The Savage Tide (Full D&D Campaign)

For all RPs taking place in the world Gaera Main.
User avatar
Kai
Fighting the Iron Law of Oligarchy Since 2006
 
Posts: 2408
Joined: Thu Oct 28, 2004 12:32 pm
Location: Indianapolis

Unread postby Kai » Mon Mar 19, 2007 1:10 pm

As their boat approached shore, Safiyeh looked up from the water to scan the beach that was their destination. A dark thrill of fear moved down her spine as she found the beach already occupied. All they knew of this place was that it was used by smugglers and other various sorts of criminals to hide their activities. Coming across open water like this was incredibly dangerous if the smugglers were already out in the open, on dry land, and in a position to monitor any possible approach.

They were afforded as little cover as if they were striding confidently across the open desert toward well-established enemy cave strongholds. But this was worse, because they were trapped in a boat with nowhere to go but forward or back.

She quietly addressed the others. "Gentlemen, I assume that you see the same people I do."

Her mind racing, she threw her effort into thinking of some elaborate lie to cover them all should the situation confirm her fears. Following that, she needed a plan of action in case her words failed.

First things first. Three of them and four of us. Numbers are in our favor. However, they have stable ground, and we're moving onto it in the open. The subtle approach was clearly out of place, and any deception on their part would be viewed as what it was: a desperate afterthought.

Perhaps, she thought, a more direct and confident approach is in order. She glanced at Tristan. His self-assured manner might do her some good here. Her objectives were simple.

Tell as few lies as possible in order to accomplish any other goals. The two groups would soon be sizing one another up, and it would make it easier for the others to stand by her words with confidence. Solidarity would be important in the contest of ego they were about to face.

Get across the idea that they had as much right to be on this beach as the other group. That done, it would somewhat negate the advantage of rightful territory, at least in the minds of their potential enemies.

Do not start a fight unless absolutely necessary. She had no evidence one way or the other about the abilities or affiliations of these others, and being too quick to leap to combat could potentially gain them an offensive advantage and fit with the assertiveness and confidence she required... but it could also get them in above their heads and lose potential allies, even if the latter seemed a far-off posssibility.

The only avenue she could see would be to play on the necessary confidentiality of a smuggler's affairs. If they were potential enemies, it was distinctly possible that they themselves would not be aware of all activity in these tunnels, and that it would not be unreasonable to lead them to believe they had simply crossed paths with another ally group that just wanted to conduct business without any complications.

If they were potential allies, she wouldn't have to state that she was a smuggler, only that her business was private. This would give them reason to distrust her group, but it was an unavoidable sacrifice. This potentiality left the two groups in an unfortunate state of tension until a fight broke out, which caused a serious problem. In that case, she and her allies would be getting into a fight with little awareness even of who their enemies and allies were.

Of course, given the rule that she prevent a fight if possible, she would likely not be in control in the event hostilities broke out. It would be an offensive act on the part of another group, and by then the situation would have moved out of her control anyway.

"I believe that we can get past this little complication with some care and a good deal of... confidence. As far as they need to know, we are here on legitimate but confidential business. We do not desire a fight, but must have access to the tunnels for reasons that are important to us, but should not ideally affect the well-being of the other group present. This is all... mostly true. After a while, we will not be able to lie by omission anymore. After a while we will either have to lie more directly, or we will have honest allies or an honest fight."

She took a deep breath. "I believe that I can handle the conversational... approach, and will be less threatening to them on my own. Perhaps I could be taking the lead here. Do you object?" As she finished, the boat hit shallow waters and bottomed out. She looked down. She might have to walk through the water. Wouldn't that be interesting.

Looking back to her allies she tilted her head, waiting for their answer before they approached the other group.

User avatar
Archmage
REAL DOCTOR. FROM AMERICA.
 
Posts: 442
Joined: Mon Jan 08, 2007 10:43 pm
Location: Indianapolis, IN

Unread postby Archmage » Mon Mar 19, 2007 10:24 pm

Tristan climbed out of the rowboat, winced slightly at the shock of water--good thing these boots are mostly waterproof, as they're leather and I've never seen a cow with an umbrella, he thought--and took great pleasure in the thought of being on dry land again. Tristan was not a sailor, to say the least, and it was generally his kind of ocean voyage when he neither had to look at the water nor be in it while clothed. It was preferable, in fact, to be on a boat without ever realizing one was on the boat, aside from the occasional motion of the waves and the scent of sea salt that were indicative of the fact that, yes, a cruise yacht is a boat, and it does float on water, but we're not here to think about that, we're here to drink brandy and make jokes about petticoats while those striped-shirts above deck deal with things like "riggings" and "portholes" and "yardarms."

Nautical misadventures aside, it was time to get down to business.

"Well, Kenner, since you know the most about our man, I'm wondering if you know anything about the geography of this island? I must admit that I would make a terrible smuggler, because I'm not sure where you would go around here if you wanted to hide things from lawful authorities..."

NamagomiMk0
 
Posts: 1223
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 1:47 am

Unread postby NamagomiMk0 » Tue Mar 20, 2007 8:35 pm

"Regrettably, no. Though I know of the presence of tunnels on the island, my knowledge lacks in regards to the locations thereof. There's the one path into the island, but aside from that, I do not know of any of the subterranean entrances." Driscoll explained to his fellow elf, motioning to the clear path to go along.

Looking back towards the others, he sized the four others up, in the chance that a fight would break out--there were two rather thuggish-looking men; likely to be treated the same as such. But what appeared far more notable are the other two people amongst the others...

The first particularly out of place person was the man who was dressed far too well to be going on an island excursion. Vanthus? No, hair color was wrong, no beard, and he'd have come in hiding. Likewise, he appears too much of a "noble" to be anywhere out in the open--especially if he was directing the pack. Lavinia, after all, stayed home for this one...

