand to her eyes, straining to see what was making the dust-cloud coming towards the town. “Ainsley, get up here, something’s coming…fast!” Ainsley climbed up the low fortifications to stand beside the militant nun. “A rider…riding an ass…and leading a charger,” he said, “something must have happened at the prison…” He jumped over the low battlement, landing in a crouch outside the walls.

“Ho, friend, what news?!”

Oswald pulled his panicked steed to a halt with some effort and dismounted shakily. “Demons! Unliving demons have overtaken the prison! Bloody and skeletal and led by a great lion that flies! My master, Brother Justice is fallen! I have seen no sign of his companions…you must send help…NOW!”

Sister Carlotta ran and grabbed her and Ainsley’s horses. “Right, we’re headed for the prison. You…what is your name, friend?”
“Oswald…”
“Right, Oswald, go into the town and tell the king what you told us, tell him to send a full contingent to re-take the keep. Ainsley…let’s go!”

“Nice ass by the way,” Ainsley said.
“Oh thank you, it was a gift from my master…” Oswald stammered a reply.
“I wasn’t talking to you, Oswald…”

The knight and the nun rode for the prison at top speed, pushing their chargers to their limits and beyond. In just over an hour they reached Branderscar Prison to find the gates open and the place in ruins. They dismounted their exhausted horses and tied them up near the waiting steeds of the vanguard group.
Sir Ainsley shook his head, “What the f*ck happened here?”
“Mind your tongue son,” Sister Carlotta pointed at the courtyard where a mass of cockroaches were swarming over a fleshly corpse in armor, “that looks like one of the vanguard…and those bugs don’t look friendly.”

Sir Ainsley drew out his dragon pistol and loaded it with an incendiary round. “Right, stay behind me.” The two walked cautiously towards the gatehouse and paused at the edge of a large, spiked pit. “There’s no way across…Up?” he asked.

“Right.” Sister Carlotta pulled a rope and grapnel from her saddlebags and threw the line deftly up to the battlements. The two quickly climbed up to the gatehouse roof…


Back within the tower Sir Fallon heard a series of loud bangs. He peaked out the arrow slit to see Sir Ainsley standing atop the gatehouse, arrows falling around him, firing shot after shot at the skeletons, Sister Carlotta standing by his side to reload his musket. Shot after shot rang out, skeletons, even on the farthest towers, being blown to pieces by them more often than not.

With a shout of relief the four friends opened the tower door and ran out onto the walls towards the gatehouse, all but Sir Robert pausing briefly to ogle the beautiful, and somewhat inappropriately garbed, nun. Sir Willem clapped Ainsley on the back when they arrived. “Thank you, brother…and sister, we thought we were done for.” Sir Ainsley fired a few more times, taking out the last of the skeletal archers.

“Glad that you’re all alright…but I’m out of ammo.” Ainsley set down the musket, and pulled out his pistol. “I hope anything else we fight is at closer range…”

“We need to take the towers now,” Sister Carlotta said, looking at the distant bones clattering down the sides of the towers and calling upon her extensive religious training. “If we don’t bless the corpses, those skeletons will be back up within the hour…”

Aidan the Herald looked over the edge at the courtyard below and shook his head. “We have bigger problems…the bugs can fly…”

“What!” Sir Robert cried, just as the massive swarm crested the battlements.

Sir Willem said a quick and very short prayer to Mitra, causing the bugs to hesitate briefly, allowing Sir Ainley to blast the swarm with a gout of flame from his dragon-pistol, killing thousands of the insects, but not stopping the main mass. Sir Robert and Aidan swung uselessly at the creatures, but Sir Fallon’s axe suddenly burst into flames, clearing a swath through the swarm as he swung. Then the swarm was over them…

Everyone in the party save Sir Robert and Sir Ainsley were too distracted by the painful bites to defend themselves. Sir Ainsley fired another incendiary cartridge, seriously depleting the bugs. Retching, Sister Carlotta blurted out “I…have…spells…that would help…” On queue, Sir Robert grabbed her and ran along the wall back towards the tower until she was out of the swarm.

