You trap and slaughter the creature, which is a peryton. Upstairs you find Higgins's heartless corpse. Over the next week, the men secure Redrill Castle. Congratulations! You level up and learn Magic Missile. Are you a student of Aedu College, which lets you cast it at will, or the Vancian Council, which lets you cast a more powerful missile once per day? or would you prefer a different spell?
Vancian Council, taught by the Great Murgen himself.
Aedu College, and I want to learn how to wield two implements simultaneously.
Argos activates the sword, and a pikeman flips the trapdoor open. Blood splashes down. With a weird bird-like cry, a stag-head lunges through the hatch, snapping red razor teeth and drooling blood on everyone. (DM rolls 1d20+2: 6!) The soldier jumps back. Argos steps forward and (DM rolls 1d20+2: 21!) (DM rolls 1d8+2: 10!) chops at the creature's neck, stunning it. Mandra (DM rolls 1d20: 16!) jumps up and clings, draining blood eagerly. (DM rolls 1d6: 4!)
Use the prepared spell Charm to confuse the creature and slow its reactions, while keeping the silver knife ready.
"Quick! While it's stunned, slam that trapdoor on its neck and hold it!"
"We left Higgins in the garden while we searched the castle," said a soldier. Mandra interrupts: "Fresh blood, top of the square tower." She courses off like a bloodhound. You follow her into the tower, up several ladders, past barracks and into a small workroom. There's a trapdoor in the ceiling. Blood is dripping from the cracks around the trapdoor.
Ask a pikeman to stand back and attempt to push (or pull) the trapdoor open with their pike, and for others to be ready to fight.
Option 1, and let Argos ready the sword.
(DM rolls 1d20+2: 17!) Argos says, "Mearls is right. I will not leave your side till the castle is secured." "I accept your service," says the princess. As they clasp hands, you hear distant shouting from upstairs. "A fight between our factions?" says Argos. You all race upstairs. Courtiers and soldiers are milling in the garden, weapons drawn. "I heard a scream!" says one. "Where is the sentry?" says another.
Shout "To the square Tower!"
Shout, "Where is that courtier we pantsed?"
To the Princess "Princess, stay behind me you are still gravely wounded..." To the panicked men "Calm yourselves friends, now quickly, where was the sentry posted?"
(DM rolls 1d20+2: 5!) Argos turns to the Princess with a twisted smile. "Will you take your jester's murderer as your liege man?" (DM rolls 1d20: 7!) The Princess frowns. "You seem an honorable soldier, but I cannot accept the oaths of the men who murdered the King." You try to charm them into working together in some other form and (DM rolls 1d20+2: 9!) get their grudging attention. "What do you have in mind?" asks Argos.
Princess, Argos... this castle is fine and strong and can be restored to its former glory. But fouler things than that monstorsity; that together you slew, oppose us. Only by working together can we hope to survive let alone revive the hopes we all have.
"Atone for the sins of your master by aiding my lady in reclaiming her kingdom. Then go your way with honor restored - and with rich reward."
"Argos, do your skills include juggling and good humor? I f you can do at least only one badly, we might have a position for you whilst your men rebuild this kingdom in exange for room and board and an opportunity to swear fealty in the name of our fallen king." " What say you princess?"
(DM rolls 1d20: 18!) You burn the arm with a torch, doing 1 point of damage but cleaning the wound. Esmarine is down to 1 HP. Meanwhile, Argos burns mushrooms. He uncovers a skeletal, ring-covered hand. "So. This fairy tale is true. I'm a relic of the past." He sits down. "What's left for me now? Turn mercenary? Turn bandit? Both professions I despise, but my duty now is to feed my men."
Argos this is not your fault, you can still provide for your men, with the combined wealth from the jewlery here we can buy a estate or have one built. If these grounds haven't been claimed then we can clear them and work towards building near here. I'm open to suggestions of course.
"His rings should pay for the food you need, in the short term. In the long term, you might consider working more closely with the Princess. In the meantime, can you tend her wounds?"
"I, Lady Mearls, court wizard of Redril, counsel you to swear fealty to Princess Esmarine, as I have done. My liege-lady will ensure that your needs are met." Use the Obi-Wan on him (or her) if this doesn't work.
Option three, and get some Sleep!
"He wore two handfuls of rings," says Lieutenant Argos. "I suppose they might survive a short fire. If you like, I will torch the mushrooms while you use your healing magic on the Princess. I can't treat this wound." The Princess's arm around the bite is covered with a green film that can't be wiped away.
Do a heal check on the arm and, if appropriate, use some fire magic on the wound.
"What do you know of wounds like these?" Have you seen this fungus before?
"I have no healing magic, perhaps your experience would serve her better. Surely you have tended to your men's wounds before." Start dealing with the mushrooms before he can protest...and get the rings for myself.
Perform healing check if possible (although no indication of this on char sheet?). If not, consider options for getting Princess into town where a healer or potions are available.
"Well done, Lieutenant," says Esmarine. As Argos examines her wound, he says, "Thank you, your Highness. This is Lord Crowther's sword. Drives an opponent to its knees. Chances are we've found my Lord." You carefully peer under mushrooms and see bones and coins. You won't be able to search fully without removing mushrooms.
"Does Lord Crowther have any distinguishing jewelry? Rings? A pendant? I'm afraid we may not be able to confirm much from his bones, unless he had something on the order of a missing finger."
"This vile fungus obscures our search, as well as endangering our lives. Let us destroy it." Pour oil all over all the mushrooms and light them with a torch.
The first option plus ask if any of it would be damaged by fire with the intention of using the oil and fire to remove the mushrooms.
You hurl the oil: (DM rolls 1d20: 9!) it goes wide. Argos leaps forward, swinging the golden blade (DM rolls 1d20+3: 20!) (DM rolls 1d8+3: 9!) and hits. The sword's golden glow is quenched as the green creature drops to its knees. It watches dully as Princess Esmarine steps forward and (DM rolls 1d20: 19!) lops off its head.
"You two work better as a team than as enemies." Carefully search the room, and ask Argos about the sword.
Tell Argos to keep watch in case any more enemies show up, then make sure that Esmarine's arm is not to badly hurt.
Do a heal check on Esmarine's arm, then throw the torch into the oil and close the door behind us.
"You two work better as a team than as enemies." Take a full turn to examine the room and collect valuables while avoiding mushrooms, etc. While examining the room do a knoweldge arcana check on that sword trying to not let Argos know you're interested. If he notices Obi-Wan him.
You're working on Magic Missile but haven't mastered it yet. You cast it as a cantrip for 1 damage, (DM rolls 1d20: 4!) and make no progress in learning it. Argos brandishes the sword and shouts "By this sword I rule!" The blade glows gold. The creature hisses with fetid breath at the Princess and (DM rolls 1d20: 13!) sinks its teeth into her sword arm (DM rolls 1d6: 6!). She (DM rolls 1d20: 18!) shakes her arm free, switching her sword to her left hand.
I don't think I want the Lieutenant taking possession of that magic sword, or the Princess being hurt. "Mortalus!" Take the sword from the Lieutenant. "By this sword I rule!" Step in front of the princess, holding the sword up.
Throw the flask of oil at the mushroom monster and swing a torch say it like a club.
No need to worry about who owns the sword now. We can always sort that out after combat, when I no longer need a meat shield. Cry "Protect the Princess!" and throw the flask of oil. If there's time, swing the torch.
Teleport to the right side of the princess and cram a flask of oil in the creatures mouth.
(DM rolls 1d6: 6!) "Let me see that," says Argos, taking the sword. As he examines it, the princess shouts, "Lieutenant!" There's a flicker of green-black motion and (DM rolls 1d20: 3!) a mushroom-mottled creature lunges from the well towards Argos. The princess (DM rolls 1d20: 17!) draws her rapier and halts the humanoid creature with a (DM rolls 1d6: 2!) shallow gash.
Check for motion from the other mounds. If they're stirring, Magic Missile the closest. Otherwise, Magic Missile the moving mushman.
Throw some oil on the creature, light it with your torch and teleport to the Princess.
Throw some oil on the mushroom and and light it.
Since we don't actually know the spell magic missile yet, use the oil on the mushroom creature and light it on fire.
Underneath the mushrooms, you can make out a skeleton. Gold and silver coins are spilling out of a rotting bag. You could collect a few dozen coins without breaking any mushrooms. You see a sword sticking out of another mushroom pile.
Better not look like a treasure-hunter in front of the lieutenant and the princess! Pick up a few of the more unusual-looking coins and the sword - gently! - and return to the lieutenant. "Do you recognize any of these?"
Pick up a gold and silver coin and toss them to the Princess. "Penny for your thoughts on these?." Then grab the sword from the other pile looking for initials or some kind of insignia of who might have been the owner.
