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Chapter 1: Gainful Employment

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Registered: Jun 2008
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Location: Santa Ana, CA
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You receive a letter under your door from Wisenstone's headmaster, instructing you to meet with Professor Artimus at noon in his office. After coming down a long hall and through an oddly ornate circular doorway, you come to Professor Artimus' office. Full of books and many seemingly very old things, the room is musty and cluttered, but also well-used. While you see no living quarters, you wouldn't be surprised if professor lives here as well. In the back of the large room is a spiral staircase that leads up to a loft with more books and another large, circular door, this one metal, closed, and likely magically fortified.

While you've seen Professor Artimus in his classroom and around the school, none of you have ever stood in front of him to get a good look. He embodies many stereotypes of ancient wizards - feeble looking, gray-haired, bearded, and in ornate robes. At the same time, you can almost feel the arcane magic that flows through him. Standing near him is Curator 143-Theta, the professor's assistant and a mainstay at Wisenstone.

"Thank you all for coming. While I've never had the pleasure of teaching any of you personally, your magical power and skill have been related to me by your professors, and you all come very highly recommended. I've been told also that now that you're nearing the end of your education here, you're looking for employment. If so, I have an offer for you. If you would, please, introduce yourselves."
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Hedoni Midartis - Eladrin Wizard, Scales of War
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A young man in his early twenties, with short unruly brown hair, wearing a white, sleeveless robevest over a blue tunic and trousers is clumsily trying to keep several books from falling out of his arms. He was obviously reading one of them while waiting for Professor Artimus to speak, and barely closes it making sure to keep his finger inside to mark the page. You can all see the title of the book he's reading: "Emotional Elementcy: Do Fire Golems Have Watery Nightmares".

"Ahem, yes, well, my name is, err, Alfred. Alfred Sartanius." he says without meeting anyone's gaze. He is clearly uncomfortable being around so many people. "I, uhm, think this may just be a simple mistake of mail gone awry, but are you sure this summons.....ahhh, I mean, ah-ha-ha...." he trails off and then resumes "I'm sorry, it was just that, well, the word "summons", you know....in any case, I really did not intend to almost burn half the west wing of the dormitory with that fire summons. I explained this all to the dean and, err, well, he said it wasn't my fault really since the "Pyromancium Aetherium" is a book that only very advanced mages can comprehend and leaving it lying around mere students like that shouldn't have posed a security risk to the school. It's not my fault I could read and understand it so easily." He says all this while looking down at the ground mostly and suddenly raises his head, as if realizing for the first time who he's talking to. "Oh dear!"

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  •  Alfred Sartanius
    • Male Human Wizard, Level 1
    • Passive Perception: 11, Passive Insight: 16
    • AC: 14 Fort: 14 Reflex: 15 Will: 14 Speed: 6, Initiative: +0
    • HP: 26, Bloodied: 13, Surge Value: 6, Surges: 9
    • Powers
    • Ghost Sound, Light, Mage Hand, Prestidigitation
    • Phantom Bolt
    • Thunderwave
    • Storm Pillar
    • Grasping Shadows
    • Summon Fire Warrior
    • Dailys and Utilities stored in Spellbook
    • Grease
    • Items
    • Tome of Binding (encounter/free) +3 damage for summonings that turn
    • Ceramic Hand Focus used to control Unseen Servants
    • Rituals
    • Comprehend Language
    • Create Campsite
    • Unseen Servant
    • Residuum: 45 gp
    • Skills
    • Arcana, Religion: 9
    • Nature: 8
    • Dungeoneering, Insight: 6
    • History: 4
    • Endurance: 3
    • Heal, Perception: 1
    • Acrobatics, Bluff, Diplomacy, Intimidate, Stealth, Streetwise, Thievery: 0
    • Athletics: -1
    • (Key: At-Will, Encounter, Daily, Magical Equipment, Consumable, Used)
        • _______________
          Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
          « Last edit by Viktor on Sun Oct 18, 2009 12:46 pm. »
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A particularly tall halfling stands there, eyes darting back and forth, body seeming to shiver. He smells a little like burnt matches and his clothes are a little charred at the edges. "Sir, I am Laz. Whatever you have heard from the other teachers, I swear, I am trying to keep control. It is just so hard to concentrate all the time." As he says this, a couple of sparks drop from his fingers. As this happens, his eyes widen, and the halfling turns into a pale humanoid with green hair. He quickly stamps his foot on the sparks before the Professor can see whether there is hole in his carpet or not.

