Michael Page 3
A lever in need of a fulcrum

Dear Diary,

Mr. Thane sent us on another mission – it’s not clear how much he knew beforehand, so it’s possible that the whole thing was another test, or that he honestly wanted us to solve the problem, or both. He also seems to be personally watching us in real time for the entire mission, which suggests either a lot of parallel capacity at his end, some kind of time dilation, or that he literally doesn’t have anything better to do. I’ll keep observing to see if I can get a better picture of what’s going on.

Anyway, this mission was to visit a rogue modron, 31^2, and his friend Tobbi, on Tobbi’s family’s farm. Once we talked to 31^2, that problem was pretty simple – he just needs to get through Sigil so the other modrons can’t trace him, and Mr Thane was able to do most of the heavy lifting.

Spell observations – my Dominate Creatures spell completely failed against some unexpectedly sentient wolves. If not under pressure, I should take the time to make some observatons. On the other hand, I did a pretty good job with a sick cow. On the other hand, I came close for the second time to disasterously losing control. I need to increase my skills as much as I can.,

Party observations: Most of the group was competent but fairly passive, which makes me suspect they’re observing us too. Jen is emerging as a leader, possibly out of impatience, and Iliana has some surprising abilities. I’m looking forward to seeing Sigil, and to learning why Iliana would leave Unity if it’s so awesome.

Anyway, Tobbi and 31^2 are pretty fun. We’ve been playing games, both playground and mental, and Tobbi is interested in an adventurer’s program, which is cool.

Michael Day Two
Dungeon Trial

Dear Diary,

Mr. Thane had us go through 12 rooms filled with tests to see if we’re ready for missions yet. Other than a troll and maybe a succubus, most of the rooms seem to have been a test of whether we would hold off attacking long enough to find another solution. It’s possible that it was also intended to get us to demonstrate our abilities, and maybe as an educational exercise.

Now that I’ve had some time to research, the challenges were : troll, gibbering mouther, rust monsters, exploding demons, succubus, gargoyles, gas sphere, gargoyles, genie, brain eater, eye tyrant, paladin fighting swyne. Almost nothing seemed actually aggressive.

Everybody in the group seemed pretty effective, but we probably need a leader. If we’re expected to allow possible opponents to have the first shot, that’s very dangerous in some ways, but I guess it makes sense. Given enough universes, even eye tyrants may not necessarily be hostile. On the other hand, letting an eye tyrant have the first shot might be fatal.

I think Miss Jen might make a good leader. She seems decisive and knows what’s going on. Miss Illeana seems to have some training in a similar magic school to mine – maybe we can exchange notes. I’m not sure Ox is interested in adventuring with us. If not, we should really identify some non-mages for things we’re not good at.

Mr. Thane has a lot more guests, but none that I’ve met before. I wonder if any of them know —?

Michael Days One and Two

Terramar: Michael’s Journal

Play by Post – Day One

Well, that could have gone better. Obviously I have a lot to learn, and better learn it fast.

I hoped to just hang out in the back of the Hiring Guild and wait until I found some likely partners, but everybody spotted me right away and started talking to me and I didn’t know what to say. I said a bunch of stuff I probably shouldn’t have to make them go away, but it didn’t work. Then I cried and they left me alone, so that was good.

Audrey is a pretty lady who wanted to put me in a home. She likes kids but is kind of mean. Jen feels like another junior mage, and wanted to set me up in the Hiring Hall – that feels too exposed, but I might not have a choice. Salmissa seems nice, and I’m not sure about Iliana – I’ll have to figure out something to say to her.

There’s also a guy with a glowing ball. He seems really uncomfortable.

I’m definitely not prepared. My divination spell was all wrong, most other people have cloaking spells, and I didn’t even think of one. There must be a lot of other stuff I don’t know. Still, hiding behind Lady Jane didn’t work – I need to learn the stuff that I don’t know.

Ideas – add a dispel charm; magic cloaking spell, and maybe an auto-healing charm?

Day One, part two

That went better. I met that weird guy named Thomas, who has some kind of far spirit as a companion. Together, we helped another boy get his ball back from some ratlings, then we played. That was really fun.

Observations – I don’t think I’m prepared for real combat. I don’t have any nonlethal options, or many responses to a crowd. Also, I really need to find some people who are tougher than me, or better at talking to people. All this hanging around other mages is just putting hats on hats.

It sounds like a lot of the mages are going to take up an offer from some Thane guy to apprentice. That sounds better than trying to find work in the city, and hopefully, there will be enough of us to be safe. I’m going to work out an autoheal spell and head out.

Day Two

We met that Thane guy. I said as much as I dared – I’m not sure if Jen and Illiana realize how much danger they’re in. Hopefully he’s what he seems, and maybe some of the servants are nice.

Why does he want to train us? Just for better assistants? — wouldn’t train this many people or do it this fast, but maybe Mr. Thane practices a different style of magic. If he has a library, a high mana zone, or a full set of decanic relics, I have an idea for some amazing spells.

I don’t think Mr. Thane uses my style of magic, but my next steps are to get stronger physically and mentally – he can probably help with that. I don’t know if he has decanic tools or a charms kit I can use, but even if not, the Halls are normal mana for most things and high for crossroads spells, and the hall of mirrors is very high for crossroads! I should be able to hang extraordinary crossroads spells in the hall of mirrors! (The lab is high mana for enchantment).

Day Two part two

Mr. Thane introduced us to a bunch of retainers. Magic at this level is amazing, and according to him he’s some kind of gate magic evangelist. He doesn’t seem like — at all – he seems almost not to care what we do. Then there’s the question of what happened to his other assistants. Hopefully I can keep my head down and stay prepared.

He’s sending us out on a mission, and adding some non-mage types. There’s a shifty type who claims to be good at talking to people, which is good, and a strong dude. We can keep any treasure not related to gates; — used to send people off on missions like that, and they definitely got stronger.

I’m scared, but I think I need to get stronger too, and I’m hoping having others around will help me learn faster, or get away if things go wrong.

PS: I was right about the Hall of Mirrors – hanging my spells there makes them a lot stronger!

Settling in

Settling in
Jen glanced around her new home, watching the slight flicker of the continual flame torches scattered about the room playing against the flat grey stone and the simple drab shelving and bed.
She sighed. It was easy to forget sometimes that she wanted to go out as an excitable child, to wonder at the frankly incredible amount of magic he had, the opportunities she had no opening up to her.
It was so easy to get lost in the cause, in the pragmatic slog through every moment. It wasn’t wrong per say, but it sometimes felt like it drained a lot of what made life valuable to her out of it.
She flopped down on the bed, and relaxed into meditating on the feel of the mana of the place, feeling what ‘gate magic’ aspected energy felt like, and went through her memories of the mages she had seen today.
Illiana was interesting, if a bit plain. She seemed sharpish, but also ready to enjoy things, be impressed and feel the energy of the moment.
Michael she hadn’t really gotten a read on, but he seemed bright enough, if understandably rough around the edges.
Tizun seemed interesting, intelligent, funny and driven, if perhaps not the wisest. He was an excellent teacher too, and she knew that she would grow fond of him quickly. Shame he had that spellcasting style though.
His entourage had a few interesting personalities as well. A holy man, a warlock, a man with strange technology unlike any she had seen before, and to odd elvenoids.
Maybe this was a good place to ‘settle’ in after all, despite her promise to go exploring and to live on the edge. It wasn’t like she couldn’t leave whenever, nor was there any dearth of adventure to be had, interesting people she could meet, or strange artifacts to play around with.
Really all she could ask for is a tutor for psychic arts. As much as so many of the people she had ran across said that it was ‘simply another school of magic’ or ‘another casting method’ or ‘a primitive, instinctive form of magic’, the inconsistency in there answers was suspicious enough to indicate that no one really had a precise, mechanistic theory of exactly what psionics was, and that was enough to make her more than a little curious.
She smiled slightly, letting her normal demeanor of professionalism and nervousness slip away entirely, and started recoloring the walls, letting her mind wander, green lines flickering out across the wall as she drew, hoping to express the feeling of this moment, that of a change finally realized.

Lano Mur's first day on the scene

This time in the grand adventures of the Prince of Lies, Lano Mur went with a group of adventurers to the Dragon’s Cave. Along the way they encountered magic butterflies, which while pretty, seem to not have been especially important. On the subject of the cave, Lano writes this

Upon scaling the Cliffs of Insanity
We delved the Pit of Impropriety
Encountering unspeakable horror
We braved indescribable terror
And love… True love
Eluded almost all like a dove
Only the great, the mighty
the elegant and wise Bigsby
Found satisfaction on that front at all.

Needless to say, the Mur clan isn’t known for especially elegant poetry, but bardic habits mean he’s going to make the rest of you listen to him anyways.

18.09.25 Tuesday GURPS Session - City in the Swamp
Library Science

18.09.25 Tuesday GURPS session

Audrey, Akureyra, Suki and Rain each get 2 xp. Audrey, Akureyra and Rain get an extra 1 xp for being on time. Everyone who writes up a session journal (IC or OOC) of at least 250 words gets an extra 1 xp.

Rain, Audrey, and Akureyra are present. Sunvaar is still being prepared for his duel with the Champion of Sess’Inek. Salmissra has swamp fever again, and Suki has disappeared.
Audrey and Rain are in the library.
Akureyra Goodsheep: Teenage swashbuckler in a mask and dark clothes

Rain Undermire almost is always carrying a wooden staff, with carved runes. He’s small and pale 5’2". Pale blue eyes. His white hair is a touch ragged and down to his shoulders. His clothes is worn and ratty. He tends to wear a stereotypical wizard’s hat, and have a book somewhere on his person.
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Audrey and Rain have found some extremely interesting books and scrolls in the library.
Apparently they date back to the founding of the city, perhaps as far as the Age of the Ancients.

Rain Undermire is very careful with the books and scrolls

Audrey is browsing more than reading, in search of things new or unknown.
John F. (NPCs) (GM): They describe how the ancestors of the current debased inhabitants of the city came here from another world, and they had magic sky chariots, metal demon servants, and swords with blades made entirely from magical energy.
They also had magic torches that lit up the night, and spells and devices which would heal wounds before your very eyes.
There are instructions on how to operate the sky chariots but not how to construct or repair them. Apparently the metal demons did that.
Audrey: Anything on how to build/enchant/summon those metal demons?

Rain Undermire is unimpressed by sky chariots. They are clearly inferior to portals.

Audrey appears to concur.
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Yes, there are some scrolls which have spells of demon-summoning, but they warn that it is dangerous.
Audrey: “Hey Rain, do you have any spells to copy things? I’m a little conflicted about ‘borrowing’ from Sundar before he is actually King.”
John F. (NPCs) (GM): (When I say “scrolls” I don’t mean that they have a magical charge and can cast the spell, I mean they have the formula for the spell written on them, so you can learn the spell, if you have the character points and the prerequisites.)
Rain Undermire: Rain Undermire rolls 13 vs: Research 17
John F. (NPCs) (GM): (By the way, what are you doing about the humanoids who are in the library with you, including the librarian?)
Rain manages to find a book with the formula for a spell that copies writing from one surface to another!

Audrey asks the humanoids for help and advice as she looks around the library.

Audrey asks the librarian, “So, do you know what happened to the people that these books are writing about?”
John F. (NPCs) (GM): The spell in question is the relatively well-known Copy spell, which has the prerequisite Dye, which in turn has the prerequisites Colors and Restore, which . . . well, you get the picture.
“They us!” says the librarian proudly.
Audrey: “What happened? I don’t see any of the metal people around.”
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Meanwhile, the toadlike god-king-priest-chieftain of the city has wandered into the library and stands watching the conversation with a wide grin.
“They turn brown from water!” the librarian explains.
Rain Undermire: Wait, the metal people were made of metal that rusts?
Audrey: “Ah…” Turning to the toad-god, Audrey follows up. “I take it they couldn’t maintain their society without their golems?”
Rain Undermire: Why not use essential metals?
John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Yes,” says the toad-thing in a deep voice, “the metal demons stopped working and the civilization of the ancestors crumbled. Also they mated with the creatures of the swamp and degenerated mentally, physically, and morally.”
The toad-thing waves his crooked staff around. “This is all that is left of the once-proud civilization of the ancestors.”
Audrey: “Why didn’t they just summon more. The incantations seem to be in here?”
John F. (NPCs) (GM): ^This pathetic shell
The toad-thing grins and flicks his tongue. “Why don’t you ask them? Or better yet why don’t you try it yourself?”
“Diggum, diggum!” says the toad-thing.
Rain Undermire: rolling 3d6
= 6

Akureyra Goodsheep goes to the library to find something
Rain Undermire: I think we should probably wait on demon summoning.
Audrey: Audrey doesn’t look impressed. “Because you obviously know the answer and know why it is a bad idea.”
John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Everyone please roll Thaumatology at -4, and Intuition or Common Sense or Illuminated if you have it.)
Akureyra Goodsheep: Akureyra Goodsheep rolls 10 vs: IQ 15
Audrey: Audrey rolls 12 vs: Thaumatology 11
Akureyra Goodsheep: That’s for intuition
Rain Undermire: Rain Undermire rolls 11 vs: Thaumatology 14
Audrey: Yes
Akureyra Goodsheep: Akureyra Goodsheep rolls 16 vs: IQ 11
Thaumatology failed
Akureyra Goodsheep rolls 13 vs: IQ 15
And that’s for common sense
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Rain thinks that there is something strange about the spells he and Audrey were reading about, that the ancestors had.
Akureyra thinks there is something strange about the inhabitants of the city.
Rain Undermire: These spells do seem a little strange
Audrey: “Well, my plan is to copy the ones that are unique and have the Guild study them.”
Akureyra Goodsheep: What’s going on?
Audrey: “Oh, hi! We’re just checking out some lost lore. I’m Audrey.”
Audrey is an obvious noble, dressed in silken clothes with a very impressive rapier at her side. While she doesn’t look as though she is suited to adventuring, she heads to a room before we head out and changes into a much more rugged adventuring outfit.
(Ignore the last part of that. I need to update that description to make it more general.)
Akureyra Goodsheep: Sounds… interesting…

Akureyra Goodsheep looks interestedly at Audrey’s form
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Rain and Audrey realize several things about the list of spells belonging to the ancestors. One is that all these spells and magic items are currently possessed by the Agorian Empire, at least in some variant, including aerial vessels, golems, demonic servants, magic swords with blades made of pure energy, continual light spells, and cure wounds spells.
Audrey: “I thought so, but to be honest I’m losing interest. It looks to largely be about interesting things rather than interesting itself.”
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Akureyra, who arrived on her own — sent by the Lord of the Swamp, because he is interested in Sunvaar’s quest to the City in the Swamp — was greeted by the strange humanoids of the city, and by their toadlike king.