Carefully take the coins and head over to investigate the sword.
Ignore the coins and the sword both. "Who do you suppose these people were, Princess?"
(DM rolls 1d6: 1!) When the tiny mushroom breaks, it sprays glistening green liquid a few inches. The rotting smell grows stronger.
Be careful not to step on the small mushrooms, head over to mound with coins near it and investigate.
Fireball another tiny mushroom
"Argos, Princess, watch out for the mushroom spray, I am certain it is unhealthy". Keep an eye on the well and poke the larger pile of mushrooms.
Spray the room with oil, toss in a torch, and slam the door closed. Let whatever's in there burn.
You open the door. There's a well in the middle of a round room. A bucket sits near the well. Tiny mushrooms cover the floor. Along the sides of the room are three mushroom-covered piles, roughly man-sized. In the torchlight, you see glinting coins near one of the piles.
Ask Mandra, "Could one of those shapes be Lord Crowther?" while eyeing up the coins. "We should probably investigate this room - but quietly!"
"My hazy memories of natural philosophy are that what we perceive as a field of mushrooms is often one huge organism." I poke a tiny mushroom near the door with a stick, covering my nose and mouth with my sleeve.
I pour some Oil on the doorstep, so I can easily light it up to contain whatever is in the room in flames, then I poke a tiny mushroom near the door with a stick.
I keep watch on the well out of the corner of my eye and poke the man-sized pile of mushrooms with a long pole.
(DM rolls 1d20: 12!) Mandra shrugs. "Smells like something dead but dreaming." You sniff. To you it just smells like rotting fruit.
Convince Argos to help you open the door. Position yourself so he makes line-of-sight with the next room first.
That has the flavor of something eldritch, monstrous, and possibly mind-shattering. "Let us see if we can find a pole, approximately 10 feet in length, and affix a lantern to the end. We should check this chamber, but first we should scout it from a position of relative safety."
"Giant fruit bats! Run!!!"
"Nothing we want to awaken, then." Caution the group to remain silent, then quietly open the door far enough to see whether Lord Crowther is inside.
"Gods, Argos!! What did you eat?" Tne I punch him square in the face! Uppity bastich.
How about I open the door, Argos throws some oil and the princess lights it with her necklace?
Subtle irony check: (DM rolls 1d20+2: 6!) Argos smirks and bows. "Her Highness is equally fortunate in her choice of a court wizard - who disdains riches just as much as I do." You ignore him and lead the way back to the closed, mushroom-covered door of the well room. "Who will open this door?" asks Argos. "To help her keep her vow of peace, I'd rather not turn my back on the princess."
"Mandra, you said it smelled 'bad' beyond this door. Can you elaborate any further? Have you ever smelled anything like it before?"
I punch Argos square in the face and tell him to eatch his tongue!
Can we all stop with the side comments. If it hasn't dawned on you both yet there is no point in fighting, your reasons for doing so are dust and you and the people still alive in this castle from your time are the only people who are going to care about those issues.
Magic Missile Argos, then say "who's your daddy, now?"
(DM rolls 1d20+2: 14!) Your words calm them for the moment. Argos opens the unlocked cells, revealing stacks of unfashionable old furniture. "Not worth a silver," he grumbles. The princess snaps, "Are you looking for your lord or cataloguing loot?" "Knowing Lord Crowther, he'll be with the greatest collection of loot," says Argos. He turns to you. "Which way, o guide? Forward, or back to the well room?"
Forward of course and don't get "uppity" with the Princess.
"Your lord is fortunate to have the loyalty of a man such as yourself," with a touch of irony. Lord Crowther doesn't seem particularly worthy. "Past here, time continued its ordinary flow; should Lord Crowther have gone this way, he would be dead of old age. Let us return to the well."
You are both part of a life altering event, neither of your groups have set up in this ruined castle so logic says they've both likely perished. We need to keep going forward to find information for both of you. There is no point in fighting, your reasons for doing so are dust.
You unlock the cell. On the floor is a skeleton wearing loose motley. The princess's face whitens. "Look, Argos! Our jester, Merrimac. Last night, my father threw him in the dungeon to sleep off his drunken insolence. No one fetched him for 60 years, because your traitor lord slaughtered my parents. You should join him in this cell, murderer!" Argos puts his hand on his sword. "Careful, Princess."
Step between them. "Lady, our lieutenant is bound to his lord by blood and honor. Your quarrel is with Lord Crowther, who has paid for his crime these many years since. Once we have satisfied Lieutenant Argos, we will see that Merrimac rests in peace."
Charm Argos so that he will apologize to the princess.
Put out a placating hand to the Princess. "Good sir," you say. "Surely you have seen enough to be convinced of the truth of our statements. The body of your Lord could be anywhere, or nowhere. But you must realize that the situation is as we say. Say now if you will assist or hinder us."
You take oil and move on. The passage goes east, then down a flight of stairs and west. You come to another wooden door. "The dungeon cells," says the Princess. Mandra sniffs. "No blood." Argos swings the door open and looks inside: it's a guardroom with five cell doors. A bunch of keys is hanging on the wall. Checking the doors, Argos finds that four are unlocked and one locked.
Grab the keys and unlock the locked cell.
Grab the keys and give them Argos.
Look inside the locked cell first.
Listen at the cell door, not all bad things have blood...
Grab the keys and listen at the locked cell door first. If nothing heard, attempt to unlock and carefully open.
"Bad blood," affirms Mandra. "Who would want a rat's memories?" Lieutenant Argos looks around: "While you're debating that important question, I'll take a few flasks of oil. I don't see Crowther in here: let's move on." There are lightable candelabras in the corners.
Collecting a few flasks of oil, move on to the next room.
on the way out light the candelabras
"A rat would remember if a monster was in this room. And some kinds of traps."
Collect two flasks, light candelabras and take one last look at the room, then move on to the next one.
Inside is a huge storeroom with eight vaulted chambers. Most of the chambers are filled with boxes and barrels. One chamber is filled with big clay jars, some broken. The floor around the jars is covered with oil. Rats scutter around the room, avoiding the torchlight.
If Lieutenant Argos is satisfied that Lord Crowther isn't here, close the door and move on to the next room. (But make a note of any interesting-looking boxes to check out sometime when the Lieutenant isn't around.)
"Oil on the floor. Careful with your torches." Looking around the room for lamps to light, I point to the rats. "Are these the blood not worth drinking?"
Take a jar of oil. "You never know when this might come in handy. Allright, let's keep looking." Move to the next room.
You head east. You came this way when you entered the hilltop palace: you remember that the passage continues east past two doors you didn't open, followed by a vertical shaft to climb down, then a natural cave system that leads outside. You come to the first door. "A little blood in there, but nothing worth drinking," says Mandra.
If we've got to prove to Lieutenant Argos that Lord Crowther is either dead or absent, there's no point in skipping rooms. Open the door.
"What kind of blood is not worth drinking?"
"We're off the map now," says the princess, "but east are the storage rooms, and I don't know what's west. North is the well, but I heard that it was closed for some reason." Argos returns from the north, holding a moldy piece of paper. "Smells bad up there. There's a closed door, with a sign pinned to it: 'The well is being repaired. In the meantime, fetch water from Redrill River.'"
Hmm in the interest of not being drowned without having some type of underwater breathing spell. Lets check the storage area first.
"Sounds like someone is trying to keep us out of there. Time to open up that door and see what's happening at the well."
You fasten the necklace on the Princess. "Great, now you're married," smirks Lieutenant Argos. "Let's go." You, Argos, Mandra, and the princess head to the dungeon intersection north of the pearl-dispensing king statue. East leads outside. The passage to the west is well-worn and free of dust. From the north wafts a faint odor of rot. Mandra sniffs. "North: blood and... something bad."
I gesture to the north. "After you, lieutenant."
Looking at the numbered map, ask the princess to point out our current location by the number of the room we're in and tell us what she remembers to be in the room or rooms in the directions available to us.
Ask Mandra if she'd be able to move forward sneakily and scout the northern passage and to return with any information she could gather.
Let's take some reinforcements and explore north.
Next morning you re-memorize spells and examine the ruby necklace. "A family jewel. Redrill's Heart," the princess tells you. "My father gave that to my mother when they were married. It shoots blasts of fire that never miss. Someone else needs to fasten the clasp on the back. And that person can always teleport to your side. Do you want one of us to put it on you?"
"Better, lady, that I always be able to come to you in your time of need. Nor would I take a family heirloom from you and your line. May I?" Fasten the necklace around her neck.
Yes princess that's a good idea the lieutenant should put it on me in case he needs to cover a great distance or finds himself exposed and needs to retreat to cover quickly.