Free of the swarm, Sister Carlotta conjured a blast of wind, somewhat dispersing it, as Sir Robert ran back to help Sir Willem out of the area. Ainsley continued to hold his ground, ignoring the many tiny bites and firing his dragon pistol again. The other struggled to get free of the swarm as it moved to follow them. As the swarm neared Sister Carlotta again, a blast of flame from her hands killed or dispersed the last of the insects.

A burst of positive energy from Sister Carlotta had everyone back on their feet. “Hurry, the skeletons.”

“Right,” said Sir Robert, “several fell into the courtyard and there are six towers to check for bodies. We’ll have to split up.” Noticing the despairing and incredulous faces of his friends, he continued, passing out vials of holy water. “No one goes alone. We’ll split into three groups. Willem and Aidan take the right towers. Sister Carlotta and Fallon go left. Ainsley and I will take the courtyard. Regroup in the main courtyard when your done…shout if you encounter something.”
“Great…that worked well last time.” Aidan complained.
“Got a better idea?”
“No…”

They split up…and they ran. Sprinting along the walls and down the stairs, the six friends quickly found the remains of the skeletons and doused them with holy water. The towers were cleared and the walls reclaimed.

In the courtyard, Sir Robert and Sir Ainsley doused Tristram’s body, as well as the undead hounds, zombies, and skeletons. When the others joined them Aidan knelt by Tristram’s corpse and began looting it.

“Why are you disrespecting the dead?” Sister Carlotta gave him a glaring look.
“He has useful magic items,” Aidan responded, holding up a wand and a potion vial, “I’ll return them if we manage to raise him, but for now we need all the help we can get.”

“Right…” Sister Carlotta turned and examined the other bodies. “Hmmm…” She said, kneeling over one of the zombies. “It has a magic ring.” She pulled a plain iron ring off of it, saying a prayer for the deceased’s soul. “Can anyone tell what this does?”
Sir Fallon gave it a hairy eye, “leave it…its cursed.”

Sister Carlotta sighed and threw the ring into the pit by the gatehouse…

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Mysteries of Jzadirune Session 2
Look! A Ninja pick-pocket!

Dinojazz7b

The party decided to investigate the perfumer (Jazzasaurus Alasty)
Darcy talked to the doorman in front
Raske talked to the cook in the back
The monkey ninja’d his way into a gnome artificer’s (Tophran Silverwire) house and started pushing buttons
BOOM!
A crowd was attracted to the explosion
Irongnome messed with the heads of some robo-gardeners…
Raske and Holmes worked their way to the front of the crowd
An idiot tried to pick-pocket raske…he got manacled
There was a struggle
Iron-Gnome summed a rotocopter…
The pick-pocket knocked out the crowd with a poisonous blow-tube
His accomplished showed up and assaulted Holmes
The party subdued the pickpocket…
The accomplice fled…
The party scurried up a rusty pipe and chased him across the rooftops…
Lenny shot at him…
They dropped down to an alley…
Holmes knocked him out with a thrown bottle…
The party hauled his body back to where the crowd was and looted the two thieves…
Then the cops showed up…
Irini passed the coins that the thieves dropped to the guards…they were poisoned…

Raske and Irini convince the watch second-in-command that they don’t need to be taken in for questioning…
The monkey steals the watch sergeant’s badge and ID…
The inspector (Constable George) phones to headquarters to check out Irini’s credentials…Trom intercepts the call (via the child of intellect, which looks like the results of a cofee maker having sex with a printing press)…Trom, acting as the Chief Inspector informs them that Irini is “a nice piece of ass” and encourages the constable to see if the party smell’s like gunpowder…Holmes and Raske blow smoke in the constable’s face as he goes around sniffing everyone…“The girl with a nice ass would have a better clue what to do than you would”…