Akureyra Goodsheep bows to the king
John F. (NPCs) (GM): The king bowed to Akureyra and said he assumed she was there to see the duel between the Chosen One and the Champion of Sess’Inek, and the sacrifice to Tsathoggua the Toad God afterward.
He apologized for the degenerate condition of the inhabitants of the city, who are a pale shadow of their ancestors, due to loss of technology, inbreeding with each other and outbreeding with the beasts of the swamp, and so forth.
Akureyra Goodsheep: I had many purposes, but I would not miss such an important event… erm, what is it?
Rain Undermire: Yeah, nothing particularly groundbreaking
John F. (NPCs) (GM): (What’s the big deal about robots if you have golems and demons? What’s the big deal about autodocs if you have magic healing?)
The god-king-priest-chieftain of the city keeps harping on how inferior the current inhabitants are to their ancestors.
Audrey: (New and different things are worthwhile, if they take a different approach. Audrey is definitely interested in their variant magics. The trick is that she’s interested in the formulas more than the stories.)
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Including their science, technology, and magic.
Audrey: “Rain, do you think you can at least make a copy of the summoning spell? That might be the key to the rest. That, or I guess we could copy it by hand.”

Akureyra Goodsheep bows and tries to escape to the library

Audrey asks if they have writing materials she can use.
John F. (NPCs) (GM): The humanoids have crude paper made out of marsh reeds, and ink made from the dye of the swamp octopus.
Rain Undermire: “its probably going to take a while for me to learn the copying spell.”
Audrey: “I’ll see what I can do by hand.”
Rain Undermire: “I will start studying the spells for copying”
John F. (NPCs) (GM): They have reed pens made out of marsh reeds, cut and sharpened with sharp knives made of crystalline material.
Audrey: That’s actually pretty impressive.
Akureyra Goodsheep: \me has escaped to the library, where the dialogue given above happened
John F. (NPCs) (GM): When the librarian sees Cee and Audrey trying to copy spells, it shambles over and puts its taloned claw on top of the page and shakes its head.

Akureyra Goodsheep has escaped to the library, where the dialogue given above happened
John F. (NPCs) (GM): “You no learn!”
Audrey: “Why not?”
John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Must learn other first!”
Audrey: “Other what?”
John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Other magic!”
Rain Undermire: “Which other magic?”
John F. (NPCs) (GM): The librarian bares his teeth in a grimace and stomps off to pull another volume down from the shelf and open it on one of the reading tables. He leafs through it, then points to a spot with his talon.

Rain Undermire looks at the spot he is pointing too

Audrey does the same.
John F. (NPCs) (GM): It is the spell Pentagram.
Akureyra Goodsheep: Order of knowledge may be important… but what if they already know the previous lesson?
John F. (NPCs) (GM): “You no learn this!” he says, pointing at Pentagram again. “First learn this!” And he brings out another book and points out the spell Spell Shield.
And he repeats the process for all the prerequisites of Pentagram.
Rain Undermire: “You are quite right Mr. Librarian!”

Audrey rolls her eyes.

Akureyra Goodsheep immediately rolls eyes too
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Mr. Toad chuckles.
Audrey: “Librarian, if we promise to learn those first will you let us copy that spell?” She gestures towards the summoning spell.
John F. (NPCs) (GM): The librarian ponders.
rolling 3d6 for reaction.
= 10
Eventually he nods.

Akureyra Goodsheep smiles at Audrey
Akureyra Goodsheep: Good idea, miss…
Audrey: “Oh, um, thanks.”
Rain Undermire: “I still want to learn Pentagram. Its a good spell.”
Akureyra Goodsheep: Erm… I don’t think we were properly introduced… Rain, would you do the honors?
Rain Undermire: Audrey, meet Akureyra and visa versa
Audrey: Audrey gives a friendly smile, “Nice to meet you.”
Akureyra Goodsheep: Y-you too…
John F. (NPCs) (GM): The library also includes a variant of the spell Golem and of course all of its prerequisites.
Audrey: “Are you feeling alright? You seem a little distracted?”
Rain Undermire: me?
Audrey: “No… Well, yes. But I didn’t mean you.”
Rain Undermire: I was focused on learning the spells for pentagram. Starting with scryguard
Audrey: “Anyway, we should copy the spells we need before the duel. That way we can learn…” wink “all of the other spells first.”
Rain Undermire: Eh I suppose. I’ll start back on the chain for copy then.
Audrey: “I think copying manually will probably work, although the spell is probably more reliable.”
Akureyra Goodsheep: Well… I’m a bit surprised to meet you I gue-ess..
Audrey: It takes a moment for Audrey to put two and two together before she responds. “Oh! Sorry. I didn’t realize you recognized me.” She smiles warmly. “We’re kind of out of the way out here.”

Akureyra Goodsheep is shocked but nods
Audrey: “I’m sorry I didn’t recognize you. I guess I’m kind of out of my element out here.”

Audrey continues to copy the summoning spell by hand as they chat.
Audrey: (I believe so.)
Akureyra Goodsheep: N-no… you never really… met me face to face before… blushes under mask
Audrey: “Still, you’d think I’d remember a masked swords… person. If by reputation if nothing else.”
“Oh! Have you seen my brother around lately? That’s why I’m out here.”

Akureyra Goodsheep tilts head left and right
Audrey: “That’s alright. I think the trail is pretty cold.”

Audrey will continue to chat as she works to fill the time, being pretty good at talking about nothing.

Rain Undermire is confused, but does not ask any questions. It will be fine. Probably

Akureyra Goodsheep continues to flirt awkwardly and indirectly
Audrey: (Are you waiting on us to take additional actions?)
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Eventually the spells are copied — although not learned, yet. (What do you want to do next?)

Akureyra Goodsheep looks at the spells
Akureyra Goodsheep: Can you… really learn it?

Rain Undermire is content to continue learning the spells.

Audrey does some more poking around in the library for novel things. If she goes for a while without finding anything of interest, she’ll likely get bored and want to leave.
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Audrey finds some strange-looking jewelry in a chest.
Akureyra Goodsheep: You’re so clever… do you think I can ever learn magic like you?
John F. (NPCs) (GM): It’s pretty worthless-looking, not even costume jewelry — it looks like it’s made of glass and glossy wires.
Small finger-sized and finger-shaped glass tubes with shiny wires inside them.
Audrey: “I doubt I can, but someone probably can. Rain looks like he is making progress.”
Rain Undermire: “Maybe. The big hurdle for most people is Magery.”
If you don’t have magery you could try to get it by finding a high mana area and practicing spells
or participate in rituals
Audrey: “Yeah… That’s my problem. I’m not great without my wand.”
Rain Undermire: If you do have magery, its a lot of studying and practice.
Akureyra Goodsheep: Magery… oh, yes. Of course. But still… I doubt I would be of use even with a wand

Audrey mutters. “A lot of study…”

Audrey Audrey addresses the Frog-god. “Do you know what this stuff is?” She gestures to the jewelry.
Rain Undermire: There is probably a high mana area nearby though, so this would be a good place to learn.
Audrey: ((Sorry. I meant Mr Toad.))
John F. (NPCs) (GM): The god-king-priest-chieftain of the city waddles over to the spot where the chest of jewelry is. “Looks like some cheap trinkets to me,” he says. “Diggum!”
Suki (Housecat): Suki has low standards, she thinks the jewelry looks cute

Audrey is obviously please that the kitty is awake.
Audrey: ((Pleased)
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Mr. Toad eyes Suki hungrily and licks his big, slobbery lips with his big, slobbery tongue.
Suki (Housecat): (suki needs no swamp fever, she is cat and cats must sleep)
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Then he licks his big, slobbery body.
Suki (Housecat): Suki fluffs up trying to look big and scary
she wears her bravest face

Akureyra Goodsheep pets Suki
Suki (Housecat): she purrs, still fluffed up and scurred
Audrey: “Don’t worry kitty, we won’t let him hurt you.”

Rain Undermire continues to study
Akureyra Goodsheep: Yeah, we won’t… Audrey is strong, we will protect you…

Rain Undermire notices Suki. :Kitty!"

Rain Undermire goes to pet suki
Suki (Housecat): “Who’s this dude?” Suki asks, enjoying multiple pets at once
“He’s heping us right?”

Akureyra Goodsheep pets Suki intensely still looking at Audrey
Suki (Housecat): “I don’t want to be in the presence of someone who wants to eat me if I can help it”
Audrey: “Helping would be an exaggeration, but he’s a friend at least till the duel.”

Audrey checks her dress to make sure nothing is out of place, given the staring.
Rain Undermire: He’s helping us. He even let us access the library
John F. (NPCs) (GM): “I am the god-king-priest-chieftain of this city,” the Hitchcock-like creature intones, gravely.
Audrey: “Rain, is there anything else we need to do here? I’m just about booked out.”
Suki (Housecat): “I see” Suki says still eyeing his teeth
(I think suki has seen him before but she is racist and can’t tell frog people apart)
John F. (NPCs) (GM): “I am the chieftain of the tribe, the king of the city, the priest of Tsathoggua the Frog God, and I am a god myself.” He preens.
He is a different species from the humanoid inhabitants of the city, much more squat and toadlike.
Rain Undermire: "Well we can always study more spells. Free library access is a pretty big perk

Audrey complains, “There are libraries back East. With mulled wine and comfortable fireplaces…”
John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Oh-ho-ho-ho! Is it wine you want? We have plenty here,” says Mr. Toad.
Suki (Housecat): Suki’s gloves unclip from her color, the eyes on the palms glow as the gloves float around looking for Necromancy for Beginner books, “May as well take the opportunity”
Akureyra Goodsheep: Is it… bad to have libraries?
Audrey: Audrey is largely distracted by Suki’s gloves. that’s a neat trick. “No… Libraries are a good thing. They just aren’t what I had in mind for an ‘adventure.’”
Akureyra Goodsheep: Akureyra Goodsheep rolls 13 vs: IQ 15
Suki (Housecat): Suki DOES want the cheap jewelry but she doesn’t want to offend the scary frog god
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Mr. Toad croaks some orders in Draconic and soon afterward a pair of humanoids brings in a large clay amphora with an intricate design on the outside.
Audrey: Getting back to Mr. Toad Audrey is pretty skeptical, “Really…?”
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Another servant brings in several ceramic cups.
^goblets, also decorated with intricate artwork.
Suki (Housecat): Suki finds a Necromancy for Dummies and wonders if she can continually revive and sacrifice something and if it would be accepted as an offering
Akureyra Goodsheep: I had some adventures… they usually turn out to be worse than one thinks beforehand.
Suki (Housecat): “This is my first adventure and I’m learning a lot already”
Audrey: “You have grapes out here? You have a cellar to age wine out here…?” The goblets give her pause, being surprisingly good.
John F. (NPCs) (GM): The artwork shows froglike humanoids — presumably the inhabitants of the city — bowing before a large toad creature with tentacles — presumably Tsathoggua — and presenting it with offerings.

Rain Undermire knows never to drink and learn new spells. Or really cast spells at all. That’s how accidental demon summonings occur.
John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Ho-ho-no, this is swamp wine!”
“These are strange, unearthly grapes which flourish in the unwholesomely fertile muck of the swamp.”
Akureyra Goodsheep: Any fruit would pass probably…
Suki (Housecat): Suki sniffs the wine, she doesn’t think she can digest it

Audrey sniffs the wine, skeptically.
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Suki thinks that the wine smells like concord grape wine or blackberry brandy — mixed with mud, or very silty water.