You find Mandra in the garden, where everyone has been avoiding her nervously. "I never explored all of this castle," she says, "but I can smell blood - that is, living creatures. Besides those in the garden, there is a little blood downstairs. And there is much blood, much, in that tower." She points to a square tower to the east.
Pass along the information and ask the Lieutenant and Princess what they want to do.
let's scout out this bloodfilled tower! if it's too dangerous we can come back with a bigger party.
Suggest to guard the square tower and, after a good nights sleep (and an arcana check on the necklace) first explore downstairs.
To the Lieutenant: "Can you please help organize the survivors? We must all work together in these dire circumstances. Once organized, we can plan our next actions. What do we have for assets?"
"If we don't find my Lord alive, I swear that my men will leave the castle peacefully," says Lieutenant Argos. One of the Princess's rings flashes. "I trust your word," she says. Argos unrolls a map
of the castle. "We'll explore tomorrow. Where shall we start? Anywhere on this map, or in the dungeons, of which we have no map?"
"Perhaps Mandra, that tick-headed woman outside, can help us in our decision."
In private, so that Argos can't hear, ask the Princess what the ring flashing meant.
Briefly share where you've been, and suggest retracing the path the lieutenant took entering the castle.
(DM rolls 1d20+2: 16!) Lieutenant Argos turns over one of the skeletons. "One of our uniforms. Either you're telling the truth or you're a powerful illusionist." He turns to the princess. "Your Highness, I can't let you go free until I've found Lord Crowther. Will you both give your word to accompany me on my search? If, as I suspect, Crowther is dead, we will leave the castle peacefully."
"There is no living Lord Crowther," I say, remembering the tick-man's words. "But that does not mean his body lies here. Should we search the castle and not find his corpse, you may go to his estates - but you will go peacefully, and without the princess."
"Why don't you let one of your men guard the door of this tower, while I show you the remains of the King, as well as one of the Orcs I encountered here? You could also ask the tick-headed woman, who goes by the name of Mandra, about Lord Crowther."
"If you suspect it, time demands we not play at shadows. Your orders come from the Princess now. Do you abandon your fealty by refusing a Royal Command?"
The princess looks out the window, where the leader is muttering to another soldier. (DM rolls 1d20: 6!) "I don't know. Without a superior officer, he could join us, or turn bandit. I'll try to get a read on his character." He comes into the room, glancing casually at the skeletons on the floor. "Lieutenant Argos," he says, offering his hand. "Let's hear about these dire circumstances."
Shake his hand, and inform him of the year and what you know of world events that occurred while he was frozen.
"While this kingdom has been locked in time for 60 years, dangerous creatures have begun to populate its borders. Orcs, traps, and fouler things surround this place. I have explored some of it, and am willing to help guide all these chronological castaways out."
Present the crown, then tell him about your experiences on your way. And regain charm, just in case...
Tell him that if he needs proof of the year, he merely need look at the state of the castle around him, which has moldered during the years that they have been frozen, tell him of the dire MacGuffin that has threatened the land recently and that his battles are long forgotten.
(DM rolls 1d20+2: 14!) "You'll prove your words before we disarm ourselves," says the leader of the soldiers. "Down here, we outnumber you twenty to ten. I'm coming upstairs to parley with you, and you can prove your fairy tale. Agreed?" If you let him come upstairs, you'll have a minute before he arrives. You're in the room with the skeletons of the duchess and the two soldiers.
send the princess upstairs to the clockwork man to time-freeze Lord Marsden, and do an arcana ckeck on that necklace
Ask Esmarine: "If we can convince him of the current situation, what do you suspect he will demand? Do you fear for your safety?"
Charisma check: (DM rolls 1d20+2: 21!) Everyone turns to you. You hear them muttering, "Why is it winter?" "Why are we covered with snow?" "Where is the princess?" "Who is this naked woman with a tick head in our midst?" "Lord Marsden, when did your pants fall down?" A soldier yells, "Come down here and explain things, wizard. And bring the princess."
"First put down your weapons as a token of peace. You are enemies no more, but fellows thrown together by dire circumstances."
As you pull the pricess further into view,"The princess is safe, please stop your fighting and come inside so we can explain."
Option 1, plus, about how many soldiers of each side are there?
Send the princess upstairs to tell the clockwork man to time-freeze Lord Marsden, plus option 3
She takes the watch and touches you. "Consequences are inevitable - but not for you. Once a day, you may say my name - Mortalus - and the last choice you made will be undone." She disappears. You hear more shouting from outside - the soldiers and courtiers are alive again, and fighting. A loud voice yells: "The princess has disappeared!"
Run to the window overlooking the garden. "Stop your fighting at once! The Princess is safe, but because of the magic of the Clocktower your Lords have been dead for decades! You've no reason to fight!"
Tell the Princess about the courtier that tried to kill her and ask what she wants to do next.
Get to the clock tower and re-engage the 1/36,000,000th gear.
do an arcana check on the necklace and head up the clock tower
Search the bodies in the hiding place while talking with the princess to see what to do next. Stopping time again may bring Mortalus back so that may not be the best course of action.
"Choices exist, but consequences are inevitable. I see four choices for you: lose the watch and accept my boon. Keep the watch and accept my curse. Fight me, and I will defeat you. Or run, and I will follow you."
Press "some", hand over the watch, and accept the boon
Grab princess Esmarine, press "some", and hand the watch over.
"But the watch is not mine to give. It belongs to the princess, my liege-woman."
Enough of this. Just knock the hourglass off her head, make sure it shatters, and be done with her.
Ask, wether she wants the clocktower, too, and if the clockwork man is a relative of her.
Charisma check! (DM rolls 1d20+2: 17!) The clockwork woman laughs, a beautiful sound. "I will ever be Inevitable," she says, "and humans will ever seek to delay me. You have succeeded more than most. Give me that device willingly, and I will grant you a small boon of my choice."
Step forward and solemnly hand the watch over.
Drop to one knee before her. "Then accept this token of my respect gladly, Queen of Forever. May you smile upon me when next we meet."
Calmly ask "How does an Inevitable have a choice? What other choices do you have? Perhaps you are not as inevitable as your creators desired. Where does your will end, if it ends at all?"
Keep taking steps back until I reach the window. "I ... seem to have run out of options." Drop to one knee, humbly offering the watch. "Lady Time, I offer my fealty, forswearing all other obligations." Then when she bends to get it, grab her wrist and chuck her out the window. BOOYAH
The door opens and the clockwork woman enters. One hand is gripping her hourglass head to prevent it from being flipped. The other hand is reaching towards the watch in your hand. "I am inevitable and I will have the watch," she says. "Out the window? Into the dressing room?" suggests the princess, gesturing at a window and a door.
Tackle the clockwork woman, flipping her head and jamming it in a flipped position with the bent hoop.
I take a step back to keep the watch out of the clockwork woman's hands. "And have you considered what happens, then, to you? When you have the watch, and are no longer inevitable? Why not play this game of cat and mouse a little longer?"
Look out the window and jump if it isn't certain death. "Ladies first!"
Clamp both hands with the hoop to her head. "If you trip over - do you get a splitting headache?" and kick her against the next chair.
You slip through the door: the lock seems to be broken. You hide behind the door. Inside, there are three skeletons lying on the floor, two soldiers and one in a hoop skirt and a necklace. The furniture and the soldiers' clothes are charred. "That's her," whispers the princess, "my father's mistress. Duchess Devery. Looks like she died bravely." Clockwork ticking approaches.
Wait for the clockwork thing to open the door. Try flipping the hourglass again this time jamming the knife into it to get it to stick.
Take the necklace and loop it over both our wrists, to protect us both from the ensuing firebomb. When the Inevitable walks through the door, activate the necklace's power.
Grab the expensive necklace! Maybe it, uh, has a special magical power.
Take a hoop off the skirt and try to bend it to roughly the size of Lady Hourglasses "head" while hiding behind the door, then try to flip the hourglass again and block it with this ring.
Destroy the time device and grab the necklace.
The power to bend time is clearly intended for small doses. Grab the Princess and press "Some".
Your magic has no effect. You follow the princess down a concealed ladder, into the bedroom where the frozen king's ghost is taking off the corset of a frozen ghost duchess. "Grosssss," says the princess. You see no obvious mechanisms to break. You run into the hallway, where there are stairs going up and down, and a closed door across the hall. You hear clockwork ticking approaching.
"Do you know her?" Try if that door opens and hide beyond; if it keeps shut, go upstairs.
Go back into bedroom and look for something heavy to throw down the stairs. If that fails, hide somewhere in bedroom. Hopefully Sandy Clockwork will be just as distracted by the King, and not notice you.