Raske sends his snake in to investigate the explosion…it reports “nothing to see”…
Irini and the monkey pick the lock and head in…
The party heads inside and finds lots of automatons (depowered), strange spikey chandeliers, and other things…
They pass a ballroom, Trom and Raske head down a flight of stairs into a very smoky room…
Trom creates water to dissipate the particulate matter in the air…
They investigate the workshop, Trom checking out a mechanical face in the wall which is belching smoke, and Raske throwing random shiny tools in his bag…
A sewage-covered mechanical python climbs up Raske’s leg and into the mouth of the mechanical face…
Raske, meanwhile, wanders back up to the group and informs the Sergeant that the homeowner had an illegal data tap which clearly overheated creating the explosion…

Irini heads over to Peacekeeper HQ to report the illegal data tap and fill out the necessary paperwork (since its a white-collar crime and therefore in her jurisdiction)…

Raske receives a dispatch from the sewer service, indicating that “after cleaning his pipes, a blockage was discovered, a large number of psicrystals were flushed down there and he should get someone to check it out”…

The party returns to the Roasted Grouse, belly up to the bar, and get hammered…Raske begins casting random spells while sloshed, trying to sober himself up…he then reports the Cathcallen and sets up for watch duty…positioning skeletons at Cathcallen’s doors and windows while he falls asleep in a chair outside the door…Lenny builds a fort under Cathcallen’s bed…the monkey perches at the foot of his bed…

Everyone falls asleep on watch…a ninja sneaks in the window, shoots Raske leaving a gaping, bleeding wound in his stomach, then closes on Raske with with a sword…Raske kicks the chair out from under himself, rolls away from the ninja, and shoots him point blank with his flare gun, blinding the ninja…another shot is fired from downstairs, hitting Irini…

A rotocoptor comes flying in through the window behind the ninja, followed by three fiendish origami cranes, crashing through the windows into the hallway and Cathcallen’s bedroom…followed by two more ninjas, leaping through the windows into Cathcallen’s room, into the waiting arms of Lenny’s skeletons…The skeletons tearing one of the ninjas and one of the cranes appart almost immediately…

Meanwhile, out in the hall, Irini engaged in a firefight with the ninja downstairs…Raske kicked in the door to the bedroom, rushing to his monkey for healing…Holmes bursts out of his room and begins pummeling the blinded ninja…the one at the bottom of the steps rushes up the stairs and pistol-whips Irini…

A floating lantern comes in the window and charges the blinded ninja…

The remaining cranes divebomb Holmes…slashing him badly…

Three magic missiles come streaming through window, striking Cathcallen…Lenny leaps to his aid, healing him as his skeletons dispatch the remaining crane…the other ninja in the room drops a smoke bomb…Orn the hawk dives through the smoke at the ninja’s face…

The ninja with the gun shoots the blind ninja, knocking him backwards, then flees…Irini pursues and entangles the ninja in a blob of ectoplasm…the skeletons, charging out of the room, tear the remaining crane and the blinded ninja to shreds…

The hawk divebombs the ninja in the room one last time finishing him off…

The halway goes dark…Holmes feels his way downstairs, sees the ninja with the gun, and throws a chair at her, impaling her with one of the chair legs…then a rampaging robotic pony charged in through the front door and began stomping on the head of the downed ninja…
E3913e62aa442f76a3bb1498cebe9c1b

LOOTS:

  • Katana
  • Wakizashi
  • Tanto
  • Bracer with hypodermic Mephit inside it
  • Magical Pistol
  • Magical Chain Shirt
  • Amulet of Mage Armor
  • +1 Magical Wakizashi
  • +1 Magical Pistol
  • 4 Ninja Outfit
  • 4 Live Ninja Prisoners
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    The Rule of Random
    Random character creation can be your friend...

    Sometimes it happens that when you are asked to generate a character for a new game you run up against a wall of indecision. What race should I play? What class? What feats? What traits? What class archetype (or should I use one)? What traits? What skills? What gear?… Generating a character can take hours or even days, and sometimes you still aren’t happy with what you made. Then of course, there are the times when you spent 2 days making “The Perfect Character” only to have them die in their first session.