Even more peculiar was the woman--she was outright and completely different from everyone altogether. While the well-dressed man appeared to be undeniably of a different class altogether from the thugs, he at least appeared to be from the general region. That woman, however...appeared completely different. Different skin tone, different hair, and those shades. Clearly an outsider in comparison to anyone else...and as such, completely unpredictable as to what she could or would do.

...And lastly is the fact that the boat is rowing itself; at least one of their number is a magic user, if not both, and while the well-dressed man definitely looked the part; why else would he be coming out here; the woman was equally suspect...

"Stay on your guard, people," he stated to the two others, facing the other group.

User avatar
Nakibe
Lady Malix wills your demise!
 
Posts: 1214
Joined: Wed Apr 24, 2002 8:51 am

Unread postby Nakibe » Wed Mar 21, 2007 12:25 am

Orson just eyed the other folks approaching the island as he finally pulled the boat ashore. If these folks were guards or had some business with Vanthus, then everything was screwed right here and now. No chance of just knocking on his door, claiming to go get a cup of sugar or something. Dammit. And... wait... what the hell? Who's rowing that boat? Oh. OH. Crap.

Trying to keep up a calm and confident front, Orson stepped out of the boat and onto the beach. And without any preamble, keeping his hand a distance from his sword so as to remain nonthreatening, Orson strode halfway to the other group. "Nice night for a boat ride" he intoned. "You folks here for business too, huh?"

User avatar
Kai
Fighting the Iron Law of Oligarchy Since 2006
 
Posts: 2408
Joined: Thu Oct 28, 2004 12:32 pm
Location: Indianapolis

Unread postby Kai » Wed Mar 21, 2007 6:58 am

Safiyeh couldn't help but smile even as she rapped Tristan on his arm with the back of her hand to get his attention.

Silly lout, she thought. But I should be able to handle this, provided no one gives anyone else cause for worry.

Penkus was using these caves for some sort of operation, or so they had reason to believe. As Safiyeh had already accepted, they had no way of knowing whether these few individuals were affiliated with him, affiliated with the authorities, or possibly dealing with some third party entirely.

She saw no reason Orson shouldn't be allowed to see her keeping back a smile. She thickened her accent a bit, taking just a little more time on her consonants than she knew was necessary. She wanted to sound very different from a native speaker of Common, just this once. It made her very slightly more difficult to understand, but often it forced her audience to listen more carefully to her, concentrating on listening to her words instead of finding an opportunity to strike. It was a precaution that couldn't hurt.

"You are correct. It would seem that we both have business here." She tilted her head and took a good look at him. Perhaps not friendly, but amiable enough and apparently inclined toward honesty. Or, and which was more interesting, this man had simply had precisely the same idea as Safiyeh herself. After all, had she not been planning to approach the others with almost the very same air of self-assurance?

"I can reassure you, and your acquaintances, that I do not hope for my business to affect your safety. I wish to do what I wish to do, and unless I have.... very good reason for believing that I am in danger... I will not go out of my way to be causing you problems."

User avatar
Nakibe
Lady Malix wills your demise!
 
Posts: 1214
Joined: Wed Apr 24, 2002 8:51 am

Unread postby Nakibe » Thu Mar 22, 2007 12:15 am

Won't go out of her way to cause problems, she says. Well, I'm not so sure if your BEING here is a problem or not, lady, thought Orson. But instead of displaying his thoughts, he did his best to keep the strained smile he started with. Yeah, just keep looking a little slow, maybe a little stupid, he thought. With some luck she'll just think I'm some brainless muscle. Makes things easier. "Uh, yeah. About that. You wouldn't happen to know about a guy named Vanthus, would you? We're looking to ask him about some of his wares."

User avatar
Kai
Fighting the Iron Law of Oligarchy Since 2006
 
Posts: 2408
Joined: Thu Oct 28, 2004 12:32 pm
Location: Indianapolis

Unread postby Kai » Thu Mar 22, 2007 12:07 pm

Safiyeh thought for a moment. Vanthus? Vanthus. I don't know the name.

This created a host of problems. Bluff and imply she knew Vanthus and she would be gambling hard on this new fellow's allegiances. It was probably best not to affiliate herself with anyone but her allies until she was sure. At least then she would err on the side of conservative prevarication rather than bolder outright lies.

Hopefully acquaintance with Vanthus was not a prerequisite for being present on this island. It would be a problem later if she and her friends were found out as enemies because they didn't claim permission from or affiliation with the reigning criminal.

"I am not here to speak with anyone by that name, nor do I believe my business is with him. If you wish to converse with this man, I can offer you little help."

Big question... return the gesture and ask after Penkus? It would be less risky to omit all mention altogether, but this stranger would gain little advantage over her that she did not already have over him. Was it worth giving up that advantage for the chance to learn more about their target?

Certainly. Otherwise they would stand and dither about aimlessly, getting no farther than the beach.

"I have come to speak with another man by the name of Penkus. I think it would be a good guess," she gestured broadly toward the caves. "...that given the close quarters here, the two would at least be aware of one another."

User avatar
Nakibe
Lady Malix wills your demise!
 
Posts: 1214
Joined: Wed Apr 24, 2002 8:51 am

Unread postby Nakibe » Fri Mar 23, 2007 12:14 am

Orson's grin finally graces his eyes as the young woman with the weird glasses over her eyes said that she had nothing to do with Vanthus. Alright. Won't be in our way, then. Good. Orson's smile wasn't even moved an inch by the comment on Pinkus. "Yeah, that's possible," was the laconic reply. "But can't say I've heard of the guy till now. Ah, well." Business was now done as far as Orson was concerned. As such, he turned back to his companions. The smile was gone both from his smile and his manner as he just said "Lets go".

"Nice meeting you, miss, but our business is a little sensitive." Part of Orson felt that it was rather rude of him to just up and leave like this, without a goodbye or anything. But that part of him was rather small. Besides, it pays to be a little rude sometimes.