"I take it that isn't your mum." Run up the stairs with the princess to where the clockwork workman is.
drop the 50 pounds of silverware on the bedroom floor and run outside into the hallway, waiting to see what happens next
Wow. That's awesome. (DM rolls 1d20: 12!) This monster has a touch AC of 11, so... You flip the hourglass. There's a chime, and the inevitable walks backwards out of the room. "In here!" The princess draws aside the cloth-of-gold-hanging and ducks through the concealed door. Another chime as the inevitable flips the hourglass and starts forward again, pointing at you.
Fire a magic missle at the hourglass woman and run through the hidden door with the princess breaking the mechanism to open it from the other side after its secure.
I duck under the cloth of gold hanging and into the hidden passage.
Let's try that again, but this time block the hourglass with that butter knife.
"Here it comes. The secret passage!" suggests the princess, gesturing at a wall hanging. The door opens, revealing a handsome woman made of gold clockwork. Instead of a head, she has an hourglass. Her voice rings like crystal: "You cannot escape me, in time or space. You may choose: destroy the watch or accept my curse." The princess whispers, "My dad chose the curse."
This watch is only of use in the confines of this kingdom, and I plan on having further, curse-less adventures. "Sadly, I believe destroying this watch is ultimately the safest choice."
Ask if I can press "some" first.
Move forward humbly (redirecting her attention to cover your movement). "I choose .... THIS!" Flip over the hourglass that forms her head so that the sand in it flows backward.
"It is clear that meddling in Time brings ill to those who tamper too much. I will destroy it - but only once I have saved as many of milady's subjects as ... time allows..."
"Very well, Lady. I will guard your room. Call out if you are in danger." She shuts the door of the king's bedroom behind her. Now a few hours of random monster checks: (DM rolls 1d6: 5!) (DM rolls 1d6: 5!) (DM rolls 1d6: 4!) (DM rolls 1d6: 1!) You're awakened, fully healed but without spells, by (DM rolls 1d6: 6!) the sudden chiming and tolling of all the frozen clocks in the room next door. The Princess slips in. "The Inevitable! My father feared it above all."
An Inevitable! I'm afraid we could not fight with a being of such power as we are. I may be able to convince it to hold off from our destruction momentarily, but we should prepare to return to the normal flow of time to avoid it's wrath for our flouting of the chronological laws.
Rewind that pocketwatch, grab the princess and press 'none' again.
Destroy the pocketwatch and prepare to face the inevitable.
"I believe that my duty as a queen is to save the few subjects I have left," says the princess. "If you wish to help me in this, then kneel." You kneel. She strikes you on the shoulder. "Arise Sir Mearls, court wizard of Redrill." As you struggle to your feet, she looks at you closely. "You're wounded! Can you defeat the soldiers in your state?"
Correct her, "Lady Mearls. Perhaps it would be best if I rest and recharge my spells."
Lady Mearls, please. Bearing arms I would be more than useless, but with Your father's watch, we have more than enough time to lay traps. Is there a weaponry around? And perhaps it would be good to take a rest, so my spells would be available, too.
Though I am visibly unsteady I say, "Have no fear, my lady, I stand ready to guard you against any foe."
I could use a rest. And perhaps a spot of tea... (And aren't I like 80 xp away from glorious 2nd level?...)
The princess looks stricken. "I had suspected as much. Then, since Father's clock tower magic only affects this garden, all my subjects are dead but a few lords and ladies. You are my only ally. What is my duty now: stay and punish Lord Crowther's men for their treason? Save my nobles? Leave this place and find out who rules my kingdom?"
As the rightful heir, only you can answer that question. But whatever you decide, I will do my best to aid your cause.
Think to yourself "or check out that bedroom again" and smile.
The burden is yours to decide, but I would punish not only Lord Crowther, but also that pantless traitor over there. Perhaps the tick-headed folk your father feared so much is the key...
By deed or by blood, I shall help you find who rules your kingdom and see to it that you are rightfully placed on the throne where you belong.
"It's the year 550." (That's 60 years ago.) "You're probably right, things were always going wrong with my father's experiments. He released tick-headed men in the castle. He aged twenty years in one night. He'd turn into a statue for months. Mostly because of that watch you're holding... which I recommend you destroy."
"But Princess, surely with this we could easily defeat all of Lord Crowther's men!"
"Princess, I hate to tell you this, but sixty years have slipped away while you slept. While your father and Lord Crowther fight, the world outside has forgotten them both. But no matter what happens now, you have a chance to start your life anew."
"I think the clocktower is a bigger version. Let's go see if we can figure this out in relative safety." And introduce her to Mandra
(DM rolls 1d6: 5!) "Mearls. A good name," she says. "My father's treacherous vassal Lord Crowther attacked this morning, perhaps thinking my father weakened by his bouts of chronolepsy. My father and our soldiers are defending the garden," she points west towards the rooms filled with bones, "but I fear for them. How did you get Father's watch? Have you seen him? Is he hurt?"
Your father is alive and has taken refuge in the treasury. We should join him immediately.
What year do you think it is? I think something went wrong with your father's experiments.
Your father went too sick to defend you further, but he left instructions. Do you know how the tower clock works?
Break the news. "everyone you know is dead" etc. Then get her in to town, this place isn't safe. Offer to buy her passage to nearest known relative or plate mail and a sword. Don't let her see Mearls trade the crown for cash.
(DM rolls 1d6: 5!) The princess races upstairs to the clock room, with you following. "Father? Are you in here?" She turns to you. "Is the king safe? What about Mother?" She stops herself. "But I am being rude. I am the Princess Esmarine of Redrill. How may I address my rescuer?"
My name is hard to pronounce in your tongue, please simply call me 'Mearls'. Now, will you tell me what happens here, who attacks this place?
Truth: Criswell Cogitus, wandering scholar and sage.
You could call me Ishmael Weisszahn.
I am Duke Scotmore of Mearls. Pleased to finally make your acquaintance.
Time stops for everyone but you and the princess. "You have my father's watch!" she says. "It's a dangerous artifact, but given the circumstances..." She puts her hand on yours. "Who are you? Were you send by my father or Lord Crowther?"
"Your father...in fact he meant for you to be my bride!"
Keep with the truth, and perhaps introduce her to Mandra too
Let's no bludgeon the princess with too man facts just yet. "neither sent me. But we are in danger, follow me!" take her to the tower clock room.
Your initiative: (DM rolls 1d20: 1!) Soldiers: (DM rolls 1d20: 13!) Courtiers: (DM rolls 1d20: 2!) As you take out your watch, a spearman thrusts at your unprotected chest. In a flash, your tick friend Mandra flashes in front of you to block the attack, (DM rolls 1d20: 11!) which misses anyway! The warrior screams in horror. (DM rolls 1d20: 6!) (DM rolls 1d20: 9!) Soldiers and courtiers fight inconclusively. So how exactly are you saving the princess now?
Get to the tower to re-engage the 1/36,000,000th gear.
Touch princess on the shoulder and then hit 'none' on the watch, freezing everyone but us. Then take her to safety.
Saving throw vs humiliation! (DM rolls 1d20: 2!) The fop's knee-breeches fall around his ankles, revealing, naturally, heart boxers. "What sorcery is this!" he shrieks, as he falls over. A dandy raises an eyebrow. "It appears we are to be punk'd before we are slaughtered." Then, the 20 soldiers charge the 10 courtiers, (DM rolls 1d20: 5!) but fail to kill any. Rapiers flash, (DM rolls 1d20: 3!) and clatter off the soldiers' armor.
Hit the pause button again.
Let's try to rescue the Princess with the "some"/"none" trick. Princesses are fabulously wealthy and prone to handing out rewards.
Hit the none button and try to remove the glowing ring from the foppish courtier and take away his rapier. Regardless, avoid any tick-men and get to the tower to re-engage the 1/36,000,000th gear.
Hit the pause button again and "punk" the soldiers this time.
You go down to the garden, (DM rolls 1d6: 6!) avoiding tick-men, but you see one passing a window on the south wall. You find that you can't disarm the fop. His frozen grip is like iron on his rapier. You see a chain shirt hidden beneath his fashionable velvets, and a faintly glowing ring on his finger.
Get behind the fop and hold your knife to his throat. Press 'some' and hiss, "Drop your sword, traitor!"
The old "tie his shoelaces together and unbuckle his belt/untie his laces" trick ought to work. Stand back and press "some."
Get behind him with knife to his throat. Press 'some' and cut his throat.
Press "some" and cut the fop's throat with the knife before quickly pressing "none." Then repeat this process with all of the hostile soldiers.
Take the glowing ring off the Fop's finger!
cut your sack to ropes and tie each two soldiers feet together, and maybe there are some picks you can place where the soldiers would fall. then care about that fop.
Everything freezes, including Mandra. (DM rolls 1d6: 5!) What next?
Move Mandra, and click the "none" button again while holding her hand. Pass it off as more divine powers if it wakes her up.
Go disarm the fop. Avoid tick-men.