    Sometimes, you just want to go random…

    The question then becomes, “What if the other characters that everyone else took so much time on are better?” Sure, they might be more tweaked, but that doesn’t necessarily make them better, and might, in the end, make them less versatile than your pile of random rolls. Still, as a GM I like to encourage “brave” players who are willing to take the dice where they lie, so here is an attempt to make trusting the dice more palatable.

    Note that some of the arrays of random options do not match a common die type (i.e. you need 1 of 33 options). In this case, please refer to AnyDice.com for all of your rolling needs.


    Random Character Creation

    You may use any or all of these random options.

    Random Ability Scores: Roll 2d10, six times, and record the stats in order.

    • Benefit: Add +2 to the highest and lowest scores.

    Random Race: Roll 1d16 and compare to the options below.

    • Benefit: You gain 1 bonus Race Trait. This may be chosen or rolled randomly. You can have two traits of the Race type.
    Roll Race
    1 Mountain Dwarf
    2 Plains Dwarf
    3 Dwergar
    4 Island Elf
    5 Mountain Elf
    6 White Elf
    7 Wood Elf
    8 Goblin
    9 Goblin, Great and Black
    10 Half-Elf
    11 Half-Goblin
    12 Halfling
    13 Human
    14 Gnome (roll again for parent race)
    15 Librarian
    16 Ironborn

    Random Class: Roll 1d24 and consult the table below.

    • Note: You may also want to roll randomly for your class Archetype(s). The dice for this will vary depending on the class (use 1dX where X = the number of archetypes).
    • Benefit: Your first class is a favored class for you. You gain double the normal benefits for favored classes (i.e. you can choose to gain +1 hit point and +1 skill point, or +2 hit points, or +2 skill points per level).
    roll class
    1 Alchemist
    2 Antipaladin
    3 Barbarian
    4 Bard
    5 Cavalier
    6 Cleric
    7 Corbie
    8 Druid
    9 Fighter
    10 Gourmand
    11 Inquisitor
    12 Magus
    13 Oracle
    14 Paladin
    15 Priest
    16 Ranger
    17 Rogue
    18 Sorcerer
    19 Summoner
    20 Voyageur
    21 Warlord
    22 Witch
    23 Witch-Hunter
    24 Wizard

    Random Lifepaths: Roll 2d4 to determine the number of Lifepaths, then roll for lifepaths.

    • Note: Depending on race the dice used will vary (the DM might make all the necessary tables later). For each path, roll once for available settings (by race), then again for the path. If you roll a path for which you do not meet the prerequisites, roll again.
    • Note: Stat points for random lifepaths are applied as a 1 point bonus to an ability, rather than additional dice. Physical points are applied in order to Strength, Dexterity, and Constitution, and Mental points are applied to Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma. For example, if you received 5 Mental stat points from your lifepaths, you would gain +2 Int, +2 Wis, +1 Cha.
    • Benefit: You are not subject to “Leads” limitations and do not gain additional years of age for taking “Leads” to different settings.

    Random Traits: For each trait roll 1d10 to determine the type of trait and consult the table below. Then roll 1dX (where X is something large) and compare to the appropriate list.

    • Benefit: You can take more than 1 trait of a given type. If you roll the same type of trait more than once you keep that result. If you would be able to have more than 10 traits (because of Lifepaths or feats) you gain all of them (instead of the normal hard limit of 1 per type).
    Roll Trait Type
    1 Combat
    2 Faith
    3 Magic
    4 Social
    5 Race
    6 Region
    7 Religion
    8 Equipment
    9 Campaign
    10 Crime

    Random Feats: Roll 1dX (where X is something huge) for each feat. Use any list or table found on the SRD site.

    • Benefits: If you roll at least 1 random feat, you gain 1 extra bonus feat at 1st level. This extra feat must also be random.

    Random Spells: Roll 1dX (where X is something large) for each spell known or spell you would have in your spellbook. Compare it to the list on the SRD site.