NamagomiMk0
 
Posts: 1223
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 1:47 am

Unread postby NamagomiMk0 » Fri Mar 23, 2007 12:20 pm

Driscoll, on the other hand, watches the groups--and the exchange, from a distance. Orson seems to be doing a good enough job of going out of his way to talk that there isn't any point in interfering. He's doing well enough at it is...

Not associated with Vanthus, huh? That's a good thing...though I must wonder...

This means there are three possible outcomes in this situation. The first, and the easiest to come to, is that both of them happen to be on the island, and are working separately, either in acknowledgement of or ignorant of each others' presence. However, I find myself doubting that they would be working under separate operations given the space available. In such a case...they'd have to be alone, or only with one or two others. Not really much for any big operations, and definitely not enough to guard his money or operations for forever, in Vanthus' case.

The second...and more possible, is that "Penkus" might be a pseudonym he adopted. Given how much money he got away with, this is clearly a viable option; what better way to get around hunters than to camouflage the fact that you even exist on the island? None that I can think of, and it would also explain holing up in such quarters--just big enough for one person to run operations.

The last, and also likely...is that they're working in tandem with each other. If they share a common boss, and have been assigned to the same task, this is far from unlikely on any level. In fact, it's arguably one of the more viable options...but so is the second...


Driscoll simply stood, looking thoughtful as he muttered under his breath, "...pseudonym...or tandem..."

User avatar
Kai
Fighting the Iron Law of Oligarchy Since 2006
 
Posts: 2408
Joined: Thu Oct 28, 2004 12:32 pm
Location: Indianapolis

Unread postby Kai » Fri Mar 23, 2007 3:16 pm

Safiyeh nodded respectfully to Orson's statement. "Understood." His statement was fair, and his desire to keep his business confidential did not seem unreasonable either. In his place, she would want the same thing.

She let him walk away without another word before turning to her companions. They'd been conspicuously silent during her exchange with the stranger, and it was time to get their input again.

"So," she said. "They are here to find someone named Vanthus, and seem to have little interest in us now. Vanthus and Penkus could not avoid one another in these caves, so it does not seem possible to me that the two are ignorant of one another. It is likely that they have an agreement or are even the same person, but the latter allegation is not one that I can support. It simply is not impossible, so it bears mention."

Safiyeh glanced over her shoulder to the other group. "At any rate, we will be joining them in the caves I assume. So it was good that we were able to... set a precedent of not killing each other on sight. I do not believe that they intend to harm us unless we give them cause. What's better is that they should be able to assume we will be in the caves with them. Given that, we should have little need to hide ourselves from them at least."

She sighed. "There is one complication." She looked over her shoulder again towards the darkness of the path they would be taking. "Even if we bring a light, I will not be able to see in the caves with these on. I am having enough difficulty out here. It is... fortunate that we would not be able to hide our light source either, or my presence could be... compromising."

She reached up to pull free of the lenses that wrapped around her eyes so closely. She pulled them off with her eyes closed to avoid blinding herself with an earpiece and folded them onto a small wooden case. As she slipped the case into one pocket, she cleared her throat self-consciously and looked around at the others.

It was much lighter out here than she'd initially felt, and the increased visibility she now enjoyed was something of a relief. It was dark enough out that her eyes were no longer their daytime hazy blue. With the concealing glasses gone, they were now a vibrant luminous blue from edge to edge. As the night grew darker they would even begin to cast a faint light over her eyelids and lashes.

"Well. If we know where we are going, perhaps it would be best if we set about our mission. I believe we will be following the other group unless any of you have information that would suggest another way."

User avatar
Kelne
EXTERMINATE!!!!
 
Posts: 3604
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 2:02 am
Location: New Zealand

Unread postby Kelne » Sat Mar 24, 2007 8:21 pm

Sel and Kenner, having taken the time to secure the boat as soon as they were sure that immediate combat wasn't going down, did look up at Safiyeh's announcement. You could see the wheels turning as they tried to work out what was up with the eyes, but in the end they said nothing, simply shaking heads in response to the question about alternative leads.

The trail led Driscoll, Orson and Gillet up the slope and towards the interior of the island. A few minutes' walk brought them to a clearing at the centre of the island, featuring a scattering of boulders, and with numerous trees about the edges. This, it seemed, was the end of the line, so far as the path went.

The others were free to follow or not, as they chose.

User avatar
Spleen
I put a BOMB inside EVERY BAD GUY!
 
Posts: 2625
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 5:07 pm
Location: Demon Realms of Niu-Jiurzi

Unread postby Spleen » Sat Mar 24, 2007 11:03 pm

Gillet sighed. "They probably hid the entrance, is my guess," the gnome asserted. "This clearing looks like a likely place for it, so why don't we split up and each search one part of it? Maybe I'll search over here by these boulders, one of you can take half of the circle of trees, and the other one can take the other half. Sound fair?"

User avatar
Archmage
REAL DOCTOR. FROM AMERICA.
 
Posts: 442
Joined: Mon Jan 08, 2007 10:43 pm
Location: Indianapolis, IN

Unread postby Archmage » Sun Mar 25, 2007 7:47 pm

"I suppose that we shall have to hope that the other group on this island means us no harm, then," Tristan noted. He blinked curiously, somewhat distracted by the vivid color of Safiyeh's eyes, but said nothing about their unusual appearance. She was foreign; that much was evident. Perhaps where she came from, everyone had bright blue eyes, although it seemed unlikely. Tristan had never been anywhere but Argovia, and as such, even if it was implausible, it was possible.

"If they are looking for the same thing that we are," he continued, "why do we not join forces with them as well, if you think that they are trustworthy? At this rate we will be tailing behind them through the caves anyway. Perhaps if we make some sort of diplomatic agreement in advance we will be more likely to survive in the event of danger."

User avatar
Kai
Fighting the Iron Law of Oligarchy Since 2006
 
Posts: 2408
Joined: Thu Oct 28, 2004 12:32 pm
Location: Indianapolis

Unread postby Kai » Mon Mar 26, 2007 9:45 pm

Safiyeh turned her eyes to Tristan. He'd made a request, and it seemed like a potentially-achievable goal. She knew several things, and now had a goal. There was little more that could be done for her chances, so she nodded to him and turned on her heel to follow the other group.