Press "some" and keep waving your hand. Finish the wave by placing your hand on Mandra's shoulder and pressing "none" again.
Place that sack of silverware at the feet of the fop, then return to Mandra and awake her with the watch.
You re-start time. You hear warlike shouts from the garden. "Wakened sleepers!" shouts Mandra, and races to the balcony. "Look at this, they're moving!" As the courtiers prepare to die defending their princess, she points to a skulking fop. "I tasted him. He plans to betray his princess. Look how beautiful they all are when they move!"
"Yes, they are beautiful. And with a wave of my hand, I can make them stop again." Wave one hand while clicking on the none button on the watch which I have in my pocket.
Go save the princess by making sure the fop is in no position to do any betraying. "Mandra, do you know anything else about this fop?
Press the none button without holding onto Mandra. No sense shocking her with how her world will have changed. Then disarm the fop.
Mandra says, "If you do not wish to smite the priests, I suggest you become invisible. Or return to your divine realm. Taking me with you, because I have always wanted to see sublime wonders. Or summon Mortalus and defeat him. Or become a sleeper, and take me with you as a bodyguard. Or..." Mandra lists a dozen miracles you could probably fake if you were a higher level wizard.
"Come with me if you want to live." Hold her hand and push the some button on the watch.
"I am so sorry, but you could survive neither the divine realm nor the conversion to a Sleeper. I fear I must become one of them myself to learn anymore. Perhaps I will return in generations hence; thank you for your service." Press 'some' & hurry to the clock with my finger on 'none'.
I am a well known God in my pantheon, but I have never heard of nor encountered this Mortalus. Have you seen this divinity in person? The priests themselves may be mislead by rumors and myth. Perhaps we should challenge them to summon Mortalus himself, that I may parlay with him.
"The priests remember a watchmaker, a sleeping king from ancient days who awoke in this very garden. He tried to banish drinkers from his castle to grant his family immortality. When the priests are gathered, they plan to fight you. Your allies know nothing of this plot. You will be outnumbered."
Would you help me? Take that watch, press this (Lots) Button and directly after that (none).
We must forgive our enemies their ignorance. While it would be a simple thing to destroy them, I prefer to find another way to resolve this matter peacefully and without needless death. You know them, what would you suggest?
"I am a peaceful God unless provoked. I wish to speak to these priests and learn more of Mortalus."
You serve me well Mandra. How did he attempt to banish drinkers, and why did he fail?
Saving throw! (DM rolls 1d20: 5!) She falls to her knees. "Great one! Take your celestial regalia, and forgive your servant Mandra! I only wished to learn whether you were a god, as say your friends, or a demon, as say the priests of the Divine Mortalus! I had to learn now, while you slept, before you were overthrown."
"What mischief do the priests of the Divine Mortalus plot against me?"
"Where are these priests of the Divine Mortalus, and what are they planning?"
Explain to the tick the truth, that you are just a traveler who has been mistaken for a god. Ask her for her forgiveness for your deception, and ask her to help you. The best way to make allies is to be truthful!
"Mortalus? Divine? Hardly! A mere bugaboo. And the priests are charlatans. Tell me what you know of their plot and i will tell you how they will be dealt with."
Listen close my trusted one, I have uncovered a plot of the charlatans of Mortalus! They conspire to awaken the pike weilding sleepers. Gather the true believers, we must vanquish this foe before it arises!
So my priests wish to kill me? I was correct in coming here to destroy them...take me to them.
You give blood, listlessly accept orange juice and 300 GP in coins and jewels, and go to sleep again. Perception check: (DM rolls 1d20: 4!) You awake to find a tick woman with her hand on your neck. In her other hand she holds your pearl of power and pocketwatch. "A pearl protected your memories!" she says. "Now let me drink you and learn your divine mysteries." Your initiative: (DM rolls 1d20: 17!) Hers: (DM rolls 1d20+4: 6!)
Cast Charm Person. "My dear, thank you so much for returning my Pearl and Watch. Now let us away, and I will tell you the secret of the Gods."
Obi-Wan her that the crown did the protection and ram that knife in her mouth.
Cast Charm Person. "You poor fool. You think a mortal brain could contain the wisdom of a god without instant descent into madness? You presume to subvert the protections I put in place for your safety? Perhaps I have been too merciful with your people!"
ok, I'm not fully rested, my spells are spent - I have to disable her weapon (mouth). I'll go with Obi-Waning her and knife in mouth...
Convince her to push the "lots" button on the watch
The ticks rule that they'll give you gold in exchange for your blood. They line up with treasure: each will give you 100 GP of gold in exchange for 1 HP of blood. (You have 4 HP.) In this game, each GP of treasure gives you 1 XP; you need 1000 XP to get to level 2; and you have 580 XP so far, 380 from treasure and 200 from charming orcs and ticks. How many points of damage will you take?
3, then rest up and give them another 3 more. My generosity knows no bounds...
3 and leave. They might have other ideas for the rest of my blood. Time to do some research on the time piece and Lord Crowther.
3 then head up to the clocktower to disengage the 1/32 gear that the axe man corrected so I can press "some" on the watch and get away from these ticks and get on with my search.
3, but use the pearl to Charm the ticks into thinking I gave 5
Your friend (DM rolls 1d20: 13!) convinces gathering spectators that you are the "Blood God". A schism in the new church quickly forms over the competing doctrines "Blood for the Blood God!" and "Blood FROM the Blood God!" The ticks take a vote. It's extremely close, and your ballot is needed to break the tie. Thanks for voting in this, and other, important elections today!
Blood from the blood god!
Third party protest vote, Gold for the Blood God!
"It is clear you are not yet wise enough to be worthy of me! I shall depart, and join the sleepers. My divine blood will become mortal until I choose to return to a more worthy generation. Spread the word, tell your children's children to prepare!" Push "some", count to 20, and push "none"
Same as above, but make sure to hide behind a bush just after pushing "some" for when the soldiers come back to life!
You cast Disguise Self. (Since you just slept, your Charm is re-memorized.) "Your radiance! I will lead you to the gold!" The tick-man bows and then leads you downstairs, into the garden, where two more tick-men are feeding. "Who is this strange creature?" they ask, approaching to sniff you. "I can smell his blood but not his memories."
"Halt! You will pay your respect to the Lord of Dreams. I've come to learn of the memories of these Sleepers. Tell me what you know of this place."
Let the tick-man describe me in his own words, and bolster it with an mind-tricky "It is so." if the description seems favorable. If the description seems especially dangerous or poorly-taken, have that Charm ready to go!
"There is no living Lord Crowther." The tick-man leads you into a hall with a descending spiral staircase. Opposite is a half-open door with a hawk symbol. An old tick-headed woman emerges and makes a lunge for you. (DM rolls 1d20: 4!) Your friend shoos her away and hisses words ending with "god." He turns to you. "Lord, others may drink your holy blood unless you reveal your radiant presence."
Time to cast Light on myself
"You seem a worthy servant and I will not blind and deafen you by showing my true form. But perhaps the merest hint..." I cast Disguise Self and make my skin and eyes glow. And I guess add some gross tick mouthparts too.
"I clothe myself in this form for your protection. The sight of my true body would incinerate you." You said there is no living Lord Crowther... do you mean he is dead?
Blast somebody with Magic Missile!!
"I took only scraps - loose memories." The tick-man points to various people. "That soldier eating pease porridge in Lord Crowther's castle. The princess playing racquetball in this garden. That courtier standing in Lord Crowther's courtyard, telling a servant to summon his master. That courtier closing a trap door in his room over a pile of gold coins."
"Let us walk to the trap door while you tell me what you know of Lord Crowther."
"Are there other like me, who are not sleepers or feeders?"
"Can you take more that scraps of memories? Can you take all of a mans memory? For example, could you take all the memories from the men over there in the archway?"
"Maybe other eaters have taken different memories? Can you gather them together?"
"Interesting that one of the members of this court would wish to meet Lord Crowther. What more do you know of that man?"
The tick-man says, "I smell only the sleepers in the garden. Outside the castle, there are millions more. I have walked as far as a thousand miles to sample new blood." He explains that no "drinker" feeds twice on the same sleeper; each may thus last a billion generations. As for history, the drinkers steal a tiny memory each time they feed: "but of your life, lord, I can recall nothing."
Are there others like me, ones how aren't like you but aren't sleepers?
"Fascinating. And what memories have you stolen from the sleepers in the garden?"
Bring the tick-man to the King (on the second floor) and ask if he recognizes him.
Lead the tickman back to the ghostly tableau of the king and the noblewoman and ask the tickman if it has seen the noblewoman actual self (or body) elsewhere. I want that ruby necklace!
"Having drunk from many of the sleepers here, what can you tell me of what is heppening
"What a wonderful gift! To see things from so many veiw points, the stories you could tell. What can you tell me of the sleepers here and what memories of theirs can you tell?" As you talk lead him to the king.