    • Benefits: Any spells chosen randomly are cast at +1 to your effective caster level for determining level-variable effects (damage, range, duration, etc).

    Random Skills: Roll 1dX (where x is the number of class skills you have +1) for each skill point you have. Take your class skills in alphabetical order to determine the results. On the highest roll, roll again for non-class skills.

    • Benefits: You starting skill ranks are not limited by your level. If you roll a skill more than once, you gain those ranks. If you roll the same skill 10 times as a first level character, keep it, you’re just that awesome.
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    Character Creation Tips

    Whenever you create a player character, place yourself in your hero’s mind and consider the following questions. This is not a test, and there are no wrong answers.

    1. What do you look like? Are you alluring? Plain ? Grotesque ? Do you dress in finery or tattered rags? Do you have any scars or distinguishing features? A character’s appearance may hint at her past. For example, a fighter hunting the weretiger who infected her with lycanthropy might still bear scars from the attack.
    2. Where is your family? Where is your homeland? Are you native to Barovia, or were you drawn into a quest from the arid Amber Wastes? Do you have a cozy cottage to call home, or have you been banished from your ancestral estate? Some players may believe that loved ones can’t be threatened if they don’t exist, but consider this: a hero with no one to lose also has no one to turn to in times of need.
    3. What is your greatest love? For what or whom would you make sacrifices? A romantic interest? A family member ? Yourself? Your god ? Magic ? Youth ? Knowledge ? Power ? Would you make a personal sacrifice or sacrifice Someone else?
    4. What is your greatest regret? Do you have any memories that haunt you at night? Were you unable to prevent a death? Do you have a mental or physical trait that you despise? Did you betray a friend in a time of weakness?
    5. What makes your skin crawl? What are your hates or fears ? Many elves are disgusted by the acrid scent of gunpowder, and dwarves are said to dislike the sea. Do you dislike the smell of live-stock, or do you hate the sweltering heat of summer ? Does witnessing an injustice set your teeth to grinding, or does the sight of spiders send you into shivers? Do you find a race, culture, religion, or form of magic primitive or unnatural?
    6. What fascinates you? What topics draw your interest? Do you attend operas, or do you read tawdry novels? Would you pore over the intricate patterns of a magic scroll, the strands of a cobweb, or the gears of a clock tower? Do you have a weakness for riddles ? Do you live your life in search of new sensations?
    7. What are your habits? Do you have any patterns in your life? A sorcerer might twist his beard when lost in thought; a caliban might collect “trophies” from slain foes; a bard might practice every night to hone her musical skills.
    8. What are your secrets? Do you hide anything from the outside world? Are you disguising a trait, or have you buried an event from your past? Why do you keep this secret? If your secret was revealed, would you merely be embarrassed, or might you face persecution or place someone at risk?
    9. Are you rational or passionate? Do you pride yourself on following your head before your heart, or are you a true romantic? Characters with chaotic alignments tend to be more comfortable with their emotions, but lawful characters are certainly capable of passionate outbursts.
    10. Are you sophisticated or superstitious? Were you educated in the finest boarding schools, or were you raised by tanners who left their farmstead only to check their traps? A cosmopolitan character might be experienced in the skills of etiquette, while an unrefined peasant might know countless folktales about the fey.
    11. How strong is your faith? Many people scoff at religion, believing that the gods have long since ceased to care about mortal concerns. If religious, do you worship the prevalent religion of your homeland, or have you adopted a foreign creed? Are you pious or zealous?
    12. How self-confident are you? Do you continually question your own motives? Do you struggle with an inner darkness? Or do you stride boldly forth, knowing in your heart that your actions are correct?
    13. What drives you to adventure? Why have you taken up the dangerous life of an adventurer? Are you simply mercenary, seeking treasure? Are you on a hunt for vengeance? Are you driven by altruistic motives? Do you believe you have a destiny to fulfill? Are you trying to reclaim a stolen birthright? Are you struggling to be reunited with a lost love?
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