Akureyra Goodsheep is uncertain; being noble, Aku is a bit unaccustomed to sich wine
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Audrey gets the same impression as Suki does.
It’s a very . . . earthy aroma.
Suki (Housecat): “Does anyone know if cats can have alcohol?”
“I have only had catnip,” Suki says

Audrey shrugs
Suki (Housecat): (no)
Akureyra Goodsheep: It’s not a good idea…
Audrey: “Smells, earthy…” Audrey takes a polite sip.
(Lee is very familiar with single malt scotch. Especially Islays.
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Or perhaps a very smoky flavor (like peaty Scotch).
Suki (Housecat): Suki gives it a lick just to be polite
she doesn’t have the tastebuds for it

Akureyra Goodsheep drinks with a straight face – nobles are able to mask distaste
Audrey: Audrey rolls 7 vs: HT 17
Suki (Housecat): (no!)
Audrey: (No)
Suki (Housecat): (that great is ominous)

Audrey is impressed. “That’s actually really good. Thanks!”
Suki (Housecat): Suki politely turns the drink back, “I don’t think cats should be having alcohol, it smells good nice though”
Audrey: Between the fine liquor and a cat to pet, the library is feeling a lot more bearable to Audrey.
John F. (NPCs) (GM): Audrey, Akureyra, Suki and Rain each get 2 xp. Audrey, Akureyra and Rain get an extra 1 xp for being on time. Everyone who writes up a session journal (IC or OOC) of at least 250 words gets an extra 1 xp.
Suki (Housecat): the game ended on such a comfy note
why not just live in the city in the swamp?
Audrey: (It is getting nicer, I’ll give you that.)

18.09.22 Saturday GURPS Session - Skeleton Crew

18.09.22 Saturday GURPS session

Thaanya and Rain are about to set out on an expedition ordered by the Necromancer of the Dark Tower in the Swamp.
So, Thaanya and Rain are gathering whatever supplies they want, or at least trying to.
(Want to specify what you’re taking? It’s a week there and a week back.)
Their undead servitors, of course, require no nourishment or other supplies.

Rain Undermire asks if the necromancer has something like a bowl or water skin to create water in.

Thaanya Eschon takes her powerston jewels that she pouts on her left hand and keep her brooch close she’s about to count the water she needs when rains ask his question
John F. (NPCs) (GM): The Necromancer points Cee at the kitchen, and the storerooms.
Thaanya Eschon: you can make water ?
Rain Undermire: Yup, I learned the create water spell in school.
John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Yes, you chant “Milk, milk, lemonade, around the corner fudge is made!”)

Akureyra Goodsheep takes some reasonable supplies

Thaanya Eschon: well something less to carry with us (even though the servants will do all the heavy lifting)

Thaanya Eschon thinks she will use the opportunity given by the mission to make servants of her own
John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Does Thaanya have a skeletal servitor?)
Thaanya Eschon: (Not yet but she has all the spells to male a few (including the AOE variant of the zombie spell)
John F. (NPCs) (GM): The Necromancer of the Dark Tower in the Swamp has a skeletal minion, i.e. a skeleton that he paid points for as a fairly powerful ally instead of just a regular cheap skeleton. The minion is the guy who wears the black armor with a horned helmet, has glowing red eyes, etc.
Cee: that’s cool
Dmitrij Z.: (What would the verb “male” mean, I wonder?..))

Thaanya Eschon know what she might use her incoming XP now
Deathtales (thaanya): (not yer (…) make (…))

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The Necromancer also gives Thaanya a silver skull necklace which allows her to communicate with him over long distances.

Thaanya Eschon: that will be useful
Thaanya Eschon puts the necklace on

John F. (NPCs) (GM): If you remember, the Necromancer also lit candles to St. Cyprian of Antioch, and St. Lazarus…even though his relations with the Church are strained, to say the least.
The Necromancer hates and fears God because he does not believe in life after death, at least not without necromancy.
Dmitrij Z.: The Lazarus who was resurrected?
John F. (NPCs) (GM): None else!

Rain Undermire should teach the necromancer how to brew youth potions.

Thaanya Eschon knows a bit about alchemy already, fortunately she hasn’t any elexir brewing right now.

Rain Undermire: When do we set out?
Cee: also did Rain get something to put water in?

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The tower has plenty of water skins, as well as bowls of various materials.

Thaanya Eschon gets to the kitchen and comes back with a few waterskins.
Thaanya Eschon: here you go

Rain Undermire: “thank you!”

Thaanya Eschon: anything else we need

Rain Undermire: I don’t think so. I can create food or shelter if we end up needing it.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (OOC: You need “individual basics” and “party basics” from the equipment list.)
Cee: we really do
Rain doesn’t have a survival default for Terramar though…
Deathtales (thaanya): equipement list from grps base rulebook ?
Akureyra Goodsheep: (Yep) Well… something like ropes and stuff?
Rain Undermire: Fishing line, hooks a knife that sort of thing. Its like a swiss army knife of survival
John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Page 288 “Personal Basics” and “Group Basics” plus you should look over the rest of the items and take anything else you want.)

Thaanya Eschon gather the camping supplies.
Deathtales (thaanya): by which i mean a “group basic” set and 3 “individual basics” set backpacks sleeping furs and tents (whatever she can bring with her)

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (You can set out and decide what items from the equipment list you want to take, retroactively, because you have thirty skeletons/zombies to carry stuff.)

Akureyra Goodsheep tries to find suitable supplies
Akureyra Goodsheep: That Black Pharaoh is still looming somewhere…

Thaanya Eschon: black pharaoh ?

Rain Undermire: A magic guy we bumped into in he swamp

Thaanya Eschon: I think I heard or read about him once but I cannot remember where or when

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “The Black Pharaoh?” asks the Necromancer. “Hmm,” he says, thoughtfully. “The Black Pharaoh is an avatar or form of Nyarlathotep, the Crawling Chaos.” And the Necromancer makes a strange gesture with his hands — the Elder Sign, to ward off danger.

Rain Undermire: “Huh, well he sounds nice at least.”

Akureyra Goodsheep: Yeah… real reassuring

Thaanya Eschon: well in’t nyarlathotep duplicious ?

Rain Undermire: “How is he duplicious?”

In addition to the thirty skeletons/zombies, the Necromancer also decides to send some Bog Mummies (which are totally a real thing) with you.
John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Bog mummies are exactly like regular mummies,” the Necromancer explains, “except they are created when the flesh is preserved and altered by the acidity of the water, the low temperature, and the lack of oxygen in a peat bog.”

Rain Undermire: ’so no wrappings?"

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “No wrappings.” (Yes, this is a real thing.) “The bodies are naturally preserved, and then animated either by casting a spell, or by the natural magic of the environment. Are you aware that many bodies spontaneously animate?”

Rain Undermire: “Not really. Does that mean the souls are trapped?”

Thaanya Eschon: natrally occuring undead animation can be dangerous though.

Misty a.: “are the bog mummies self aware?”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The Necromancer scowls. “There is no evidence that the soul is anything but an emergent phenomenon.”

Suki (Housecat): Suki briefly wonders if cats have souls

Rain Undermire: “But what about reports of the afterlife from people who have been resurrected?”

Thaanya Eschon: emergent phenomenon ?

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Such reports are unreliable. They might be hallucinations or false memories — confabulations — or it might be that the soul continues to exist for a brief period after bodily death, but then dissipates.”

Suki (Housecat): “Xibalba would never lie to me about the afterlife”

Rain Undermire opens his mouth to say something, but decides to give up. No real point in this argument.

Thaanya Eschon makes a last check of what we need to take. “I think we’re all set now ready to go.”

Thaanya Eschon have a similar pthought process as rain did, hence her changing the subject)

Akureyra Goodsheep thinks that it would be better to define soul before arguing about it but doesn’t interfere still depressed over the Crawling Chaos.

Thaanya Eschon: so you two come with me ? how and I didn’t see the cat come back again

Suki (Housecat): (cats are mysterious) (and sneaky)

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (It’s The Cat Who Could Walk Through Walls by Heinlein.)

Rain Undermire: Rain will come with

Suki (Housecat): (suki is following)

Akureyra Goodsheep: Coming…

Thaanya Eschon: so you areto help us ? didn’t you say what we did was immoral ?

Akureyra Goodsheep: If you can’t stop what’s coming, at least look after it not to have bigger problems

Deathtales (thaanya): “That doesn’tt especially reassures me as for you not trying to sabottage the mission.”

Rain Undermire: “Wait, what’s immoral here? We’re just taking naturally existing mana and redirecting it. Its not like the Green Wizard made the mana or anything. Why would he have any claim to it?”

Akureyra Goodsheep: Well, mana is like land. It is no one’s initially, but if we claim some land is no one’s now we create chaos.

Rain Undermire: "But even if you can claim raw mana, I very much doubt the Green Wizard is the one who first said “I claim all things that are unclaimed.”"

Thaanya Eschon: point is why shoul I trust you if you disapprove what we are going to do ?

Akureyra Goodsheep: You shouldn’t. You can leave me here, sure. But then… who would help you to solve difficulties, zombles?

Thaanya Eschon: who indeed ? someone who as an active interest on me not overcoming said difficulties ?

Akureyra Goodsheep: If the difficulties are dangerous my more active interest would be to get the group to overcoming them. You know, to survive and not become a traitor.

Rain Undermire: “Can’t we all get along? How would she even sabotage it? And can’t you just pay attention to her? Plus, I think sabotage would require gathering allies. If its a serious concern and she’s with us, then she can’t sabotage anything! Although, I don’t think we need to worry about it.”

Thaanya Eschon: I agree I’d rather have her where I can see her rather than running around and bringing dragons knew what to harm us. You’re comping along then shall we go now ?

Rain Undermire: I vote for going!

Akureyra Goodsheep: We shall.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (What are you doing about food? I mean, you can eat the flesh off the zombies, but it’s very tough and chewy and doesn’t taste very good.)

Akureyra Goodsheep: (Rain claimed it would conjure it)

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Rain can conjure food as well as water? OK)

Thaanya Eschon re-counts that she has enought food for all the party for the trip (along with the campng supplies)

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The Necromancer leans down and strokes Suki.

Suki (Housecat): Suki is pleased and starts purring, “I’d be happy being pet 80% of the time I am not sleeping”

Thaanya Eschon still doesn’t take the cat into accounts while counting food

Suki (Housecat): (suki doesn’t eat much and can hunt if there are small animals around)

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The Necromancer tries to remember where he saw a ritual for animating a Crawling Hand, and which he is sure he can modify into being a Petting Hand.

Akureyra Goodsheep leans to pet Suki as well

Thaanya Eschon pets the cat

Suki (Housecat): Suki is SO HAPPY

Thaanya Eschon: well we got food enough everyone has everything they need ?

Suki (Housecat): “This might be the best day of my life”

Rain Undermire: Yup@

Akureyra Goodsheep: Woaaaaa, kitty… What? blushes under the mask Oh, yes. adjusts backpack

Suki (Housecat): “Yes I am a kitty”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The Necromancer also decides to get an undead cat as a familiar. He remembers reading about Spellstitched Companions in the Libris Mortis.

Thaanya Eschon: so talking cat do you come with us ?

Akureyra Goodsheep: Of course this cute kitty should come with us… we would pet it… cherish it… protect it… girl is clearly overwhelmed with the kitten even though she understands it is sentient

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Soon enough, the undead caravan is assembled in front of the Black Tower: a column of skeletons and zombies two abreast, with some of them holding a sedan chair for each of the party members, decorated in the livery of the Necromancer: black, with a skull in the center. (The colors of the skulls vary according to some arcane formula.) The Necromancer explains that the undead are able to march without tiring, so they can keep moving 24 hours a day even while the party sleeps, if you wish it. John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Denn die Todten reiten Schnell,” says the Necromancer, smiling.

Deathtales (thaanya): does suki have her own sedan chair ? r does she travel on the lap of someone else ?

Suki (Housecat): (on someone’s lap bc that is cuter)

Rain Undermire: So we just sleep in the chairs?

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Yes, or you can lie back on a litter.” The movement of the undead bearers is bumpy, like trying to sleep on a moving train. “Or you can stop to sleep if you wish.”

Deathtales (thaanya): (Are pens common on Terramar ? just to add a little details to description and know if thaanya would use a pencil or a charcoal piece to write while on travel because quils are unpractical to bring with you)

John F. (NPCs) (GM): There are pencils on Terramar, because they were invented on Earth in 1564. Terramar also has “reservoir pens” similar to the design (a predecessor of the fountain pen) made by Leonardo Da Vinci.

Thaanya Eschon take sher notebook and start speculating about creating a chest with legs to carry stuff around.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The shambling corpses are also carrying chests of supplies, on litters.

Akureyra Goodsheep: takes place “I call dibs for carrying Suki on my laps!”

Thaanya Eschon takes place on another chair. “she is able to chose with whom she wants to travel”

Suki (Housecat): Suki is fine on Akurerya’s lap on the condition she gets pet. otherwise no dice

Akureyra Goodsheep: Of course I will pet you, you cute little thingie mimimiing intensely

Thaanya Eschon is jealous for not having the cat.

Suki (Housecat): Suki is pleased to be pet, she is a simple creature

Rain Undermire is somewhat jealous. He wonders about binding a cat familiar. Maybe a giant magical cat large enough to be ridden.

Thaanya Eschon defaults to continuing on her notes thinking about all the thing she can do with undeads. an idea sparks about a panther-shaped chest she could cast the “animate” spell on.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The column moves slowly through the swamp like a great undead snake — like a necrophidius, in fact!
The bearers travel at human speed, halved for the terrain, of course, so a little over one mile per hour (a little under 2 km/h).
rolling 1d4+1d6+1d600 for random encounter. = 251
After about 4 hours, the party encounters . . . (2. Lair: Either an actual lair, or a situation where they’re real close. Either way, you might be able to avoid an encounter if you take immediate action.)
(Everyone roll Perception/Sense + Magery)

Suki (Housecat): (how far away is the lair?)