Don't forget to rewind that clock, don't want to become a sleeper again...
Of course I raise the right eyebrow when saying "Fascinating"
You sleep in the king's bed for a few hours, with the tick man guarding your door, and recover your HP. When you awake, the tick man says, "What is your command, o lord?"
Send someone to gather all your people in the court yard so I may know them, and then tell me what you know about the area.
"Prove yourself a resourceful servant. Bring me an offering worthy of a god. And speak to none of your people of this, for I am a jealous master."
"I wish to tour the living spaces of the sleepers. Walk with me and tell me of your people. How many generations have you resided in these parts? Have you any leaders, or written history?"
The man cringes. "I meant no hurt. If you wish, you may drink from me." He proffers a red-veined wrist. "We wander the world and drink from sleepers. The sleepers live slow. During our lifespan, a sleeper might raise a cup to his lips. In that time, we will take a thousand drinks from him. Look." In the garden below, a white-veined, tick-faced woman drinks from a frozen soldier, then speeds off.
Fire a Magic Missle at the bastard and tell him that was for attacking me.
Although I am on the edge of dying, it seems a good plan to hide that in order to raise my god-like status. Let's instead try to find out how much tick-faces are out there; if they combine their efforts, they could drain the soldiers one by one...
Have his people tie up the soldiers
"I need not drink from you, instead you will gather your people and drink deeply from the soldiers in the garden until there is naught left to be consumed."
"I am here investigating the sleepers. Make sure no more of your people disturb me, my mercy grows short." After the tick-man leaves, rest to regain HP.
"You offer your mortal blood to me, a god?" Laugh deeply, and then smile. "The impudence of your offer amuses me. I will spare your life. Tell me more of your people."
You cast Charm. Saving throw: (DM rolls 1d20: 2!) The tick-headed man says, "What manner of creature are you? You look like a sleeper, but you walk, and your blood flows fast. When I bit you I drank a thousand meals at once." It wipes blood from its needle proboscis. "Are you a god?"
Bluff: "Yes, I am a god and you will pay for what you just did. Explain yourself and I may have mercy"
"I see you recognize me, I am Cyndor. I came here to investigate the irregularities in the flow of time. Can you explain what is going on here?"
"I am not a god, but I am one of their servants. My blood surges with divine power. If you taste of it again, its miraculous potency may overwhelm and consume you."
"I am sent by a god of the sleepers to investigate here, so refuse to invoke his fury. What can you tell me about the sleepers here?"
Obi-Wan him into skipping that question an telling you about him.
Initiative! You: (DM rolls 1d20: 2!) It: (DM rolls 1d20: 13!) You feel hot pain in the back of your neck. You take damage! (DM rolls 1d4: 2!) You have 2 HP left! You whirl, and you see something zipping out the door in fast motion. It pauses for a moment, crouched on the clock room windowsill, and looks back at you. It is a naked man, covered with red pulsing veins, with the alien face of a tick.
Jam on the LOTS button on my watch so I can keep up and then magic missile it
Try to inspect my wound with a mirror (or two if available). Was something... implanted?
Regain that charm person spell and use it on him, he could give a lot of answers.
Press the SOME button on the watch.
If he is in sight and range, use magic missle. Inspect the wound.
You flip through the book, which is the king's diary and work notes. "Diagram A shows the path of the pendulum..." "And then I fully enjoyed the Lady Isadora's charms..." "substituting a worm gear doubles the mechanical effect..." "I must never stop time again. The tick-headed men..." (DM rolls 1d6: 6!) Your arms are grabbed from behind. Something touches the back of your neck.
Pretend to go limp to give yourself time to assess the situation.
Hmm, does Ventriloquism have somatic components? If not, have a voice speak authoritatively (in an Obi-Wan fashion) from the doorway behind your assailant, "Let go of him!"
Turn around and see whats behind you before you do anything stupid
Obi-Wan the unseen assailant: "The last man who laid his hands upon me didn't have his hands for long, friend."
Use ventriloquism to distract the assailant, then headbutt him/her and slip free.
I happen to have prepared Magic Missile and I shoot it out of the back of my neck.
Attempt to free my hands and press "Some".
(DM rolls 1d6: 4!) Nothing behind you. You peer through the painting peep-holes - and see a pair of blue eyes staring past you. You go into the secret door, to find a narrow room with a ladder built into the wall. You climb up two floors, push aside a cloth-of-gold hanging in an open secret door, and find yourself in the acorn bedroom with the diary. Doors go to a dressing room, a staircase, and the clock room.
Let's explore the dressing room, maybe a disguise would become handy...
Check the diary for any information about the king's relationship with his daughter, his mistress, or Crowther.
Blue eyes staring past me? Like I saw someone looking back at me from the other side?
For fun, here's a map!
You climb back to the second floor of the clock tower. The king is frozen in time unlacing the back of the noblewoman's dress. Elsewhere in the room are two closed doors, a bed, a table covered with perfumes, on open secret door in the wall, and large portrait of an angel with a sword. (DM rolls 1d20: 19!)
It's one of those portraits where the eyes are peepholes.
Explore that secret door!
Do I remember a name for that angel?
Check with the watch to see if I am still being followed. If not, then look through the peep-holes and then explore through the secret door.
A map, eh? Can I embiggen it by looking around from up here?
(DM rolls 1d20: 2!) You're not from this area and don't know of a Crowther. You climb down the blade-sharp ivy (DM rolls 1d20: 13!), pass the frozen people and corpses, and, with difficulty, push open the west gold door. The foppish ghosts are frozen in time, kneeling around the orc's corpse, lapping up life energy. Beyond, you see a spiral staircase going up to a second-floor gallery, and a massive portcullis to the south.
Tell the GM you need to take a short break. Pretend to go outside to smoke, but when he goes to the toilet you rush inside and take a look at his notes.
What about the ghost king and noble woman?
Take all the Orc's treasure.
Climb the stairs. This is a good opportunity to explore safely.
Check if the pocket watch needs to be wound up - we don't want to leave this frozen state too early...
(On our way down the ivy, were the "adultry" ghosts frozen?) Is it possible to remove the weapons from Crowther's soldiers?
(DM rolls 1d6: 6!) You read. "Dawn, May 2. I write in haste. Lord Crowther's men are at the gates. My daughter is in the garden. I set the 1/36-mil gear to engage at 6. If we've won by then, I will disengage it. If we lose, it may preserve her (if in amber)." You keep an eye on your pocketwatch. For a split second, you think you see an insect face peering over your shoulder. (DM rolls 1d20: 7!) You whirl: nothing there.
Go back to the garden, slice every enemy soldier's throat and then restart time.
Let's see if we can find this gear...
Climb down and see if the ghosts are also frozen in time
Let's see if we can find some weapons to make this a trap for those soldiers, then search for that gear. Also keep that butter knife handy as a mirror.
Speak to the room "Whomever you are, I am here to help this person's daughter down there against Lord Crowther's men, please show yourself and tell me what you know!"
You know what would make me a fortune? The secrets of how to build a clock that can stop time. I take the diary with me, go back to the workshop and start searching for plans, diagrams, spellbooks...
History check: does the name Lord Crowther ring a bell?
(DM rolls 1d6: 1!) Everything is as hard as iron, from the ivy to the velvet door. With difficulty, you swing the door open, to reveal a luxurious bedroom with cloth-of-gold hangings. There is an open book on a table. Open doors lead to a dressing room and a stone room with a descending spiral staircase. In the unnatural stillness, you think you see motion behind you, but when you turn, there is nothing there.
Take a closer look at the book
Stay completely still for a moment and then rapidly turn around to try to catch whatever is behind you.
As I lean in to take a closer look at the book, I use the polished surface of the pocketwatch as a mirror to see what or who is behind me.
As you press the None button on your pocketwatch, all noises cease. The people in the courtyard stop moving, as does the big clock, the mechanical man, and a sparrow in flight. (DM rolls 1d6: 6!)
Well well, lets go find bindings for all the combatants we can find. Once they're all tied up we can start this thing back up and get some answers.
Let's keep scouting while *everything* is frozen.
Go inside the room with the clocks and search for any useful information and a weapon.
After a few minutes of clinking, you hear the mechanical man say "How did this one-thirty-six-millionth gear get engaged? There!" and the clock's massive second hand ticks once, then again. In the courtyard, snowy pikemen are surging forward in slow motion, and courtiers' rapiers are creeping out of scabbards. Ascending from inaudible bass, you hear shouts.
Shout to the man, "Re-engage the 1-thirty-six-millionth gear again!"
Pull out the watch and hit the none button!
Ask the man wether he can reverse the clock, as his king seems to be in danger.