Assuming the others were perfectly capable of bipedal motion she strode confidently across the beach. It was good to have sand under her feet again. It shifted reassuringly under each step instead of the jarring impact she used to only experience in cave shelters of the deep desert. She reached the path at the back of the beach and ducked under the overgrowth. She stared above her, still impressed by the abundance of plant life that was possible here.

When she got under, the light remaining was blocked out even further and she knew she must look rather alarming. At least now it would work in her favor.

"Pardon me," she called ahead of her when she had caught sight of the others. She directed her words to their group, but her gaze was on Orson. After all, he was the one who had acted as their ambassador before and was most likely to give her words some consideration. She knew that they were at least likely to give her a second look, glowing at them as she was. All she had to do was hold them long enough to get them to listen.

"This will be an odd request," she began when she had their attention. "I will give you honesty. You and we both seem to be independent... entities looking to do business here. You and we both are looking for men and you seem as uncertain as we are precisely how and when we will locate our... potential business partner. Given that, it would not be unreasonable to assume that we are both on unfamiliar ground."

She took a deep breath. "And given that, it would not be unreasonable to... suppose that our best chances of making.... a... solid impression... lie in travelling along the path together openly for now."

"After all, our destination is the same and as such... we will be following in your steps. Were I in your position I would rather keep the... strangers where I can see them instead of lurking in my shadow."

Safiyeh spread her hands wide and tilted her head, levelling the full jarringly-luminous strangeness of her gaze on them all. "And if it is a comfort to you... feel free to assume that I will not be creeping up on you in the shadows." She smirked, not caring for the moment if they shared this private joke at her own expense. "You can imagine that it is not possible for me at this time."

User avatar
Spleen
I put a BOMB inside EVERY BAD GUY!
 
Posts: 2625
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 5:07 pm
Location: Demon Realms of Niu-Jiurzi

Unread postby Spleen » Mon Mar 26, 2007 10:51 pm

Gillet regarded Safiyeh for a moment, then averted his eyes. He didn't know what could make a woman's eyes glow like that, but he was not brought up to stare at anyone different from him, especially considering that humans counted as "anyone different from him". Besides, it's not like I'm your everyday gnome myself, the rogue thought to himself. Far be it for me to judge.

He looked to Orson, to see what his reaction would be to Safiyeh. If the elf wanted to be the diplomat here, that would be fine with Gillet; the gods knew that Gillet had no flair for dealing with people. Were it up to Gillet, he'd follow the old advice of safety in numbers. He already distrusted most people by default anyway, so it made things easier on him if he could distrust them from a comfortable vantage.

User avatar
Nakibe
Lady Malix wills your demise!
 
Posts: 1214
Joined: Wed Apr 24, 2002 8:51 am

Unread postby Nakibe » Wed Mar 28, 2007 6:46 pm

Orson hears the woman start talking to him, which at this point he wasn't sure he should ignore or not. After all, it would probably mark them to... whoever the hell it was she was working for. Best to hear this "plan" out, then. he thought.

All these thoughts distracted him to the extra light in the area, so he was more than mildly surprised by seeing the woman's EYES. They glowed with a blue shine that seemed more than a bit eerie. He couldn't keep his shock from his face, but he quickly tried to compose himself. It was hard not to give a really nasty scowl at Safiyeh's plan, but he'd be damned if it wasn't sound in its way. He still didn't like it "Heh. Yeah, seems like that's not too bad an idea. Don't wanna get lost either, I'd say." FUCK. The chances that this lady was a mage of some sort shot sky high. Maybe she was even the one piloting the boat. Who knows what the young gentleman behind her could do. Quite frankly, I don't wanna know, either.

"Well then, miss. Whenever you're ready."

User avatar
Kelne
EXTERMINATE!!!!
 
Posts: 3604
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 2:02 am
Location: New Zealand

Unread postby Kelne » Thu Mar 29, 2007 8:58 pm

With a policy of mutual tolerance (with a slice of healthy mistrust) in place, Gillet was able to put his search plan into action. As it turned out, it was his own search that turned up the trapdoor, concealed among the rocks. It looked old but sturdy, and some effort had been made to conceal it with underbrush.

User avatar
Spleen
I put a BOMB inside EVERY BAD GUY!
 
Posts: 2625
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 5:07 pm
Location: Demon Realms of Niu-Jiurzi

Unread postby Spleen » Thu Mar 29, 2007 10:29 pm

"Trapdoor," Gillet called, pushing aside the underbrush. "Gimme a minute and I'll check it for traps before I try and open it. Can't be too careful. If any of you have a good set of eyes, I'd appreciate a hand here, too."

(Unless pushed by allies new or old to speed it up, Gillet will be spending the next two minutes taking 20 on his Search check to check the trapdoor for traps. He's got Trapfinding.)

User avatar
Kelne
EXTERMINATE!!!!
 
Posts: 3604
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 2:02 am
Location: New Zealand

Unread postby Kelne » Thu Mar 29, 2007 10:53 pm

Gillet's search for traps found none. It seemed that nobody had seen fit to install any sort of engine of death whatsoever on the trapdoor. Almost disappointing, really.

User avatar
Archmage
REAL DOCTOR. FROM AMERICA.
 
Posts: 442
Joined: Mon Jan 08, 2007 10:43 pm
Location: Indianapolis, IN

Unread postby Archmage » Thu Mar 29, 2007 11:24 pm

Tristan, apparently almost entirely ignorant of (or at least willing to overlook) the fact that the group was now poking around a cave where it might be a reasonably good idea to be quiet so as to avoid potential inhabitants of their intrusion, jovially approached the new "friends" that Safiyeh had made and grandly waved his arms. "Very good, very good! So, it is agreed that we shall watch one another's backs, no? I love to see people cooperate for the common benefit of everyone involved!"