Energy Type (1d10=3)

OOC: Resist Fire 5, ignore Fire Resist 5, until the end of next extended rest.


  •  Laz
    • Male Changeling Sorceror 1
    • Passive Perception: 9, Passive Insight: 11
    • AC:14, Fort:11, Reflex:14, Will:17 - Speed:6
    • HP:24/24, Bloodied:12, Surge Value:6, Surges left:7/7
    • Action Points: 1, Second Wind: not used, Resist Fire 5
    •  
      • Powers
        • Changeling Disguise (Shapeshift, +5 to Bluff vs. Insight)
        • Chaos Bolt (Will; Hit: d10; if even, att within 5, 1d6)
        • Dragonfrost (Fort; Hit: d8, push 1 sq)
        • Changeling Trick (Bluff vs. pass. Insight, gain CA)
        • Bedeviling Burst (Will; 1 or 2; Hit: d10, push 4; if even, slide
        • Chromatic Orb (Ref; Hit: 3d10, d6 for effect; Miss: d10, d6 for effect
          • 1: Radiant, dazed (save ends); 2: Fire, adj. to target takes 4 fire
          • 3: Poison, 5 OGD poison (save ends); 4: Lightning, slide 4
          • 5: Cold, immobile (save ends); 6: Psychic, -2 AC (save ends)
         
      • Items
        • Dagger (Implement)
        • Quarterstaff (Implement)
        • Crossbow
        • Bolts x40
        • Sunrods x2
        • Hempen Rope (50 feet)
         
      • Abilities
        • Basic Melee +4 (+3 Prof, +1 Exp)
        • Basic Range +5 vs. Fort (+4 Cha, +1 Exp)
        • Chaos Burst 1st att. roll: +1 AC if even; save if odd
        • Chaos Power +4 damage
        • Unfettered Power 20: slide 1 & prone; 1: Push all 1
        • Wild Soul Roll d10 for resist & avoidance of resist
          • 1: Acid; 2: Cold; 3: Fire; 4: Force; 5 Lightning
          • 6: Necrotic; 7: Poison; 8: Psychic; 9: Radiant; 10: Thunder
         
      • Skills
        • Acrobatics +9 (+4 Dex, +5 trained)
        • Arcana +6 (+1 Int, +5 trained)
        • Athletics +0 (+0 Str)
        • Bluff +11 (+4 Cha, +5 trained, +2 race)
        • Diplomacy +4 (+4 Cha)
        • Dungeoneering -1 (-1 Wis)
        • Endurance +6 (+1 Con, +5 trained)
        • Heal -1 (-1 Wis)
        • History +1 (+1 Int)
        • Insight +1 (-1 Wis, +2 race)
        • Intimidate +4 (+4 Cha)
        • Nature -1 (-1 Wis)
        • Perception -1 (-1 Wis)
        • Religion +1 (+1 Int)
        • Stealth +4 (+4 Dex)
        • Streetwise +4 (+4 Cha)
        • Thievery +4 (+4 Dex)
_______________
Mal Geminous - Tiefling Warlord, Scales of War
Corydimbiddle - Gnome Artificer, Points of Light
« Last edit by Josh on Fri Oct 16, 2009 6:17 pm. »
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Registered: Oct 2008
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Alfred seems to forget his discomfort for a moment as he watches the halfling intently, eyes wide with wonder at seeing the tranformation. "Fascinating."
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Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
Moderator
Registered: Jun 2009
Posts: 3164
A huge young dragonborn joins the group, his scales shining in the dim light of the chamber. His thick corded muscles rippling, he does not look like a student of the arcane, but rather he appears to be the sort more comfortable on the floor of an arena, doing battle with gladiators and wild beasts. He surveys the others in the room, confident that with a simple twitch he could break them in half, maybe even in quarters. "I am Gharnash," he says, his words coming out speckled with electrical energy as he exhales. "I am ready for anything you have in mind." Now let's just hope its a weight-lifting contest.
_______________
Dungeon Master - The Dark Campaign
Sir Muurak - Mul Cavalier 14, Scales of War
Demuriath - Revenant Assassin 5, Points of Light
Kurvilis - Gnome Mage 4, Eberron
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Posts: 5084
Location: Los Angeles, CA
"This lot, Professor?" Curator 143-Theta intones gloomily. "Are we truly so desperate as to trust such a vital task to ones such as these, sir?"