Maybe the people are no longer like statues and their pockets can be searched. Climb back down into the garden.
Bluff check! (DM rolls 1d20+2: 17!) "Very good, sir! Stand outside while I put it to rights." The axe-faced mechanism waits for you to retreat back onto the balcony. Then it climbs a ladder, opens a ceiling trapdoor, and pulls itself half into a machine room filled with steampunkery. Besides the trapdoor, you also notice a velvet-covered door on the far side of the room.
When the clock is repaired head back to the garden and wait for something to happen.
Follow the clockwork man into the trapdoor.
Find somewhere to hide, perhaps there is an opportunity to sneak through the door.
Look out on the garden from the balcony, and see what happens when the clock is repaired.
Examine the room and the velvet-covered door.
You open the door to see a well-furnished workroom. The walls and workbench are covered with clocks in various stages of repair, and there are piles of small tools, gears, and springs. A clockwork man with an axe for a head approaches. "His majesty is unavailable. Please withdraw!"
Go get the crown and wear it.
Withdraw and take the hawk door; perhaps there I can find reinforcements...
"Good Sir! Well Met! It seems although the clock is stuck at a little after 6, can you fix it? I don't won't to be late for all my very important dates."
Reply with "That's what your mom said", and smite the clockwork man
Do an arcana check on the clockwork man while making some conversation.
You watch carefully; the tower's clock is stuck at a little after 6. (DM rolls 1d20+4: 18!) Its hands are made of electrum, a metal used by ancients for permanent magic effects. You sense a magic field directed at the garden below. After a minute, you hear a cacophany of chimes, bongs, and cuckoos from behind the acorn door.
Open the acorn door when the noise subsides.
Climb up there and get those electrum hands!
let's snoop around undisturbed a little more. take the hawk door.
Climb up and manually move the hands to a different time. Also, check whether the time on the clock relates to the time on the pocket watch.
(DM rolls 1d6: 5!) The left-door acorn decoration, which matches your crown, is much more dented and worn than the right-door hawk. Neither door has a lock or peephole. You listen at each door: behind the hawk door you hear nothing, and behind the acorn door you hear quiet clicking, ticking and whirring, like clockwork. (DM rolls 1d60: 59!)
Clockwork sounds! Open the acorn door.
Look if the hands of the clock overhead move. If they do, take the acorn door, otherwise do an arcana check on the clock.
Spend some time trying to chisel the gold off of the acorn and the hawk above the doors. Can't leave shiny stuff behind!
No sounds mean no clockwork, more likelihood of goodies. Open the hawk door.
(DM rolls 1d6: 2!) The necklace is a ruby set in gold, no acorn. The lady is saying, "But she'll see it!" "Wear it under your dress." The king's crown does have an acorn motif, and it looks the same as the one that's in your backpack right now. This room looks like a bedroom; the door is broken in and there is at least one skeleton on the floor.
Hmm little bit of royal adultery going on. Don't think I want to tangle with two ghosts with a butter knife. Lets keep climbing. Maybe I can find a journal or something.
Ghosts are like old movies, replaying old events. You can see them, but they can't see you. I'll climb into the room and visually inspect the skeleton.
Wear the crown, enter the room, and ask the ghost of the king where the treasury is.
Look closer at the lady. Does she appear in the garden below?
Lets not hang around on this ivy too long. I don't have big muscles nor am I very dexterous so falling to my death is a real possibility from falling. Up or off.
You hide the bag under a bush, keeping a silver breadknife (1d3) to defend yourself with. You pull yourself up the ivy. (DM rolls 1d20: 12!) As you pass a second floor window, you hear feminine giggling. Peeking in, you see a ghostly king standing behind a ghostly noblewoman, nuzzling and fastening on a necklace. Above you is another window, and above that is the balcony.
Keep climbing to the balcony
Pause to listen for any conversation.
Do i recognize any insignia on those figures?
Look for an acorn on the necklace, and eavesdrop in on the conversation.
You search the statues. You find that they're solid, like cold stone, and you can't search their pockets or take their weapons or jewels. But in your search you do see insignias: the nobles' jewelry have acorns, and the pikemen wear crossed axes on their uniforms. What do you know about those symbols? (DM rolls 1d20: 1!) Apparently nothing! I guess you're not from around here.
Go back to the frozen people and start to chipping away at the ice on one of the soldiers to see if they're actually frozen people. To avoid accidently killing the princess or anybody in her court
Levitate to the balcony and check out that clock.
Go quietly and carefully to the kitchen. Look for a weapon, a source of fire to burn the wooden tower door, and any loot the orcs missed. (snow from the garden can put the fire out.)
Hide the bag very cleverly and start climbing the ivy.
The tower is a clock tower, five floors tall. Below the big golden clock face is an ivied balcony. Below that are two floors with small windows, and on the ground floor is a small wooden door, which is locked. The ivy looks climbable if you leave behind your heavy bag of silver, and the door might be breakable.
Hide the bag under/inside a nearby bush, spit on your hands, and start climbing that ivy.
Grab all the pikes from the pikemen, bind them together with the silks, and then run at the door with the blunt end of my makeshift battering ram.
Grab all the pikes from the pikemen, bind them together with the silks, and do a highjump onto the balcony
cast levitation to move up to the balcony
Go to the kitchen and look for a weapon, but also get fire making materials and make a small fire to burn down the door. Bring enough water to put it out.
Search the frozen people for a key, starting with the princess.
I have a heavy bag of silver. Forget the clock tower, I'm off for the tavern. Peace out, bitches.
(DM rolls 1d20+4: 8!) The statues are unmoving, and they're incredibly lifelike. The princess looks angry, and the ladies in waiting and male courtiers look frightened. The invading soldiers have blood on their weapons. Everyone is covered with a layer of snow. You can't tell anything about the magic involved.
Start to chip away at the ice on one of the soldiers to see if they're actually frozen people. To avoid accidently killing the princess or anybody in her court.
See if there is a way into the tower - that might be a safe place to experiment with the watch, which I suspect has something to do with these figures.
Wrap some of the rotting silks around the Princess. Place the watch in her hand, and activate the "None" switch in an attempt to unfreeze her.
Put the watch in the hand of one of the ladies in waiting, and try pushing the "Some" button (in case something goes wrong, better not damage the richest person here)
Huh - Invading pikemen. Angry Princess. Watch that affects time. Broken None Button.. Since they all appear to be frozen at the same time, I can conclude that the freeze has a radius. And if I unfreeze the Princess, then the Pikemen could unfreeze as well... So which side am I on?
OK, the unexplored places in the dungeon, from near to far, are: gold door with ghosts behind it; a tower in the snowy garden; a kitchen area already looted by orcs; and, way back beyond a stone door, a clean passage west and a passage north with a rotting smell. You can also pass all of these and descend the long stairs that lead to the outside world.
Shout "TO THE TOWER!!!' and sashay over to it.
Do an arcana check on one of the frozen inhabitants in the snowy garden.
I've got over 380GP of loot. Time to return home!
Being without any type of weapon, head to the kitchen and see if a dagger or the like can be found to coup de grÃ¢ce our enchanted minions if the need arises. Also Orcs are stupid there's prolly still loot there.
Go back to fight the ghosts. It's the right thing to do!
You summon your arcane knowledge: (DM rolls 1d20+4: 24!) Crit! You recognize runes on the tiny gears. It seems that the watch alters the flow of time for you. You speculate that the None button stops time and the Lots button speeds it. Pressing None seems safe - but why did someone try to break off the button?
Throw open the door, run in, touch the ghostly servant girl and hit the none button stopping the phantoms...hopefully.
I'm gonna make sure I can work that button before I go charging in there...
Hit the button and yell "Time out" and have a Zack Morris-esque soliloquy with the fourth wall.
Think better of playing around with this dangerous watch and wander to somewhere more profitable, now that the orc is dealt with.
Put the watch in the hand of one of the soldiers and push the 'some' button again.
OK, you, a weak wizard, try to push a warrior orc. Let's see how that goes! (DM rolls 1d20: 16!) Pretty well, actually! As you slam the door, you hear the orc cry "White Fang! Traitor!" and try to bash the door open (DM rolls 1d20+2: 12!) vs. you (DM rolls 1d20: 15!) and fail. You hear a series of orcish grunts and the sounds of an axe swooshing through air, followed by an orcish "Aargh!"
Stand here against the door and think about how awesome that was. Just for a second. Then check out what happens when I push the 'Lots' button on the watch.
Dito, but I push the 'none' button.
I'll stand propped up against the door for a few minutes more to see if the orc or the ghosts make any more noise. In the meantime, I'll examine the watch a little closer. I'm scared to press "lots" What if it's "lots" of Bees or somethng? I hate Bees...