"But excuse me," he continued, "for I have not properly introduced myself as of yet. My name is Tristan Alexander Redford, and it is indeed a pleasure to meet each and every one of you. Perhaps after this little adventure is over we shall have to actually go on a real boat trip, one with a much larger boat, more cigars, and a supply of fine brandy. What do you say, Madam Safieyeh? Would you be averse to such an excursion?"

It was at this point that Tristan noticed the trapdoor that Gillet had uncovered. "Oh, so I see. Well, the celebration and the yachting on the cape will have to wait. Were I smuggler, that would be precisely the sort of mechanism I would employ to safeguard my wares, or perhaps my lair. You seem to have good eyes, sir gnome," he remarked. "Might you lead the way, if you judge it safe to proceed?"

User avatar
Spleen
I put a BOMB inside EVERY BAD GUY!
 
Posts: 2625
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 5:07 pm
Location: Demon Realms of Niu-Jiurzi

Unread postby Spleen » Fri Mar 30, 2007 12:00 pm

Gillet raised his thin eyebrows at "sir gnome". "It's Gillet," he said. "Gillet Tarrym. And yeah, I'm probably the best in the dark here, so I'll likely be leading, or at least scouting ahead." He didn't think they'd need to keep quiet yet; if all their screwing around before hadn't roused any guards, then the human's yelling wouldn't. Still, though..."Everyone be quiet for a second, I want to hear if anyone's under this trapdoor before I open it." The little gnome stretched himself flat on the ground with his right ear to the trapdoor and his left ear plugged with a thin finger.

(I'm at school so I don't have Gillet's Listen mod on me.)

NamagomiMk0
 
Posts: 1223
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 1:47 am

Unread postby NamagomiMk0 » Fri Mar 30, 2007 1:30 pm

The gray elf, typically in the background for such incidences, decides at this point to speak up, in a matter-of-fact voice--apparently noticing Safiyeh's eyes, but looking to be with more curiosity than alarm...

"I see no problem with the plan whatsoever. I personally have had the feelings that our, for the lack of a better word, 'goals,' may be closer to each other than any of us have potentially comprehended. It would be in a mutual best interest for us to cooperate, at least for the time being, in order to at least prevent interference from each other, amongst other benefits clearly gathered from such a union."

Driscoll was no fool--if nothing else, the stories Orson and Safiyeh had used were clearly similar to each other...it's easy enough to at least venture a guess that those people weren't out in particular to make a business deal with "Penkus," especially not armed in such a way that the two thugs--as well as clearly Orson and Gillet--were. In effect, people with similar objectives with a different target; assuming they were not one and the same.

Of course, there could be a possibility that they're telling the truth; although the woman looked out of place in a trading party, the least brutish-looking man of the group had the look as if he had money to spare and spend, and the thugs look like they'd be good enough bodyguards. However, it's common sense that such claims would not be thrown out in the open; to do so was the pinnacle of idiocy, and defeats the point of arranged meetings to hidden smugglers' tunnels below small, otherwise uninhabited, and previously wiped-out islands. Needless to say, the mage felt that these people were trustworthy for the time being.

"Trapdoor." It appears as if Gillet's had another bout of usefulness. Most likely to be followed up by a stroke of complete and absolute idiocy that only he is capable of coming up with sometime later in the day.

Then the redcoated man happened to introduce himself to the group--he came off as, amongst other things, a bit eccentric...but that may be one of many things; a bluff, the willingness to lighten the mood, or simply a good or bad form of eccentricy. Needless to say, it would be suitable enough to at least respond.

"Well met, Redford. I am Driscoll Kalzeheln," he replied, with a head nod accentuating the greeting, "I would not find myself averse to a boat trip, or brandy, but I will have to decline on the offer of the cigars. I personally do not possess a taste for such things, and find no interest in developing one," he replied, while pulling one of his gloves back on his hand. It always irritated him when a glove left too much slack; the feeling is just too clumsy, and it's a pain to try to do anything requiring even a mite quantity of dexterity with such a condition.

He then turned to the gnome, "Yes, lead the way," he ordered, back in his more matter-of-fact way of speaking. "Orson, you go after him." It was--at least in his mind--clear as to what he was going to do. No need to waste words announcing one's own actions in such a manner, after all...

User avatar
Kelne
EXTERMINATE!!!!
 
Posts: 3604
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 2:02 am
Location: New Zealand

Unread postby Kelne » Fri Mar 30, 2007 6:05 pm

No sounds reached Gillet's ear from beneath the trapdoor. There was still a degree of chattering going on aboveground, of course, but unless someone was actively listening for intruders, they should still have the element of surprise.

User avatar
Spleen
I put a BOMB inside EVERY BAD GUY!
 
Posts: 2625
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 5:07 pm
Location: Demon Realms of Niu-Jiurzi

Unread postby Spleen » Sat Mar 31, 2007 5:50 pm

Since when is Driscoll my boss? I don't recall Lavinia telling us there was a pecking order.

With these thoughts in mind, Gillet pulled up on the trapdoor and (assuming it wasn't locked) peered down into the hole, possibly testing with a brisk tug any sort of ladder that might be there.

(Whisper gnomes have 60-ft. darkvision)

User avatar
Kelne
EXTERMINATE!!!!
 
Posts: 3604
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 2:02 am
Location: New Zealand

Unread postby Kelne » Sat Mar 31, 2007 9:41 pm

The open trapdoor revealed a shaft stretching down into the darkness. Thanks to his talents, Gillet could make out the bottom easily enough, perhaps 30 feet below, with a passage opening up to one side of the bottom. There was a knotted rope dangling from a hook set into the wall, which looked to provide a safe route to the bottom of the shaft. Certainly it looked new, and showed no sign of coming loose at Gillet's tugging.