Despite the fact that he doesn't need to breathe, Curator 143-Theta lets out a very well-practiced sigh.

  •  Curator 143-Theta
    • Male Warforged Artificer 1
    • Passive Perception: 15, Passive Insight: 10
    • AC: 16, Fort: 14, Reflex: 14, Will: 12 - Speed: 6
    • HP:28/28, Bloodied: 14, Surge Value: 7, Surges left: 9/9
    • Action Points: 1

    • Powers
    • Magic Weapon
    • Static Shock
    • Burning Weapons
    • Healing Infusion: Curative Admixture OR Restorative Formula x2
    • Second Wind
    • Warforged Resolve
    • Punishing Eye
_______________
Salazar Miller - Human Sorcerer 24 - Scales of War
Azad Halim al'Zahir - Tiefling Battlemind|Paladin 7 - Points of Light
Khavak'aashta - Half-Orc Thief 5 - Eberron
Dwimmerlaik - Revenant Hexblade 2 - Dark Campaign
« Last edit by Gary on Fri Oct 16, 2009 9:11 pm. »
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Location: Santa Ana, CA
Looking over at his warforged assistant, Artimus says, "143, you know each student here has at least one unique gift- and if I recall, not everyone has always trusted you to such tasks either. Either way, you should introduce yourself to them as well - it's about time for you to get your start with some field work as well."
_______________
Hedoni Midartis - Eladrin Wizard, Scales of War
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Registered: Jun 2008
Posts: 5084
Location: Los Angeles, CA
"Yes, but when I asked to be assigned to a recovery squad, I assumed I'd be assigned to a proven team, and not a bunch of twitchy students."

The warforged's eyes dim momentarily, as he resigns himself to his fate.

"I am Curator 143-Theta," he introduces himself to the three pupils. "I have studied that which this institution has kept secret from all but the most trusted since before your great-grandparents engaged in the disgusting biological activities that led to your presence here."
_______________
Salazar Miller - Human Sorcerer 24 - Scales of War
Azad Halim al'Zahir - Tiefling Battlemind|Paladin 7 - Points of Light
Khavak'aashta - Half-Orc Thief 5 - Eberron
Dwimmerlaik - Revenant Hexblade 2 - Dark Campaign
Administrator
Registered: Jun 2008
Posts: 2639
Location: Santa Ana, CA
The professor laughs and says, "They need you, and you'll need them. I'm not as old as you, my mechanical friend, but I'm not exactly new around these parts - I have some idea what I'm doing."

Noting the confused looks on the students faces, Artimus continues. "As I'm sure you've all gathered in your time here, Wisenstone does more than just educate the next generation of mages. Our necromony department is striving to understand death while avoiding the horrors of the undead. Our Feywild researchers are making strides in planar teleportation. And our advances in the field of dragon research are nothing short of amazing".

"And then there's me, the Guardian of Artifacts. For reasons that I hope will become clear, we try to keep the existence of this place a bit more secret. Throughout history, magical items have been infused with great power, and can give anyone fantastic powers or abilities. Here, we make sure those items are kept safe, to protect the people, and protect the Empire".