Thaanya Eschon: Thaanya Eschon rolls 13 vs: Per 13 plus magery 3
Akureyra Goodsheep: Akureyra Goodsheep rolls 11 vs: Per 14
Suki (Housecat): Suki (Housecat) rolls 8 vs: Per 10

Akureyra Goodsheep pets Suki absentmindedly

Suki (Housecat): Suki purrs

John F. (NPCs) (GM): . . . something that stinks, like rotting fish. Mixed with mud and peat.

Thaanya Eschon: ugh that smell

Suki (Housecat): “smells good”

Akureyra Goodsheep is not so pleased with the smell but still pets Suki
Akureyra Goodsheep: Well… this probably means something…

Rain Undermire: “Doesn’t smell great.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Do you want to try to find the source of the smell, or just continue?)

Dmitrij Z.: (Is this different?)

Thaanya Eschon doesn’t thinks there is anything about the smells worthy if investigation from available info (ie “it stinks” is not a sufficient reason to investigate in a swamp)

Rain Undermire does not wish to investigate. It is a swamp! Stuff stinks. Dirt is everywhere.

Suki (Housecat): Suki would love to investigate the rotting fish smell but democracy wins out

Akureyra Goodsheep: Sorry, kitty, but we don’t need them all angry and covering their noses, do we?
Suki (Housecat): “Such a shame, smelled good”

Thaanya Eschon didn’t ever express her opinion to continue, it was more of a default choice, as no one had explicitely suggested to stop

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The expedition continues!
rolling 1d4+1d6+1d600 for random encounter. = 486
John F. (NPCs) (GM): After another couple of hours, the party encounters . . . (3. Spoor: They’re real close! Encounter easily avoided, but also easily approached.) . . . tracks, three-toed.

Thaanya Eschon is curious
Thaanya Eschon: does anyone here know what laid these tracks ?

Akureyra Goodsheep: http://pluspng.com/img-png/png-running-track-running-track-running-track-run-exercise-sport-960.png
Akureyra Goodsheep is curious about tracks having toes…

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Roll Naturalist or Survival.)
Thaanya Eschon: what do they default to ?
Deathtales (thaanya): was ooc
Rain Undermire cannot identify tracks at all
Deathtales (thaanya): I have neither of those skill and was wonderign if they had a default
Thaanya Eschon usually spends more time in a library than in a forest and is not the best suited to identify tracks
Dmitrij Z.: Survival is Per-5; Naturalist is IQ-6
Thaanya Eschon: Thaanya Eschon rolls 10 vs: IQ 14
only thing I can say is “thses are tracks”
Dmitrij Z.: Akureyra Goodsheep rolls 10 vs: Per 9

John F. (NPCs) (GM): They look like bird footprints. Big ones.

Suki (Housecat): “hmm big bird . . .”

Akureyra Goodsheep: Yeah, true… pets Suki

Thaanya Eschon: what kinds of big birds are there around here ? anyone knows ?

Rain Undermire: “Bird? Where?”
Rain Undermire is really bad at identiying tracks

Akureyra Goodsheep: Well, we suppose tracks are left by a bird-like creature.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Well, two of the party members are from other worlds, so probably not familiar with Terramar fauna…

Rain Undermire: Birds fly though. Can’t be a bird. I’ve read about this! Also Ive seen some. Flying.

Suki (Housecat): (emu) (GIANT EMU)

Akureyra Goodsheep: Some big birds don’t really fly much.

Rain Undermire: Really?

Akureyra Goodsheep: So I’ve read… dubious, still pets Suki What do we do about them?

Suki (Housecat): “eat them”

Thaanya Eschon: well given the skill we have with tracks I’m not sure we would find anything if we tried. unless… suki what about your nose what does it say?

Suki (Housecat): “It smells tasty. not as good as the rotting fish though”

Thaanya Eschon: can you track them using smell ?

Akureyra Goodsheep: So the teeny-tiny kitty wants to eat birds probably higher than me? chuckles petting Suki’s ear

Suki (Housecat): (I’m gonna have to head out. Suki will continue purring and wanting to eat everything) “yes”
Suki (Housecat): “if we don’t finish it I shall sacrifice it to my god Xibalba”

Akureyra Goodsheep wonders how to explain that won’t be the main problem

Thaanya Eschon: so shallwe try to find these birds ?

Akureyra Goodsheep: I guess Suki votes yes… I would vote no otherwise but in this situation I think I would abstain.

Rain Undermire: Rain will support Suki! The cat is very cute.

Thaanya Eschon: given what we know and that we aren’t good with tracks I’d be enclined to say no. unless someone has an idea i don’t know about. also the cat is very cute.

Rain Undermire: “You’re probably right. I guess I’ll vote against trying to track the birds.”

Akureyra Goodsheep: Sorry, Suki, it’s majority will pets Suki and shrugs

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Rain, Thaanya, Akureyra and Suki get 2 xp each. Rain, Thaanya and Akureyra also get an extra xp for being on time. Plus everyone who writes up a journal for the session either IC or OOC gets 1 extra xp.

18.09.21 Friday GURPS Session - City in the Swamp
Tour de Frog

18.09.21 Friday GURPS Session.

Sunvaar, Audrey, and Taemo have swamp fever.

Rain and Suki get 2 xp each. Rain also gets an extra xp for being on time. Audrey gets 1 xp. Plus everyone who writes up a journal for the session either IC or OOC gets 1 extra xp.

Audrey and Taemo have swamp fever, but Sunvaar is being prepared for the sacred ritual duel with the Champion of Sess’Inek. While that happens, the god-king-priest-chief of the City in the Swamp asks if you wish a tour of the City, or perhaps refreshments first. “I never like to perform a sacrifice on an empty stomach. Kill the fatted calf and all that. Nothing but the best for the Toad God!”

The bloated, warty god-king-priest-chief leans forward and puts his webbed hands on the arms of his throne as if to push himself up. Several of the humanoids rush over to the throne and help him up. He supports himself on a spiral staff with a large green orb on top.

The staff and the orb are magic as well, as is the god-king-priest-chief’s cloak and headdress and belt, which are his only articles of clothing.

Suki (Housecat): “the concentration of magic is so strong”

Rain Undermire: “Quite high. He must be powerful. Oh god-king-priest-chief, may I ask a questions?”

Looking like Toad of Toad Hall (from The Wind in the Willows) he starts waddling off, using his staff as a cane. His entourage surrounds him and you. “Yes?” he croaks.

Rain Undermire: “You’re very magically powerful. Almost is if you’re made from it. I wonder if that is the result of a deliberate transformation, or something natural?” He tries to be as diplomatic as possible, since that never hurts!

He chuckles throatily. “It is something unnatural, for I am what your kind call a Slaad!”

Suki (Housecat): “What is that if I may ask?” Suki mews

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “We are creatures native to Limbo, the plane of Uttermost Chaos.”

Rain Undermire: “Interesting.”

Suki (Housecat): “How is Limbo? It sounds . . . chaotic”

Rain Undermire: “Also like it would be lethal to an uprotected human? I mean eventually. Humans have a narrow band of tolerances.”

“Limbo is glorious. It is supreme chaos, a twisting, quicksilver place filled with bits and pieces of rocks, trees, the four elements, entire landscapes, strong winds, and random pockets of liquid, solid, gas, plasma, light, darkness, electricity, magnetism, charm, and strangeness. Sentient beings can control the chaos and produce the environment they imagine as long as they maintain concentration. Demigods and more powerful beings can create realms that survive even if they leave Limbo. Thrown objects will fly straight until they hit a solid object. Objects with no momentum hang in space until contacted by something solid.”

Suki (Housecat): “Sounds fascinating. Do you like it here or do you prefer Limbo?”

Rain Undermire: “That sounds pretty cool. Sounds like it might be trouble if you slept though.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “I am enjoying ruling the City in the Swamp for a few centuries. And yes Limbo is pretty cool, and we Slaadi do not need to worry about sleeping there.”

Suki (Housecat): Suki hope’s Xibalba’s afterlife is that bitchin’ and metal. “What brought you here in the first place?”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Chance!” It grins widely.

Rain Undermire: “Seems appropriate for someone from Limbo”

Suki (Housecat): “Sounds lucky!” Suki mews, “I wish I got to rule a city by sheer chance”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Well, I am the most powerful frog-thing around!” He preens.

Rain Undermire: “So if you work hard at magic and become powerful you could probably rule something too. Although honestly that sounds like a lot of work.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Meanwhile you have been walking through the “citadel” section of the City in the Swamp, although Slaad of Slaad Hall continues to converse and answer your questions in addition to giving you a tour.

Suki (Housecat): “If chance should ever reshape your form I can recommend being a cat, its nice”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Ha, “Slaad of Slaad Hall”! Sometimes I am so clever I impress my own self!)

Rain Undermire pays close attention for anything that might hint of a treasure room, although theft may be more complicated than anticipated.

Suki (Housecat): “So what do you eat? I don’t know very much about er, frog people?” Not cats right?"

Rain Undermire: “I recommend Essential Food. At least if you have mana to spare.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “. . . and here is our sacred fountain, which flows into the sacred pool. Notice the valve which can control the flow of water. And the statues representing the ancestors of the current inhabitants, from which they have degenerated, losing virtually all their magical knowledge and advanced technology.” (You can’t see any real physical difference between the forms of the ancestors, depicted in the statues, and the forms of the current humanoids.)

Suki (Housecat): “it must be subtle,” Suki says to herself

Rain Undermire: “What does the sacred water do?”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): "Here are our kitchens, where we prepare our food. We eat herbs and tubers harvested in the swamp, as well as occasional sacrifices. And here are the monks’ quarters . . . "

Rain Undermire is proud of himself for not assuming the sacred water is like the Goddess’s

Suki (Housecat): “I wonder how many edible goodies we have just waltzed past out of ignorance!”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “The sacred water is good for drinking, bathing, cleaning, cooking, healing, and enchanting to create magical potions.”

Rain Undermire: “Oh that’s pretty versatile.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Notice how the water flows through these channels carved in the floor by the ancestors when they built the city, and these gates can channel the flow to the appropriate tanks.”

Rain Undermire: “Oh cool.”

(The sacred spring and sacred pool are magic, as is the water flowing through them.)

“Here are cells and torture chambers for prisoners and sacrifices,” he says, pointing to some cells which have doors constructed out of iron bars. The cells are apparently empty, but there are skeletons — human skeletons — in the manacles attached to the cell walls.

Rain Undermire makes a mental note to not enter any restricted areas without an escape plan.

“Here are the quarters for the priests and acolytes.

“Here is the library used by the court magician of those who built the City, and here is a laboratory. Of course the current inhabitants have degenerated so much that they have lost all such knowledge.”

You can see a few of the humanoids in the library, laboriously attempting to read ancient books, running their clawed forefingers along the text and mouthing the words as they do so; and in the laboratory, a few other humanoids are stirring large cauldrons with thick vapor coming out of them.

Rain Undermire: “Oh wow. What sort of books are here in here? Alchemy formularies? Spell manuals? Any lost secrets of yore?”

Rain Undermire is reassessing what this cities most valuable assets are.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Of course,” says Slaad of Slaad Hall.

Suki (Housecat): “Now that sounds fascinating!”

Rain Undermire: “Indeed. Unfortunately, we probably can’t read the writings…”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Not without some sort of magical aid, no doubt. Now, come along…” He waddles through a long, irregular tunnel that leads you out of the building. “Here are our frog corrals. And over there” gesturing with his staff “are the fields and gardens where we grow medicinal and alchemical herbs. And over there is the temple of Tsathoggua the Toad God. The Black Pharoah came here a day ago to inform us that the Chosen One would be arriving.”

Rain Undermire: “A good man that one. Who did the choosing anyway?”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Mr. Slaad shrugs. “I don’t remember. Tsathoggua or some other god or a glowing green star, something like that.”

Suki (Housecat): “Is the Black Pharoah still here?”

Rain Undermire shrugs and asks “What kind of herbs do you grow? Or what kind of potions can you make with them? I used to work as an apprentice alchemist, although I only got certified for Healing and Youth potions. Youth potions take forever to make.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “The Black Pharoah is everywhere. It is said that he has nine-hundred and ninety-nine forms, and every single one of them will drive at least one race mad. Oh, they do not grow very many herbs, because their knowledge is so degenerated compared with that of their ancestors. And they can make very few potions.”

Rain Undermire: “Sad. This feels like something that should be worked on. How did they backslide so?”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Social decadence, and inbreeding.”

Rain Undermire: “Huh, inbreeding? Didn’t they know that’s dangerous? Wait, or was that one of the things the Goddess just told us and we didn’t find out on our own.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Their gods encourage it.”

Rain Undermire: “Oh wow. That’s not good. Why would gods do that?”

Suki (Housecat): “That is certainly unusual I’ve never heard of gods encouraging that”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “These humanoids worship Tsathoggua and Ramenos, among others.”

Rain Undermire: “Don’t know them. Honestly, I don’t really know much about any gods except for the Goddess.”

Suki (Housecat): “I’ve only concerned myself with Xibalba”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Which Goddess is that? The Triple Goddess?”

Suki (Housecat): “Xibalba is an ancient, near forgotten God. He’s planning a comeback though, trying to entice new worshippers”

Rain Undermire: "The Goddess? Worshiped by nearly everyone in the Hidden City? I think her true name is a whole string of words of power. Sometimes called the Empress of Heaven?