Before doing anything rash like sacrificing my meat shield, again, I do a knowledge aracana check on the pocket watch to see if I can identify it use and the functions of the buttons. After that I push the button that best applies to the situation. Otherwise hide behind a body and watch.
Go back to the snowy garden and try to find a new ally!
The orc opens the door. In a gilt chamber, four phantom fops are standing around and tormenting a ghostly servant girl. "Let us see if the minx is too shy to kiss me!" cries one, seizing her.
Push the orc in and shut the door.
Obi-Wan the fops on the importance of active consent and respecting the autonomy of all women.
Slam the door and hope a cleric shows up!
Shoot "Magic Missile" from a position hidden behind the orc at one phantom
"Waste of time, boys. I think she finds your advances...(adjusts glasses)...quite ghastly.
Obi-Wan the fops "This isn't the minx you're looking for! Go on!"
You wave the orc to silence. The laughing voices behind the door are saying "Look! She blushes!" Other business: the pocketwatch is already wound up and ticking, and when you hold the magic pearl, you feel that you could recall your spent Charm spell to your mind.
Open the door a crack and peer beyond.
Pound on the door and hide behind the Orc
Sounds like trouble. I broke my good sword on some elves a few rooms back, gots anything I can bash with?"
The speech above and silently try if the "none" button still works.
Say in Orcish, "Unless you brought friends with you, I think there's something or someone tasty beyond this door". Also keep the Pearl of Power hidden in your hand in case you need to recall the Charm Person spell you cast.
You put on some rotting silks and press the "Some" button on the pocketwatch. Nothing obvious happens. There are still occasional guffaws from beyond the gold door, and the orc is still chipping away loudly. He's got two of the six gems. (DM rolls 1d6: 5!)
Let's Detect some Magic on that pearl.
listen quietly at the gold door to determine who's talking and about what.
try to wind up the pocketwatch and press the "Some" button again.
"Hey, friend. Do you hear that noise?"
Bluff check! (DM rolls 1d20: 10!) This is a good time to ask: Obviously Int is your best attribute. What's your second best?
You hide the jewelry and crown. The skeleton is clutching a gold pocketwatch with exposed gemstone gears: ruby, emerald, amethyst, garnet. There are three diamond buttons, labeled "None", "Some", and "Lots". The "none" button is bent, like someone tried to break it off. You slip the watch free (DM rolls 1d20: 5!) but a fingerbone snaps. The orc turns around. "Let me see that!"
Hide the watch in the sleeve of my robe. "This fingerbone? I was going to chew on it a little, but you can have it if you want, boss."
"That is logical." The orc leads through a wide marble hall, clogged with about 25 dusty soldier statues, into a richly decorated antechamber, filled with (DM rolls 1d6: 4!) tapestries, benches and inanimate skeletons in rotting silks. A stone door to the north reads "Those who serve also serve" in Old Northern, and to the west is a gold door studded with green gems. The orc begins to pry out the gems.
Say to the Orc: "The writing over that door to the North says 'treasure chamber'."
Start to smash the skeletons before the animate!
Slowly step back ready to bolt out of the room and let the orc suffer what may come
Mosey over and unassumingly eyeball those well-dressed skeletons looking for non-degradables (jewelery, e.g.)
The orc gives you his loot: 50 pounds of silverware. Assuming orcs can tell silver from pewter, it's probably worth 250 GP. "We came from the feast hall," says the orc, gesturing east. "No gold. Let's go west through the doors in this garden." There are two western doors: a small one into a curtained and balconied clock tower, and a large one thronged with soldier statues.
Wait for orc to take one door, go through the other
Go through the Large door.
"Ok, let's go through the big door. You should go first since your tusks are yellower."
"I've seen gold in a room over there."
The winning orc finishes smashing the loser's head as you cast Charm. (DM rolls 1d20: 11!) The orc fails his save. "Hey! I like you, though your tusks are not yellow," says the orc. "I shall call you White Fang, and you shall be my pet." He hands you the dead orc's bag. "White Fang, carry this bag of silver for me."
Offer to carry both bags, as they look heavy
Wait for the orc to turn his back, then stab him.
Explain to orc that you are actually Baros white-fang, an exarch of Gruumsh, god of the orcs.
Seeing how the charm spell didn't exactly work the way I wanted it to, cast Magic Missle at the remaining Orc.
Charisma check! (DM rolls 1d20: 15!) You make orcish accusations like "Your bag of loot is heavier," "You stole those monogrammed cuff links," "your tusks are insufficiently yellow," and soon the orcs drop their bags on the ground and begin brawling.
Backstab each orc as they roll around on the floor
Rush to the aid of one of the orcs! I could use a henchman...
Unlimber my lute and play a magical bardish song of reconciliation...after taking off the cufflinks.
Wait for the last orc standing to charm being my henchman
In the snowy garden is a tableau of what look like wax figures: a crowned princess, ladies in waiting, and courtiers, all turning towards armored pikemen bursting through a door. Everything is in lifelike color, down to the angry flush on the princess's cheek. The orcs are losing interest and are arguing with each other. Fun fact: you know 2 level-1 spells. I'm not sure which!
Pull a Gandalf and trick the Orcs into fighting each other
Quietly cast Spiritual Hammer and send forth the hammer to attack the nearest Orc . Stay back and out of sight as much as possible.
Cast Charm Person on an orc. I could use a friend...
You pry out a garnet worth 50 GP. Five left in the door. (DM rolls 1d6: 4!) No wandering monsters so far, but you see two orcs wandering around in the garden, occasionally hitting the silent people (painted statues?) with their swords to no effect. The orcs have giant sacks on their backs. They haven't noticed you.
I withdraw in the room and examine the mirrors
Pocket the garnet and move to the side of the west entry and carefully get a better look at the garden area and silent people. Look for an opportunity to take out an Orc.
Toss a fireball into the snowy garden and fire the orc.
Cast ventriloquism spell on an aggrieved silent person/statue, insulting the Orc that hit it, its mother, and its stunted man-, err, Orc-hood.
Besides worthless orc weapons and leather, you find that the orc is wearing elegant coral-and-silver cuff links monogrammed "S". The pair might be worth 50 GP to someone whose name starts with S. From this room, you can go north (the way you came), west into a snowy garden that seems to contain silent people, or east through gemmed silver doors, now ajar. Beyond the door you see gold mirrors.
Wear cufflinks (My name starts with an S)
Pry the gems from the doors, then go through them.
Stealthily Saunter over to the Silent Snowy Somebodies
Pocket the cuff links and move to the side of the west entry and carefully peer into the garden area. Look to the snowy floor for any fresh footprints.
Pocket the cuff links, then try to unhinge the silver doors.
Go look in the golden mirrors. One must look their best when adventuring!
As you close the door, you hear orcs clomp up to the statue. There is a click of a door opening, a whoosh of fire, and an orcish scream followed by orcish laughter. Then a pause. Then more laughter, like they were reflecting back on how funny it was, and footsteps leaving the room (you can't tell what direction). You open the stone door. There is a charred orc corpse near the statue.
Examine my surroundings; slapping my head I didn't do that earlier.
Follow the surviving orcs after looting the corpse.
You kneel and pry open the tiny door. Flames gout harmlessly above you, and a magically lustrous pearl rolls into your hand. No time to examine it now. From a gemmed silver door to the east, you hear the grunts of approaching orcs. There's also an archway to the west, through which you see a snowy garden, and a stone door to the north.
Go through the stone door and block it behind me
Scratch in orcish "Tresur be herez!" above the eyes with arrows pointing towards the eye doors, and then make for the stone door and block it behind me.
Scratch in orcish "NO TREASUR BE HEREZ DO NOT OPEN TIL ME BACK" above the eyes, then make for the stone door and block it behind me
The inscription says "The divine Se'Caber II. Pearls of wisdom fall from his mouth, and his eyes flash righteous fire."
Tear off a strip of cloth from your cloak and blind the statue's eyes.
Block the eyes with my metal shield and hold my helmet under the mouth door
Kneel down below level of eye doors and then open the mouth door carefully
Put my ear to the mouth door and listen
The statue is a human wearing an imperial crown. Instead of eyes and a mouth, there are three little wooden doors. At the base of the statue is an inscription in Old Northern. If you're a wizard or cleric, you know the ancient language, and if you're a thief, you can search for traps. If you're a fighter, you can pry the doors open clumsily with your salami-like fingers. What do you do?
Apply salami-like fingers to doors
Use my paladin "Detect Evil"
Play beautiful music on my lute, hoping to attract nearby dungeon denizens who can help me out.
You stand at an intersection, with passages to the north, south, east, and west. You arrived here from the east. The passage to the west is well-worn and free of dust. From the north wafts a faint odor of rot. To the south, you see a stone door, half open. In the shadows beyond you can barely make out a statue. Which way do you go?