Artimus looks wistfully around the room before continuing. "Unfortunately, there are items that were lost in the last war, and others that we've never been able to catalog. This is where you come in - we need trusted, highly skilled mages to help the school recover these items. The tasks are uniquely suited to your skill sets, and I hope you'll be willing to join our ranks. Any questions?"
_______________
Hedoni Midartis - Eladrin Wizard, Scales of War
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Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 7786
Looking at the Headmaster directly for the first time since he entered the room Alfred asks "Well, uhm, not to sound, err, selfish or anything, but might some of these lost items also include a copy of Frederick's "Manifesto Homunculi" or even the tragically misplaced "Elemental Bonding" first edition? If such are the items you seek to recover I would be glad to, err, help safeguard them." he finishes with very intent and lively eyes.
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Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
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Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 4627
Laz takes a deep breath and shifts himself back into a halfling, looking a little more comfortable. "Uh, sir...I think you called the wrong person for this. I try to stay away from people and valuable objects. I still don't have full control of my abilities." As if to emphasize the point, Laz shifts into a half-elf as one of his sleeves bursts into flames, which he quickly stamps out with his hand. Laz then furrows his brow and says, "You probably know all about me, though. All of the other professors do. I shall do what you wish me to. I suppose I will eventually have to face the real world again, anyway." With that, he promptly turns back into a halfling and the smoke coming from his hair stops for a few moments.
_______________
Mal Geminous - Tiefling Warlord, Scales of War
Corydimbiddle - Gnome Artificer, Points of Light
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Location: Santa Ana, CA
Looking slightly alarmed but intrigued at the changling's power, Artimus says, "The treasures we seek aren't just laying in barren fields, or ripe from the taking from abandoned dungeons. They're typically in the possession of someone not interested in giving them back. So you can see where a gift like yours could come in handy. Rest assured that all three of you were very specifically chosen for this opportunity."
_______________
Hedoni Midartis - Eladrin Wizard, Scales of War
Moderator
Registered: Jun 2009
Posts: 3164
Gharnash looks at the rest of the group, and sighs. "Professor, I am your man... er, your dragon. But a bookworm, a robot, and a freak? I can only do so much with the materials I am given."
_______________
Dungeon Master - The Dark Campaign
Sir Muurak - Mul Cavalier 14, Scales of War
Demuriath - Revenant Assassin 5, Points of Light
Kurvilis - Gnome Mage 4, Eberron
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Alfred arches an eyebrow at Gharnash's words. "Fascinating. Your race is an evolutionary aberrancy, err, I mean to say a mutational transmogrification. Dragonborn are inferior to their dragon ancestors in every way, almost insignificant by comparison. Still, ahem, you somehow never cease in your struggle to make up for that inadequacy, constantly trying to prove yourselves as a race, even if it takes four or more wars to give you that false sense of accomplishment. Such perseverance is quite remarkable really. It's a shame that you haven't yet understood that the concept of being more than the sum of one's parts applies to whole nations and continents and more, and not just to communities or races. Your people would be able to achieve greatness if they weren't so blinded by their self-importance."
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Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
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Registered: Jun 2009
Posts: 3164
Gharnash ignores Alfred's comments. "What are the items you want us to find? Where do we find them?" He looks around as if impatient to leave.
_______________
Dungeon Master - The Dark Campaign
Sir Muurak - Mul Cavalier 14, Scales of War
Demuriath - Revenant Assassin 5, Points of Light
Kurvilis - Gnome Mage 4, Eberron
Moderator
Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 7786
Nodding in agreement at hearing Gharnash's words, Alfred returns his attention to the headmaster. The wizard thinks to himself that it's a very good thing to have some pragmatic people around, since he himself probably wouldn't have thought to ask such obvious, yet important questions. "Those are good questions. I too find my interest is piqued by this venture. Traveling together with a transient being, an advanced homonculus, and a descendent of the dragons will be very interesting, ahem, I daresay even educational. Will there be packhorses, servants, and a cook joining us?" he asks hopefully.
_______________
Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
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Posts: 3164
'A cook? Really?', Gharnash thinks to himself. 'These ladies need to toughen up, or we will never survive a picnic, let alone a very important quest.'
_______________
Dungeon Master - The Dark Campaign
Sir Muurak - Mul Cavalier 14, Scales of War
Demuriath - Revenant Assassin 5, Points of Light
Kurvilis - Gnome Mage 4, Eberron
Administrator
Registered: Jun 2008
Posts: 2639
Location: Santa Ana, CA
Smiling in amusement, Artimus looks at the assembled group and says, "It's fascinating how every group starts so differently - some seem like perfect matches but end up in trouble, and others more rag-tag than you become perfect teams."

Turning his attention to the Dragonborn, the still amused Guardian says "There's a world full of magical items out there that are better served in this vault than in the hands of people who don't know how to use them. We've cataloged hundreds, of which many still remain lost. There are probably as many others out there that we've never seen, but believe exist. You'll recover what most needs recovering at any given time."

Artimus considers the human's question a moment before responding."This is not a luxury position in a university library. You will be expected to do what is needed of you, and some rough times may be ahead. But the real-world experience is invaluable, and I will not send you out unequipped."
_______________
Hedoni Midartis - Eladrin Wizard, Scales of War
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Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 7786
Alfred nods in understanding. "Uhm, what sort of equipment? Will I be able check out some of the books? If this is to be rural outing, then I may know the proper ritual or two to help. Ahem, might we appropriate some of the School's residuum supply? It would come in handy."