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “The Queen of the Angels?”

Rain Undermire: “Umm… maybe? Empress of Angels? Empress is a higher rank than Queen in the feudal ladder right? The Hidden City’s highest ranked official is just mayor.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “I believe so.” The slaad is not particularly impressed by Xibalba. Ancient, near-forgotten gods planning a comeback are a copper a dozen in the Multiverse.

He takes you to see the temple of Tsathoggua, which has an enormous pile of treasure in front of the altar in front of the enormous statue of the deity.

Rain Undermire does in fact stare greedily at the treasure. Even if lost secrets are more valuable, the pile of treasure, is sill a pile of treasure!

Suki (Housecat): Suki’s jaw is agape, “MEOW

The temple is paved with immense quinquangular flags of the same material from which its walls are built. Other than the huge pile of treasure it is quite bare, except for the image of the god enthroned at the further end, the two-tiered altar of obscenely-figured metal before the image, and a large and curious-looking basin of bronze supported on three legs, which occupy the middle of the floor.

Tsathoggua is very squat and pot-bellied, his head is more like that of a monstrous toad than a deity, and his whole body is covered with an imitation of short fur, giving somehow a vague suggestion of both the bat and the sloth. His sleepy lids are half-lowered over his globular eyes; and the tip of a queer tongue issues from his fat mouth. In truth, he is not a comely or personable sort of god.

Rain Undermire whispers to Suki “It would be rude to try and tell people about Goddess right?”

Suki (Housecat): “Probably for the best not to. I’m sure he has multiple good qualities aside”

The basin is very large; indeed, it is no less than six feet in diameter by three in depth, and its brim is the height of a tall man’s shoulder from the floor. The three legs that bear it are curved and massive and terminate in reptilian claws displaying their talons. The bowl is filled with a sort of viscous and semi-liquescent substance, quite opaque and of a sooty color. It is from this that an odor comes—an odor which, though unsurpassably foul, is nevertheless not an odor of putrefaction, but resembles rather the smell of some vile and unclean creature of the marshes.

There is writing on the stone walls of the temple, carved by ancient hands in ancient runes, as well as in more modern languages. One such writing begins “I, Satampra Zeiros of Uzuldaroum, shall write with my left hand, since I have no longer any other, the tale of everything that befell Tirouv Ompallios and myself in the shrine of the god Tsathoggua, which lies neglected by the worship of man in the jungle-taken suburbs of Commoriom, that long-deserted capital of the Hyperborean rulers. I shall write it with the violet juice of the suvana-palm, which turns to a blood-red rubric with the passage of years, on a strong vellum that is made from the skin of the mastodon, as a warning to all good thieves and adventurers who may hear some lying legend of the lost treasures of Commoriom and be tempted thereby…”

Rain Undermire: “What’s in the basin?”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “A Formless Spawn of Tsathoggua.”

Suki (Housecat): “Has it been named yet?”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “I do not know. Do you wish to name it?”

Rain Undermire: “Oh wow. A child of a god?”

Suki (Housecat): “Valentus is a nice name. Or something cute like Sooty Paws though I doubt it has paws”

Rain Undermire: “I think paws require form.”

Suki (Housecat): “How about Gurgle?”

Rain Undermire: “I like Gurgle”

Suddenly, the whole mass of the dark fluid in the basis rises, gradually displaying an uncouth amorphous head with dull and bulging eyes on an ever-lengthening neck, and stares you in the face with primordial inscrutability. Then two arms—if one can call them arms—likewise arise inch by inch, that wave around with tentacle-like appendages in lieu of claws or hands!

Suki (Housecat): Suki fluffs up in astonishment, “Either it likes the name or absolutely detests it”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): And it . . . gurgles!

Rain Undermire waves back and then puts out a hand for it to shake. “Hello, Honored Mr. Gurgle”

Rain Undermire has no idea the proper address for a god’s child.

Suki unfluffs a bit, “Nice to meet you your honorable Gurgle”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): This black heap of thick organic material swiftly changes form, emitting rope-like tendrils and building legs, mouths, and other structures seemingly without pattern. It continues to gurgle.

Gurgle extends a random pseudopod that barely touches Rain’s hand.

“Be careful,” says the Slaad. “The last outsider it touched, it took off his right hand at the wrist. Of course, he was trying to steal treasure from the temple — you can read his confession on the walls.”

Suki (Housecat): Suki stiffens, “Oh wow that really er, sucks for them. So Gurgle can move about then huh?”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Of course.” As if to prove this, Gurgle sloshes over the rim of the basin and splashes onto the floor, forming into an amoeba-shaped blob.

Rain Undermire suddenly puts his hands back into his pockets and gives a completely unconvincing denial “Oh yeah. I didn’t finish reading that. But since I have absolutely no desire what so ever to steal, I don’t need to worry! Plus, why would I want to steal when I’d probably need your help to learn any secrets from the library of yours.”
Rain Undermire: “Much more to be gained by working together.”

Rain shoved his hands in his pockets to make it look like he wasn’t about to take the treasure. Not because he was worried about his hand getting eaten immediately.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (LOL)(“Yeah, that’s the ticket!”)

Rain Undermire: “Gurgle is very cute though. Its hard to imagine him eating someone.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The slaad chortles. “Now, shall we return to the citadel of the City?”

“works for me” Suki says eyeing Gurgle nervously

Rain Undermire crouches down and says to Gurgle, “your a cute little godspawn aren’t you. … Mr Honored Gurgle.” He gets back up. “Sure”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The gurgling noise turns to something a bit like a purr. (Is Rain crouching down with his hands still in his pockets?)

Cee: he was. he thought about trying to give it a chin rub, but didn’t know if that was okay and didn’t know how that would work. So he defaulted to not changing anything

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Roll DX or Acrobatics or Body Sense.)
Rain Undermire: Rain Undermire rolls 16 vs: DX 13

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (It’s hard to kneel or crouch down with your hands in your pockets, and not fall over.)

Rain Undermire falls over?

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Rain falls over — right on top of Gurgle! Sploosh!

Rain Undermire begins to profusely apologize while trying to get up.

Suki (Housecat): "You’re hurting Gurgle!: Suki screams

Rain Undermire: “I have healing. Gurgle I’m gonna try and heal you!”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Rain, roll HT, then roll DX or Acrobatics or Body Sense.)
Rain Undermire: Rain Undermire rolls 11 vs: HT 13

Rain Undermire rolls 9 vs: DX 13

Cee: a least Rain still has his bless

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Rain doesn’t take any damage from touching Gurgle — this round. He also can change position to sitting or kneeling.)

Rain Undermire changes to a kneeling position.

Suki (Housecat): “We’re gonna get sacrificed for hurting Gurgle” Suki cries

Rain Undermire: “Sorry Gurgle. Let me toss a healing spell and please don’t sacrifice me.”

Suki (Housecat): “It was Rain’s doing if you must sacrifice anyone Sacrifice Rain!”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Ho, ho, ho,” chortles the slaad, his belly quivering.

“Gho, gho, gho!” gurgles Gurgle, its entire body quivering.

Rain will continue trying to get up, then get his staff ready to cast

Rain Undermire will then cast major healing at four energy if he is able to get up

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (NP, the DX roll was to extricate yourself from Gurgle.)

Rain Undermire: Rain Undermire rolls 12 vs: Major Healing 18

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The Temple of Tsathoggua is Very High Mana.

Rain Undermire: “Great healing will take a minute to cast, but that will certainly fix any damage.”

Rain Undermire then casts great healing

Rain Undermire: Rain Undermire rolls 8 vs: Great Healing 18

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Unfortunately, neither Major Healing nor Great Healing work on a Divine Servitor, nor an Elder Thing.

Cee: does Rain get any sort of feed back to that effect from the healing spells?

Suki (Housecat): “Poor Gurgle”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Rain can tell that he didn’t use any energy for his spells because of the Mana level, but (if he makes a Thaumatology roll) he will realize that Gurgle is too alien for normal healing to affect it.

Rain Undermire: Rain Undermire rolls 18 vs: Thaumatology 18

Cee: So Rain thinks he did a great job of healing Gurgle then?

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Yes, Rain thinks he critically succeeded on healing Gurgle. :D

Rain Undermire rising panic settles down. “Thank the Goddess. Gurgle should be all better.”

Rain Undermire takes a couple steps back, and with his hands out of his pockets he kneels down to apologize.

Rain Undermire: “I am so sorry, honored Mr. Gurgle. I didn’t mean to fall over. I was just trying to kneel to get a closer look at your excellent formless… form. This was completely my fault. If there is anything I can do to make it up short of my soul please ask.”

Cee: its important to not inadvertently offer your soul to eldritch powers.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Gurgle extends some randomly-changing pseudopods to gently stroke Cee. Well, relatively gently. (Roll HT again.)

Rain Undermire: Rain Undermire rolls 12 vs: HT 13

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Yet again, Rain does not take any damage from touching Gurgle (this time).

Gurgle makes cooing-gurgle noises.

Rain Undermire is hoping that this is an a sign Gurgle accepted his apology.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Eventually Toad of Toad Hall stops chortling and leads you back to the citadel of the City.

Rain Undermire gives a silent prayer to the Goddess.

Rain Undermire also resolves to spend a little more time praying each day to build up his afterlife fund.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): By the time you get back to the citadel, Audrey has recovered from her most recent bout of swamp fever.

Taemo is still sick, and Artyom is nowhere to be seen.

Rain Undermire: Audrey, you’ve recovered! We met a god-child.

Kainesh (Audrey) responds sluggishly. “Another one, or the one we were going to be fed to?”

Rain Undermire: “I don’t think we’re being fed to it. I probably would have already been eaten if that was the case. I sort of tipped over onto it.”

Suki (Housecat): “And here I thought a tour would be relaxing”

Rain Undermire: “Well, at least it was enlightening. Oh they have a library here. Filled with ancient lore and stuff.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The humanoids have been giving Audrey lots of water and various colored potions, and some broth.

The water is water from their sacred pool, the colored potions are the low-tech equivalent of gatorade (water with salt and a little fruit juice for flavor), and the broth is made by boiling swamp beetles (basically cockroaches) until they come apart, and then scooping out the exoskeletons.

Kainesh (Audrey): Audrey is grateful until she realizes where the broth comes from. She sort of chokes at that.
She manages he best “Thanks…” as she stops eating.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (You don’t know where the broth comes from, unless you ask or do something else to find out. :) )

Kainesh (Audrey): (In that case, if it tastes fine she is genuinely grateful.) To Rain, “I’m kind of surprised they have a library. It isn’t super wet?”

Rain Undermire: Apparently it is from an older time. Not sure how they protect the books though…

Kainesh (Audrey): “That’s pretty interesting. That could make the whole trip worth while.”

Rain Undermire: “That’s what I was thinking.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Rain and Suki get 2 xp each. Rain also gets an extra xp for being on time. Audrey gets 1 xp. Plus everyone who writes up a journal for the session either IC or OOC gets 1 extra xp.

Suki (Housecat): good game!

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (What do people want to do next? Especially, is there anything you want to do before the next session? E.g. gathering any sort of information, etc.)

Suki (Housecat): I loved Gurgle! maybe visiting the library?

Kainesh (Audrey): (I may have ideas, but I would need to catch up on the chat log.)

Rain Undermire: Rain would like to visit the library.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (You don’t need to catch up on the chat log because IC you were not there.)

Kainesh (Audrey): (Okay. Then checking out the library sounds great.)

Rain Undermire: I’m off!

18.09.18 Tuesday GURPS Session - City in the Swamp

18.09.18 Tuesday GURPS session.

Rain, Sunvar, Suki and Audrey get 2 xp each. Rain and Audrey and Sunvaar also get an extra xp for being on time. Plus everyone who writes up a journal

for the session either IC or OOC gets 1 extra xp.

Rain, Audrey and Salmissra are heading through the swamp following the Black Pharoah. However, Salmissra succumbs to the dreaded swamp fever. Meanwhile,

back in the Morning Sun village, Sunvaar has recovered from swamp fever and, after hearing that the others left the village, he sets out after them. Since

he can easily travel twice as fast as they can, he catches up to them.

This is fortunate, as the others have to stop to rest and the Black Pharaoh, pushes on without them, leaving them behind.

Audrey Audrey is pleased to see the large lizard catch up. “Welcome! You move quick!”

Frogtown is on the edge of the swamp. Sunvaar’s home village is just inside the swamp. The Morning Sun village is about 20 miles inside the swamp. The

party is about 10 miles past the Morning Sun village. The City in the Swamp, home of the territorial frog/fish/reptile folk, is somewhere deeper inside

the swamp.

Audrey: “So, we are looking to stop this city from attacking adventurers, right?”

Cee: Basically. And steal all of its treasure

Rain Undermire: “Basically, and take its treasure.”

Audrey: “Sounds good.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Sunvaar now has to carry Salmissra and Audrey as well as Rain. (Please calculate your new encumbrance level.) Sunvaar is extremely

strong and his movement is not reduced for being in a swamp, while everyone else’s movement is cut in half.

Audrey: “Hey big guy, do you think carry us all?”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): So the most efficient procedure is for everyone to ride Sunvaar, or be carried by him. He already has Suki and Taemo in his rough

cloth bag.

Sunvaar Suleykaar looks over at the two of them, and nods a bit. “I am certain I could.”