User avatar
Kai
Fighting the Iron Law of Oligarchy Since 2006
 
Posts: 2408
Joined: Thu Oct 28, 2004 12:32 pm
Location: Indianapolis

Unread postby Kai » Sun Apr 01, 2007 5:51 pm

Safiyeh put her hands back in her pockets as she observed the reactions of these gentlemen. The gnome seemed determined to avoid looking at her face, which could either be a sign of disgust or a respectful overreaction. He seemed to be backing out of the conversation, and deferring to the elf with whom she had spoken before.

The elf in particular seemed a little alarmed by her, but covered it well. His discomfort could also be attributed to the awkwardness of the situation itself. After all, he was being required to trust his safety and the safety of his allies to strangers. At the same time, he seemed wiling to allow the plan to remain unopposed.

She was moving on to appraise the other when Gillet announced that he was going to open and attempt to investigate the trapdoor.

If any of us have a good set of eyes, Safiyeh repeated to herself. His choice of words brought a little smile to her lips, but her eyesight was unlikely to be any better than his. She allowed Tristan to introduce himself, choosing not to break her silence again until it became necessary. She'd accomplished the goal they had decided upon, and now she was no longer really needed.

Tristan was making some bizarre and unnecessary comment about boating, and Safiyeh tried not to think too hard about it. She could have alerted him to the fact that she had already participated in more "boat trips" than nearly anybody she could name back home.

When Driscoll introduced himself, Safiyeh decided to do the same. This time when she spoke her accent retreated again to make her easier to understand. "My name is Safiyeh Kiyankadah," she said quietly to Driscoll as she approached him to watch Gillet as he investigated the entrance. "My friends have often called me Javid, and if that is more to your liking, you may do so as well. I know that my given name is a bit of a mouthful," she finished with a nod.

She looked up again to see Gillet making his way forward. She took a step toward him and noted that he didn't seem entirely pleased that Driscoll was being so commanding.

Two potential explanations. Either the elf is a bit pushy or demanding... and potentially impatient to boot... or the gnome somehow requires such treatment. No real way to determine it just yet.

Unsure of how to navigate in a party whose dynamics were still so uncertain, Safiyeh gave Gillet a grateful nod. "Gillet. Thank you for leading us forward." It was true. She was glad to be led by an expert, since in all likelihood she would have to follow them in last. She was simply too conspicuous to risk a more prominant position as they explored.

However, it was also true that Safiyeh was now in a tricky position. She had to prove herself to these people, and provided she was not overly ingratiating, it was better to be as considerate and reliable as possible to keep them all on good terms. She knew that her behavior reflected on her own allies, particularly since these men seemed--blessedly-- inclined to ignore anything Tristan said.

She looked back over her shoulder to Driscoll. She was curious about the elf to whom she had been speaking, and Driscoll had called him Orson. However, it was unlikely that her best avenue lay with Orson. She had already spoken enough with him, in a conversation somewhat tainted with suspicion. With Driscoll perhaps she would have a clean slate, and he seemed to be the one here who was... well, in short he was the one who seemed most like her.

She saw the way his eyes flicked over her and her comrades, and she knew what it meant. He was appraising them just as she was doing to him and his allies. If she made a mistake with him, he could be the most dangerous because he seemed best able to hide his speculations and intentions. However, if handled properly he could be her most useful ally in this group.

"I believe that I will have to be staying back until others have gone," she said to Driscoll. "If we are to be seen, it will be because of me, and if I walk behind I am less likely to... reveal the rest of you."

User avatar
Spleen
I put a BOMB inside EVERY BAD GUY!
 
Posts: 2625
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 5:07 pm
Location: Demon Realms of Niu-Jiurzi

Unread postby Spleen » Sun Apr 01, 2007 6:32 pm

Gillet glanced up from preparing to descend the shaft to look at the source of the kind words, forcing himself to look at her face and not her glowing eyes. "Happy to, ma'am," he said in slightly uncharacteristic gallantry and with a smile that looked maybe a little out-of-place on his serious countenance, flattered at the kind words to which he was not accustomed in his own group. Orson and Driscoll were good men in their own ways, but "their own ways" rarely involved giving Gillet any recognition. Not, as he told himself, that he craved any, of course.

Gillet drew one of his daggers from his belt, clenched it squarely between his teeth (for effect, possibly, or maybe because the last few fights saw him struggling to get his weapons off his belt), took the rope in both hands and swung his legs off the side. In a moment he was clambering carefully down the rope and into the darkness.

(Climb bonus +2, but that's enough to climb down a knotted rope with no check. I'm not expecting him to gain any advantage by drawing the dagger from his teeth, I just always wanted to have a character do that. Also, I can't wait for him to reach BAB +1 and finally be able to draw a weapon while moving 9_9)

User avatar
Kelne
EXTERMINATE!!!!
 
Posts: 3604
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 2:02 am
Location: New Zealand

Unread postby Kelne » Sun Apr 01, 2007 7:06 pm

Gillet reached the bottom of the shaft without incident, and was able to look around. There wasn't much to be seen, really. The opening was clearly an artificial tunnel, extending west for ten feet before taking a sharp turn to the right. So far, there was no sign of any light down here, nor could Gillet make out any notable sounds.

The air was damp, but certainly breathable.

User avatar
Spleen
I put a BOMB inside EVERY BAD GUY!
 
Posts: 2625
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 5:07 pm
Location: Demon Realms of Niu-Jiurzi

Unread postby Spleen » Sun Apr 01, 2007 7:44 pm

Gillet took the dagger from his mouth and sheathed it, choosing instead to unsheath his rapier in case he should have to fight. He stayed under the hole, peering up and waiting patiently and silently for Orson's descent.

User avatar
Archmage
REAL DOCTOR. FROM AMERICA.
 
Posts: 442
Joined: Mon Jan 08, 2007 10:43 pm
Location: Indianapolis, IN

Unread postby Archmage » Tue Apr 03, 2007 2:04 pm

"Driscoll, it is a pleasure to meet you, even if the circumstances of our meeting are a bit odd." The nobleman bowed his head slightly, observing as Gillet climbed down into the hole. It was evident that he expected another member of his original company to follow behind him before anyone else did. There appeared to be a rope, more or less designed to make it easy to climb down, and it was evident that this was some kind of impromptu smuggling outpost. "I'm afraid I don't have any brandy on my person at the moment, but now seems to be hardly the time. This..."