1d20+1=3 (Diplomacy roll)

OOC: I added +1 for 24 hour. Are we playing with that?
_______________
Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
« Last edit by Viktor on Sat Oct 17, 2009 5:22 pm. »
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"Got it. Just point the way to where we start." Gharnash doesn't seem to quite comprehend what is going on, but his eagerness to do something wins out, though easily mistaken for impatience.
_______________
Dungeon Master - The Dark Campaign
Sir Muurak - Mul Cavalier 14, Scales of War
Demuriath - Revenant Assassin 5, Points of Light
Kurvilis - Gnome Mage 4, Eberron
Moderator
Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 4627
Ignoring the insults of the dragonborn, Laz says, "So, ummm, sir, what are the artifacts you want us to find."
_______________
Mal Geminous - Tiefling Warlord, Scales of War
Corydimbiddle - Gnome Artificer, Points of Light
« Last edit by Josh on Tue Oct 20, 2009 11:07 am. »
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Location: Santa Ana, CA
"We have received word of a series of odd goings-on in the town of Twinmarsh, three days west of Rivervale in the east. Residents are reporting a ghost, or some type of spirit, entering their houses and making off with their possessions. While such hauntings are certainly possible, ghosts rarely have much use for jewels, coins, and expensive heirlooms. We're not sure what's at play, but we're willing to bet a magic item that belongs here is involved."

OOC: We are, though I might make it 12 hours later on - we'll see. I'm not starting anything adventure-wise until I know whether or not Gary can post at least daily from the Aloha State. But Artimus is happy to keep talking...
_______________
Hedoni Midartis - Eladrin Wizard, Scales of War
Moderator
Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 7786
"Uhm, about that residuum? If there's a summoning or spirit involved we may need to exorcise them. Such rituals require the necessary paraphernalia and ingredients."
_______________
Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
Moderator
Registered: Jun 2008
Posts: 5084
Location: Los Angeles, CA
"Robot? Advanced homunculus?" Curator 143-Theta repeats, mortified. "Such insults! But I should expect no better from such uncultured, ignorant, philistines..."

The warforged then listens to the professor's comments on their first task.

"Ghosts, Professor? I hope this spirit isn't like that horrible poltergeist Cheswickle, who haunts the third floor dining hall here. Cheswickle alone is enough to make me happy I don't have to eat and can ignore that chamber of mischievousness."

OOC: Should be able to get on daily. I had time to catch up on the other deadgoblins games yesterday, and am caught up here now. Plus, I do believe we've got Nathan acclimated to the time zone here now, which means internetting during his naps, as I'm doing now. :)

In case you couldn't tell, Mike, I'm TOTALLY running with that Marvin angle. ;)
_______________
Salazar Miller - Human Sorcerer 24 - Scales of War
Azad Halim al'Zahir - Tiefling Battlemind|Paladin 7 - Points of Light
Khavak'aashta - Half-Orc Thief 5 - Eberron
Dwimmerlaik - Revenant Hexblade 2 - Dark Campaign
« Last edit by Gary on Sun Oct 18, 2009 4:41 pm. »
Administrator
Registered: Jun 2008
Posts: 2639
Location: Santa Ana, CA
"I believe this "ghost" to be nothing more than a small-time thief with some newly-acquired power, but there's only one way for you to all find out for sure - head to Twinmarsh yourselves."

Artimus reaches into a pocket in his robe, and pulls out four silver rings, handing one to each of the assembled team. "These signet rings are made specifically for each of you - they'll show the Guardian's symbol once you have them on. Use them to identify yourself as agents of the Guardian, in case you run into trouble."

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He also hands each of you a small sack. "You leave first thing in the morning via the school's teleportation portal. You'll go to Rivervale, then make your way to Twinmarsh from there. There's 100 gold pieces there for each of you, plus 30 gold pieces worth of residuum. That should be plenty for anything you'll need. Report back here at sunrise for further instructions, and to head out."
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Hedoni Midartis - Eladrin Wizard, Scales of War
« Last edit by Michael Doss on Sun Oct 18, 2009 8:50 pm. »

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