Audrey smiles. “Great! Thank you. This will be fun.”

Rain Undermire “Thank you again Sunvaar”

Audrey: I believe we proceed in the direction we suspect the city to be in.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Sunvaar is slowed down to 2 mph instead of his usual 2.5 mph, but he’s still faster than anyone else in the party while you’re in the

swamp, even if you’re unencumbered!

Audrey: …

John F. (NPCs) (GM): There is a ghostly spirit with a crocodile’s skull for a head, summoned by the shaman of Sunvaar’s village, and charged with guiding

Sunvaar to the City in the Swamp. Unfortunately it can only be seen by people who make a successful Perception+Magery roll.

The group sets off through the swamp, heading eastward, following the spirit.

rolling 1d4+1d6+1d600 for random encounter.

(Did Audrey and Cee and Salmissra take food with them from Frogtown? Is it listed on your encumbrance? Because Sunvaar’s “rations” are not really fit for

human consumption.)

Audrey: Audrey has food in an extradimensional space.

Rain Undermire: Rain casts spells when that’s an issue.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Great, what about water? The water in the swamp is not really healthy for humans.)

Audrey: (The same. Along with Create Water as needed for refills.)

Rain Undermire: Also capable of casting create water

There is finger of quartz sticking out of the muck at an angle. Everyone who succeeds at the roll and has Magery can tell that it’s magic.

Audrey: “Huh. That thingy over there looks magic.”

Rain Undermire: “Sunvaar, what’s that quartz thing? It’s magic. That probably means it is worth at least a little bit. There is writing on this.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Inscribed upon the piece of quartz are runes of an unknown language. Or at least it is unknown to Rain, who had an isolated

upbringing in the Hidden City, and to Sunvaar, who is not very well educated at all, being a lizardfolk barbarian. And to Audrey.

Rain pockets the quartz, and the party continues its journey.

Audrey: As the group travels, Audrey will show them a picture inside a pocket watch. It is of a handsome young man with a family resemblance to her. She

asks if you’ve seen him, but it is unlikely that you have.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (If there is a random encounter and the party did not have time to rest during it, we assume Sunvaar is down 3 FP for medium

encumbrance, although he does not suffer the additional FP loss for hot climate, because he’s adapted to it. However, the other party members, riding or

being carried by Sunvaar, are being bounced up and down as if they were in a wagon going cross-country (so they are down 2 FP for that) plus fatigued by

the heat — it’s well over 90 degrees in the swamp, and will get over 100 degrees by noon. (Down another FP for that.)

Audrey: (Audrey has the Coolness enchantment.)

John F. (NPCs) (GM): rolling 1d4+1d6+1d600 for random encounter.
Around noon the group is — I assume — preparing to stop for lunch and a siesta.

Audrey: Lunch and a rest sound great to Audrey.

Rain Undermire: Lunch is good

Audrey: When we stop for lunch Audrey finds a relatively dry place and materializes a steamer trunk. Out of that she digs out some rations and water,

offering some to the others.
Rain Undermire: Rain Undermire rolls 14 vs: Create Food 16
Rain Undermire rolls 6 vs: Shape Earth 16
Rain Undermire rolls 16 vs: Earth to Stone 16
Rain Undermire rolls 13 vs: Create Water 16

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Everyone spots that something has been gnawing on the stems of woody plants, blackberry canes and other brambles, and on fallen twigs

and branches, on the mound where you are pausing in the swamp.

Rain Undermire: “Wait I’ve heard of this. Could there be… rabbits nearby? I don’t think they’re dangerous”

Audrey banishes the trunk. “I wonder how big it is.”

Audrey takes a look and tries to get a sense of what did it.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): There are also some small, soft green spheres.

Rain Undermire: “Unless they are of the rabid variety of rabbits. Those curse you if you’re bitten, if I remember.”

Audrey: Weird looking spheres or plant looking?

Rain Undermire: “but I’m pretty sure those are carnivorous and these rabbits are obviously herbivorous.”

Audrey: Audrey rolls 11 vs: Survival (Swampland) 17

John F. (NPCs) (GM): It looks like the rabbit was about 2’ long.

Audrey: “The thing is probably a couple of feet long. So… I guess we should keep a look out as we rest.” (We continue with lunch, keeping an eye out.)

Rain Undermire: I bet its cute.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Nobody spots anything during lunch.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): After a light lunch of magically-created food, except for Sunvaar, who chows down on “jerky” that is simply strips of rotting meat,

marinated in spices, the party resumes travel.
Remember that lizardfolk are really more like crocodilefolk, at least on Terramar, and crocodiles often bury their kills and let them “ripen” before eating


Audrey: (Oh yeah. His food is probably real gross.)

Audrey: After lunch Audrey hesitates before getting back on Sundvaar. "No offense, but I’m betting that ride wasn’t any more comfortable for you than us.

Would you guys be okay with flying the rest of the way?"

Audrey: “Er… Unless you are really heavy, Sunvaar. It’s hard to tell.”

Rain Undermire: “I wouldn’t mind.”

Sunvaar Suleykaar looks over at Audrey, and shrugs a bit. “I am not sure how much I weight. Last I was told, almost ‘half a ton’.”

Audrey looks worried but replies, “I think that will be okay. We’ll be cutting it a little close, though.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Sunvaar is 12’ tall, the size of a large deinonychus or small Utahraptor. His arms are not tiny like a carnosaur’s, but he still

probably has a hard time wiping is @$$. (Now you know why T. rex was so mean!)

Audrey produces the trunk again. This time fishing out a carpet. It is 9-12 feet across and floats when unrolled. "Everyone on? Let’s see if this thing can

hold you."

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Hold on, you going to let Sunvaar sit on that thing, with his unwiped rear end??)

Sunvaar Suleykaar: (Sunvaar will lay on it, and everyone rides on Sunvaar)

Rain Undermire: Rain will hop on to the carpet

Audrey: (But yes. There will probably be some cleaning later.)

Suki (Housecat): Suki crawls out of Sunvaar’s rucksack, “’Sup?”

Rain Undermire: You’re awake!

Audrey almost squees at the talking animal.

Rain Undermire: “so we should plan for how we are going to liberate the treasure from the City in the Swamp”

Suki (Housecat): “As a cat I must take naps. It is our way”

Audrey: “That makes sense to me. Well, both the plan and the cat nap things make sense.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Also Suki was sick with the dreaded swamp fever (a/k/a player absence).

Rain Undermire: I vote we pretend to be travelers, try and socialize with them, wait until they inevitably brag about their treasures and show them off

Then we grab as much treasure as we can and fly out."

Suki (Housecat): (cat naps and swamp fever are one and the same)

Audrey: “I figure they’ll try to rob us, at which point we defend ourselves.”

Rain Undermire: Hmm… that works if they attack us, but why would they do that? There can’t be that many anti-social groups around and we already

encountered one

Audrey: “There is a giant pile of equipment from their previous victims.”

Suki (Housecat): “We can have a trap set just in case, a non lethal one if they try to chase us”

Rain Undermire: Hmm… Maybe

Suki (Housecat): “What sort of enemies are we encountering anyway?”

Rain Undermire does not seem convinced

Audrey: “Lizardmen, I think.”

Suki (Housecat): “If we are preemptively convinced they will be violent perhaps we can preemptively poison them somehow”

Sunvaar Suleykaar will try to confirm if this is the work of lizardmen?

Suki (Housecat): “We can slip drugs into their food! How do lizardmen react to drugs anyway? Can they get high?”

Audrey shrugs.

Audrey: “Sunvaar, will you be able to follow your spirit from the air, or do I need to stay low?”

Suki (Housecat): “I’ve got fat rolls of catnip wedged into the fingers of my gloves hehehe”

Rain Undermire: “I’m not sure if anyone other than cats are affected by catnip”

Suki (Housecat): “Or if we don’t want to sacrifice the catnip perhaps we could prepare a distraction to keep them busy while we rummage about” (more

catnip for suki >:3 )

Audrey: “Wait, is it a good idea to be high on catnip out here?”

Suki (Housecat): “Once we succeed I will enjoy my catnip as a reward”

Audrey: “That seems fair to me.”

Suki (Housecat): “Thought I’d brought enough to share but now you say it only affects cats, oh well”

Audrey: “I mean, the more for you then! I brought some cognac for celebrating, so we won’t be left out.”

Rain Undermire tries to scratch suki’s ears

Suki (Housecat): “Excellent! I hope it compares to catnip” (Suki accepts the scritches)

Rain Undermire: “I don’t think its a good idea to be intoxicated while operating a magic carpet.”

Suki (Housecat): “When we succeed then!”

Audrey: “Fine… You’re probably right.” (Max lift, 2250 lbs)

Audrey: “So… How close do we want to get before landing? Also, don’t jump.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Everyone piles on to the carpet which is capable of carrying over one ton at maximum encumbrance. Since everyone combined, including

equipment, only weighs about 3/4 of a ton, the party is able to fly at 1/4 of the maximum speed for the carpet.
Since Audrey’s skill with the Flying Carpet spell is 20, its maximum speed is 20 so its speed at 3/4 encumbrance is 5, so the carpet can fly faster than

Sunvaar because Sunvaar only marches at 2.5 mph and the carpet can fly at 10 mph. . .. but it’s much more comfortable for him and everyone else.

Rain Undermire: I suggest we set down out of site.

Rain Undermire: So they don’t get envious and try to steal the carpet.

Audrey: “I agree. Once we can see it, how about we land a mile or two out?”

Rain Undermire: Also they hopefully won’t realize we can fly

Audrey: “True!” (The good news is flying avoids many hazards. The bad news is the hazards it doesn’t avoid are really bad.)

John F. (NPCs) (GM): After about an hour, you come into sight of the city (as shown on the “City in the Swamp” handout in the Journal tab above).

Audrey will look for a good place to land about a mile out.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The City in the Swamp appears to have been constructed by no human hands. It looks . . . organic, with irregular curved surfaces

constructed out of some mudlike substance.

Suki (Housecat): “Goodness what a sight! I was expecting something a little grander but this is cool too”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The citadel of the City appears to be covered with a translucent dome. The water and mud of the swamp do not stop at the edge of the

city, but continue into it as far as you can tell.

Audrey: “That is pretty impressive.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Area “C” on Map 2 is a gateway about 30 feet across, with towers on either side of the massive bronze gates.

Rain Undermire: “I wonder which spell variants they used to make that city? I’ve never seen stone like it”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The entire City has a wall around it, which is intact (not ruined as depicted in the map).

Suki (Housecat): “Look at those gates!”

Rain Undermire: Must have taken quite a while to make, unless they had a lot of mages

Audrey: “Geeze. I was expecting this to be a lot more… primitive.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (At one mile away, everyone has -18 to perception rolls, so you don’t get a lot of fine details. But when something is big, you get a

plus to perception rolls.)

Suki (Housecat): “I never looked at the map I just thought the whole thing would be made of shiny metal for some reason”

Audrey: “Well, shall we approach from the ground?”

Rain Undermire: Maybe the swamp degrades metal? Yeah, let’s land

Audrey: “It kind of does. Water does that.”

Audrey lands on relatively high ground and moves to put away the carpet.

The party landed in the swamp about a mile or two from the city.

Audrey: After a nice flush from her waterskin. :-p

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Area “B” looks like it has some sort of creatures in it, and area “D” appears to be a tall building of some sort.)

Rain Undermire: Rain Undermire rolls 13 vs: Shape Earth 16
Rain Undermire rolls 4 vs: Earth to Stone 18
Rain Undermire rolls 6 vs: Create Water 18

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Rain shapes the mud into a bowl shape, and then turns it to stone, to make a stone bowl to put water in, and then casts Create Water.

Sunvaar Suleykaar looks around for a second, on alert.

Rain Undermire will ask "So what’s the plan? Just walk up and see if we can talk our way in? I suppose if we’re paranoid we could cast some defensive

spells first…"

Audrey: “We should. And watch for arrows.”

Rain Undermire: “How about Armor and Haste for Audery, Suki and I? They aren’t obvious spells, so we shouldn’t offend anyone.”

Audrey: “Not a bad plan. I should already be good, though.”

Rain Undermire: “Alright then, Suki you ready?”

Audrey: “We’re at least a half hour out now. Are they going to drain you?”

Rain Undermire: “Nope, I was going to cast them at their lowest energy. I can sustain that without drain”

Audrey: “Neat!”

Rain Undermire: “Can’t cast them on Sunvaar though since he’s so big.”
Rain Undermire rolls 9 vs: Armor 19
Rain Undermire rolls 10 vs: Armor 18
Rain Undermire rolls 9 vs: Haste 17
Rain Undermire rolls 11 vs: Haste 16
Cee: so that’s +1 to move, dodge and DR
for Rain and Suki

Audrey: Audrey will walk.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The party sets off through the swamp toward the City. Sunvaar is carrying everyone except Audrey, who can keep up with him.
Sunvar can travel about 2 mph through the swamp over an extended period of time, so the party arrives in front of the city in about 45 minutes.

rolling 1d6+1d600

On the way, the party notices some strange-looking mushrooms on the ground. Their tops look like an old woman’s headscarf.
(People can roll against Pharmacy, Physician, Esoteric Healing, Poisons, Naturalist, and/or Survival. Also Herb Lore.)

Audrey avoids the creepy looking mushrooms.

Sunvaar Suleykaar: Sunvaar Suleykaar rolls 10 vs: Survival (Swampland) 14

Rain Undermire waves, hello!