Tristan paused awkwardly, as though trying to decide whether or not he should really say the words in his head so readily. The answer seemed to be yes.

"...this...is an adventure," he noted with a satisfied nod, "and one cannot face danger as effectively when inebriated. In any case, my talents will serve us best if I bring up the rear." The nobleman hefted the unloaded crossbow attached to his belt and sighted down it experimentally. "And should we happen to need a light source, I can provide one."

User avatar
Nakibe
Lady Malix wills your demise!
 
Posts: 1214
Joined: Wed Apr 24, 2002 8:51 am

Unread postby Nakibe » Wed Apr 04, 2007 2:09 am

Orson looked at the rest of the assembled group, and shook his head. With luck things would go moderately poorly here, although his bets were on worse. "Meh. Ain't you got no manners," he enquired of his teammates. "Its supposed to be 'Ladies First'.... that is, assuming you don't mind, ma'am."

Orson was taking NO chances with these other people just in case. Sure, he was hoping to send the crazy eye-light Safiyeh down after Gillet, but the little sneak was clearly in his element down there. This way, he didn't leave Driscoll with someone that could potentially backstab him. Besides, he told himself, With some damn luck I'd be able to actually catch one of these assholes IF they try anything. Just 'cause they haven't done anything YET doesn't mean they won't. Caution bordering on paranoia like this seemed overboard even to Orson, sure. At this point, however, Orson thought it was better than the alternative. Damn scar never did fucking heal right...

User avatar
Kai
Fighting the Iron Law of Oligarchy Since 2006
 
Posts: 2408
Joined: Thu Oct 28, 2004 12:32 pm
Location: Indianapolis

Unread postby Kai » Wed Apr 04, 2007 8:47 pm

"As I said before, sir," she said, purposefully mimicking his half-serious honorific. "If you have any regard for delicacy or discretion, it would be best were I to stay in a more.... discreet position."

Her speculations were only destined to lead her in circles, as they so often did.

When we first spoke, his first concern was that I would interfere with him somehow. As long as our business was not related, he was content to leave me be. Now that we are walking together, he has somewhat more concern than he did before. Is it merely that more is at stake now should we prove untrustworthy? Or is it perhaps that his own business is so sensitive he now fears we'll have reason to stop him?

She didn't particularly appreciate having her words disregarded. That coupled with his use of the word "ma'am" suggested more than a little sarcasm behind his consideration. She decided to bait him just a bit. She wanted to know whether he was attempting to make a conversational swipe at her, and the best way to determine his tone was to match it and see how he responded.

Good experiment. Leave him with a remark that would match any potential snideness without being overtly rude. He couldn't rightly assume she was retaliating unless he already viewed the conversation as a battle of wills, a power struggle between potential enemies.

If indeed he saw it that way, he would understand the retort behind her words. If not... and he were merely suggesting a plan of action... it would be nothing more than a gracious refusal. With luck and a few skillful maneuvers, Safiyeh would not have to be any more aggressive than this.

"Perhaps it would be best for me to continue as I stated, and remain toward the rear of the group." She tilted her head and looked him straight in the eye as she spoke. "Unless you believe that I can light the way for you by walking ahead and watching the path," she finished with a smirk.

(Total sense motive of ten to figure out what the hell Orson's problem is.)

User avatar
Kelne
EXTERMINATE!!!!
 
Posts: 3604
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 2:02 am
Location: New Zealand

Unread postby Kelne » Wed Apr 04, 2007 8:58 pm

Kenner took this opportunity to speak up, "I'll head down and get the lantern lit. We're gonna need some kind of light down there, 'less we want to bang our noses into the wall every couple of steps. Sel? You mind sticking around up here, making sure we don't get any visitors while we're down there?"

At Sel's nod, Kenner lowered himself into the hole and started climbing down the rope. Gillet would soon find himself with a companion who was busying himself with a small hooded lantern.

User avatar
Spleen
I put a BOMB inside EVERY BAD GUY!
 
Posts: 2625
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 5:07 pm
Location: Demon Realms of Niu-Jiurzi

Unread postby Spleen » Wed Apr 04, 2007 9:25 pm

"Humans," Gillet groused under his breath. Then, at an audible whisper, to his new companion in the hole as soon as he was within range to hear: "Do me a favor and tell them I'm scouting ahead for a lay of the land, will you? Don't yell up to them, or it could be my ass."

NamagomiMk0
 
Posts: 1223
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 1:47 am

Unread postby NamagomiMk0 » Sat Apr 07, 2007 11:51 am

The mage turned to the other mage, responding, "I get your point about inebriation. However, I find 'adventure' to be a bit off for this excursion. As far as I am concerned, this is simply a job; if you must put it in more epic and "heroic" terms, perhaps 'quest' would be a suitable word."

Really, one couldn't say too much about whether or not it was an actual adventure that the two groups were going on. Given the similarities in stories, Safiyeh and Tristan were on something of their own. There was a very good chance, he thought, that they were both on a similar mission as his own group--out to kill someone. In Driscoll's case, it was to get at someone who had stolen his employer's money, and return said money; not quite anything epic as much as Tristan had made their endeavors out to be.

Driscoll then observed the situation. One of the thugs was to stay watch above, and another of them headed down. His competent teammate and one of his new allies bickering between each other, with clearly outward snarkiness--a bit of dislike? If anything, Orson was sacrificing common sense out of what may be dislike or distrust, and apparently Safiyeh had an issue or two with the fighter. Regardless, he knew that his spells were clearly strong enough to fell the average man in a clear shot; that was proven in the rumble on the ship.

As far as we know, we don't need this conflict; unpredictability may be nice, but only in the right circumstances, and to the right people. Best to keep the two separate anyway. Orson knows what my spells can do, and as such, I find myself doubting he would attack her unprovoked. However, I'd prefer this group lack such internal turbulence...