Rain Undermire: “Hello! We are travelers who have heard of your wondrous city and wished to learn of its wonders.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The towers of the gatehouse are manned — or creatured — by hideous-looking humanoid aberrations. (See the PDF posted in handouts


The creatures are humanoids standing 6-7 feet tall. Their flesh is scaled, with a glossy sheen to it. Their taloned hands and feet are webbed. Their heads

are their most inhuman parts, with large, black, unlidded eyes, no nose, a broad, lipless mouth, and ears made up of sharp spines connected by webbing. A

webbed, spined crest runs from the center of the forehead down the back of the neck. Their flesh is a shade of green, from very pale to almost black. They

wear no clothes other than equipment harnesses or crude jewelry.

Suki (Housecat): (that animal man is sure a sight lol)

Audrey whispers, “They don’t look friendly.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): They growl and shake their spears at you.

Audrey looks to Sunvaar, mostly. “Does anyone speak their language?”

Rain Undermire Rain whispers "Well, we probably just can’t speak their language. Honestly, I should have picked up borrow language before leaving the

Hidden City"

Rain Undermire raises his voice to be heard “Do any of you speak Common?”

Cee: apparently common is what they call it in the hidden city

Audrey: “Sunvaar?”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The creatures roar back at Rain.

Suki (Housecat): Suki’s fur is on end, “hisssss”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): One of the creatures steps forward and shouts in broken Draconic, “Who you be??”

Suki (Housecat): Suki meows simply, she is merely a housecat

Audrey speaks softly, “Did anyone else make that out?”

Rain Undermire: “Not me.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Yes, like apparently every other intelligent reptilian species on Terramar, their tongue defaults to Draconic at broken level.

Sunvaar Suleykaar looks at the frogman, and raises a hand. “Hail. We are travellers.” He responds in fluent Draconic.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “You big!”

Suki (Housecat): (oh wait can Suki understand him? I guess she can just meow bc cat) meow

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Does Suki speak Draconic?)

Audrey looks relieved that Sunvaar can speak with them. He looks less like food than her.

Suki (Housecat): (nah she doesn’t) meow

Audrey: “Sunvar, I think they are impressed. Keep talking.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Where you from? Why you here?”

Sunvaar Suleykaar nods a bit. “I am Sunvaar from the Suleykaar tribe. We’ve come to explore and meet with whomever resides here.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (You know Draconic is sort of a lingua franca especially for magic-users and other scholars. It’s kind of like Latin was in the middle


Suki (Housecat): (ah so maybe Suki should know this) Suki is too scared to speak

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Of course, scholars know Latin as well, on Terramar.)

Suki (Housecat): she is puffed up and silent

Audrey quietly translates for the group while Sunvaar talks to the lizardmen.

Rain Undermire waits silently for the conversation, convinced things are gong well

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “You are he! You are he!” shout several of the creatures, until their leader shushes them.
“We take you to god-king-priest-chief,” the leader declares.

Audrey: “Wow… That couldn’t have gone better. Sunvaar, are you a chosen one?”

Sunvaar Suleykaar seems surprised for a moment, but nods a few times.

Sunvaar Suleykaar: “I would be grateful if you brought me to your leader.”

Sunvaar Suleykaar turns to look at Audrey. “I am something called a ‘Lizard King’. Perhaps this is what they are referring to.”

Rain Undermire: “See, I knew this would go well.”

Audrey looks impressed.

Suki (Housecat): “I wasn’t expecting this kind of welcome”

Audrey: “To be honest, I thought we were going to have to cut our way in.”

Rain Undermire: Well, there is nothing wrong with being cautious

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The leader croaks orders in the humanoids’ native tongue. One of the creatures lifts a snail shell to his mouth and blows through it

making a soundlike a horn. After a bit, the bronze gates open and you see another squad of the creatures armed with spears, knives, and crossbows, just

like the ones on the towers. And with them is a big lizard man, over 9 feet tall and armed with a trident — but he looks small next to Sunvaar.

The big lizard man looks annoyed, but he gestures for you all to follow him. He turns around, and his cape swirls around him. The humanoids surround you,

their spears and crossbows at the ready.

Sunvaar Suleykaar looks around him for a moment, but does not seem too concerned, and continues onward.

Rain Undermire follows oblivious to any danger.

Audrey follows, keeping an eye on the escort.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): As you cross the courtyard to the citadel of the City in the Swamp, you can see on your right the corral where they humanoids keep

giant frogs, and also the large temple-like building you spotted earlier.

Suki (Housecat): “I wonder what the giant frogs are for? Meat? Maybe transport?”

Sunvaar Suleykaar looks around left and right at the area, seeming to be taking mental notes…

Rain Undermire is looking for anything that might be a large pile of treasure.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The big lizard man, and the guards, bring you into the citadel, which has more guards who open its gates to you.
They bring you into the central part of the citadel; if you look up you can see the translucent white dome overhead.
In the large central chamber is a throne with a strange creature on it.

Rain Undermire is impressed by the large dome.

Rain Undermire: “Hello!”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The big lizard man gestures with his trident. “This our god-king-priest-chief!”

Suki (Housecat): “The dome looks beautiful from beneath”

Audrey performs a slight curtsy, but not nearly enough for a god-king-priest-chief.

Suki (Housecat): Suki bows her head unsure how a cat should curtsy

Rain Undermire bows

Sunvaar Suleykaar gives the god-king-priest-chief a bow.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The creature on the throne looks like a huge frog or toad that is sitting upright, with thick, heavily-muscled limbs that end in

wicked claws with long talons, and a mouth filled with needle-sharp teeth. Its skin is covered with warts and spikes. It looks about eight feet tall.

Audrey just fails to hide a smirk.

Suki (Housecat): Anything with sharp teeth makes Suki nervous but she tries to look brave

Sunvaar Suleykaar looks on at the god-king-priest-chief, wondering just what had made them look like that. Were they a toad-like variety of a Lizard King?

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The god-king-priest-chief speaks in a rumbling, gravelly voice, but in surprisingly good Draconic. "Greetings. You are the One Who Was


Suki (Housecat): hahaha

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Everyone who makes a Perception+Magery roll can tell that he is magic. He is magic.
“You are the One Who Is Prophecied to unite the swamp.”
“You are the One Who Was Prophecied to come at the time of the green falling star.”
“But first, to prove the prophecy, you must defeat the Chosen Champion of Sess’Innek!”
He gestures at the 9’ tall lizard king with the trident, who bows to Sunvaar.

Audrey continues to translate, but is clearly concerned.

Sunvaar Suleykaar gives Sunvaar a bow back to the lizard king. “I see.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “If you fail, you and your companions will be sacrificed to the Toad God!”
The toad-thing on the throne licks his lips as he says those words…

Cee: Cliffhanger!

Suki (Housecat): dun dun DUN
sorry I couldn’t be here from the start but it was fun!

Suki (Housecat): :o

18.09.15 Saturday - City in the Swamp
The Black Pharaoh

18.09.15 Saturday GURPS Session

“I have many names. Ahtu. The Black Man. The Royal Pant. The Faceless Sphinx. The Masked Messenger. The Bat God of L’gy’hx. Mr. Skin. Shugoran. Johnny Carcosa.”

18.09.15 Saturday GURPS session

Cee: so yesterday we had just escaped the Troglodytes and got back to the Hut.

Deathtales (Salmissra) (GM): and my powerstone is empty I’ll have to buy some ER at some point

Suki (Housecat): is suki still sick with swamp fever?

John F. (NPCs) (GM): When last we left the party (last night IRL) Salmissra, Rain Undermire, and Audrey were retreating from the troglodyte tower (which is englobed in a 30’ diameter ball of fire) to Baba Jungar’s hut. Rain cast Major Healing on Salmissra, who was struck by a javelin.

Deathtales (Salmissra) (GM): problem with long recharge delay is when you make your adventure back to back they are essentially one time use

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Meanwhile, back at the Morning Sun lizardfolk village, Sunvaar and Taemo are still incapacitated with swamp fever, but Suki has recovered.

Suki (Housecat): ok thanks. is the entire party together again?

Deathtales (Salmissra) (GM): OOC note: we still don’t have any tank

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Suki wakes to find herself in a cozy sack along with Taemo.
Suddenly, Audrey is struck by swamp fever!

Rain Undermire: “Crud, we better get Audrey back to the village of lizard folk too”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): So the party decides to go back to Morning Sun to let her recuperate with Sunvaar and Taemo.

Suki (Housecat): “This swamp fever is relentless”

Rain Undermire: “Suki, you’re awake! Yeah, it is nasty. I didn’t even know lizard folk could get it.”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: fortunately it doesnt look deadly
ssssso you’re sssssuki ?

Suki (Housecat): Suki stretches, “I wonder what I missed. How unfortunate to get sick on my first adventure!”

Rain Undermire: “Well, we tried to talk to the troglodytes, but they attacked and Salmissra set the entire tower on fire.”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: they assssked for it. and their tower was made of wood, damp wood though

Suki (Housecat): “Well that . . . sucks”
“They should have been nicer”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Is everyone clear that the West Marshes are an enormous swamp, about 200 miles across? And that the primary intelligent inhabitants are lizardfolk?)

Rain Undermire: “For sure. Also I’m thinking I should cast Bless on everyone who is in the party at some point.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (You can explore the swamp, go back to civilization, socially interact with the lizardfolk, socially interact with Baba Jungar, etc.)

Rain Undermire: “I vote we wait about four hours so I can recover my energy and Bless both of you. Then we set out once more into the unknown!”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: ssssseconded

Suki (Housecat): “Where are we anyway?” Suki asks, memory addled by swamp fever

Rain Undermire: Sun something village?

Suki (Housecat): “well so long as we are safe, I wonder what happened to that giant slug”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (You’re in the Morning Sun lizardfolk village which is about 20 miles / 30 km into the swamp and so it is halfway to the City in the Swamp.)

Rain Undermire: "I think the giant slug is long gone.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The Morning Sun lizardfolk are relatively advanced. They use metal tools (swords, axes, hammers, sewing needles) while most lizardfolk are (literally) stone age.

Lady Salmissra Daerya: giant sssslug ?

Rain Undermire: We saw a Giant Slug trail

Suki (Housecat): “We thought we saw evidence of one, it might have been edible too”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: evidenccce ? you remind me f ssssomeone. the earth boy that was alwasss talking about evidenccce like if everything as a crime.

Suki (Housecat): “Yeah the slime trail!”

Deathtales (Salmissra) (GM): larry yes

Rain Undermire: “that guy was a bit weird. Although I suppose without magic his society had to adapt”

Rain Undermire rolls 13 vs: Bless 16
Rain Undermire rolls 7 vs: Bless 16

Suki (Housecat): “No magic? that sounds awful”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): rolling 1d4+1d6+1d600 for random encounter.

Lady Salmissra Daerya: apparently they did manage ssssssomehow.

Rain Undermire: “Yeah. Apparently they had a lot of really complicated substitutes for not having magic.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): After you have rested for about two hours … (6: “Traces/Benign: Some more evidence or, if I can’t think of anything, some vaguely on-theme set dressing.”)

John F. (NPCs) (GM): …a man comes strolling through the swamp, up to the gates of the village. Well, I say a man, because he looks humanoid, but his skin is black — not like a negro, but jet black. (Anyone know OOC who this might be?)

Suki (Housecat): “He has skin like my fur color, what a good choice,” Suki says with interest, “I wonder who that is”

Rain Undermire approaches the man and says “Hello! Welcome to the Morning Sun village! I’m just a passing traveler.”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: like my sssscales as well

Lady Salmissra Daerya stays behind rain so as not to get shot stabbed or other inconveniences.

Suki (Housecat): “Black really is the best color”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): His beard is a long, thin braid and he is wearing a black linen kilt and carrying a staff. On his brow is a circlet of yellowish metal with a snake’s head in the front.

Lady Salmissra Daerya: I like that ccccirclet

Rain Undermire: “It is a very nice circlet.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): He smiles. “Blessing be upon you.” Following behind him are two panther-like cats, also solid black, which fawn and lick his hands.

Rain Undermire: “Big Kitties!”

Suki (Housecat): “BIG KITTIES” Suki says, very impressed

Rain Undermire: “Can I pet them?”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): He smiles again and nods.

Rain Undermire pets the kitties.

Suki (Housecat): Suki goes forward to sniff noses with one of the big kitties

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The man is incredibly magical — solid magic, as it were. The panthers are magical. When he said “Blessing be upon you” he was casting a spell.
Oh, the staff and the circlet are magical as well.

Rain Undermire is impressed.

Lady Salmissra Daerya notes to herself, I have to spend more moneyr on shiny magical item.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The shaman of the Morning Sun village leads the villagers in kneeling down before the stranger.

Rain Undermire asks “should we be kneeling?”
Suki (Housecat): Suki feels super blessed. its a nice feeling

Lady Salmissra Daerya thinks about the perks of not having any knees once more.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The shaman says, in accented Draconic,

And at the last from southern lands came
The strange dark One to whom the fellahs bowed;
Silent and lean and cryptically proud,
And wrapped in fabrics red as sunset flame.
Throngs pressed around, frantic for his commands,
But leaving, could not tell what they had heard;
While through the nations spread the awestruck word
That wild beasts followed him and licked his hands.

Cee: related note: I wrote up a summary of what I envisioned Rain’s religion as more or less. Bottom of his character sheet.
er the description.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Boy, you folks are getting all the unique encounters! Baba /Y/a/g/a/ Jungar, and now this guy!)
Suki (Housecat): “Do these big kitties speak?” Suki wonders

Rain Undermire asks the kitties while still petting them. “Can you speak?”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The two panthers nuzzle Suki. They just purr loudly.

Suki (Housecat): “This is the best part of my adventure so far!”

Rain Undermire: "They might speak a different language.

Suki (Housecat): “I feel blessed and accepted”

Rain Undermire asks “So what’s your name?”

Suki (Housecat): Suki could interact with the giant kitties all day

Rain Undermire: “I’m Rain Undermire”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: I’m SSSalmissssra

Suki (Housecat): “I’m Suki” Suki purrs
ohn F. (NPCs) (GM): The black-skinned stranger just smiles at Rain. “I am the Black Pharaoh.”
(Well, each of you now has a three-point blessing on you. :-D )

Cee: Holy crap!

Suki (Housecat): “What brings you here Mr. Black Pharoah?”

Rain Undermire responds “Its good to meet you too! Your kitties are very nice.” Rain is still petting the two cats.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): "I am roaming throughout the earth, going back and forth on it. And I am here to visit the idol and altar in this village.”

Suki (Housecat): “Ahh I see you are on an adventure as well!”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: always niccce to meet another traveler
Cee: I think it means modifies die rolls by three. Its a spell, so it doesn’t cost points to purchase.
Lady Salmissra Daerya: i did make a note of this under advantages on my character sheet just to keep track
John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Yes, it gives you a +3 until you fail a die roll for something serious.)
Deathtales (Salmissra) (GM): crazy good then
Cee: do we notice the blessing on us?
John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Yes, if you roll Per + Magery. But you just know that it’s some spell.)
Rain Undermire: Rain Undermire rolls 12 vs: Per 16
John F. (NPCs) (GM): He walks into the village, heading for the idol of the frog-thing. The lizardfolk get down on their hands and knees as he passes.
Lady Salmissra Daerya: Lady Salmissra Daerya rolls 9 vs: Per 13

Rain Undermire will watch this part respectfully

Lady Salmissra Daerya does her best to appear respectful.

Suki (Housecat): Suki is more interested in the big kitties but likewise watches respectfully.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): ("Only priests and the doomed are on a first-name basis with the gods, but it never hurts to have a god on a first-name basis with you.)

The Dark Man approaches the idol and speaks to it in an inhuman tongue . . . and it replies!

Suki (Housecat): “what the heck!”

Deathtales (Salmissra) (GM): OOC I could object that a lot of people have had their life ruined by having a god on a first name basis with them

Lady Salmissra Daerya: interessting

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Well, it’s just a saying on Terramar.)

Deathtales (Salmissra) (GM): I get it that there is no zeus equivalent there then

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The two have a brief but apparently pleasant conversation.
Then the Dark Man turns and walks off, towards the east — the heart of the swamp.
“I go,” he says, “to prepare the way.”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: the way for ?

Rain Undermire is somewhat confused as to what all went on. His best guess is the idol is some sort of enchanted messaging device.

Rain Undermire: “Good luck with that!”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “The way for the One Who Was Chosen.” He walks through the palisade fence surrounding the village.

Suki (Housecat): “Well that seems a neat trick”

Rain Undermire: “Would certainly make robbing the City of the Swamp a lot easier.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): He is walking in the direction of the City in the Swamp.

Lady Salmissra Daerya: well lookssss like he go where we are going

Suki (Housecat): “Perhaps we should tag along”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: i’d feel sssafer with him around

Suki (Housecat): “Him and the big kitties”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (Okay, you want to head into the swamp with the Dark Man?)

Deathtales (Salmissra) (GM): nd hopefully learn more about him

Rain Undermire: “Tagging along seems fine.”
Although if he can walk through fences we might have trouble keeping up.

Suki (Housecat): “I will go as fast as I can!”

Rain Undermire will also attempt to keep up.

Deathtales (Salmissra) (GM) also try to follow along

Lady Salmissra Daerya also try to follow along

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “I have many names. Ahtu. The Black Man. The Royal Pant. The Faceless Sphinx. The Masked Messenger. The Bat God of L’gy’hx. Mr. Skin. Shugoran. Johnny Carcosa.”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: masssked messenger ? missster ssskin ? why these names

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Because I have many natures.”

Rain Undermire is confused.

Rain Undermire: “Like different facets of yourself?”

Suki (Housecat): “maybe he changes names with his moods”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: or many names depending on cults ?

Rain Undermire: “Wait why would cults get involved?”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: did you see how the villager treat him ?

Deathtales (Salmissra) (GM): nope. not part of my racial package

Rain Undermire: “I suppose that is a bit culty. But then couldn’t he give them the same name?”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The party can only travel about 1.25 mph through the swamp. (Sunvaar can move twice as fast because he’s lizardfolk, but he’s incapacitated.)
At that rate it will take you 16 hours of travel time to reach the City in the Swamp, not counting rest periods.
And you don’t know whether this guy sleeps or not.

Suki (Housecat): (oh no!)
(lol imagine him walking off whie everyone sleeps)

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (I do imagine that.) One of the panthers is gently carrying Suki by the scruff of her neck.

Suki (Housecat): (That is adorable) “This is much better than walking”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: lucky cat

Rain Undermire: certainly seems that way. This is why I started looking into a flight spell

After about five hours of wading through the swamp, following the Dark Man, who seems to feel no fatigue, you encounter (2: “Lair: Either an actual lair, or a situation where they’re real close. Either way, you might be able to avoid an encounter if you take immediate action.” Hmm!)

Suki (Housecat): “What is that up ahead?” Suki ponders

John F. (NPCs) (GM): . . . a greenish glow, vaguely humanoid-shaped (as I posted in Discord).

Rain Undermire waves at the humanoid glowing thing. “Hello! Can’t stop to talk, trying to keep up with this guy!”

Suki (Housecat): Suki’s glove-eyes watch the flowin figure intently, “The swamp is such an odd place”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): rolling 3d6 for reaction.

The glow is floating in mid-air and facing toward you. As you pass it, it slowly rotates to continue to face you.

Rain Undermire waves at it again. “Good-bye glowing person.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): rolling 1d4 + 1d6 + 1d600 for random encounter.

After another four or so hours, the party encounters a skeleton . . . of a boat!

Cee: is this a wooden skeleton? Like the boat frame?

Suki (Housecat): (pls be bone skelly)

John F. (NPCs) (GM): It is the framework and remains of a barge, tipped over on one side, and draped with moss. The barge actually has a smokestack and two sidewheels.

Rain Undermire: “anyone know what that is?”

Suki (Housecat): “Now that is interesting!”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: a boat

Rain Undermire: “That’s a weird boat.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (What would Rain know about boats? :D )

Suki (Housecat): “Do you think there would be anything interesting inside”

As if on cue, the panthers bound off towards the wrecked boat.

Cee: Rain has been on a couple swamp boats. mostly rafts, but also one that was called something like “The Boat that Goes of Neither Land Nor Sea”

“You can let me go now” Suki says to the big kitty

Cee: the point is Rain wouldn’t know much, and that doesn’t fit his schema at all.

The panther waits until it reaches the wreck and can put Suki down on something other than the muck of the swamp.

Rain Undermire runs after Suki.

Lady Salmissra Daerya slithers towards the wreck.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): As you reach the wreck you can see some actual bone skeletons clamber out of it. They are wearing the tattered remains of uniforms, and carrying cutlasses and crossbows.

Suki (Housecat): “Skellies!”

Rain Undermire says “Oh wow survivors! Sort of. What happened?”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: ssssstrange definition of ssssurviving

Rain Undermire: “That’s why I said sort of. But they’re still moving and in this world. I hope it isn’t because they are trapped and unable to move on or something like that.”

Lady Salmissra Daerya stays behind Rain ecause she won’t take the first shot again.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (LOL)

Rain Undermire: “Do you guys need any sort of help?”

Suki (Housecat): “Uh, are you OK?”

Suki (Housecat): “I have the feeling they might be enemies”

Rain Undermire: "Why? "

Suki (Housecat): “They are spooky”

Rain Undermire: “I’m really not an expert on undead…But I don’t think just being spooky means they are an enemy”

Suki (Housecat): “Just look at them! They are spooky scary skeletons!”

Rain Undermire: “You have a skeleton inside you!”

Suki (Housecat): “That is just cruel why would you say that? I try not to think about it”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: you know the troglodytes from yesterday seemed friendly in comparison with those

“oh sorry” Rain says to Suki “These guys haven’t shot us yet.”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: famoussss lassst wordssss

“Shoot first,” Suki ays trying to look intimdating

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The skeletons are hissing and growling and brandishing their weapons, and their eyes are glowing green.

Rain can understand what weapon brandishing means at least. “it sort of looks like they don’t want us here.”

Rain Undermire begins to back away. “Sorry for disturbing you.”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: ssssseriously ?

Suki (Housecat): “Please pick me back up” Suki asks the big kitty.

One of the panthers does so.

The Black Pharaoh intones, “Look carefully. Its power infests all times, all galaxies, all dimensions. But many still seek it out; a green jewel they must possess. But see how it destroys their lives.”

Rain Undermire: “Back to following Mr Pharaoh I guess.”

Suki (Housecat): “I wonder who those skellies were before they died”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “They were the crew of the Water King” says the Pharaoh.

Rain Undermire: “And now they’re just unliving there. What’s with that?”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “Their vessel was wrecked and they were cursed by an evil presence.” He continues to walk to the east.

“Well . . . that sucks” Suki says. “I wonder what they do all day”

Rain Undermire hurries after the man. That seems like a crappy fate. “Is thee anyway to release their souls?”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: I don’t know I’m no necromancer.

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “They mostly commune together, tell stories, gamble — what sailors generally do. And they brood about their fate.”

Suki (Housecat): “Well at least they have each other”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “There is a necromancer in the swamp. He can release their souls.”

Rain Undermire: “I’ll have to tell him, when I see him next.”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: you’ve already seen him ?

Rain Undermire: “Yeah, I’ve met the necromancer. He’s nice.”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: not the first adjective I’d pick to describe a necromancer

Suki (Housecat): "Hey dead people doesn’t have to mean bad people, good people become dead too. Maybe if we remembered all the good dead people we’d think better of necromancers

Rain Undermire: "Really, necromancy classed spells have a lot of variety. "

Lady Salmissra Daerya: that doesn’t vhange the bad reputation the whole field has

Rain Undermire: “Most people I know who study necromancy are just trying to pick up resurrection actually.”

Suki (Housecat): “Undeserved”

Rain Undermire: “There is one rich guy who has these really well preserved zombies for servants. And another really obsessive lich. Both back in the Hidden City.”

Suki (Housecat): “Do these zombies need to eat humans still?”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: oh eah I heard of thes in my days there

Rain Undermire: “No. What sort of zombie eats humans?”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: that would be ghouls

Rain Undermire: “Okay, that’s worrisome. Who would even create such a thing? One of the particulary nasty demons maybe?”

Lady Salmissra Daerya: don’t know much really, you should assssk someone else

Rain Undermire: “Mr. Pharaoh do you know who would create human eating undead?”

“Demons, or gods.”

Rain Undermire: “Huh. I guess that explains it. I think cursing someone to commit cannibalism for the crime of cannibalism seems a bit counter-productive though.”

Suki (Housecat): “Hmm this necromancy business is quite interesting”

Thaanya Eschon meanwhile is studying ‘how to avoid being eatend by your own undead at your death’

Lady Salmissra Daerya: and messy

John F. (NPCs) (GM): (LOL Yes, counterproductive, that’s what I think, and I am quoting from folklore here.)

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The Black Pharaoh explains about divine curses, using the Ark of the Covenant as an example. “Perhaps it is the gods warning humans, ‘Do not be a cannibal once or you will be cursed to be a cannibal forever.’”

Rain Undermire: “I suppose that would make more sense. Probably should have paid more attention in my theory classes.”

John F. (NPCs) (GM): “When Aaron and his sons have finished covering the sanctuary and all the furnishings of the sanctuary, as the camp sets out, after that the Kohathites shall come to carry these, but they must not touch the holy things, or they will die. These are the things of the tent of meeting that the Kohathites are to carry. Numbers 4:15.”

Lady Salmissra Daerya thinks it doesn’t make sense unless the gods are particularly insane but stays silent

John F. (NPCs) (GM): The Black Pharaoh also makes an analogy with high-tension wires, and radioactivity.

Lady Salmissra Daerya has no ieda what he’s talking about

Suki (Housecat): Suki nods respectfully while understanding nothing.

Rain Undermire does not have any clue either, but nods along.

So, the Black Pharaoh actually quotes the Old Testament as well as discussing electricity and radioactivity.

Suki (Housecat): (yes!)
it was fun and i like Black Pharoah
he should be a Magic the Gathering character

Deathtales (Salmissra) (GM): black pharaoh is a nice character

John F. (NPCs) (GM): Rain, Suki and Salmissra each get 2 xp for showing up and 1 xp for being on time, and everyone who does a session journal of at least 250 words either IC or OOC gets an extra 1 xp.

Cee: I know I do really short journals, but I’m not adding any xp for them.

Suki (Housecat): clocking out, that was fun

Deathtales (Salmissra) (GM): mine are quite long and I’m having a blast doing them.