He then interrupted the spat, "I'd beg to differ, but it would be preferable if Safiyeh would stay in the back. She would end up compromising our position too much were she at the vanguard. The only real advantage that we notably have so far is that Vanthus is oblivious to our current presence on this island, to my knowledge, and I would prefer to keep that advantage at all costs. As such, I am with her in the opinion that she would be better off in the back."

The gray elf then looked over at Safiyeh's glowy-eyes; was there some sort of manalogical cause to it? He was, for lack of a better word, curious as to why they glowed; what kind of magic is this the result of, if any?

(Knowledge:Arcana check at a total of 20(4 ranks, +5 INT, 11 from roll) to find out what the fuck is making her eyes glow.)

User avatar
Kai
Fighting the Iron Law of Oligarchy Since 2006
 
Posts: 2408
Joined: Thu Oct 28, 2004 12:32 pm
Location: Indianapolis

Unread postby Kai » Sat Apr 07, 2007 12:36 pm

"I'd beg to differ, but it would be preferable if Safiyeh would stay in the back. She would end up compromising our position too much were she at the vanguard. The only real advantage that we notably have so far is that Vanthus is oblivious to our current presence on this island, to my knowledge, and I would prefer to keep that advantage at all costs. As such, I am with her in the opinion that she would be better off in the back."

She turned to answer him, and paused when she saw that he seemed to be directly addressing her.

To directly address such a statement to her suggests that he was purposefully and openly endorsing her judgment, and that he wanted her to know that's what he was doing. Why would he so openly support her in a disagreement with his own ally?

Perhaps he only wanted her to think that's what he was doing, which is why he looked at her as he spoke, plainly addressing the comment to her so that she could not possibly dismiss it.

What possible advantage was there to this? What did he gain by speaking this way that could not be gained another way?

Perhaps he was attempting to force her into a rapport with him in which she trusted him above the others. It would entitle him to priveleges above his allies: information, backup in a fight, financial resources, or even affection.

Perhaps there was mutual advantage. By allowing the elf to create the shallow threads of an alliance between them, he would have reason to continue supporting her, and she would be able to make similar demands upon him. All Safiyeh had to do was stay aware of his intentions and actions, and she would be able to gauge somewhat where his greatest advantage lay.

Go along, then. Friendliness wasn't hard, and would reward him for the effectiveness of his tactic.

But he wasn't just addressing her now, was he? He was studying her.

She smiled, genuinely amused for the first time in a couple of days. She tilted her chin up and chuckled a little up to the sky. "Hm. You know, Driscoll. Nobody ever really asks."

Safiyeh rolled her head to one side and looked back over to him. "You can. I am quite certain that you have noticed it by now."

(Driscoll would be able to tell that it's not a spell effect on her right now. She isn't, for example, walking around with True Seeing cast on her.)

User avatar
Nakibe
Lady Malix wills your demise!
 
Posts: 1214
Joined: Wed Apr 24, 2002 8:51 am

Unread postby Nakibe » Sat Apr 07, 2007 2:16 pm

Orson shrugs and makes his way down the trapdoor. With some luck, I'm just too damn paranoid or Driscoll can handle it. he thought, turning his attention towards Gillet and what presumably was the way to Vanthus. It probably was for the best that the issue not be pressed anyway. Even a fool could see that antagonizing the other party TOO much would be stupid. Might even get them killed. So Orson pressed on.

"See anything interesting down here?" he whispered to Gillet. It was time to get this show on the road, and hopefully no one would get themselves killed in the process.

(Assumed that Orson would make it down the rope, but eh. If it DOES matter, he's still got +4 to climb checks due to being HUUUUGE. Will edit if necessary.

Edit: Whoops. DO need a roll. With Armor penalty this is +0. >.<)

User avatar
Spleen
I put a BOMB inside EVERY BAD GUY!
 
Posts: 2625
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 5:07 pm
Location: Demon Realms of Niu-Jiurzi

Unread postby Spleen » Sat Apr 07, 2007 4:55 pm

"Not clear right now," Gillet said at a similar whisper. "While they're bickering, though, I think I'm going to have a proper look around; I don't need light to see down here, but I know elves and humans do, so I guess I'm the perfect scout for our little endeavor. I'll just go a little bit in, see if there are any crossroads or guards or anything we need to think about."

With that, the little gnome dipped a slight bow to Orson, pressed himself against the wall, and inched out into what, to Orson, would have been the barrier between light and darkness but was to Gillet just the border between color and monochrome.

(I believe I'm supposed to roll his Hide and MS checks when someone has a chance to see him, right? His Hide is +11, his Move Silently is +10.

Little annoying rule thing that's open to interpretation: He moves at half speed while hiding, and half speed while moving silently. How fast does he move when he's doing both?)

User avatar
Kelne
EXTERMINATE!!!!
 
Posts: 3604
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 2:02 am
Location: New Zealand

Unread postby Kelne » Sat Apr 07, 2007 6:36 pm

(We'll assume that they don't stack, so half normal speed overall.)

Gillet crept into the tunnel, and followed it around the corner. The tunnel took a turn to the left shortly thereafter, and looking forwards, Gillet could see that it took a turn to the right again up ahead. Still, the winding could only go on for so long. There was only so much space under Parrot Island, after all.

User avatar
Spleen
I put a BOMB inside EVERY BAD GUY!
 
Posts: 2625
Joined: Tue Apr 23, 2002 5:07 pm
Location: Demon Realms of Niu-Jiurzi

Unread postby Spleen » Sat Apr 07, 2007 8:57 pm

Gillet checked that the glint of his rapier wouldn't give him away if there was a light around the bend, and then looked closely at the wall facing perpendicular to the way he would go to see if there was any reflected light or anything on the wall that might indicate that he'd be facing a race that needed it soon.

PreviousNext

Return to Gaera Main RPs

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron

Yalogank